Re: Regarding OOXML and Microsoft patents

> Interesting that you should say this.  Yesterday I read Eben Moglen's
> response to my questions about the OOXML patent issue.  He said
> Microsoft's OSP is worthless.

I have emailed Eben, hopefully he can share with me what he thinks is
worthless about the OSP and maybe we can request the terms to be

>     Rosen's statement is from November 2005, and reflects the pre-OSP
>     promise, but this is discussed in the above url, and considered a
>     non-starter which puts it at odds with Rosen's position.  
> Rosen is talking about open source, not free software.  He said that
> Microsoft's old patent promise allows open source implementations.  I
> explained in
> why it did not allow free software implementations.

The analysis on that page is based on a different patent license than
the OSP for OOXML.   It is based on the patent license for XPS which is
a format used for output (it is similar in spirit to Postscript or PDF
as opposed to ODF).

This is probably where the confusion stems from.

In any case, I only knew about Larry Rosen's position on the original
OOXML license, but it turns out that the Microsoft page for the OSP
contains a quote from himself directly regarding the OSP, it
specifically talks about "free and open source licenses":

        “I see Microsoft’s introduction of the OSP as a good step by
        Microsoft to further enable collaboration between software
        vendors and the open source community. This OSP enables the open
        source community to implement these standard specifications
        without having to pay any royalties to Microsoft or sign a
        license agreement. I'm pleased that this OSP is compatible with
        free and open source licenses.”

In addition to Larry Rosen's quote, there is one from Mark Webbink,
Deputy General Counsel at Red Hat:

        "Red Hat believes that the text of the OSP gives sufficient
        flexibility to implement the listed specifications in software
        licensed under free and open source licenses. We commend
        Microsoft’s efforts to reach out to representatives from the
        open source community and solicit their feedback on this text,
        and Microsoft's willingness to make modifications in response to
        our comments."
He also explicitly mentions "free and open source licenses".   

> Maybe Rosen is right--as regards open source.  But that isn't
> relevant to free software.  The criteria are not the same.


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