Update of Software Patents Agenda

PILCH Hartmut phm at a2e.de
Mon May 21 06:39:01 UTC 2001

> > 	The EPC is only active in a given country *after* it's translated
> > 	 therefore the EPC does not enter in action immediately and
> > 	 countries can refuse to apply it, although it's very unlikely
> Yes, but:
> The situation is totally different for EU member countries. If the
> European Commission (backed by the EU parliament) puts out a new
> directive, then the member countries will *have to* make this national
> law as well. The EPC will - after that - be changed to reflect this
> situation (EU member countries cannot say they are against something
> which is their national law, so software patents will be allowed also by
> the EPC.... which will then probably influence non-EU countries as
> well).
> That's how I see it (correct me if I am wrong).

You are wrong.
The legal situation in the countries is exactly the same.
All have copy&pasted Art 52 EPC into their national laws.
There is no need of harmonisation.
The only problem is that leading courts such as those of the EPO have
disregarded the law or are interpreting it in a perverted and inconsistent
Since the people at the European Commission are lawyers and the EPC courts
are both an authority and the representative of their group interest,
they want to make sure that the practise of the EPC courts is observed by
all those national courts who currently still abide by the law or could
possibly be seduced to abide by it and defy the EPO.

That is why we should be against any attempt at an EC directive on this
subject, except perhaps one that restates the law as it stands and
explains why the EPC interpretation is wrong, such as


But even there it is not urgent for us to have such a directive.  A
parliamentary resolution in that direction would be enough.

Hartmut Pilch
Federation for a Free Information Infrastructure        http://www.ffii.org/
For a software patent free Europe PLEASE SIGN http://petition.eurolinux.org/

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