A Comparative Review of New Developments
- New Directions in Patent Law series
Edited by Emanuela Arezzo and Gustavo Ghidini
Chapter 7: Towards a New Instrument of Protection for Software in the EU? Learning the Lessons from the Harmonization Failure of Software Patentability
7. Towards a new instrument of protection for software in the EU? Learning the lessons from the harmonization failure of software patentability* Reto M. Hilty and Christophe Geiger INTRODUCTION Who would have thought that patent law, a subject previously considered complicated and difficult even among legal experts, would attract considerable public interest and give rise to such passionate discussion? Until recently, the future of this subject matter was decided within small circles, far removed from the eyes of the public. That is clearly in the past, as demonstrated by the enormous wave of protest against the gradual recognition of what is called – somewhat imprecisely – ‘software patentability’.1 This is certainly not the only field of intellectual property law in the limelight, if we think, for example, about the heated debate over the future * This chapter is an updated and amended version of an article previously published in the International Review of Intellectual Property and Competition Law (IIC) 2005, 615. 1 In fact, the concept of ‘software’, which will be treated here, is larger than the concept of ‘computer program’ since it contains the supporting documentation (see in this sense M. Vivant & J.-M. Bruguière, ‘Protéger les inventions de demain’, under the direction of M. Vivant, ‘La Documentation française’ 16 et seq. (Paris 2003); J. Weyand & H. Haase, ‘Anforderungen an einen Patentschutz für Computerprogramme’, 2004 GRUR 198, note 1, for English-language version ‘Patenting Computer Programs: New Challenges’, 2005 IIC 647). We will nevertheless use both expressions as synonyms, with...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.