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Various groups of the European Parliament have submitted amendment proposals to the Legal Affairs Committee which, if adopted, would reinstate the Parliament's decision of September 2003, thereby clearing up the dogmatic mess created by the European Patent Office and encouraging judges to exclude software solutions from patentability.

News & Chronology

Deadline for submission of amendments was 2005-05-03 18h. Currently FFII is aware of the following sets of amendments:

FFII's amendment analysis service

FFII president Hartmut Pilch explains the upcoming procedure:

"The FFII is working with a group of patent examiners and legal experts to provide analysis and further proposals throughout the weeks of deliberation in the Legal Affairs Committee, which will vote on the amendments in June, and in the Plenary, which will vote on these and possibly further new amendments in early July.

Only amendments that win the support of a majority of component members of the Parliament, i.e. at least 367 !MEPs, will be adopted. Every absent MEP will be counted as pro-Council."

Post Second Reading

Hartmut Pilch explains further:

"The Parliament's position will not become law, but rather will be the basis for a further reading of the Council and, most likely, for negotiations between the Council and the Parliament in a Conciliation procedure, which may well end without a result, leading to the failure of the directive project, if the Council continues to be dominated by the ministerial bureacracy of the national patent offices. On the other hand, if the Parliament fails to amend the Council's current proposal under the harsh majority requirements, the Council's proposal will become law, and the hunting season for enforcement of more than 30000 broad and trivial software patents granted by the European Patent Office will begin in Europe."

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