Fwd: A steering committee for the LPF?

Ean R . Schuessler ean at novare.net
Tue Mar 23 19:10:26 UTC 1999

I would like to see us get involved with this.

Personally, I am curious to see whether we could bring a class action
suit against the United States government under the arguement that 
software patents, in their current state, violate a Free Software 
programmer's freedom of expression. Freedom of expression is a gauranteed
human right and is supposed to be stronger legally than a patent, which 
is a tool of convenience. I think it is arguable that many programmers
are as dedicated to the creation of Free Software as any religious person
is to their chosen method of worship.


On Sat, Mar 20, 1999 at 12:24:20PM +0100, J.H.M. Dassen wrote:
> This may well be of interest to SPI, or indivual readers of this list -
> please keep discussion of it on gnu.misc.discuss.
> Ray
> From: ps at cam._nospam_.org (Pierre Sarrazin)
> Newsgroups: gnu.misc.discuss
> Subject: A steering committee for the LPF?
> Date: 20 Mar 1999 00:20:57 -0500
> Organization: League for Programming Freedom
> Lines: 34
> Sender: ps at CAM.ORG
> Message-ID: <7cvb7p$at1 at ocean.CAM.ORG>
> Since October 1998, I have been maintaining the website of the League
> for Programming Freedom at <http://lpf.ai.mit.edu/>. On this site,
> there is an email address where people can write to offer their help.
> A number of people have offered to help, but unfortunately there is no
> defined agenda for the LPF. The League has no formal organization
> right now and I am limiting myself to the role of a webmaster.
> I am posting this article here in hopes of starting a discussion among
> people who would be interested in forming a steering committee for the
> LPF. These people would have to decide what they specifically want to
> do to obtain the abolition of software patents by the
> U.S. Congress. The LPF also opposes user interface copyrights, but
> since a major 1996 U.S. Supreme Court decision, this problem seems to
> have receded for now (see the website for details).
> The job of the committee would be to define a strategy to eventually
> convince Congress of outlawing software patents. Recent news about
> Microsoft's patent on style sheets and Sightsound's threats against
> MP3.com (regarding patents over downloading audio over a network) may
> provide arguments to convince lawmakers that software patents should
> be abolished as soon as possible before they become an intolerable
> impediment to the software community. A letter-writing campaign might
> be a good start; I could post the results on the website.
> Greg Aharonian's Internet Patent News Service has published some
> issues about the two patents I mentioned:
> <http://lpf.ai.mit.edu/Patents/patents.html#IPNS>
> The front page of the LPF website shows an index to the article
> "Against Software Patents", which is a very good read for anyone who
> wishes to have a reminder of why software patents are a threat.
> -- 
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Ean Schuessler                Director of Strategic Weapons Systems
Novare International Inc.        A Devices that Kill People company
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