Monday, February 28, 2005

THIS IS GETTING TO BE COMICAL - THE EU COMMISSION REFUSES TO REWRITE PTENT DIRECTIVE: In another twist in the "will they or won't they" saga to computer-implemented inventions, the EU Commission has recently indicated that it will likely refuse to rewrite the Computer Implemented Inventions Directive that has been kicking around the EU for the last year. Predictably, the anti-software crowd is furious.

An EC spokesman confirmed on Monday that the Commission had declined requests from the European Parliament to go back to basics on the CIID, which opponents claim will allow the widespread patenting of software in Europe.

"We expect the European Council to formalize the common position. The Commission stands ready to review all aspects of the directive," said the EC spokesman, adding that this meant that changes could yet be made to the directive when it reaches the European Parliament.

Florian Mueller, who runs an anti-patent Web site (you have to read it to believe it), condemned the EC's decision, accusing those responsible of "negating democracy".

The CIID has sparked many months of argument, debate and confusion within Europe. It has yet to be formally adopted by the European Council, but if this does happen the directive will return to the Parliament. The EC spokesman said he understood that the Council is planning to put the CIID on the agenda of the 7 March meeting.

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