The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Comments to the Commission’s Horizontal Guidelines”Standardization

Jorge Padilla, Feb 11, 2011

This note sets out my comments to Section 7 of the Guidelines on the applicability of Article 101 of the TFEU to horizontal co-operation agreements (“Guidelines”) and, in particular, to the criteria for assessment of standardization agreements which (a) involve intellectual property rights (“IPR”), (b) establish technical interoperability and compatibility between products and systems, and (c) give rise to a de facto industry standard.

There are many statements in these Guidelines that I find helpful and support. However, I disagree with other statements. I am concerned that the policy principles contained in those statements may chill innovation and undermine the process of standardization. Finally, there are many statements that I find confusing and where I would appreciate some further clarification.




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