RE: JavaMemoryModel: JMM discussions moving to

From: Boehm, Hans (
Date: Wed Aug 24 2005 - 14:29:57 EDT

This now seems to be a moot point for us. But I'll elaborate in the
that somebody can actually fix this. I'm of course not a lawyer, so
this should be taken with a very large grain of salt ...

The rules seem to imply that:

(Clause 1) Ordinary users need to abide by standard licensing rules for
posted materials.

(Clause 12) The "hosts" (Sun, O'Reilly) get incredibly broad rights to
anything we post. These rights are not granted to other users of the
site, though the "hosts" have the right to sublicense them.

The licensed rights include patent rights. It is unclear to me whether
they include patent rights to ideas that are merely mentioned, as
to incorporated in posted code. It is also unclear to me whether, if I
accidentally mention some idea on which HP happens to hold a ten year
patent, I have thereby licensed it to Sun. I'm of course not allowed to
do that.

Including patent rights here seems to buy nothing for site users, since

(a) I can still post code that's covered by some third party patent with

(b) These rights do not appear to be automatically transferred to other
site users.

But it does potentially cause serious problems for employees of other
like HP.

I am not in any way arguing for software patents, which I personally
would be very happy to get rid of. (My employer may feel differently.)
But under the current IP rules, this strikes me as an incredibly
one-sided agreement.


> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> [] On Behalf Of Joe Bowbeer
> Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2005 7:02 PM
> To:
> Cc: javamemorymodel-users
> Subject: Re: JavaMemoryModel: JMM discussions moving to
> The website terms of participation, which apply to
> this mailing list I believe, are as follows:
> Isn't their intent to protect these discussions and anything
> based on them from patent and copyright suits?
> Joe.
> On 8/23/05, Boehm, Hans <> wrote:
> > Bill, Doug -
> >
> > I didn't take a lot of time to verify this, nor run this past a
> > lawyer. But it seemed to me that in order to access the
> mailing list,
> > I need to agree to the usage agreement, which I
> just declined
> > to do. This states in part:
> >
> > 12. The Hosts do not claim ownership of Submissions you
> post or make
> > available for inclusion on the Service. However, with
> respect to such
> > Submissions, notwithstanding any other provision of these Website
> > Terms of Participation, you grant to the Hosts a royalty-free,
> > perpetual, irrevocable, non-exclusive and fully
> sub-licensable right
> > and license under your intellectual property rights (including, but
> > not limited to, copyright, patent trademark and trade
> secret rights)
> > to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create
> > derivative works from, distribute, perform and display your
> > Submissions (in whole or part) worldwide and/or to
> incorporate it in
> > other works in any form, media, or technology now known or later
> > developed.
> >
> > If I understand this correctly, then it seems to be entirely
> > unreasonable for the use of a mailing list. In particular, I'm not
> > sure whether it implies that Sun gets a license to any HP patent,
> > whose contents I happen to mention in a posting.
> >
> > If it were at least symmetric, I'd run it past our lawyers. But as
> > written, this seems so far out of line that I would really advocate
> > going back to the old arrangement. I certainly don't want to
> > encourage the precedent that mailing list hosts get patent
> rights ...
> >
> > Hans
> >
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