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* It's hard to know when a technology is patent free (e.g. MP3, MPEG-1) - but this is an argument for changing the way patents work, not an argument for abolition.
 
* It's hard to know when a technology is patent free (e.g. MP3, MPEG-1) - but this is an argument for changing the way patents work, not an argument for abolition.
 
* Writing any software that solves any problem IS an invention.  Any time any software programmer types up functional code he or she has invented something that is patentable.  The U.S. patent system relies on the fact that only a small percentage of these software "inventors" take action to patent their invention.  If every programmer attempted to patent the software that they had written it would create a backlog that the patent office would not be able to clear and would gridlock the software industry by ensuring that anything that could be done with a device that contains RAM and a CPU to fall under one or more patents.  Any system of laws that continues to function only because the majority of citizens do NOT exercise their rights under those laws is a broken system.  
 
* Writing any software that solves any problem IS an invention.  Any time any software programmer types up functional code he or she has invented something that is patentable.  The U.S. patent system relies on the fact that only a small percentage of these software "inventors" take action to patent their invention.  If every programmer attempted to patent the software that they had written it would create a backlog that the patent office would not be able to clear and would gridlock the software industry by ensuring that anything that could be done with a device that contains RAM and a CPU to fall under one or more patents.  Any system of laws that continues to function only because the majority of citizens do NOT exercise their rights under those laws is a broken system.  
* Not only are most citizens not exercising their rights but are unable to. As stated above, it's very easy to create something that could be patentable. How many ideas could we patent? This system (no automatic recognition and very costly to gain recognition) creates a system of monopoly rights to be bought by the highest bidder. The more money you have, the more of your and of others' ideas you can patent to gain the monopoly/taxing rights over everyone. This system only has a chance of being fair if those affected directly by it can participate on a near equal footing. [Note that some patents involve technology that costs millions or billions of dollars for execution. Few have the resources to invent in this environment so almost no one is held back specifically because of the patent monopolies. Those that can play this game at that level can easily afford those (nonsoftware) patents.]
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* Not only are most citizens not exercising their rights but are unable to. As stated above, it's very easy to create something that could be patentable. How many of us could afford tens of thousands of dollars that on average is required to get a patent? How many ideas could we patent? This system (no automatic recognition and very costly to gain recognition) creates a system of monopoly rights to be bought by the highest bidder. The more money you have, the more of your and of others' ideas you can patent to gain the monopoly/taxing rights over everyone. This system only has a chance of being fair if those affected directly by it can participate on a near equal footing. [Note that some patents involve technology that costs millions or billions of dollars for execution. Few have the resources to invent in this environment so almost no one is held back specifically because of the patent monopolies. Those that can play this game at that level can easily afford those (nonsoftware) patents.]
 
* ([[Software is math]]) Since the logic (idea) of software can be reduced to mathematical formula (idea) with Church-Turing Thesis, and because mathematical formula (idea) is not patentable, software should not be patentable as well. More generally, [[http://www.groklaw.net/articlebasic.php?story=20101007030644178 software is abstract]]. It exists because of digitalization. This is why writing software is frequently like writing fiction; you can create almost anything you can imagine without having to answer to Mother Nature (and deal with related expenses and uncertainties).
 
* ([[Software is math]]) Since the logic (idea) of software can be reduced to mathematical formula (idea) with Church-Turing Thesis, and because mathematical formula (idea) is not patentable, software should not be patentable as well. More generally, [[http://www.groklaw.net/articlebasic.php?story=20101007030644178 software is abstract]]. It exists because of digitalization. This is why writing software is frequently like writing fiction; you can create almost anything you can imagine without having to answer to Mother Nature (and deal with related expenses and uncertainties).
 
* Since the only requirement to develop software is a commodity computer, which is very cheap, software should not be patentable just as authoring a book that only requires paper and a pen, which are very cheap, is not patentable. Very cheap means (a) the pool of inventors is much higher and (b) the risk to inventing is much lower. This in turn means (a') a monopoly hand-cuffs that many more (a very high liability to progress and cumulatively to individual liberties) while simultaneously (b') the incentive required to stimulate invention goes down similarly, both because of lower capital risks and because of the mentioned greater competition. [FOSS forms evidence that many can and do create original quality software without seeking patents and actually while encouraging no-strings attached collaboration.] Either (a) or (b) should be sufficient reason to abolish or greatly reduce the power, scope, and/or duration of patents. (b) is naturally true and keeps getting lower the more quality FOSS exists. (a) is generally true for an average patent (and is also promoted by an increasing body of quality FOSS) and is true to a large degree for most patents because the bar for accepting patents is so low.
 
* Since the only requirement to develop software is a commodity computer, which is very cheap, software should not be patentable just as authoring a book that only requires paper and a pen, which are very cheap, is not patentable. Very cheap means (a) the pool of inventors is much higher and (b) the risk to inventing is much lower. This in turn means (a') a monopoly hand-cuffs that many more (a very high liability to progress and cumulatively to individual liberties) while simultaneously (b') the incentive required to stimulate invention goes down similarly, both because of lower capital risks and because of the mentioned greater competition. [FOSS forms evidence that many can and do create original quality software without seeking patents and actually while encouraging no-strings attached collaboration.] Either (a) or (b) should be sufficient reason to abolish or greatly reduce the power, scope, and/or duration of patents. (b) is naturally true and keeps getting lower the more quality FOSS exists. (a) is generally true for an average patent (and is also promoted by an increasing body of quality FOSS) and is true to a large degree for most patents because the bar for accepting patents is so low.

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