Torvalds Slams EU Patent Proposal

Linus Torvalds and two other European software luminaries have thrown their weight behind a campaign to block software patents from being legitimized in Europe, ahead of a critical European Competitiveness Council decision later this week.

On Thursday or Friday, the Competitiveness Council is expected to decide whether to formally back-draft legislation on "the Patentability of Computer-Implemented Inventions," which received the tentative approval of the EU Council in May. In the long EU legislative process, this would amount to a significant step forward for the controversial proposal, which many argue would open the floodgates to software patents if approved in its current form.

In a statement published on Tuesday, Torvalds, the inventor of the Linux operating system kernel, along with Michael Widenius, one of the creators of the MySQL database, and Rasmus Lerdorf, creator of the PHP scripting language, urged the EU Council to prevent the proposal's adoption. "In the interest of Europe, such a deceptive, dangerous and democratically illegitimate proposal must not become the Common Position of the member states," they wrote.

News source: eWeek

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