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The verdict is in.. results from Rics Patent Poll


Is this poll proof that the time for software patents is over? No. Its proof that Software games supporters are  rabidly loyal and that most people don't understand the real issues.

First some facts. This poll was taken during the heat of the anti-Uniloc publicity peak when they first sued Mojang over their game Minecraft.

We had thousands of visitors each day, most of them indignant gamers.

So this is what they said:

30% said patents are no good get rid of them 
55% said just Software patents should go
6% said everything should be free (unless it affects my job no doubt) and;
8% said patents are good...

I wonder if you asked the same crowd about drink driving or about the decriminalization of heroin whether you'd get a similar response.

Software patents are about things like:

Do you think the inventor of the worldwide web should be compensated for providing such a wonderful thing?
Do you think that anyone should be able to make their own version of the iPhone and sell them?
Should anyone be allowed to copy Google's search engine and do their own?

Boiled down the question is anarchy vs regulation.

Im not totally fond of the patent system believe it or not. I think non competing use of a patent by 3rd parties should be allowed at reasonable royalty rates. ie I mean if Apple doesn't want to supply extended power supplies for MacBooks then they should be forced to allow extended life battery owners to pay a reasonable royalty rate for the magsafe connector...

And as far a software patents, I feel rather than shutting them down, just let everyone have a look at the patent before examination to make a case for its lack of novelty.. you could charge $100 to anyone who wants to formally file a claim of prior art or lack of novelty to stop people from filing nonsense, but it would give everyone a fair chance to have their say before granting... 


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