Functional Form

Avoiding side-effects since 2004.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Letter to Senator

Dear Senator Boxer:

I am writing you to express my strong opposition to the patenting of software. I beg you to consider the deleterious effects of patents in this very unique domain, both to business and freedom of individual software developers to create and share their work. Software is not like any other innovative pursuit to which patents have been applied in the past... it is much less a form of engineering than an art. Software represents a new kind of social activity in an era of increasing ubiquity for digital information, and it is rapidly becoming the tool of freedom seekers around the world. I heard you today on NPR, and I believe that you care about the cause of freedom. Please take a look at this issue. Note that the EU parliament is currently in debate over this subject, and it is very likely that Europe will reject the application of patents to software, giving the European market an edge over the US, where patents will stifle innovation. We must reform our intellectual property system to sanely approach the new intellectual realities brought on by revolutionary new technologies. Note what happened to Europe following the adoption of mechanized printing. Digital sharing of information represents a change in the nature of intellectual exchange, and it carries similar implications for our future. Please help ensure that America meets that future with open arms rather than stifling it. Thanks.


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