It's even worse than it appears.
Saturday December 4, 2021; 10:39 AM EST
  • I had a radical idea about patents many years ago, when they were starting to spoil the software world.#
  • The idea -- open source patents.#
  • Develop something new. Document it, have it evaluated by a panel of experts. If it's new you get a "patent". #
  • The ersatz patent does a few things.#
    • It prevents Google or Apple from patenting it. #
    • It gives the inventor proper credit for their work.#
    • It makes the idea useful to other software devs because it isn't just some random feature ready to be patented by Microsoft or Amazon.#
    • You can find out if something you did really is unique or if someone did it 25 years earlier (this has happened to me, I thought I had invented outlining until I read Ted Nelson's book and leared about Doug Engelbart).#
    • It's good publicity, giving people an incentive to participate. #
  • Unlike non-open patents, everyone is free to use the idea for free. However they can't claim that they invented it. It's like Creative Commons for patents. #
  • I must not have been very good at explaining it, I thought it was something my friends at Harvard Law School would help with, but we're still stuck in this horrible situation where inventors of new ideas are forced to put up gates to simply get credit for their work. I'm never willing to do this myself, so I've seen many of my works being ignored or even undermined (notably podcasting by the f'ing EFF) or patented by IBM or Salesforce.#

copyright 1994-2021 Dave Winer.

Last update: Saturday December 4, 2021; 9:07 PM EST.

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