In Canada, if I hold copyright on a program's code but not a patent on what it does, and someone else patents "what it does", how would this affect my copyright? Lets assume this person did not learn "what it does" from my program's code.

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    Which came first? Assuming your code was published it might be evidence that the patent should not have been granted. Your copyright means someone (including the patent owner) can not copy your code. Someone's patents could mean you can't execture your code. May 17 '20 at 21:09
  • @GeorgeWhite Canada is a "first to file", not "first to invent" patent system, so conceivably the copyright could exist first without being "prior art" as copyright is granted on creation, not distribution. The OP could have created their code before the patent was filed and granted, but unless they distributed it then they could still be up a certain creek without a useful paddle.
    – user28517
    May 17 '20 at 21:23
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    @Moo - Almost everywhere is (now) on a first to file system. That is why I said "assuming it was published". I might have said assuming it was published before the patent appliation was filed. It is still the case that, regardless of the relative timing, the patent owner would need the OPs permission to copy the copyrighted code and the OP would need the patent owner's permission to execute the code. May 17 '20 at 23:55
  • @GeorgeWhite I was specifically commenting on "might be evidence that the patent should not have been granted" - in first to file, that probably wont be the case. The rest of your follow on comment is fine, I understand that.
    – user28517
    May 18 '20 at 0:13
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    The date of copyright registration is not important to the issue of patentablity, rather the date of public disclosure via publicly available publication. May 18 '20 at 4:38

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