More IP lawyer double-think

I just wrote a response to an article in what I believe to be a trade magazine for IP lawyers. Probably a waste of energy, but it was nice to get it off my chest ;-)

Dear Mr Wild,I write in response to Craig Opperman’s article on software patents in Issue 9, available online at:http://www.iam-magazine.com/articles/CRAIG%20OPPERMAN%20ISSUE%209.pdfIn addition to the variously discredited, contradictory, and ad hominem arguments put forth by those that would impose software patents on European innovators, we are now asked to swallow yet another.According to Mr Opperman, it doesn’t matter whether EU lawmakers prohibit software patents because IP lawyers will find a way to work around any restrictions, so they shouldn’t even try. In doing so it appears he would concede his lack of respect for the law as written by our elected representatives.Aside from its undemocratic implications, the practical problem with this argument is that while the “astute IP strategist” may well find ways to fool patent offices into granting invalid patents, those patents will not survive long as soon as they are challenged in court. This, presumably, is the reason that most holders of illegally granted software patents in Europe have avoided litigation lest their “IP assets” receive such scrutiny.In fact, any “astute IP strategist” that encourages their client to go through the expense of obtaining a patent in the knowledge that, if granted, would be unlikely to survive a court challenge should be reported to the law society for professional misconduct.Yours Sincerely,Ian Clarke.

Also see Prof. Lenz’ response.

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