recommended reading

How New Zealand Banned Software Patents Without Violating International Law

What do you do when you’re a small country with a technology industry convinced that innovation requires the banning of software patents, but you’ve signed an international treaty that in theory obliges you to make software patentable? If you’re New Zealand, you simply declare, in a historic and long-debated bit of just-passed legislation, that software isn’t an invention in the first place.

As a result, New Zealand’s new Patents Bill, passed today, guarantees that patents of pure software—that is, software uncoupled from some dedicated new piece of hardware—cannot be granted in New Zealand.

New Zealand’s seemingly zany declaration is not without precedent. In 1998, the head of the UK Patent Office commented that European law says that a piece of pure software is not technically an invention, or even a piece of “technology,” and it would have to be one or the other (or have an “industrial” application) in order to run afoul of the part of international law known as the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

Read more at Quartz

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • It’s Time for the Federal Government to Embrace Wireless and Mobility

    The United States has turned a corner on the adoption of mobile phones, tablets and other smart devices, outpacing traditional desktop and laptop sales by a wide margin. This issue brief discusses the state of wireless and mobility in federal government and outlines why now is the time to embrace these technologies in government.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • A New Security Architecture for Federal Networks

    Federal government networks are under constant attack, and the number of those attacks is increasing. This issue brief discusses today's threats and a new model for the future.

    Download
  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Software-Defined Networking

    So many demands are being placed on federal information technology networks, which must handle vast amounts of data, accommodate voice and video, and cope with a multitude of highly connected devices while keeping government information secure from cyber threats. This issue brief discusses the state of SDN in the federal government and the path forward.

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.