[Discussioni] Sesso degli angeli o brevetti software?

Sarchiapons sarchiapons a gmail.com
Mer 27 Set 2006 15:27:22 CEST

Fatti, non pippette!

European patent controversy heating up again

PES, Greens/EFA and GUE/NGL groups in European Parliament file motion
for resolution — Proposal calls for “balance between the interests of
patent holders and the broader public interest in innovation and
competitive markets” — Commissioner McCreevy’s preference, the EPLA, is
seen as weakening EU democracy, increasing litigation costs and
“exposing SMEs to greater risks” – McCreevy to speak in parliament next
week, vote to take place in mid-October

Brussels (21 September 2006) — More than a year has passed since the
European Parliament’s historic rejection of the Commission’s and
Council’s software patent bill. Now the hot potato is back in the
parliament’s oven: on October 11 or 12, the EP is set to vote in
Brussels on two competing motions for a resolution on future European
patent policy. Next week, internal market commissioner McCreevy will
speak in the EP in Strasbourg and outline his patent policy plans, which
have already come under fire.

A joint proposal of three groups — PES, Greens/EFA and GUE/NGL — calls
for “balance between the interests of patent holders and the broader
public interest in innovation and competitive markets”. The motion
criticizes McCreevy’s preferred measure, the European Patent Litigation
Agreement (EPLA), as weakening EU democracy, compromising judicial
independence, increasing litigation costs and “exposing SMEs [small and
medium-sized enterprises] to greater risks”. The proposal also warns
against the effect the EPLA would have on the scope of patentable
subject-matter, and a decision of the European Patent Office (EPO) to
uphold a Microsoft software patent (on clipboard data formats) is
mentioned as an example.

Conversely, the chief negotiators of the EPP-ED and ALDE groups want the
chamber to support McCreevy’s push for the EPLA.

The spokeswoman of the PES on legal affairs, Maria Berger, and former
French prime minister Michel Rocard explained: “We are all for
improvements to the European patent system, but we must continue the
search for solutions within the framework of the EU. That includes the
need for democratic control and truly independent courts.” The two
socialist MEPs insisted that “there has to be a comprehensive strategy
for lower costs and higher quality if patent policy is supposed to
foster Europe’s economy in general and SMEs in particular. Merely
expanding the system itself, which is the spirit of the proposed EPLA,
gets us nowhere.”

Eva Lichtenberger, Austrian Green MEP and member of the Legal Affairs
Committee, said: “If McCreevy were to succeed with his plans for the
EPLA, he would hurt the EU institutions and Europe’s SMEs at the same
time. Even some large players such as Nokia and GlaxoSmithKline don’t
seem to consider the EPLA to be a good idea. It’s high time for the
Commission and for certain conservatives to stop this constant,
anachronistic push for ever more patents.”

For the GUE/NGL group, Italian MEP and former Space Shuttle astronaut
Umberto Guidoni issued a warning: “After the failure of the software
patent directive, the EPO has come up with another proposal backed by
McCreevy, and it’s even more undemocratic and dangerous than the
previous one. EPLA is about much more than software patents. Still,
software patents are one of the key motivations behind it. The
Parliament made it very clear last year that we largely disagree with
the EPO’s granting practice in certain areas. That’s why we don’t want a
new court that would be controlled by basically the same people as the

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