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Linux Journal: FTC to Probe IT Patents' Antitrust Effect

Nov 29, 2001, 11:19 (21 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Don Marti)

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Representatives of large corporations walk into a room and come out with an agreement that excludes small companies from competing with their technology. It is an illegal conspiracy in restraint of trade, an information technology standards organization...or both?

That's what the US Federal Trade Commission wants to find out. In a speech on November 15, Federal Trade Commission Chairman Timothy J. Muris announced hearings on "Competition and Intellectual Property Law and Policy in the Knowledge-Based Economy".

The agenda and list of speakers for the hearing have not yet been determined. (Since any patent on Batman's Batsignal must have expired by now, Linux Journal technical staff have been assigned the task of building a "Lessig Signal" to alert Prof. Lawrence Lessig.)"

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