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The Register: Web standards schism "terrible" - W3C patent policy boss

Oct 02, 2001, 20:39 (30 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Andrew Orlowski)
"A web standards schism would be "a terrible thing", says the man at the centre of the firestorm over the blessing of royalty-bearing patents by the World Wide Web Consortium. Danny Weitzner is the head of the W3C's Patent Policy Working Group, and we caught up with him earlier today.

We raised the prospect of a breakaway after the ferocious reaction to the W3C's mooted RAND license. The suggestion that royalty-bearing licenses (RAND) should take their place alongside royalty-free licenses would make open source implementations difficult or impossible, say community luminaries. The public mailing list has drawn over a thousand critical comments since Saturday.

The nightmare scenario runs like this.

A company introduces a royalty-bearing technology under a RAND license, and it become a W3C-approved standard. The free software community decides not to pay the piper, and sets about creating a royalty-free and open alternative..."

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