[ Software Patents Directive's Rejection 7th Anniversary ]



Brussels, July 6th 2012 - Seven years ago, the Software Patent's Directive was rejected by the European Parliament with an overwhelming majority of 648 votes vs 14. For Josep Borell, former EP President : the "most decisive majority vote in the history of the chamber". A Celebration Drink will be held today at 18:00 in the European Capital.

Whereas the European Parliament just confirmed its independence last Wednesday by defeating the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, it might be opportune to remember that exactly seven years from now, the first European citizen battle was won in similar circumstances with the rejection of the Software Patents Directive, which purpose was to legalize the European Patent Office's illicit practices in the ICT field with an inelegant support from the European Commission.

Michel Rocard, rapporteur on the Directive commented : "There is a collective and unanimous anger on the part of the entire Parliament at the unacceptable way it has been treated by the Commission and the Council. […] As a matter of principle, this is scandalous enough. The crisis in Europe today has a lot to do with the deficit of democracy, an area where the Council has an overwhelming responsibility, as it has proved amply on this issue. Let us hope that this rejection is a lesson to it !"

He concluded : "The European Parliament has refused to ratify the recent judicial errors", referring to the EPO Board of Appeal case law in favor of software patents, formally forbidden by the 1973 European Patent Convention. "If these errors were to continue, it now seems clear that a parliamentary majority would emerge to put a stop to them."

Guess what ? Members of the European Parliament are currently considering their vote on another magical text : the Unitary Patent, aimed at simply giving a unitary effect in all members states to patents delivered by the European Patent Office. The regulation does not mention any quality requirement nor relevant substantive law, apart from the European Patent Convention and EPO internal case law. As a reminder, the European Union has no control over the EPO, which is an independent institution auto-financed depending on the number of patents delivered.

As foreboded by Michel Rocard in 2005, will a parliamentary majority emerge to "put a stop" ?

Until then : come and join us to celebrate the 7th anniversary of the Software Patent's Directive Rejection


More information

» Remember July 6th, 2005 : http://06072005.eu
» Warning about the Unitary Patent : http://www.unitary-patent.eu
» Invitation sent to MEPs : http://06072005.eu/invitation06072012:meps
» Link to this press release : http://06072005.eu/press-release:06072012

About Ultimate Circle

With headquarter in the heart of E.U. capital Brussels, Ultimate Circle is a citizen lobby spreading awareness on digital and technical innovation challenges. Mostly focusing on European public affairs, promoting appropriate policies and healthy practices, Ultimate Circle is notably concerned about intellectual property drifts.

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