Closed because of Software Patents

Today on Slashdot :

blueser writes “I went today to TUTOS homepage to check for a newer version, and I was surprised to see that the author replaced the homepage by a ‘Closed because of Software-Patents’ page, with a brief explanation.” Just one site? that’s hardly a big deal, but there’s more. maliabu writes “Knoppix is closed, apparently waiting for the European Parliament to decide about the legalisation and adoption of so-called ‘software patents’ in Europe.” And still more. SLbigE writes “The Wine HQ website has temporarily shut down its webpage in protest to a proposed law in Europe regarding Software Patents.” There’s many more sites as well, these were just the first I was alerted to, Feel free to note some more in comments. Looks like they’re doing a good job of illustrating what could be lost soon.

Knoppix is dead , Gimp is dead.

(sigh) It’s a fucked up world

my faith in europe took a big hit today :frowning:

Surely the great strength of the internet in the P2P era and open-source software development is that such OS distros etc etc will continue to be developed, distributed, and used unofficially ad infinitum, regardless of poncy Brussells legislation.

Originally posted by DryBaboon
Surely the great strength of the internet in the P2P era and open-source software development is that such OS distros etc etc will continue to be developed, distributed, and used unofficially ad infinitum, regardless of poncy Brussells legislation.

I seriously doubt that! Many of the open source developers respect the laws or don’t want to get into trouble with any companies.

Anyhow, this is a big hit for the open source world! There’s nothing wrong with patents, but I feel this is just idiotic… this could lead to the end of OSS as we know it. Pretty strange that the European parlament got this idea, as they are advising OSS to many companies.

Besides all this, as a software developer, I feel deeply insulted…

Originally posted by DryBaboon
Surely the great strength of the internet in the P2P era and open-source software development is that such OS distros etc etc will continue to be developed, distributed, and used unofficially ad infinitum, regardless of poncy Brussells legislation.

In fact , it could mean disastrous results for the same industries.

I mean , how easy is it to get illegal software / music / movies / whatever ? It’s brilliantly super easy !
The biggest morons can install Kazaa and with a little effort they get the software they want to.

Now , when you had open source projects , at least you had SOME alternatives to get your conscience in order.

You’d try some graphical program , then put on your halo , logged in to sourceforge.net or something similar and get a nice , free , open sourced program , (Example : The Gimp) that can be the beginning of a very nice future in graphical drawing/programming.

Íf the patent-trend keeps up… The Gimp will close down and all you can do is practise with Ms Paint … and if you want more… pay up HUGE BUCKS for professional products , or get it immensly easy , and illegal , using P2P such as Kazaa.

Same goes with the people who want to try out the Linux Operating System. Knoppix is an excellent way to check if your hardware is linux-ready. You don’t have to configure a single thing. Just pop in the cd-rom , let it boot and presto.

Luckily most distro’s are still free, but most of them require their own partitions.

If they kill the last open source and free project initiatives… the communities of illegal downloads will flourish and expand… a LOT.
Expect huge IRC / UseNet / Kazaa communities in the next few years.

Mr. Belvedere, you are totally right.

After reading your post, I did some thinking and concluded that this can have a huge economical impact on the long term, apart from the obvious struggles. If OSS wouldn’t be developed anymore, a lot of knowledge would get “lost”, resulting in a immensive strong backdraft concerning IT technical knowlegde between non-proffesionals. That’s not good for business I think…

I’m really anxious to know if this bill will be accepted…

As found on Slashdot :

The European Parliament has delayed voting on a controversial software-patents directive, following protests and criticism by computer scientists and economists.
The vote, originally planned for Monday, will now take place at a plenary session starting Sept. 22.

Software patents have been likened to allowing a monopoly on the ideas behind stories, and opponents of the proposed Directive on the Patentability of Computer-Implemented Inventions claim it would effectively allow unlimited software patents. In the United States, large companies acquire arsenals of patents that they use to protect themselves from upstart competition.

The directive, drafted by Labor Member of European Parliament Arlene McCarthy, has generated political opposition from the Greens and the European Socialist Party (PSE), among others. The German and French socialist parties are using the delay as an opportunity to raise MEPs’ awareness of the issues surrounding software patents ahead of the late-September plenary session.

A demonstration last week in Brussels, Belgium, that attracted more than 400 participants was organized by the Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) and Eurolinux, among other groups, which also persuaded several hundred Web sites to black out their front pages in protest.

A June vote on the proposal was put back amid criticism by MEPs that the legislation would institute a U.S.-style patent atmosphere that would be detrimental to European small businesses and open-source software developers.

The proposed software-patenting legislation is the result of a European Commission effort to clarify patenting rules as they apply to “computer-implemented inventions,” a term that can be taken to include software. The patent offices of different EU member states currently have different criteria for accepting the validity of software-related patents, which is a situation that the Commission’s proposal aims to remedy.

MEP McCarthy said in a June analysis of the proposed directive that there were links between the patentability of computer-related inventions and the growth of IT industries in the United States. Such patents aided “in particular the growth of small and medium enterprises and independent software developers,” she wrote, citing a study on the issue carried out for the European Parliament by London’s Intellectual Property Institute.

But in a recent letter criticizing the directive, a group of economists poured scorn on any notion that software patents and business growth are connected, saying most economic research does not support this claim. They argued that the directive in its current form would “have serious detrimental effects on European innovation, growth, and competitiveness.”


Let’s analyse this text , shall i ? Note : Do not read this if you fail to spot irony , mockery and stupdiness. Go away… nothing to see here. Don’t say i warned you. Second of all… notice the “i” ? Yes … me … I … me . personal. Let’s type that again … p-e-r-s-o-n-a-l. Gettit ? Good.

following protests and criticism by computer scientists and economists

W00T ! People actually listen to some reason ! I’m deeply proud.

In the United States, large companies acquire arsenals of patents that they use to protect themselves from upstart competition.

“Protect themselves from upstart competition” : WTF !?

Are they so scared someone could come up with a better product ? That’s called healthy competition and company risk !
It’s only software people … it’s not like kill people with it , go to war and get rid … oh wait … nevermind …

The proposed software-patenting legislation is the result of a European Commission effort to clarify patenting rules as they apply to “computer-implemented inventions,”

Clarify … really … I get it now… It has nothing to do with money and/or protecting your rights. It’s because of clarification.

that there were links between the patentability of computer-related inventions and the growth of IT industries in the United States

We gotta keep this guy… He has the powers of common sense.
I wonder how much time it took him to figure it out ?

the directive in its current form would “have serious detrimental effects on European innovation, growth, and competitiveness.”

I’m impressed. Really… i am… No wait… it’s impression… it’s amazement.

Does it show i dislike authorities ? :bigsmile:

Just saw this and remembered this thread

New Gimp released - 1.3.20

http://www.gimp.org/download.html

Suprising that nobody have noticed that the parliment voted decisevly against the software patent. A big wohoo for this!

Forgot this thread, but you are totally right Airhead

I did notice… and I am very happy about it. I kind of use a lot of free software… :slight_smile: