Subject: RE: license with patent grants appropriate for specifications?
From: "Lawrence Rosen" <lrosen@rosenlaw.com>
Date: Fri, 14 Jan 2005 23:14:16 -0800

> As I wrote earlier, the patent licence must extend at least to
> noncompliant Open Source derivatives of an original compliant
> implementation.  Otherwise the software is not Open Source because the
> community is not free to make and distribute modified versions.

Not as I see it. To be compatible with open source, the patent license must
at least extend to the creation of conforming implementations, and it must
not forbid non-conforming implementations. On a case-by-case basis,
additional patent licenses may be needed from the original licensor or from
third parties for non-conforming applications.

/Larry Rosen

Lawrence Rosen
Rosenlaw & Einschlag, technology law offices (www.rosenlaw.com)
3001 King Ranch Road, Ukiah, CA 95482
707-485-1242  ●  fax: 707-485-1243
Author of “Open Source Licensing: Software Freedom 
               and Intellectual Property Law” (Prentice Hall 2004)
 

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ipr-wg-bounces@ietf.org [mailto:ipr-wg-bounces@ietf.org] On Behalf
> Of Ian Jackson
> Sent: Friday, January 14, 2005 8:23 AM
> To: Bob.Scheifler@Sun.COM
> Cc: lrosen@rosenlaw.com; license-discuss@opensource.org; 'Ipr-Wg@Ietf.Org'
> Subject: Re: license with patent grants appropriate for specifications?
> 
> Bob Scheifler writes ("Re: license with patent grants appropriate for
> specifications?"):
> > So, is it reasonable to take the following approach:
> >   - issue the specification itself under an existing open source
> license,
> >     one that in and of itself does not grant any patent rights with
> respect
> >     to implementations of the spec
> 
> Yes, that is fine as far as it goes, but of course as you recognise
> the patent question must be dealt with as well:
> 
> >   - provide separately a patent-only license that grants patent rights
> >     to compliant implementations of that specification (or broader if
> >     one wishes)
> 
> As I wrote earlier, the patent licence must extend at least to
> noncompliant Open Source derivatives of an original compliant
> implementation.  Otherwise the software is not Open Source because the
> community is not free to make and distribute modified versions.
> 
> Ian.
> 
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