Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Microsoft, Patents and the Soprano's

Steve Walli is an old buddy from Microsoft that came over via the Softway Systems acquisition a few months after Zoomit was acquired. He's since left Microsoft and has been very actively blogging about open source. His recent post about the whole Microsoft/Linux patent issue and holding customers for ransom really hit the mark...

First, to reiterate, as a customer I am completely uninterested in buying something from a vendor, and then paying every other vendor in the space a license to their possible additional but unproved patents. I'm not even interested in licensing their PROVED patents. Patents are vendor to vendor discussions. To make sure the license wonks in Microsoft Legal and Corporate Affairs understand what I mean: As a customer, when I buy my Xerox copier, I do not intend to additionally license patents from HP, Canon, Epson, or ANY other copier manufacturer. I buy solutions from my vendors, and I expect value for money. I am uninterested in your protection shakedown. Move on. The bullying of customers stops now.

It's a great post and puts an interesting perspective on the issue. Check it out!

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