Red Hat Announces Broad Expansion to Open Source Patent Promise

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Red Hat’s Patent Promise now covers permissively-licensed code, making it the broadest protection for open innovation

RALEIGH, N.C. —  

Red Hat, Inc. (NYSE: RHT), the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, today announced a significant revision of its Patent Promise. That promise, originating in 2002, was based on Red Hat’s intention not to enforce its patents against free and open source software. The new version significantly expands and extends Red Hat’s promise, helping to protect open innovation.

Our patent promise – we believe the broadest in the industry – is intended to support and nurture that community and force.

MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND GENERAL COUNSEL, RED HAT

In its original Patent Promise, Red Hat explained that its patent portfolio was intended to discourage patent aggression against free and open source software. The expanded version published today reaffirms this intention and extends the zone of non-enforcement. It applies to all of Red Hat’s patents, and all software licensed under well-recognized open source licenses.

The expanded Patent Promise, while consistent with Red Hat’s prior positions, breaks new ground in expanding the amount of software covered and otherwise clarifying the scope of the promise. Red Hat believes its updated Patent Promise represents the broadest commitment to protecting the open source software community to date.

Supporting Quote
Michael Cunningham, executive vice president and general counsel, Red Hat
“Red Hat’s Patent Promise now covers the lion’s share of open source code and continues to cover all of our patents. We encourage others to make commitments like these. The innovation machine represented by the open source community is an enormous positive force for society. Our patent promise – we believe the broadest in the industry – is intended to support and nurture that community and force.”

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Red Hat is the world’s leading provider of open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to provide reliable and high-performing cloud, Linux, middleware, storage and virtualization technologies. Red Hat also offers award-winning support, training, and consulting services. As a connective hub in a global network of enterprises, partners, and open source communities, Red Hat helps create relevant, innovative technologies that liberate resources for growth and prepare customers for the future of IT. Learn more at http://www.redhat.com.

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