Council Presidency Adopts Software Patent Agreement Against Council's Rules

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7 March 2005 -- The Council Presidency today declared the software agreement of 18 May 2004 to have been adopted, in violation of the procedural rules and in spite of the evident lack of a qualified majority of member states and the requests of several states to reopen negotiations.



Council defense

Reportedly, the Danish minister (who was forced by a parliamentary committee to request a B-item, but did not like that at all) and the Luxembourg Council Presidency use the following paragraph as defense for their behaviour:

This paragraph indeed does not mention anything about the possibility to change an A item into a B item. Looking at rule 3.8, that one says:

They might argue this still doesn't say anything about changing an A item into a B item, although three countries (with the support of more) asking for a B item is hard to classify as anything but something which "might lead to further discussion". Additionally, Annex III of those same rules of procedure states on page 20, point 1(c):

This clearly and literally provides for the possibility of turning an A item into a B item if otherwise the A item would have to be withdrawn from the agenda (which is the case if there "might" be further discussion due to some statement from a country).

Audio stream from Council session (sent by on-site activists)


Jonas Maebe, FFII Board Member:

Extra information


About FFII --

The Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) is a non-profit association registered in several European countries, which is dedicated to the spread of data processing literacy. FFII supports the development of public information goods based on copyright, free competition, open standards. More than 500 members, 1,200 companies and 75,000 supporters have entrusted the FFII to act as their voice in public policy questions concerning exclusion rights (intellectual property) in data processing.

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