Sorry, my mistake: more on MS and IP


One of these days I’m going to be able to get a title that’s entirely abbreviations…

Anyway, it appears that my earlier estimation of how Microsoft would respond to the Sender ID fiasco was a bit off. As a refresher, I said that:

If Microsoft were looking for a purely defensive patent, they could eliminate the issue by assigning the patent to a third party (as has been done with many OSS projects), but I don’t believe that will happen. If MS can’t own the IP then they’re going to gather up their toys, glare at the OSS community, and quote Cartman:

Screw you guys — I’m going home!

It now turns out that MS’ response to the situation is slightly different. I thought that MS was going to take their toys and go home; in fact, the continuing developments seem to indicate that MS is thinking more along the lines of “if you’re not going to license our intellectual property, then we’ll just extend our IP claims to include what you’re already doing.” They’ll take everybody’s toys and go home.

Great. It seems that I was optimistic last week when I thought that we might be just a little further from having a generally accepted email sender validation scheme than we were prior to the now defunct Sender ID/SPF convergence. How young and idealistic I was to belive that widespread ill will was the only negative result of this whole process. Turns out that we’re a lot worse off than we were three months ago.

Explain to me again how the US Patent system supports innovation and works to benefit all of us?