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Richard M. Stallman response.

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 66.92.78.210] on April 02, 2008 09:42 PM
Even though Rosen and Popowich do not intend to sue free software
developers for patent infringement, their plans nonetheless put us in
danger.

Software patents are the greatest danger to free software developers
and users -- and we are too few to win their abolition alone. But we
are not in this danger alone. Software patents also threaten the
developers and users of proprietary software, and the developers and
users of custom software. Everyone involved with software is in the
same boat with us, and we need to ask them to join with us to oppose
software patents.

That is why all the campaigns to prevent or abolish software patents
-- from the League for Programming Freedom to FFII to End Software
Patents -- try to make common cause for all software developers on
this crucial issue. With our combined strength, we sometimes win.

Rosen and Popowich's "business model" would undermine this common
cause against patents. That is shortsighted and dangerous. If we are
to argue convincingly against the "Reasonable And Non-Discriminatory"
patent licenses, that discriminate unreasonably against free software,
our own actions must not legitimize the practice of using patents to
demand money from software developers and users.

Rosen and Popowich are in the same boat with the rest of us. But
instead of helping everyone escape, they plan to cut spears from the
wood of the hull to threaten some of the other passengers. This is
dangerous for everyone in the boat.

We need to pull together if we want to get out of this. So don't use
any "business model" based on software patents. Support the End Software
Patents campaign (EndSoftwarePatents.org).

Posted on behalf of Richard M. Stallman (rms@gnu.org).
Joshua Gay, campaigns manager
Free Software Foundation
jgay@fsf.org

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