Red Hat's VP and assistant general counsel Rob Tiller writes
about the case for
software patents—or at least the case that is being put forth by proponents. He is responding to a recent blog post
by attorney Gene Quinn that, among other weak arguments, calls those who oppose software patents "ideological buffoons
". Tiller says: "Not everyone views it this way, of course. Those who are profiting from the existing system generally think that it works rather well. And they have some appealing-sounding arguments. For instance, they argue that patents encourage innovation by allowing lone inventors to pursue their ground-breaking dreams in the face of powerful corporations. This sort of story tends to excite emotions and hinder rational analysis. It ignores the rarity of inventors who work without significant collaboration, of inventions that are ground-breaking, and of patents that ever recover even the cost of the patent application. Dreams of getting a hugely successful patent are about as realistic as dreams of winning the lottery. Still, it's a nice, and understandable, dream.
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