Home Messages Index
[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
Author IndexDate IndexThread Index

Re: Microsoft's secret deals on open source

Hash: SHA1

____/ nessuno@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx on Sunday 08 February 2009 22:09 : \____

> <Quote>
> It's a familiar story. Microsoft does a secret deal with a company
> over patent licences. Almost no details are provided about which
> patents, how much money has changed hands, or why, except for one
> vaguely worded press release that talks about how such secret deals
> benefit the customer through openness and innovation.
> This time, the lucky donor of cash for secrets is Brother, which will
> now be allowed to use Microsoft patents to make printers. As Microsoft
> doesn't make printers – indeed, doesn't even make printer drivers – it
> is an interesting exercise to try and guess what's actually happened.
> It's fruitless to ask either of the companies – and we did try. In
> cases like this, as in the best gangster movies, nobody ain't sayin'
> nothin'.
> Patents, you might remember, are designed to encourage innovation by
> the disclosure of information: when a $1.8bn company pays a $230bn
> company a secret amount for secret rights to a secret list of patents
> – something else is going on than the open promotion of innovation and
> "a healthy and vibrant IT ecosystem."
> In this case, as so often, it involves Linux. Brother uses Linux in
> some of its printers. Microsoft claims that Linux infringes its
> patents. It won't say in public which ones, and it doesn't attempt to
> press such claims against companies – such as IBM – who would want to
> fight back and not care about the cost (Ask SCO how that business with
> AIX went). It doesn't go after people who have little to lose and
> plenty to gain by fighting back, such as individual high-profile
> developers or small open-source teams. And it has never gone to court
> on this matter.
> Instead, it sends in the lads to mid-sized companies who would really
> suffer from a long court case, and who care about that lovely legal
> fact of intellectual property life: paying off a determined litigant
> is often cheaper than winning. A look at the list of people with whom
> deals have been done, and from whom cash has been extracted,
> underlines Microsoft's approach: Novell, for example (market cap:
> $1.25bn) and Nikon ($4.2bn) both paid Microsoft. Kyocera ($12bn) has a
> deal with no mention of payment. Samsung ($100bn) may be on equal
> terms. Microsoft says that it did a 'similar' deal with HP ($85bn),
> but uniquely, no details whatsoever have been published.
> ...Microsoft's trick of gaining revenue from licensing open-source
> software behind closed doors will smell more and more like extortion.
> As the economy sours and curdles, the values of trust and
> accountability will prove to be worth far more than a handful of
> dollars in secret taxation raised on other people's software.
> </Quote>
> http://news.zdnet.co.uk/leader/0,1000002982,39612309,00.htm

This confirms that Microsoft can't make money from s/w for much longer.

"Intellectual property is the next software."

                    --Nathan Myhrvold, Microsoft patent troll

- -- 
                ~~ Best of wishes

Roy S. Schestowitz      |    Proprietary cripples communication
http://Schestowitz.com  |     GNU/Linux     |     PGP-Key: 0x74572E8E
Mem:   2075800k total,  1660792k used,   415008k free,    12460k buffers
      http://iuron.com - next generation of search paradigms
Version: GnuPG v1.4.9 (GNU/Linux)


[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
Author IndexDate IndexThread Index