software patents

By nature of our interests and where open source commonly intersects the law, we post a lot about patents in the Law channel on opensource.com. And it's been an interesting year for patents. In May, a verdict was delivered in favor of Red Hat and Novell in an infringement case based on bad software... Read more
0 comments Posted 30 Dec 2010 by Ruth Suehle (Red Hat) Feed
The U.S. Supreme Court recently agreed to hear an appeal regarding the evidentiary standard for invalidating patents. The case involves a judgment against Microsoft Corporation in favor of i4i Limited Partnership. If the Court accepts Microsoft's arguments, it could be good news for the FOSS... Read more
0 comments Posted 14 Dec 2010 by Mike Pavento Feed
The serious problem of proliferating bad software patents was not solved by the Supreme Court's Bilski decision, but now it's looking like it may be part of the solution. The early case law applying Bilski is much more encouraging than expected. The new Bilski test focuses on whether an... Read more
40 comments Posted 18 Nov 2010 by Rob Tiller (Red Hat) Feed
When the Supreme Court decided the Bilski case, it didn't speak directly to the issue of software patents.  But the Bilski majority  emphasized that abstract ideas are not patentable, and recognized that allowing patents for abstract ideas could hinder innovation.  Thus there's still room for... Read more
11 comments Posted 30 Sep 2010 by Rob Tiller (Red Hat) Feed
Eben Moglen's keynote address at LinuxCon last week, "Doing What it Takes: Current Legal Issues in Defending FOSS," called for a strategic shift in the free software movement. Moglen, the founding director of the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) and one of the principal drafters of the GPLv3,... Read more
2 comments Posted 19 Aug 2010 by Ruth Suehle (Red Hat) Feed
Recently the NZ govt announced that it was to remove software from the list of items that can be patented. This decision came after hectic lobbying from the open source community on one side and the proprietary vendors on the other side.
17 comments Posted 26 Jul 2010 by Venkatesh Hariharan (Venky) (Red Hat) Feed
The Supreme Court case of Bilski v Kappos was billed as a case over business methods, but at its core it was over an application for a patent on software, and the denial of that application sets a good example that may lead to the denial of other software patents.
1 comment Posted 13 Jul 2010 by Ben Klemens Feed
The Supreme Court finally issued a decision in the Bilski case today [PDF]. For those troubled by the problems surrounding software patents, the opinion will be disappointing, because it does not resolve those problems. But it would be a mistake to view the opinion as a victory for the proponents... Read more
5 comments Posted 28 Jun 2010 by Rob Tiller (Red Hat) Feed
One of the most important aspects of the recent trial victory for Red Hat and Novell was a finding that the asserted patent claims were invalid.  This meant that the jury was persuaded by clear and convincing evidence that the patents were improperly granted.  Getting to this decision involved... Read more
3 comments Posted 18 May 2010 by Rob Tiller (Red Hat) Feed
The jury verdict last Friday in favor of Red Hat and Novell in a case based on bad software patents owned by "non-practicing entities" is an important victory for the open source community.  Those in the business of acquiring bad software patents to coerce payments or bring lawsuits should be... Read more
81 comments Posted 3 May 2010 by Rob Tiller (Red Hat) Feed

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