Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Documentary Film "Patent Absurdity" Features Interviews with Major Patent and Software Players and Summarizes the Case History of Software Patenting up to Bilski : A MUST!

 H-Online.com writes at "Patent Absurdity" documentary available as free download :
A new 30-minute documentary titled "Patent Absurdity: how software patents broke the system" about the application of patent law to software is now available to download from patentabsurdity.com.
Andrew Donoghue at eweekeurope.com in Free Software Film Slams Absurdity Of Software Patents writes:
"A new film criticising the growth of software patents is being made freely available for copying and dissemination to demonstrate the importance of open standards.
The documentary, “Patent Absurdity”, has been released online and is being partly funded by open software campain group the Free Software Foundation. The film is being made available under the Creative Commons BY-ND (Attribution-No Derivative Works) license, which encourages sharing and redistribution. The film was also made entirely with free software, in the Ogg Theora format, the makers claims."
In our opinion, this excellently done documentary film is destined to become a classic in the law.

Supreme Court Issues Constitutionally Correct but otherwise Unfortunate Animal Cruelty Law Decision

See Scotus Blog on First Amendment left intact: Animal cruelty videos escape ban and Mark Sherman at the Huffington Post in Supreme Court Overturns Animal Cruelty Video Ban: Ruling Could Spur New 'Crush' Videos.

Essentially, this is a Constitutionally correct, but very unfortunate 8-1 Supreme Court decision.
We fully appreciate Justice Alito's dissent, as he is the only Justice right on the result.

There is no question that the Supreme Court is technically right on the law, but wrong in the decision.

What the Supreme Court should do in this kind of a case is to alert the Congress that it is going to find an overly broad law like this rightly unconstitutional, but the Supremes should then delay publication of this kind of a harmful decision -- which has clear negative consequences for the nation as a whole the minute it is proclaimed -- and the Court should give Congress a grace period to quickly pass new conforming legislation which not broadly -- but very specifically -- bans certain kinds of depictions of animal cruelty in order not to open the doors to perpetrators of it.

Who says it can not do this? I see nothing in the laws that prohibit it.

I am surprised the Supreme Court does not investigate more modern methods of communicating with Congress to avoid this kind of thing, where months may now pass before conforming new legislation is passed and in the meantime, many animals will needlessly suffer, not to speak of the negative impact that these things have on public morals and values.

At the same time, there has got to be some kind of a mechanism developed in Congress to try to get the Senators and Representatives in Congress to become aware that they have to tailor their laws to the requirements of the U.S. Constitution -- are they completely oblivious of the nation's highest law when they pass legislation in Washington? Any 1st-year law student with a brain in his head can see that this legislation was overly broad.

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