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Europarl 03-09-24ReactionsfaqAppealCEC 2003/11

Call for Action II
Commemorate Banana Union Day

The European Parliament has voted for legislation that would effectively exclude software and business methods from patentability. However European patent legislation is still largely in the hands of ministerial patent experts, many of whom have for years been pushing for unlimited patentability. This situation calls for close attention and resolute action by national parliamentarians and concerned citizens.
  1. We are concerned that
  2. For these reasons we recommend the following:
  3. Signatories
  4. Annotated Links
  5. Questions, Things To Do, How you can Help
  1. The European Patent Office (EPO) has, in contradiction to the letter and spirit of the written law, granted tens of thousands of patents on rules for computing with conventional data processing equipment, below termed "software patents".
  2. The European Comission has proposed to legalise these patents and make them uniformly enforcable in Europe. In doing so, it has disregarded the manifest will and well-argued reasoning of the vast majority of software professionals, software companies, computer scientists and economists.
  3. Prominent proponents have tried to deceive and intimidate the European Parliament. They have presented the proposal as a means of excluding software and business methods from patentability and have threatened that the European Parliament would lose its chance of participation if it voted for a real limitation of patentability.
  4. Since the European Parliament has refused to be deceived or intimidated, influential patent professionals in various governments and organisations are now trying to use the EU Council of Ministers in order to sidestep parliamentary democracy in the European Union.
  1. We urge the European Patent Office as well as national patent offices to immediately stop granting patents on business methods and data processing methods in whatever verbal clothing, and to apply Article 52 of the European Patent Convention correctly according to conventional methods of interpretation of law.
  2. We urge the members of the EU Council of Ministers to refrain from any counter-proposals to the European Parliament's version of the draft, unless such counter-proposals have been explicitely endorsed by a majority decision of the member's national parliament.
  3. We urge members of national parliaments to formulate clear national policies on the limits of patentability and to make sure that their government's representatives in the European Council are faithfully implementing these policies.
  4. We demand that all legislative proposals, including those from the European Parliament and the member states, be rigorously tested against a test suite of sample patent applications to see whether they would beyond any doubt lead to the desired results and would not leave room for any more misinterpretations.
Support Now

Bent Hindrup Andersen (MEP, EDD, Denmark, http://www.j.dk)
Jens-Peter Bonde (MEP, EDD, Denmark, http://www.j.dk)
Johanna Boogerd (MEP, ELDR, Netherlands)
Hiltrud Breyer (MEP, VERD, Germany)
Daniel Cohn-Bendit (MEP, VERD, France)
Jan Dhaene (MEP, Belgium)
Raina Mercedes Echerer (MEP, VERD, Austria)
Pernille Frahm (MEP, GUE/NGL, Denmark)
Pierre Jonckheer (MEP, VERD, Belgium)
Piia-Noora Kauppi (MEP, PPE-DE, Finnland)
Wolfgang Kreissl-Dörfler (MEP, PSE, Germany)
Jean Lambert (MEP, VERD, United Kingdom)
Donald Neil (Professor) MacCormick (MEP, VERD, United Kingdom)
Caroline Lucas (MEP, VERD, United Kingdom)
Heide Rühle (MEP, VERD, Germany)
Ulla Sandbæk (MEP, EDD, Denmark, http://www.j.dk)
Olle Schmidt (MEP, ELDR, Sweden)
Bart Staes (MEP, VERD, Belgium, Groen!)
Claude Turmes (MEP, VERD, Luxemburg, DÉI GRÉNG)
Anders Wijkman (MEP, PPE-DE, Sweden)
Matti Wuori (MEP, VERD, Finnland)
Olga Zrihen (MEP, PSE, Belgium, PS)
Jens Holm (MEP candidate, Sweden)
Ellen Trane Nørby (MEP candidate, Denmark)
Dirk Van Der Maelen (Leader parliamentary faction of Flemish Social Democrats in Belgian Parliament, Belgium, SP.be)
Grietje Bettin (Member of the German Federal Parliament, Media Policy Speaker of the Green Party)
Gustav Fridolin (MP, Sweden)
Zoé Genot (MP, Belgium, ecolo.be)
Arseni Gibert (Senator of the Girona region for Entesa Catalana de Progrés)
Ulrich Kelber (Member of the German Federal Parliament (http://www.spd.de/))
Monica Lochner-Fischer (member of Bavarian Parliament, SPD)
Dr. Jan Van Duppen (Belgian Senator, Member of the Flemish Parliament, SP.a spirit)
CEA/PME (European Confederation of Associations of Small and Medium Enterprises) (contact: Walter Grupp)
Danish Association of IT Professionals (PROSA.dk) (contact: Peter Ussing)
VOV@SPD (Internet Association of the German Social Democratic Party) (contact: Axel Schudak, Arne Brand and Boris Piwinger)
temPS réels (Internet Branch of the French Socialist Party) (contact: Thierry Noisette)
Opera Software (contact: Håkon Wium Lie, CTO)
Magix AG (contact: Oliver Lorenz, Head of Legal Department)
ESR Pollmeier GmbH (contact: Stefan Pollmeier, Managing Director)
FSG IT (contact: Lars Noschinski, Developer)
ObjectWeb (contact: Francois Letellier)
TFDesign s.r.o. (contact: Michal Zajic, Owner, Head Designer - civil engineering)
ashampoo Technology GmbH & Co. KG (contact: Hauke Duden)
Intelligent Firmware Ltd (contact: Michael Krech, Managing Director)
PETE SOFTWARE GmbH (contact: Thies Reinhold, CEO)
Phaidros AG (contact: Matthias Schlegel, CEO)
Power Media Sp. z o.o. (contact: Narczynski, Wojtek Jakub, CTO, VP & co-founder)
Myriad Software (contact: Guillion Didier)
MySQL (contact: Michael Widenius, Florian Mueller)
NEOlabs (contact: Jo De Baer)
Thorsten Lemke (Lemke Software GmbH, founder and owner)
Ulf Dunkel (invers Software Vertrieb and Dunkel Software Distribution, Managing Director)
Mind (contact: Dr. ir. Peter Vandenabeele, Managing Director)
Stefan Englert (Gesellschaft für Informatik und Produktionstechnik mbH, Managing Director)
Intevation GmbH (contact: Bernhard Reiter and Jan-Oliver Wagner)
RDG Software di 'Roberto Della Grotta' (contact: Roberto Della Grotta)
S.K.I. GmbH (contact: Michael Schlegel)
Bureau d'Etudes en Génie Informatique, Hasgard (contact: Bruno Berthelet)
Nexedi (contact: Jean-Paul Smets)
TRI-EDRE and TRI-EDRE Developments (contact: Thierry Rolland)
Stephan Körner (Managing Director, Pilum Technology GmbH)
Marco Schulze (Managing Director, Nightlabs GmbH)
Python Business Forum (contact: Jacob Hallén)
National Computer Helpdesk (contact: John Harris - Manager Support Services, Christopher Thompson - Director)
ROHOST (contact: Marius David)
AB STRAKT (contact: Laura Creighton, Venture Capitalist)
Prof. Martin Kretschmer (Centre for Intellectual Property Policy & Management, Joint Director)
ROSPOT (contact: Cosmin Neagu)
Dr. Karl-Friedrich Lenz (Professor for German and European Law, Aoyama Gakuin Daigaku, Japan)
Dr. Jean-Philippe Rennard (economist, informatician, Managing Director, Eponyme SA)
Anders Skovsted Buch (Lector in mathematics, Aarhus University, Denmark)
Prof. Dr. Koen De Bosschere (Ghent University, Belgium)
Prof. Dr. Wilfried Philips (Ghent University, Belgium)
Dr. Michiel Ronsse (Ghent University)
Student Union Akku (University of Nijmegen, The Netherlands) (contact: Dieter Van Uytvanck)
Institut Biotecnologia i Biomedicina (Universitat Autónoma Barcelona, Spain) (contact: Dr. Enrique Querol, Director)
Austrian University Students Union (contact: Leonard Dobusch)
ANSOL - Associação Nacional para o Software Livre (contact: Jaime Villate, President)
APRIL (contact: Olivier Berger)
Catalan Linux User Group (CALIU)
Electronic Frontier Finnand (contact: Ville Oksanen, Tapani Tarvainen)
Europe Shareware (contact: Pascal Ricard and Sylvain Perchaud)
Association for Free Software (contact: Marc Eberhard)
Association of Free Software Professionals (contact: Neil Darlow)
Bürgernetzverband e.V. (contact: Eberhard Mittag)
Free Software Foundation Europe (contact: Georg Greve, president)
FSF France (contact: Frédéric Couchet)
German Unix User Group (GUUG.de, contact: Christian Lademann, vice president)
Internet Society Belgium (contact: Rudi Vansnick, president)
Internet Society Poland (contact: Wladek Majewski)
LSVB (Dutch National Student Union) (contact: Jurjen van den Bergh)
Patentverein.de (defense association of german SMEs against trivial patents) (contact: Heiner Flocke)
LSVB (The Dutch National Student Union) (contact: Jurjen van den Bergh)
Liberale Hochschulgruppe Ulm (contact: Markus Schaber)
Call for Action II (contact: Erik Josefsson)
WINA-Leuven (Student Association of Students in Maths, Computer Sciences and Physics of the KU Leuven) (contact: Dominique Devriese)
VVS (Union of Flemish Students) (official standpoint)
Zeus WPI (Student Workgroup on Informatics of Ghent University) (contact: Jonas Maebe)
Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (contact, Hartmut Pilch, Alex Macfie and Holger Blasum)
... (see Signators of the previous version., We are currently putting together a new list)
more signatures (28055 persons have so far signed this appeal via the FFII participation system.)
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Contact user cpedu-help on machine ffii org for information on how to procede.
[ Europarl 2003-09-24: Amended Software Patent Directive | Reactions to the EU Parliament's Vote of 2003/09/24 | FAQ: The EU Vote on Software Patents | Call for Action II | CEC 2003/11: Secret Nitpicking on European Parliament's Amendments ]
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