Laura Creighton, a software entrepreneur and venture capitalist living in Sweden, comments:
and her allies have repeatedly stated that under the EPO doctrine which they are proposing, something like Amazon's One Click Patent would be "impossible" or "highly unlikely". I have again and again asked them: "If you sincerely wish that business methods be unpatentable, please show me where are the teeth in your law which will prevent this." They have however refused to explain what gives their proposal the teeth.
FFII president Hartmut Pilch explains:
The Amazon Gift Ordering patent was granted after years of in-depth examination of prior art. One could have expected that, given the public outcry which Amazon has caused world-wide, the EPO would do its best to say that Amazon's method "does not make a technical contribution in its inventive step". It shouldn't have been difficult to say that. Ordering a gift for a friend is hardly new, and the main claim does not even teach a method of reducing the number of mouse clicks needed in doing so, but just broadly covers the process of fully-automated delivery of gifts. This illustrates nicely what we have documented in detail elsewhere
: the EPO doctrine ensures that algorithms and business methods like Amazon One Click Shopping indisputably become patentable inventions, and the requirement of "technical contribution in the inventive step" is usually not a real obstacle.
The Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) is a non-profit association registered in Munich, which is dedicated to the spread of data processing literacy. FFII supports the development of public information goods based on copyright, free competition, open standards. More than 300 members, 700 companies and 50,000 supporters have entrusted the FFII to act as their voice in public policy questions in the area of exclusion rights (intellectual property) in data processing.