6 March 2005 -- FFII is starting a campaign of support for Denmark's initiative to reopen negotiations on software patents in the EU Council. The campaign site thankdenmark.info which was just launched, starts by praising Denmark's move as a historic step toward parliamentary democracy in the EU and asking supporters to write letters to various politicians. Letter templates are collected on a related site.
Stream from the Council (if you hear nothing, then it has not yet started or the interesting part is over):
Feel free to recycle any of these for your own letters. Send your letters to addresses suggested here.
2005-03-07 Gérald Sédrati-Dinet to French diplomats
2005-03-07 Erik Josefsson to Council Politicians
2005-03-07 Holger Blasum to Wolfgang Clement
2005-03-07 Hartmut Pilch to Hansjörg Geiger
2005-02-17 FFII to Luxemburg Presidency
As appendices to your fax, you can use some of the following material
Lenz: Qui Tacit (Lenz is a professor of European Law who has been strongly criticising the Council's "unwritten rules" that the adoption of political agreements is an automated "formalisation" rather than a decision that needs a qualified majority)
Lenz: Learn Writing! (critique of "European Voice" article which accused Poland of breaking the Council's "unwritten rules")
- Reversing the Swpat Agreement does not mean Reversing every Agreement. EU is not a banana republic. Late B-Items are only a weak safety valve. Ministers only need to consult with their national parliaments to assure that agreements are reasonably stable.
- Commission must not be allowed to withdraw the directive. The problems created by the EPO call for a Europe-wide solution, and the EP has worked constructively on this solution. The Commission's attitude of either imposing EPO practice or doing nothing is inacceptable. (NL patent lobby (government, VVD, Philips) as well as Lehne, patent bullies and a few others are currently mobilising for withdrawal of the directive and will use this to pressure Denmark and Poland)
- Outrage at Commission's handling of directive, call for transfer of responsibility away from DG MARKT
- Consilium and EP are very far apart (NL governmental+philips patent lobby is pretending that the texts are similar and lax triviality standards are the only problem, retraction of directive plus an exhortation to the EPO on triviality would be enough)
- Call for a national regulation that forbids granting of program claims by national offices and mandates deletion of program claims from EPO patents that enter the national phase. (This makes it clear that we are continuing at the national level in any case, so the patent lobby doesn't gain anything by having the directive withdrawn. The EPO praxis is based on quite weak grounds, and is probably the most basic reason to why some wants to codify it in a directive)
Who does what?
- assign roles: phm, ...
- Collect Addresses for Countries (coordination): WANTED (erjos?)
- Prepare letter texts for use by supporters in different languages (coordination): ?phm?
- EN: phm
- DE: phm, ?ccorn?
Prepare locally customised mass mailings to be sent on sunday: ?ccorn, ?blasum (blasum cannot be online all the time on saturday night but once you want him to localise en to de and/or to send things out please call me up at +49 174 7313590 *anytime*), ...
- DE : blasum has sent DRAFT V 0.01 to releg-de