Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

World Wide Web Consortium Releases New Draft of Patent Policy

26.02.2002


Community and Member Feedback Shapes New Royalty-Free Draft



The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) today published a revised Patent Policy Working Draft which is based on strong, explicit commitments to producing Royalty-Free (RF) specifications. To achieve the goal of producing Royalty-Free specifications, the draft requires all who participate in the development of W3C Recommendations to make any essential patents they hold available for free.

The option which would have permitted W3C Members the option to charge for the use of patented technologies in W3C Recommendations (called "reasonable and non-discriminatory terms", or RAND) has been removed, pending final resolution of the question of what role RAND technologies should play in Web standards.


W3C Patent Policy Draft Incorporates Public and Member Feedback

Since the August publication of the first public Working Draft of the W3C Patent Policy, the Patent Policy Working Group has received thousands of email messages from both W3C Members and the public, with questions and concerns regarding the document. Many of the constructive suggestions provided direction and points of discussion for the Working Group. The Patent Policy Working Group has invited Members of the Open Source community as participants and has published publicly-readable
minutes for each meeting.

W3C Makes Formal Commitment to Royalty-Free Specifications

The new Patent Policy Working Draft differs from the previous draft in three significant ways:
  • The RAND track for W3C Working Groups has been removed. There is no process in this policy for developing RAND specifications. However, the Working Group has an open question on options for accommodating RAND technologies in exceptional circumstances.
  • Working Group Participants must now commit to Royalty-Free Licensing.
  • Defensive use of patents is allowed only in the case where a holder of essential claims is sued for patent infringement in the implementation of a W3C Recommendation.

Though the final W3C Patent Policy is still under development (this recent draft is a version of what will become the final policy), W3C`s current operating procedure with respect to patents already contains a firm commitment to Royalty-Free standards.

Work Continues, Additional Drafts in 2002

The Patent Policy Working Group seeks public comment on this new Working Draft and encourages the larger Web community to be aware of the state of discussions within the Consortium. As with the previous draft, public comments are considered valuable, and will be taken into account for future revisions. Though the basic outline of this policy is now stable, it remains a work in progress, with several significant issues remaining unresolved.

Notably, neither the Patent Policy Working Group, nor the W3C Membership as a whole has a final decision about what role, if any, RAND technologies will play in the final policy. Both public and Member comments had a significant impact on the direction of the policy, which puts priority on developing RF specifications. However, many W3C Members feel that there should be a way of dealing with technologies only available on RAND terms within the W3C Process, at least on an exceptional basis. This issue remains a focus of continued discussion.

There also remain questions about how the terms of the royalty-free license as defined in this policy will interact with various Open Source licenses. Though the Patent Policy Working Group believes that the RF license as proposed is compatible with most major Open Source licenses, there are still questions about interaction with the GPL. The Patent Policy Working Group is working toward resolution of GPL-related issues.

Before the patent policy is finalized, at least one more public draft will be released for review this year. Following the normal W3C Process for approving technical Recommendations, after the publication and review period for a Last Call Working Draft, the Working Group plans to prepare a final draft (Proposed Recommendation) for W3C Advisory Committee Review, after which the Director will determine the final disposition of the policy.

Marie-Claire Forgue | alphagalileo

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Japanese researchers develop ultrathin, highly elastic skin display
19.02.2018 | University of Tokyo

nachricht Why bees soared and slime flopped as inspirations for systems engineering
19.02.2018 | Georgia Institute of Technology

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Contacting the molecular world through graphene nanoribbons

19.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

When Proteins Shake Hands

19.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

Cells communicate in a dynamic code

19.02.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>