ITANZ head Jim O’Neill says his organisation is interested in providing a patent-monitoring service for the industry, though he is not yet certain how this could be done.
Patent proposals that could affect the way e-commerce is conducted in New Zealand or even block parts of it altogether are a concern, O’Neill says.
InternetNZ might also be interested. “My personal view is that this would be an appropriate role for us,” says InternetNZ vice-president David Farrar. The key question is whether the society has the appropriate skills in its own ranks or, alternatively, “can we get someone else to do it [on our behalf] and if so, how much will it cost?”
TUANZ chief Ernie Newman says the organisation believes it’s a sound suggestion. “We’re certainly looking at this whole patents issue.”
As of a week ago the Intellectual Property Organisation of NZ (IPONZ) website showed 2191 patents as “accepted,” and in their three-month period for comment. If that is typical, there are more than 700 patents a month flowing through the system, suggesting that checking even the ones that might be IT-relevant is no small job.