Thursday, July 29, 2004

Patent spending: How the net is being trade marked

This article by Mark Ward for the BBC highlights the problem concerning software patents. You would not think much about it but large firms frequently apply for broad patents which they can later use to sue small firms who infringe the patent.
For those who are against such patents, I urge you to visit the
Electronic Frontier Foundation Patent Busting Project. The project involves a campaign to root out the most broad patents or inventions that has prior art. This usually only concern the US patent office although Europe isn't safe yet. Earlier this year, France and Germany attempted to block reforms to the EC patent law from evolving adopting US style procedures - so its safe for now. Groklaw is a good place to read about patent laws although the blog site concerns mostly about the ongoing SCO Vs IBM case. Go IBM!
Some of those patented includes:
  • One-click online shopping
  • Online shopping carts
  • The hyperlink
  • Video streaming
  • Internationalising domain names
  • Pop-up windows
  • Targeted banner adverts
  • Paying with a credit card online
  • Framed browsing
  • Affiliate linking

Shocking isn't?

Source: BBC News

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