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Poland Erases EU's Pro-Software Patent Majority

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the you-forgot-poland dept.

Patents 46

Algorithm wrangler writes "It looks like there is no longer a majority for software patents in the EU. Yay to our Polish friends - glad you made it in ... Now we can just hope for a bigger push in my own country too (the Danish minister got fried over this issue recently)."

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YFL (1, Funny)

JHromadka (88188) | more than 9 years ago | (#10843941)

Looks like the software patent people forgot about Poland.

Don't forget (-1, Troll)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 9 years ago | (#10843942)

See, this is what happens when you forget about Poland!

Re:Don't forget (1)

E_elven (600520) | more than 9 years ago | (#10850444)

The polish reversed their earlier notation.

Re:Don't forget (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10861805)

Polish vote wasn't counted earlier because the majority was enought during the first voting. But since then the way of deciding in EU has changed and now Poland has stronger position and without Poland there can't be majority in this case. Couple months ago Poland didn't present its opinion, couse it couldn't change the majority anyway. Now it seems Polish government will block software patents. But the new EU constitiution will take away Polish strong position again.

Re:Don't forget (1)

RWerp (798951) | more than 9 years ago | (#10871063)

Not so soon, as the constitution will take more than a year to be ratified by all 25 states and come into effect, if ratified (it's still far from certain). Plus, the difference really isn't that big.

Yay! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10843948)

If you're Polish and you're proud, clap your hands!

Don't Forget Poland! (2, Insightful)

jkujawa (56195) | more than 9 years ago | (#10843966)

They did well on the whole Engima thing, too.

Fired or Fried? (1)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844015)

Inquiring minds want to know.

Re:Fired or Fried? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10844592)

Unfortunately just fried - although fired would have been more appropriate for the lack of attention that he showed this important issue. Being minster for economics and industry, and then not show up for the vote is not a wise move in my mind.

I vote against software patents (1)

Free_Trial_Thinking (818686) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844059)


I vote against software patents. (I just wanted to voice one small opinion.)

US economic sanctions surely to come... (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844165)

How long before Big Business makes Washington impose economic sanctions on Poland and is friends for daring to defy the will of the Almighty Corporate Hemogony?

Re:US economic sanctions surely to come... (1)

Halo1 (136547) | more than 9 years ago | (#10845098)

The nice thing is that several big businesses support Poland's decision (such as Sun, Novel and HP). From the parties present at the ministry meeting, more or less only Microsoft and a couple of patent lawyers were opposed (surprise).

Re:US economic sanctions surely to come... (1)

RWerp (798951) | more than 9 years ago | (#10870903)

If Microsoft did not succeed in making Polish government back software patents directive, this is a welcome change. In the past, Microsoft was very influential in Poland.

Re:US economic sanctions surely to come... (1)

nusratt (751548) | more than 9 years ago | (#10848066)

what's "Hemogony"?
something that one eats with "grits"?

Re:US economic sanctions surely to come... (1)

linuxhansl (764171) | more than 9 years ago | (#10862547)

That'd be quite interesting with the EU being the stronger economic power.

The Bush administration already backed off from steel-tarifs when the EU (backed by the WTO) imposed sanctions on US imports this year. (Of course that's nothing you hear much about in the US news)

Thankfully the EU is a place that is not arbitrarily kicked around by the US anymore, though the Europeans may not quite realize that, yet... In time they will.

That clinches it (1)

aelbric (145391) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844185)

Screw Canada. If the Poles support relaxed copyrights with a sensible time duration, I am moving there. Sounds like at least one government has its head on its shoulders.

3.98:1 exchange for Polish zloty to the dollar, 200 miles from Munich, 700 from Amsterdam, and I hear they have cheap broadband internet access. Sounds good to me.

Re:That clinches it (3, Interesting)

Gadzinka (256729) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844539)

3.98:1 exchange for Polish zloty to the dollar

Actually, according to Polish Central Bank [www.nbp.pl] it's 3.2582/3.2758/3.3240 (sell/mean/buy) today.

US dolar used to be even >4.0 some time ago (2002), but since the beginning of Dubya presidency it's constantly falling. Not that I claim that those two are related ;)

Robert

PS You are welcome, vodka and caviar are cheap here (from 30pln for 1 litre of vodka), women are cute and the "age of consent" is 15 ;)

Re:That clinches it (1)

aelbric (145391) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844699)

Oops, that's what I get for going to a static website for currency exchange info. 3.25 is still pretty good if the cost of living locally is not off the scale.

Tough little country, Poland. Survived the Nazis and the Communists both in the same century(along with Czechoslovakia, Hungary, et al.). Guess you guys know what dictatorship is really about. Maybe if they change the Visa rules, some more of you folks can come over and have a word with our congressmen. They seem to need a talking to.

Re:That clinches it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10845424)

Yeah, we do. Thats why we are pissed about the USA a bit :) (ok, much). There are actually quite a few Hungarians in the states, after 1956(hungarian revolution crushed by soviets) lots of people emigrated. I won't visit the states until they change the ridicoulus rules about biometric scans and visa anyway ;) Also, im spending, as a hungarian, quite much time in Poland and, don't be concerned about the cost of living, as its considerably cheaper than N. America.

Re:That clinches it (1)

RWerp (798951) | more than 9 years ago | (#10871189)

Tough little country
With nearly 40 million inhabitants, I wouldn't call it "little".

Re:That clinches it (1)

Xtifr (1323) | more than 9 years ago | (#10847759)

I'd rather go with a country that was opposed to this nonsense all along, rather than one that had a last-minute change of heart. Too much danger that they could change back.

I wonder if the FSF-Europe has any recommendations on where I (we) should relocate. :)

Re:That clinches it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10861882)

Poland didn't change its opinion. See my post below.

Re:That clinches it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10862695)

Well, we spoke just after we got into EU. It really was not long ago, but you can say that it was our government who spoke against patents. Our IT people did it a long, long ago!

Re:That clinches it (1)

Cobra_666 (777517) | more than 9 years ago | (#10859671)

Everything right except for broadband (and the currency as some other guy said ;)... it's definately not cheap. For 249 pln/month you get 1 mbit/s... I'm not saying that there aren't any cheaper options, but they have monthly transfer limits or don't allow you to share your connection with your friends/neighbors...

Re:That clinches it (1)

RWerp (798951) | more than 9 years ago | (#10870877)

Add to it: corporate income tax 19%.

I have one thing to say ... (3, Funny)

crimethinker (721591) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844313)

... to the pro-software patent majority:

YOU FORGOT POLAND!

Thank you, I'll be here all week. Remember to tip your waitress.

-paul

Re:I have one thing to say ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10844797)

Did you moderate yourself up or something? The joke was already made in the from-the-dept line as well as earlier comments.

EU forgot Poland (1)

humuhumunukunukuapu' (678704) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844354)

sorry :)

As Bush would say to the EU: (3, Funny)

douthat (568842) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844561)

You forgot Poland! [urbandictionary.com]

Time to learn more about Poland (1)

UnapprovedThought (814205) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844724)

Time to start brushing up on the Polish language, or at least to have a closer idea of how to pronounce Polish words and names:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polish_language

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poland

The second article is a longer description of Poland along with history, maps, lots of images etc.

If software patents pass, when strong AI becomes available even thoughts (presented in patent jargon like "problem-solving heuristics in artificial neural networks: adapting techniques of the biological model") can be patented. Somebody has to draw the line somewhere, before we end up as automatons, forced to group-think all of the time.

Re:Time to learn more about Poland (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10852219)

Artifiial intelligence ? AI systems will be like the air we're breathing, to our daily activieties, in less than 15 years. We should mention that more often. It's not too far ahead. Remember there already are computer chips in most things surrounding you. Patenting ideas comprises so much power over market and society that it just should never happen. This is the intellectual a-bomb, and they still insist it's only about power plants (which also rise problems anyway).

They admitted it? (2, Interesting)

CheetahMk2 (832017) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844794)

However, at a meeting hosted by the Polish government on the 5th of this month, everyone including representatives of the Polish Patent Office, SUN, Novell, Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft, as well as various patent lawyers, confirmed that the present proposal of the EU Council does make all software potentially patentable.

That's pretty interesting. Poland said that they would not stand for pattenting of business methods, and that's why they were against it - that's the same mess that makes '___ on the web' pattentable here in the US. I think that was a good call on their part.

Also, when in a room with Microsoft & Co., they admitted it WOULD allow pattenting of everything. I think that says something. I only regret that Poland's only issue is the pattentability of code that can "run on an average personal computer", not code in general. As soon as they fix that issue, Poland looks like they will side with it next time around.

Re:They admitted it? (1)

RWerp (798951) | more than 9 years ago | (#10871134)

Also, when in a room with Microsoft & Co., they admitted it WOULD allow pattenting of everything. I think that says something. I only regret that Poland's only issue is the pattentability of code that can "run on an average personal computer", not code in general. As soon as they fix that issue, Poland looks like they will side with it next time around.

The "average personal computer" wording does not appear in the official statement of Polish government, which can be found at http://www.kprm.gov.pl/441_12649.htm [kprm.gov.pl] (alas, only in Polish). The statement says about computers in general.

And I thought Scotts were horrible... (1)

M1FCJ (586251) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844845)

(the Danish minister got fried over this issue recently)

After deep-fried Mars bar... This is quite a suprise.

Belgian vote in doubt -- Infoworld (2, Informative)

JPMH (100614) | more than 9 years ago | (#10844893)

Infoworld's report [infoworld.com] is claiming that the Polish decision may still be negated, if Belgium changes its vote. According to Mark MacGann of EICTA:
"In May, Belgium voted to abstain, and though I cannot speak for the Belgium government, we have been extremely encouraged by meetings we have had with officials in Belgium and are cautiously optimistic that they may change their vote to yes," MacGann said.

Should Belgium decide to approve the Council's version of the directive, Poland's change of heart would not keep the "Patentability of Computer-implemented Inventions" from being formally approved and the legislation would then move to a second reading in the Parliament, where the contentious debate would continue, MacGann said.

According to NoSoftwarePatents.com, MacGann has
got his sums wrong [nosoftwarepatents.com] .

But this vote won't be over until it's over.

Okay, (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10844962)

I'll strangle the next one who says 'You forgot about Poland'!

More reports (2, Informative)

JPMH (100614) | more than 9 years ago | (#10845506)

More reports:

See also FFII's Breaking News wiki [ffii.org]

The Council of Ministers' first reading text had been scheduled [ffii.org] for fast-track approval [nosoftwarepatents.com] before the end of the year, probably by Agriculture and Fisheries ministers.

Say it with me please (0, Offtopic)

silicon not in the v (669585) | more than 9 years ago | (#10845535)

w00t!

YAY Poland! (1)

sudog (101964) | more than 9 years ago | (#10849161)

I've always liked Polish people anyway.

Poland looking for leveage? (1)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 9 years ago | (#10852411)

This could easily being an attempt by the Polish government to leveage for more... western... investments.

Re:Poland looking for leveage? (2, Insightful)

Trurl's Machine (651488) | more than 9 years ago | (#10853056)

Not likely. Poland is right now in a severe political turmoil, the government [www.ctv.ca] has recently fallen due to corruption allegations and there's another interim government with rather weak (if any) support in the parlament. There's no long-term planning of anything, the government will just manage things until the next election. Every day the press reveals another evidence of corruption. The sentence "Tinted windscreen, man, tinted windscreen.. it's better than... better than... better than... anything!", taken from transcript of secret service taping of conversations of one MP with a lobbyist corrupting him with a gift of a brand-new Mercedes Benz (with tinted windscreen) is now as popular in "watercooler" conversations as "You forgot about Poland". It turned out that in Polish government everyone took bribes from everyone, but they were too lazy/incompetent to do what they took bribes for. It's quite typical for Poland and that's why things have sometimes a happy ending here - when the politicians become too corupt and stupid, they sortof step back, enjoy their tinted windscreens and... let the wise men do their job. I guess that's what happened here.

Re:Poland looking for leveage? (1)

maciejkt (413286) | more than 9 years ago | (#10862506)

That's a pretty good summary of the situation here.

Do not put great faith in Poland, people. It's a strange place to live. :-)

Re:Poland looking for leveage? (1)

RWerp (798951) | more than 9 years ago | (#10871029)

It's stupid for a Pole to respond to another Pole's criticism of Poland on Slashdot, but I'll try. I think the parent poster is overly pessimistic, the guy who took the bribes is already in jail and he didn't succeed in convincing anyone in the government to his propositions. THe corruption is really large in Poland, but it's not like Chicago in Al Capone's times, not yet at least ;-)

Anyway, I find it amusing that when Poland is being praised on Slashdot, the people who bitch it most are those from Poland... Are we Poles so used to p...ng against the wind?

Re:Poland looking for leveage? (1)

Trurl's Machine (651488) | more than 9 years ago | (#10874361)

It's stupid for a Pole to respond to another Pole's criticism of Poland on Slashdot,

Stupid - maybe. But also quite typical for us, isn't it? :)

Viva Poland - Again! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10859659)

It appears that Poland does not like Fascists! Be they Nazis or American corporations.

At least the joke books will be easy to rewrite... (1)

Crash Culligan (227354) | more than 9 years ago | (#10865132)

s/polock/patent attorney/w
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