The technology of the Internet began its development in the 1960s, and its popularity expanded as the protocols and designs for a worldwide network infrastructure were made freely available to all who desired to implement them. The World Wide Web, invented by CERN scientist Tim Berners-Lee in 1991, owes its universal popularity to the fact that anyone can create a Web page, and anyone else with a browser can read it.

Unfortunately, some newcomers to this world of electronic co-operation are attempting to fence off certain bits of online technology from others, and their short-sighted actions threaten to impede the development of this technology for everyone. By exploiting the technical ignorance of patent offices, some companies are trying to get the exclusive legal right to use generic Internet technologies. If these moves are successful, we could well see the Internet fragment into a welter of stagnating, incompatible proprietary technologies.

That's why a number of netizens concerned at the abuse of intellectual property law have formed, a site which encourages and empowers individuals to act against destructive corporate legal policies. Its first target is, which has obtained patents for several basic e-commerce techniques which have been independently developed by many other vendors.

The NoWebPatents campaign is itself innovative (no word on whether they've patented this idea). Amazon customers and shareholders are urged to boycott the company and state the amount of their business to date. The front page displays the number of customers and shareholders lost by the target company, as well as the financial losses caused by this action. This quantification of political action could be a model for enforcement of consumer opinion on the Internet - so watch for further developments.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Aldis Ozols

PC World
Show Comments


James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >


Sansai 6-Outlet Power Board + 4-Port USB Charging Station

Learn more >



Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?