Software patents and power to the parliament

Last Friday (I would’ve done a write-up sooner, but I had to rush to Brussels for a course in Orthodox Theology), I participated in my very first demonstration. One complete with police attendance.

The issue is this: software patents stifle innovation. That this should be clear can be seen from the fact that my father, who knows nothing about the issue at hand, immediately told me that this would kill all innovation, as soon as I had outlined the barest facts of the proposed bit of EU legislation. I would like to go further: the bill as proposed will make it impossible for my employer, Tryllian Solutions, to stay in business making new software platforms.

Allowing businesses to patent software is to allow patenting ideas, thoughts even. And then the gedanken will no longer be frei. As Germany has recognized, as well as other EU countries, but not the

Also: The Council of ministers now proves that it pays only lip service to democracy by pushing aside the decisions of the democratically elected European Parliament.

Of course, when we were in The Hague, Minister Brinkhorst was in Paris, and somehow I have a feeling that the top-level civil servant who was so very civil and suave is not the most dependable intermediary for our message; besides, what he said was basically that he was full of confidence that the Parliament would in the end agree with the Council proposal, and that we would like that decision, because it was made for our own good, my dear children.

Still, a nice turn-out, for so abstract a matter: about a hundred people, among whom one current colleague, and two ex-colleagues.