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Date:      Sat, 13 May 2000 16:43:31 -0700
From:      "David Schwartz" <davids@webmaster.com>
To:        "G. Adam Stanislav" <redprince@redprince.net>, "W Gerald Hicks" <jhix@mindspring.com>, <chat@FreeBSD.ORG>
Subject:   RE: Why are people against GNU? WAS Re: 5.0 already?
Message-ID:  <000001bfbd35$0bcd8d40$021d85d1@youwant.to>
In-Reply-To: <3.0.6.32.20000513182440.00892db0@mail85.pair.com>

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> Mostly because the patent is rarely granted to the creator of the
> idea. The
> current GIF fiasco is a good example. It is not Lempel and Ziw who hold
> patent to Lempel-Ziw. It is Unisys. The fact that it was
> developed by their
> employee should not make them owners of the idea. They did not teach their
> employee how to think: They hired him because he already knew how
> to think.
> They may own whatever specific products he was paid to create for
> them, but
> they should have no claim on the algorithms he used. Those should have
> remained his.
> Adam

	Suppose the patent was granted to Lempel and Ziw, should they have been
allowed to sell it to Unisys had they chosen to? And should they have been
allowed to assign any ideas they might develop to Unisys when their
employment began?

	All you need is for Lempel and Ziw to have the freedom to choose to work
for Unisys or not and the freedom to negotiate whatever terms with Unisys
that are found mutually agreeable. The PTO has no control over such
agreements and is not responsible for the outcome.

	Prohibiting people who come up with ideas from selling or assigning them
just decreases the value of such people to their employers.

	DS



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