[ffii] EuroParliament to exclude Free Software with patents and FRAND

Office FFII e.V. office at ffii.org
Fri Feb 17 17:06:08 CET 2012


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EuroParliament to exclude Free Software with patents and FRAND
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Brussels, 17 Feb 2012 -- The European Parliament Consumer Committee is on
the verge to reform the standardisation process in Europe. The reform
recognises the payment of royalties (FRAND) over software specifications
which discriminate Free Software implementations.

Benjamin Henrion, president of the association complains: "The payment of
royalties makes it impossible to distribute free software on the web. It
creates an enormous barrier of entry for small companies and independent
developers. Authors of the software VideoLAN have been previously
threatened by patent holders because they implemented an ETSI standard for
a video decoder."

The reform recognises digital specifications which are licensed under
"fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms and conditions" (FRAND).

Henrion continues: "Even consortia like ECMA refuse to define what the
RAND term means, because it simply does not mean anything. It is a shame
that lawmakers use a term that has no clear definition."

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Links
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Free Software Foundation list of words to avoid:
http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/words-to-avoid.html#RAND

However, Ecma does not define the term "Reasonable And Non Discriminatory”
(RAND):
http://www.noooxml.org/ecma-humour

VideoLAN LibDCA patent threats:
http://libdca.wikidot.com/
http://www.videolan.org/developers/libdca.html

European Standardisation 2011/0150(COD)
http://www.europarl.europa.eu/oeil/popups/ficheprocedure.do?id=591938

Permanent link to this press release:
http://press.ffii.org/Press%20releases/EuroParliament%20to%20exclude%20Free%20Software%20with%20patents%20and%20FRAND

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About FFII
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The FFII is a not-for-profit association active in twenty European
countries, dedicated to the development of information goods for the
public benefit, based on copyright, free competition, open standards. More
than 1000 members, 3,500 companies and 100,000 supporters have entrusted
the FFII to act as their voice in public policy questions concerning
exclusion rights (intellectual property) in data processing.




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