Closely-watched case may spell trouble for software patents

Two of the nation's leading civil liberties organizations and a new organization dedicated to the abolition of software patents have all filed amicus briefs in a patent case that could give the courts an opportunity to revisit the issue of software and business method patents. The case involves an application for a patent that would cover "a method for managing the consumption risk costs of a commodity" through a series of financial transactions. Not surprisingly, the Patent Office rejected the application on the grounds that purely abstract ideas are not patentable.

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