question about software patents (sandisk/sisvel)

Xavi Drudis Ferran xdrudis at
Wed Sep 6 12:56:42 UTC 2006

> "Hanno Böck" <ml at> writes:
>> - Is this one of the "epa gives sw-patents although they're not
>> allowed"-case?
> Probably.  What we achieved in July 2005 did not change the EPO's
> practice.
> We didn't really "win", we just scared them off.  Now the software patents
> problem is coming back in a different form this Winter:

I disagree. We won. It's just that winning a battle or even a war
does not imply you can sleep on laurels. The attacks keep coming.
That was a hostile force trying to take over a part of our law.
We were the defenders and we kept the law intact, the attackers
were forced to flee our land. Simply because we didn't slain them
all doesn't mean that we didn't win. We have to keep watch, but
we would have to anyway, whatever the outcome would have been.

Now sorry for the belicist metaphor, but I think saying we didn't
win it's simply giving the pro-swpat field too much credit. They
did the only thing they could do after we proved them wrong to
legislators. And they've been forced to take less easy ways to
their goals. We still have to stop them in those ways, and it's
no easy task, but thinking we lost once does not help. We lost in
the IPRED, in privacity, in DRMs, in so many laws so many times.
But this time we won. We learnt much and we showed others we are
right and may prevail. Maybe if we hadn't won we would have less
reason to keep working.

When we started our campaign in March 2002 (we=CALIU, I know there were
groups that had been active much earlier) we asked for rejection of the
directive. And that's what we got in the end. I call that success.

Proposing better legislation that we currently have was no original goal,
but was done as a constructive answer to legislators and deision makers.
We don't really need better law (it is not hard to envision better
legislation that we have, but the one we have suffices and there are
many worse law in many other areas). Our problems
are in unaccountability, democratic deficits, imbalances of interests,
widespread ignorance and maybe money to be had by some if the weak defences
of public interest can be undermined.  No small threat, but no reason
to think we didn't win if looking in perspective.

So we didn't win eternal peace, but still we won. Damn it, we won and
you should know it since you worked so hard for it.

I'm not saying it because it is required partisan marketing to say always
you won whatever it happens (like after elections), I'm saying
it honestly because I think it is difficult to achive continued successes
if we don't recognize one when you get it. Just as difficult as surviving
with just one success.

More information about the Discussion mailing list