Open Source Threatened by Intellectual Property Laws

Monday Feb 1st 2010 by Developer.com Staff
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The vague definition of what "IP" is opens the door for abuses by proprietary software companies to stifle open source competition.

Intense lobbying and incomplete intellectual laws pushed by the proprietary software industry are threatening the future of open source software.

That's what technology consultant Colin Jackson said during a presentation at Linux.conf.au last month.

"We have a good specification for property ownership, but it is completely debatable about what the law should say about IP [and] it's not clear what the law says about ownership of IP," Jackson said.

He asked "what does IP mean"? According to Jackson, the media and the legal profession continue to put forth vague definitions for what "IP" means.

ComputerWorld's Rodney Gedda Sydney reports that Jackson said, "We need to push back, as the term is meaningless and it can provide a limited monopoly over some things."

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