Re: [antitrust-policy] Should the IETF allow discussion of licensing costs

Jorge Contreras <cntreras@gmail.com> Fri, 20 January 2012 19:37 UTC

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Date: Fri, 20 Jan 2012 14:37:06 -0500
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From: Jorge Contreras <cntreras@gmail.com>
To: Russ Housley <housley@vigilsec.com>
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Subject: Re: [antitrust-policy] Should the IETF allow discussion of licensing costs
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On Fri, Jan 20, 2012 at 2:30 PM, Russ Housley <housley@vigilsec.com> wrote:

>
> >>  - discuss licensing costs of essential patent claims associated with
> >>    different technical approaches;
>
> This point in the strawman has lead to a disagreement.  Some say that this
> should not be allowed, and they point to the policies of other SDOs that
> prohibit it.  On the other side of this issue, Jorge points out that these
> SDOs are being very conservative, and he says that it is not prohibited by
> current antitrust and competitive laws.
>
> This leads me to a question: Does the IETF need to be able to include
> discussion of licensing costs?  In other words, is it sufficient to
> distinguish between 'royalty free' and 'not royalty free'?
>
> Russ
>

Russ -- I'd rephrase this last question, as I believe that most people said
that mere *disclosure *of licensing costs did not bother them, but some
felt uncomfortable with *discussion *of licensing costs.  Maybe it is most
accurate to ask:

1.  Should disclosure of licensing terms be *allowed*?
2.  Should disclosure of licensing terms be *required*?
3.  If you said yes to either 1 or 2, should *discussion *of those
licensing costs be allowed?

Jorge