To everyone wanting to help End Software Patents,
2011 hasn’t even begun and we already have big challenges to work on:
- US Supreme Court to hear another software patent case: i4i v. Microsoft
- Canada’s Federal Court of Appeal to decide validity of Amazon’s 1-click shopping patent
- Legislation in Australia
- Legislation in New Zealand
- UK government’s review of patent law (by Prof Ian Hargreaves)
- ACTA – this will lead to changes in patent law in the 39 signatory countries – if ratification isn’t stopped
- …plus everything else that springs up during 2011
To work on these, ESP is asking for your financial support. By donating to ESP, you make our work possible.
As in 2010 and 2009, all of ESP’s work on these issues will be documented on the en.swpat.org wiki so that others can also work on these issues, either with ESP or independently.
2011: More details on what’s coming up
US Supreme Court: i4i v. Microsoft
Just months after the Bilski decision, the US Supreme Court has taken another software patent case. The i4i case touches important questions of judging novelty of software and of whether it’s right that courts assume the USPTO’s patents are valid, even in spite of evidence to the contrary. Removing this concession would transfer power away from the pro-software-patent USPTO.
Canadian court to decide 1-click
Called “Canada’s Bilski”, this case will directly tackle the question of which ideas are and aren’t patentable. Canada’s patent office ruled that 1-click shopping isn’t patentable. A first-instance federal court disagreed. The Federal Court of Appeal has agreed to hear the case.
Legislation in Australia and New Zealand
Track record, a look back on two year’s work
ESP submitted amicus briefs, with abundant references, for the Bilski court cases at the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court.
ESP was the first organisation to publish text versions of the leaks. We did this for the leaked texts of January and March 2010. This made it easier to read, search, and spread copies of the proposed treaty. It also showed the leakers that we appreciate their help and that we were grateful to be able to see the treaty that our governments were negotiating in secret.
The utility of ESP’s transcriptions inspired other organisations to transcribe the subsequent leaks, thus freeing up ESP’s resources to work on analysis of ACTA’s effects on patent risk to software distributors.
en.swpat.org documentation wiki
All research performed for ESP’s projects is documented on the en.swpat.org wiki. ESP has no interesting in keeping our knowlege secret – we want as many organisations as possible to also do this work!
By documenting all our research in a publicly-editable wiki, we enables others to work against software patents, with ESP or completely independently, now and in the future.