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W3C Patent Policy: Latest News

The chairman of the W3C and three undisclosed participants made an exception proposal to bring back a type of RAND track/hybrid, allowing patented material into the W3C specifications.
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Open Source and Free Software representatives oppose

Posted Jul 9, 2002 23:28 UTC (Tue) by BrucePerens (guest, #2510) [Link]

Of course, the Open Source and free software representatives on the PPWG oppose inclusions of royalty-bearing patents in W3 standards. We've made that very clear, and will continue to do so at the meeting next week. W3 policy doesn't allow me to reveal who is behind the proposal, although you could guess, and the chair's participation doesn't necessarily mean he supports the proposal.



"Dark Cloud over the W3C" - show your opposition

Posted Jul 10, 2002 3:16 UTC (Wed) by DeletedUser2512 ((unknown), #2512) [Link]

FWIW, when the RAND thing first broke, I created a web page code snippet playing on the W3C "valid code" icons. It puts a "Dark Cloud" graphic over W3C's icons, and it links to a page that outlines the RAND issue.

Check it out here - use it if you have any pages that display the "Valid HTML" icons:

If you have any suggestions for the page, you can send them to me at:

lloyd001 at userfunded dot org

Or (maybe even better) - edit the page html and send me a copy so I can just post it.

Open Source and Free Software representatives oppose

Posted Jul 10, 2002 4:45 UTC (Wed) by tompoe (guest, #9) [Link]

Hi: Bruce, you've exemplified the phrase, "W3 Policy", with your obfuscation of the issues, and reference to "secrecy". If there's a policy you're referring to, you need to quote the section. If there's a policy that refers to Sponsors dictating the Calendar for the W3, you need to quote the section.

The W3 is a standards-making body. It is not a Cartel, promulgating worldwide standards. The line is clear, and the line is bright. You lose your job, if the sponsors withdraw their support. Face it. The time has come to look down and see the line in the sand. What are they going to do in response? Hire other lackies. A shame it's come to this.

Draw the line, Bruce. We'll support you all the way to the unemployment office. If I had money, I'd pay your salaries, no questions asked. But, only on condition you remove corporate sponsors after the first strike. They participate, until they claim a patent. If they don't do it within the agreed upon timeframe that permits the group to destroy the work done, and start from scratch, they waive their rights to any future patent claims. If they don't do their homework up front, and announce their patents entering the start of work, they waive their rights. This is easy, Bruce. Set the policy retroactive to 1990. The RIAA through CARP likes that. The CTEA likes that. H%$^, they went all the way back to 1922. What's wrong with you folks? You don't like retroactive, get off the pot crap?
Tom Poe
Reno, NV

Open Source and Free Software representatives oppose

Posted Jul 11, 2002 17:53 UTC (Thu) by BrucePerens (guest, #2510) [Link]

Hi Tom,

I pretty much agree with your sentiments, but if I were to state them that way, or run rough-shod in general with their internal rules, they wouldn't invite me to be on their committee and I would have less chance to influence them to do the right thing. I did get Larry Rosen of OSI on that committee as well, and Eben Moglen of FSF is there, too. We are all flying to Paris to meet with the rest of the W3C patent policy board next week. The fact that I am taking a entire weekend and much of a week away from my two-year-old indicates how seriously I take this.

There will be at least two more rounds of W3C patent policy draft release with calls for comments. If it turns out that the next draft is not acceptable, I will issue the "call to arms".




Posted Jul 11, 2002 18:06 UTC (Thu) by BrucePerens (guest, #2510) [Link]

The W3C process document is here. I am an invited expert, not a member representative, on the patent policy working group. So, you should be able to figure out the rules binding me while I'm an "insider". I am representing SPI, not HP, at W3C. HP is kind enough to give me an expense account and a salary to use in promoting Free Software. They understand that they can't tell me what to do, and that my opinions remain my own and can be publicly stated as such. So, I'm not in any danger of losing my job over this.


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