Friday, April 9

Software Patents in New Zealand, proposed Law

In some countries, like the USA, it is practically impossible to write software without violating someone's patent claim. Even if it were feasible to read find and read all possible applicable patents, often only courts can rule on the scope and validity of such patents.

Even if 99% of software patents can be shown to be invalid, it takes a lot of time and money to do so, and that has to be done for each and every patent.

So software patents are practically impossible for solo developers, and even moderately sized software companies, to defend against or to successfully avoid. Hence software patents discourage innovation in practice, if not be intent.

Certain vested interests wish to establish software patents, here The New Zealand Open Source Society presents a response:
First I would like to thank the Commerce Committee for the carefully consideration of the issues around software patents and applaud their decision to introduce an exclusion for software from patents.
There are many powerful interests who will be very upset by this decision, and no doubt they will do bring every influence they have to bear on changing this decision.

Two law firms with an interest in patent law have already weighed in, and so I have taken the time to reply to their comments.

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