Today is World Day Against Software Patents - Adventures in Switching to Linux

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Today is World Day Against Software Patents

September 24 is World Day Against Software Patents. Why are software patent so bad you ask? They are bad because they are being issued too freely for trivial ideas and then used as a tool by patent trolls for litigation. Instead of encouraging innovation as intended they are stifling innovation. Do you want to have a wish list on your website like everyone else? Too bad, you have to pay Channel Intelligence or worry about getting sued. Software patents let companies bully each other too with FUD like in this case with Microsoft and Linux. I think the threat of software patents to Linux and any developer really was best explained by Bruce Perens: "And you can never finish a patent search. The definitions are so broad, you can't ever be sure a company would or would not assert their patent on what you are doing." On one last note, there is the Open Invention Network which aims to make some of these patents royalty-free.

You can help fix the patent system. See what you can do.

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