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OASIS patents and OpenDocument

by John Sullivan Contributions Published on Jul 14, 2006 06:29 PM

Since we posted our opposition to OASIS's patent policy last year, we've had a few questions about how this affects OASIS's ODF standard. This statement aims to reassure people that ODF is, to the best of FSF's knowledge, a standard which can be implemented in Free Software.

  1. OASIS's patent policy as a whole is objectionable. But as our statement last year noted, individual OASIS projects can choose a royalty-free option.
  2. The ODF working group is working under the "RF On Limited Terms" policy, which means that all patents required to implement the ODF specification are licensed for everyone's use, with some reasonable retaliatory provisions.
  3. Only one member of the ODF group has issued statements about their patent policies: Sun. Sun's statements provide for free use of their patents in ODF. Their patent licenses terminate only for people who threaten others with patents on ODF implementations.

So, FSF supports the ODF. Here's some information about our campaign to support ODF: http://www.fsf.org/campaigns/odf.html.

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