---

Eurolinux Alliance delegation meets European Union legislators

[ Linux Today reader Stefane Fermigier writes: ]

“A delegation of european industry leaders headed by J-P Smets
and sponsored by the Eurolinux
Alliance
corporate members has met on october 15th
representatives of the European Commission (DG XV) to share views
about a possible modification of the article 52.2 of the Munchen
Convention that would allow software patents in Europe.

Complete
(and unofficial) minutes of the meeting
are available on the
Eurolinux Web site.

Unfortunatly, the DG XV doesn’t seem to get the concept that
computer programs are more like books than like hardware
inventions, as they may never have come into contact with real
computer programs, but only with shrink-wrapped software packages
sold in computer shops, where, for marketing purposes, software is
dressed up like hardware. They also have expressed the opinion that
“it is very unlikely that the EU can do anything that will be
imitated by the US, because in general the EU lags a few years
behind the US.”

Eurolinux’ opinion that software patents are bad for competition
and inovation in the IT industry is shared by many, like Jamal
Labed (president of BSA (Business Software Alliance) France),
Roland Dyrof (SuSE), Paolo Didone (Prosa Linux), Ralf Schoebel
(Intradat), Tatu Ylönen (SSH), Ismael Ghalimi (ExOffice),
Frank Hoen (NetPresenter), Jean Ferré (ARISEM), Haavard Nord
(Troll Tech), Tim Berners-Lee (W3C), Richard Stallman (FSF), Bruce
Alberts (President of the US National Academy of Sciences), Linus
Torvalds (Linux), Michael Widenius (MySQL), Infomatec, Linbox, ISOC
France, AFUL, FFII, Linux-Verband, and by more than 10000
individuals who signed FFII’s open letter to the EU
Competition Commissioner
.

More info:

  • The Eurolinux Alliance,
    whose goal is to promote a free information infrastructure in order
    to garantee optimal economic conditions for free competition,
    innovation and technology diffusion in the IT industry.
  • The FreePatents.org
    website
    , dedicated to the protection of innovation, competition
    and open source software against the use and abuse of software
    patents.
  • AFUL, the french-speaking
    Linux and free software users association.
  • FFII, the
    Association for the Promotion of a Free Informational
    Infrastructure.
  • IICBS (Italy).”