Feeds

Software developer asks Lords to hear patent appeal

Last chance saloon

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Neal Macrossan is seeking leave to appeal to the House of Lords after his application for a patent was rejected by the Court of Appeal.

Macrossan's invention is an automated system that compiles the necessary documents for incorporating a company in the UK. The appeal court judges ruled that this was both a business method and a computer program and was therefore excluded from patentability under Article 52 of the European Patent Convention.

Article 52 sets out the conditions under which an invention does not qualify for patent protection.

In their judgment, the Justices wrote: "We are firmly of the opinion that the patent is both for a method of doing business as such and for a computer program as such."

They went on to use the judgment to suggest three questions to the European Patent Office's Enlarged Board of Appeal that might form the basis of an effort to clarify the precise scope of Article 52.

Macrossan will be represented by patent lawyers at Marks & Clark. A spokesman for the firm said the company was unable to clarify the grounds for the appeal. "We are unable to comment on points of law in the case or anything that will constitute our argument part of the petition for leave to appeal," he told us.

However, the fact that the judges felt moved to send questions to the EPO seems to have prompted the appeal.

Dr John Collins, partner at Marks & Clerk, head of the legal team representing Macrossan, commented: "The Court of Appeal's referral to the Enlarged Board of Appeal is an illustration of the level of discomfort surrounding the divergence between the UK and European approach to inventions of this nature and the recognition of intellectual property."

Neal Macrossan added: "There is an issue of law here that affects not just me, but all sorts of interested parties. And unlike the Court of Appeal, the House of Lords is not bound by any previous decisions including its own." ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Nexus 7 fandroids tell of salty taste after sucking on Google's Lollipop
Web giant looking into why version 5.0 of Android is crippling older slabs
Be real, Apple: In-app goodie grab games AREN'T FREE – EU
Cupertino stands down after Euro legal threats
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
SLURP! Flick your TONGUE around our LOLLIPOP – Google
Android 5 is coming – IF you're lucky enough to have the right gadget
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
Bada-Bing! Mozilla flips Firefox to YAHOO! for search
Microsoft system will be the default for browser in US until 2020
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.