Speaker: Ciaran O'Riordan
The 2005 rejection of the software patents directive in the European Parliament was the culmination of seven years of work which earned the respect around the World. It was impressive and meaningful, but it was not the end of the story. This Winter, the threat of software patents is returning in Europe. This time, instead of a directive, it is an intergovernmental agreement that we will have to get involved in.
O'Riordan will speak on the lessons learn pre-July 2005: what worked, and when did we shoot ourselves in the foot. He will also discuss what is coming - what's different, what's the same, and what we have to be organised to do.
Ciaran O'Riordan is a Brussels-based software rights lobbyist, originally from Ireland. A user of free software, such as GNU/Linux, since 1998, O'Riordan has a background is in writing software. He began focussing on the legislative aspects of software rights in 2003, becoming particularly active in the campaign against software patents in Europe. Since then he has taken up public speaking and expanded his work on EU directives on topics such as copyright, patents, and enforcement of laws which relate wholly or partly to software. He was a founder of Irish Free Software Organisation in January 2004. Continuing his lobbying work, he relocated to Brussels in August 2004. In April 2005, he was hired by Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) to continue his lobbying work full-time. Today, O'Riordan is still a full-time employee of FSFE and as well as his lobbying work, he has become active in raising awareness of the revision process for free software's cornerstone software licence: the GNU General Public License.