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Software patents harm SMEs

(Redirected from SME)

During the lobbying around the EU software patents directive, representatives of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) were against software patents.


The main problems are:

There are other problems. Sometimes these other problems are very real, but sometimes they're used by pro-software-patent campaigns in strange ways to distract politicians away from the main problems. Focussing on these should be don with caution:

How important are SMEs?

  • According to European Business Summit, they provide 99% of European jobs![1] (This sounds too high - other sources say 75%)



(See other studies on economics and innovation)

Related pages on ESP Wiki

External links


  1. "SMEs Engines for Recovery?". "providing an appropriate balance for a discussion of a sector that provides 99% of all of Europe’s jobs." 

Why abolish software patents
Why abolish software patents Why focus only on software · Why software is different · Software patent quality worse than all other fields · Harm caused by all types of patents
Legal arguments Software is math · Software is too abstract · Software does not make a computer a new machine · Harming freedom of expression · Blocking useful freedoms
High costs Costly legal costs · Cost of the patent system to governments · Cost barrier to market entry · Cost of defending yourself against patent litigation
Impact on society Restricting freedom Harm without litigation or direct threats · Free software projects harmed by software patents · More than patent trolls · More than innovation · Slow process creates uncertainty
Preventing progress Software relies on incremental development · Software progress happens without patents · Reducing innovation and research · Software development is low risk · Reducing job security · Harming education · Harming standards and compatibility
Disrupting the economy Used for sabotage · Controlling entire markets · Breaking common software distribution models · Blocking competing software · Harming smaller businesses · Harming all types of businesses · A bubble waiting to burst
Problems of the legal system Problems in law Clogging up the legal system · Disclosure is useless · Software patents are unreadable · Publishing information is made dangerous · Twenty year protection is too long
Problems in litigation Patent trolls · Patent ambush · Invalid patents remain unchallenged · Infringement is unavoidable · Inequality between small and large patent holders