Call

World Day Against Software Patents (24 Sep 2008)

You want to get your software association, software company, software consultancy, software project involved in the 24 September World Day Against Software Patents and are able to speak in the name of your organisation? Please give us your contact data below. Your organisation gets the opportunity to be listed as a supporter for the announcement of the World Day Against Software Patents. Deadline to endorse this call is Monday 1st September @ 20:00 Paris hour.

Considering the following:

  1. The issue of software patents is a global one, and several governments and patent offices around the world continue to grant software & business method patents on a daily basis; they are pushing for legal codification of the practice, such as currently in New Zealand and India, and via the misappropriation of Free Trade Agreement instruments;
  2. Previous initiatives as the Noepatents.org petition (approx. 400 000) at the EU level are outdated (notably on the issues of the central EU patent court) and not open for signatures anymore.
  3. Companies still view software patents as assets. They have yet to understand that software patents should also be considered liabilities, especially if they are in the hands of trolls.
  4. Time is on our side as litigation gets spread wide: Markets learn the hard way that you may not leave reform to patent professionals. Patent litigation is becoming wide spread in key markets such as the financial sector, and will be more wide spread in the software sector in the forthcoming years due to the number of applications pending;
  5. The United States needs a larger coalition of business and civil society against software patents
  • The lobby gap makes Congress and Senate, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) and the Supreme Court susceptible to lobbying from patent industries, holders and patent professionals. American software developers have been intimidated by the patent establishment and should make themselves heard.
  • Companies affected by software patent litigation have been lobbying for reform, but their advocacy for "quality" and "lower damages" aims at symptoms rather than the roots of the problem.

For these reasons,

We declare the 24 September as the World Day Against Software Patents, in commemoration of the European Parliament First Reading in 2003 with amendments stopping the harmful patenting of software, guaranteeing that software programmers and businesses can safely benefit from the fruits of their work under copyright law.

A Global Petition will be launched which asks to stop software patents, with some localised versions of the petition for specific regions, such as New Zealand, India, United States and Europe. The public will be invited to comment on the draft between the 1st and the 23rd September.

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Milestones

What to do that day?

  1. Sign the Worldwide petition against software patents (in preparation)
  2. Burn a candlelight in memory of freedom and upload it to a website
  3. Start to create a coalition of businesses and citizens in your country
  4. Participate in a group picture happening with StopSoftwarePatents t-shirts in front of your patent office
  5. Ask your National Patent Office to list of software patents granted in your country
  6. Complain to your Member of Parliament if you cannot get this list
  7. Close your frontpage and display a banner similar to AK Vorrat banner (example of a website)

Regional action

  1. India: Recent hot debate that requires your participation
  2. Europe: EU-EPLA and software patents legalised via a European central court
  3. New Zealand: new law proposal being discussed in Parliament
  4. United States: Ask McCain and Obama some precise questions

Discuss

  • Webchat here (server: irc.freenode.net channel: #stopsoftwarepatents)
  • Join the mailing-list here (coming very soon)

Latest Software Patent News

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About

For any questions related to this initiative, please contact Benjamin Henrion <gro.vedu|hb#gro.vedu|hb> Mobile: +32-484-566109 Fixed line: +32-2-4148403

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