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[News] Nokia's Software Patent Fiasco in the UK 'Ignored' by UK-IPO

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Merry Christmas from the Own-it IP news round-up!

,----[ Quote ]
| We kick off this week with the news from Out-law that the UK IPO has 
| announced it will not be revising its approach on software patents in the 
| light of the findings of the Symbian case. The announcement comes after UK 
| IPO's decision to deny a patent to Symbian was overturned on appeal back in 
| October in a judgment many took to be critical of the UK IPO's approach. The 
| decision has drawn criticism from the Chartered Institute of Patent 
| Attorneys, who claim the current guidance creates uncertainty for patent



The UK-IPO's latest thoughts on software patents

,----[ Quote ]
| The IPKat thinks the UK-IPO's view that the Enlarged Board will be able to
| settle the matter soon is hopelessly optimistic. For one thing, the Enlarged
| Board is not known for being quick at producing definitive decisions. Also,
| as has already been pointed out (see here), it seems very likely that the
| Enlarged Board will have to reject the referral, because it simply does not
| comply with the requirements of the EPC, which only allows such referrals in
| limited cases. This would not, however, be such a bad thing, provided the
| UK-IPO properly takes on board the guidance offered in Symbian and uses the
| word 'technical' often enough (even though nobody knows what it actually
| means).


Patentability of computer programs, recent Court of Appeal judgment and
questions raised by the President of the European Patent Office

,----[ Quote ]
| 4. In the light of this development, the UK-IPO will not seek to appeal the
| Symbian judgment further. The UK-IPO agrees with the Court of Appeal in that
| it would now be premature to seek a view from the House of Lords when
| European practice is likely to be settled shortly by a decision of the EPO’s
| Enlarged Board of Appeal. The UK-IPO will have an opportunity to submit
| observations to the Enlarged Board of Appeal on the questions put to it. In
| order to inform any such observations the UK-IPO will undertake a study to
| determine the economic impact of patenting computer programs.

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