[Linux-aus] Dealing with the patent process

Arjen Lentz arjen at mysql.com
Wed Aug 4 06:29:01 UTC 2004

Hi Pia,

On Tue, 2004-08-03 at 15:02, greebo at pipka.org wrote:
> [...] I'm thinking we get the Open Source 
> community (including companies of course) involved in the patent process. 
> Apparently patents have a public period where people can speak up about any 
> prior art. I suggest we tie into this, and start getting involved with 
> speaking up about patents. This means they won't necessarily get passed (if 
> we have good cases) and then after say 6-12 months, we will potentially have 
> a good paper trail of the issues the FTA has locked us into concerning 
> patents. Other ideas are much welcome :) 

I haven't checked for AU specifically, but traditionally the entire
process is public. A patent is not a secret thing. Everybody can look at
the whole story, they're just not allowed to implement it without
licensing. This protection in essense comes into force the moment the
patent application starts, because the review process of an application
depends on feedback from experts in the field.
In practise, this feedback loop is broken in many countries (most
notably the US) but the process itself has not changed. So the "hooks"
are there for anyone who is paying attention.

So I think you are very right. We basically need to track patent
applications, identify software patents and other relevant issues,
inventorise them (website) and find the prior art that inevitably

I know that you can set up triggers on the AU trademark site to be
notified when item with certain keywords are added to the database,
likely something similar is possible for patent applications. Or just
having people take a daily peek to identify stuff that needs adding to
the list. Once identified, handling by a broader group of people becomes
possible. Particularly if we can categorise.

Arjen Lentz, Technical Writer, Trainer
Brisbane, QLD Australia
MySQL AB, www.mysql.com

Brisbane 6 Sep 2004 (5 days): MySQL & PHP Training
Training,Support,Licenses,T-shirts @ https://order.mysql.com/?ref=marl

More information about the linux-aus mailing list