[cabfpub] question about patent-free guidelines

Dimitris Zacharopoulos jimmy at it.auth.gr
Thu Nov 3 17:39:31 UTC 2016

I do have a rather "naive" question, trying to understand all the 
arguments that seem to be arriving to the lists (non-native English 
speakers struggle to keep up :).

If the guidelines allow for a number of options to perform a specific 
task, but we know (either before the guideline is accepted or after) 
that _only some of those options_ are royalty free, and _some others_ 
are claimed to be under IP, I see no problem. It would mean that all 
options reach an acceptable level of confidence for domain control that 
is described in the requirements (the "standard") but some CAs (the ones 
claiming the IP) would be able to use more options than other CAs. Of 
course, other CAs could use those claimed methods but they might be 
infringing another CA's patent. However, I think it's out of the CA/B 
Forum's scope to resolve this problem between CAs.

If the guidelines allow for a single option (or a very limited set of 
options) and these options were claimed for IP, then there would 
definitely be a problem and such cases should be looked at more carefully.

The current BRs allow for many domain validation methods and some CAs 
can use more methods than other CAs. I think that is fine but I could be 
wrong. Is it required that everyone in the world should be able to use 
all methods described in CA/B Forum's guidelines/requirements under a 
royalty free license? Is the CA/B Forum required to produce patent-free 


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