W3C moves to snuff Apple web patents
Er, Steve. HTML5 is royalty free
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has launched a bid to overturn two Apple patent filings that may apply to the HTML5 standard.
The web standards group – which is responsible for the HTML5 spec – has asked the world to submit prior art on US patent applications 11/432,295 and 7,743,336. The patents cover ways to secure online content, including documents, media, and software.
Apple has claimed that the technologies apply to the W3C's Widget Access Request Policy specification, and it has refused to make them available under the W3C's terms.
The W3C operates a royalty-free patents policy, meaning that any patents which apply to its specifications must be made available one everyone free of charge.
As patents expert Florian Mueller notes, the W3C can't formally adopt the "infringing" specification because this would break the group's rules.
Patent owners who surrender rights to that patent – as W3C members do – lose the legal right to enforce it for any later claims.
Apple is not just a card-carrying member of the W3C. It has been one of the biggest cheerleaders for HTML5, as Apple chief executive Steve Jobs sought to bury Flash. By not surrendering the claimed patent, Apple is reserving the right to sue for potential violations in the future, once the HTML5 spec is finished and becomes widespread.
Apple is no lightweight when it comes to lodging and fighting patent infringement cases or exacting royalties.
Apple has launched cases against Samsung (for allegedly ripping off the "look and feel" of the iPhone and iPad) and HTC (over a claimed 20 patent infringements of the iPhone's user interface, underlying architecture, and hardware), and it has filed a counter-suit against Motorola over six multi-touch and underlying operating system patents. Apple is also fighting Amazon and and Microsoft as it tries to claim a trademark on the "App Store" name.
Meanwhile, Apple just agreed to pay Nokia royalties over claimed patent infringement in a settlement that seems to have cost the company's top patent lawyer Richard Lutton his head. ®
If that's a software description, can't the world just agree to drop the brain-dead US system and let the rest of us implement HTML5 because software patents don't apply (yet) elsewhere? That's the best way to make the point, let the US stew in its own juices until the citizens demand decent patent reform because the existing system adversely affects them. Corporations might be able to deliver campaign dollars to DC, but it's the people who deliver the votes.
sometimes you just have to wait long enough.......
I was genuinely impressed as a semi-interested bystander that Apple were pushing an open standard versus a corporate proprietary alternative, it did seem like an unusual move at the time and I thought a potentially welcome one (eventually once every one had moved over).
But sometimes you just have to wait long enough, now the real reason appears to have reared it's ugly head and it seems Apple didn't want any single company to have too much of a share of the internets favourite media format, unless it them!
Yes I know these companies are obliged to make money and the nicey nice PR is there just to hide the fins popping out of the water, but every now and again you let your guard down for a second or two, open your life to hope and the betterment of humankind and BAMM a knife between the shoulder blades, I only caught a glimpse of my attacker, but I could swear he was wearing a dark polo neck.......
that explains it then
the real reason Jobs hates Flash and wants HTML5... for money.