Re: [codec] WGLC of draft-ietf-codec-opus-07

Peter Saint-Andre <> Tue, 26 July 2011 12:41 UTC

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Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2011 08:41:15 -0400
From: Peter Saint-Andre <>
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Subject: Re: [codec] WGLC of draft-ietf-codec-opus-07
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Thanks for the clarifications. Folks might also want to read RFC 3669
("Guidelines for Working Groups on Intellectual Property Issues"):

On 7/22/11 2:47 AM, Stephan Wenger wrote:
> Hi Peter,
> I believe you phrased the disclosure obligations a tad to broad:
> On 7.21.2011 19:39 , "Peter Saint-Andre" <> wrote:
>> [...]
>> According to IETF rules, individuals who are aware of IPR claims related
>> to work in which they are participating (e.g., as document editors or
>> list discussants) are required to state that they are aware of the
>> existence of such claims (which might even be claims made by third
>> parties not involved in the work) -- not necessarily to disclose the
>> nature of the IPR itself, but at least to state awareness of the
>> existence of such claims.
> An individual is *required* to disclose "own" IPR against "own" drafts and
> someone else's drafts the individual is commenting on.  See sections 6.1.1
> and 6.1.2 of RFC3979.
> The disclosure obligation under 6.1.1 and 6.1.2 against a given document
> or contribution is triggered when (amongst others) three conditions are
> fulfilled: the individual has "reasonable and personal" knowledge (and not
> only a suspicion) that a patent claim applies to a patent, that patent
> claim is under control (from an assertion/licensing viewpoint) of the
> individual's employer or the individual himself/herself, and the
> individual contributes to the document or contribution.  It's quite common
> that individuals participate in certain activities of a WG, and do not
> trigger a disclosure obligation against other documents of the WG.  For
> example, I have personally contributed quite heavily to the operational
> practices of the codec WG, but not to the codec specification draft.
> Accordingly, I do not have a disclosure obligation against the
> specification draft.  In many patent-savvy companies, this feature of the
> IETF's patent policy is well understood by the individuals working for
> those companies, and exploited to the advantage of the company.
> Beyond that, an individual is only *encouraged* to make a third-party
> disclosure, i.e. a disclosure related to patent claims not under control
> by themselves or their employers.  Section 6.1.3 of RFC3979.  While this
> has been done on occasion, it is, AFAIK and IMO, not common practice.  For
> example, I work on patent matters for a living and had jobs that included
> IPR portfolio management, and therefore had to study the scope of
> protection of quite a few patents, quite possibly to the extent that would
> pass the "reasonable and personal" knowledge test.  However, I have never
> made a third party disclosure.
> There are certain legal risks, as well as (sometimes) economical
> disadvantages associated with third party disclosures. OTOH, sometimes
> there are also economical advantages in making a third party disclosure,
> that can outweigh the legal risk.
>> Also according to IETF rules, the working group chairs are required to
>> make the group aware of notifications and disclosures that are submitted
>> in relation to the work happening in the group. The purpose of drawing
>> this information to the attention of the working group participants is
>> to allow each person to make their own determination of the validity of
>> the IPR claims, and to assess the license terms that
>> are presented.
>> I hope that this message helps to clarify the role of the working group,
>> and the responsibilities of each working group participant, in relation
>> to IPR claims.
>> Peter
>> -- 
>> Peter Saint-Andre