Two international intellectual property policy groups IP Justice and the Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) filed an Amicus Curiae Brief in the United States Supreme Court in the Bilski v. Kappos case dealing with software patents. The US Supreme Court’s decision in this case is expected to be a landmark decision on the limits of patentability on abstract ideas.
A copy of the IPJ / FFII Supreme Court Brief is here. In the joint legal brief filed on 5 October 2009, the global policy groups contend:
"The Bilski case reaches the question of the patentability of business methods and by extension other non-tangible subject matter such as software that is not connected to any machine or transformative use. This affects virtually everyone doing business in the United States or with the United States. If innovators are permitted to monopolize business practices, algorithms, or abstract ideas, untethered to any physical mechanism and damaging effects of these unconstrained monopolies will be far-reaching. There is good reason that this High Court and European Parliament have both, thus far, rejected such a rule."
Oral argument before the Hight Court is set for 9 November 2009.
- FFII / IPJ Press Release on the Bilski legal filing.
- FFII webpage with more background information on the case and the policy issues.
- Knowledge Ecology International amicus brief to focus on the role of non-patent mechanisms to stimulate innovation.
- Software Freedom Law Center amicus brief on the patentability of software.
- Free Software Foundation amicus brief on Bilski case.