WorldWatch Week in Review

by Willy Smith

This week in WorldWatch.LinuxGazette, the most popular article by far discussed Bulgaria's president Georgi Parvanov endorsing Free Software Day. We also had significant news from two countries in the Middle East, as Iran hosted its first-ever GNU/Linux Seminar, and a Microsoft exec in the UAE predicts a huge boom in Iraq.

From France, we had a guest article from Stéfane Fermigier, who reported the good news that organizations representing 2 million small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have made a public statement against EU software patents. Also, nine more cities in Germany probably will be dumping Microsoft products and switching to Linux.

From the US, Linus Torvalds replied to SCO president Darl McBride's letter of last week; and a Sun Microsystems exec went on record to say that "Open Source is irrelevant". There also was some irony in the report that a company is charging many of the large record companies big money to do marketing data mining on peer-to-peer file sharing services.

In the quest for more information about relating seeds and software, we published an article from Brazil about how some multinationals are patenting native (non-engineered) varieties of plants. We think this is especially significant, because it shows that the true intent of such organizations is control and monopoly rather than progress, as this type of activity is y unreasonable. We also think that we could expect the same type of corporate actions with software patents, which should be reason enough to totally stop their institution in Europe and elsewhere.

Willy Smith is Editor in Chief of WorldWatch.

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