EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

09.22.15

The European Patent Office’s Autocracy Has Proven the Streisand Effect, Amplifying Its Opposition’s Messages

Posted in Europe, Patents at 6:22 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Streisand Estate

The infamous Streisand estate. Copyright (C) 2002 Kenneth & Gabrielle Adelman, California Coastal Records Project.

Summary: The management of the European Patent Office (EPO) is still trying to suppress negative messages about managerial failures, violations and abuses, thereby serving to only increase media coverage (newspapers, radio, television) of increasingly well-known and widely-covered scandals

THINGS have been rapidly heating up and escalating at the EPO as of late. The public pages of SUEPO are almost self-explanatory, but some context and background are needed. This post will attempt to summarise the latest developments.

The management of the EPO has chosen not to listen to staff, instead attacking not only staff but also journalists. Benoît Battistelli’s right-hand gangster, Željko Topić, has said that “SUEPO has no standing in this office. SUEPO has no role to play in this office.” These people are obviously not qualified to manage, as they don’t treat their staff like a treasure, an asset, or even a “human resource” (to use gradually more demeaning terminology) but as a nuisance. It’s no wonder they are driving a lot of the talented people away. These are highly qualified people. They’re not a dime a dozen, not even a million (euro) a dozen (per annum).

Certain SUEPO leaders are now formally responding to the menacing messages from the wife of Battistelli's INPI buddy, titling this episode “SUEPO publication concerning an investigation” (too gentle a term). To quote the statement from the public site: “Ms Bergot, Principal Director Human Resources at the European Patent Office, has sent highly threatening letters to Mr Michels, SUEPO Central Chair, and Ms Hardon, SUEPO Munich Chair, following a SUEPO publication concerning an investigation in which Ms Hardon was summoned for interrogation as accused.

“Ms Liesbeth Zegveld, SUEPO lawyer, represents Mr Michels in this matter and Ms Hardon in the investigation. She has sent two letters of reply to Ms Bergot.

“A copy of the reply on behalf of Ms Hardon can be found here and the reply on behalf of Mr Michels can be found here.”

In case of (un)expected takedown demands (this happened before), we are making local copies of the PDFs:

Yesterday morning SUEPO finally shared (after suppression by legal threats from the EPO) this article in German. Benoît Battistelli’s oppression/suppressions have clearly become major IT news (it’s not about labour rights anymore). A lot of people in the media finally become involved these days and the EPO’s management tried to prevent staff from reading journalists’ work. How pathetic is that? As SUEPO put it, “Heise Online comments on the censorship imposed on SUEPO’s website by the management of the European Patent Office. The article recalls former unusual measures such as the covert surveillance with keyloggers and cameras of semi-public computers within the Office.”

“EPO leadership [is] out of control,” wrote Florian Müller, “now SUEPO has even had to remove a link to Heise, Germany’s most-read IT news site.” When news is treated as treasonous and there is a taboo, then the institution itself is built upon lies and corruption. The EPO was strongly in favour of the press when it effectively bribed Les Echos to become its "media partner" (i.e. shameless PR), but it blocks/censors links to Heise (German IT) because there is objective analysis there. There are no EPO payments (from taxpayers) on the table and no strings attached.

Any external observers ought to early see who’s the bad side here. The management of the EPO is now censoring information using self-censorship tactics. This self-censorship is motivated by fear, due to active intimidation and expected retribution (reign by example). This is probably why SUEPO does not link to Techrights so often (the only site to be completely banned all around the EPO’s networks, for the first time ever). There would be a lot more damning information about the EPO’s management out there if it wasn’t for reprisals. These people are thugs and they are using the same tactics that thugs are using.

Days earlier SUEPO took note of further media coverage of these scandals, reaching even European radio. As we shall show at a later date, this also became a television topic (Benoît Battistelli was being ridiculed on European television after becoming somewhat synonymous with “villain” in central Europe).

Suffice to say, patent lawyers sometimes continue to support Battistelli. One ‘magazine’ with its most shameless patent maximalists does some victim-blaming (blaming EPO staff) in this article and this accompanying tweet which says: “There are problems at the @EPOorg, but the staff union’s relentlessly confrontational approach is getting nowhere.”

Who is being “relentlessly confrontational”? The staff or the management? Someone surely missed the full story.

SUEPO now calls for “Supervision of Data Protection at the EPO,” having discovered that data protection at the EPO is an utter joke (even visiting patent lawyers are under surveillance, not just staff). “Recently,” it explained, “a letter from Ms Andrea Vosshoff (Bundesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz und die Informationsrecht) to Ms Renate Kunast (Vorsitzende des Ausschusses für Recht und Verbraucherschutz) came to our attention. In this letter Ms Vosshoff asks for attention to certain weaknesses in the data protection set-up in the EPO. She asks the above mentioned committee for support in addressing the issues.

“SUEPO intends to write a letter in support of this initiative, requesting to be heard in the matter. An aspect that seems thus far to have been overlooked is that Art. 20(1) EPO PPI seems to provide for a cooperation with the “competent authorities” in health and safety regulations and “similar regulations”. The latter would seem to cover data protection regulations.”

Given the EPO’s record of taking down material using threats, we have decided to mirror this here as well:

Lastly, SUEPO’s views on “ILO-AT workload” ( Administrative Tribunal of the International Labour Organisation) were expressed 5 days ago. “The number of ILO-AT member organizations continues to increase totalling 60 today as opposed to 25 in 1990 and 40 in 2000 – thus raising concerns about the continued capacity of the Tribunal to carry out its responsibilities effectively.”

It’s too slow to protect staff and also, to make matters worse, the EPO’s management won’t obey rulings, orders, laws, etc. The management led by Battistelli views itself as acting with impunity or operating above the law.

“The ILO intends to hold a debate,” continued SUEPO, “and prepare a guidance paper highlighting any difficulties encountered by the Tribunal in managing its workload. In preparing this paper, the ILO has submitted a questionnaire to be filled by all stakeholders.

“SUEPO’s answer to the subject questionnaire can be found here [see below]. It represents the views of SUEPO and was prepared with the input from the following staff associations/unions: FICSA, WHO, WTO, WIPO, WMO, OPCW, IFAD, BIODIVERSITY INT, ESO, CERN and EMBL.” Here is a local copy of it:

In the coming days we intend to highlight some more media coverage of these affairs and we will work to ensure that SUEPO cannot and will not lose its voice due to bullying by Battistelli and his circle of aggressors. The more adamant they become and the more aggressively they crack down on information, the more this information will spread (with additional copies thereof). Required reading.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. This Week Techrights Crosses 26,000 Posts Milestone, 3 Weeks Before Turning 13 (2,000+ Posts/Year)

    A self-congratulatory post about another year that's passed (without breaks from publishing) and another milestone associated with posting volume



  2. No Calls to "Remove Gates" From the Board (Over a Real Scandal/Crime), Only to "Remove Stallman" (Over Phony Distraction From the Former)

    Jeffrey Epstein's connections to Bill Gates extend well beyond Gates himself; other people inside Microsoft are closely involved as well, so Microsoft might want to cut ties with its co-founder before it becomes a very major mess



  3. “The Stupidest [Patent/Tax] Policy Ever”

    It’s pretty clear that today’s European patent system has been tilted grossly in favour of super-rich monopolists and their facilitators (overzealous law firms and ‘creative’ accountants) as opposed to scientists



  4. Meme: Software Patents at the EPO

    The evolution of “technical effect” nonsense at the EPO



  5. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, October 13, 2019

    IRC logs for Sunday, October 13, 2019



  6. Firm of Microsoft's Former Litigation Chief Uses Microsoft-Connected Patent Lawsuit Against GNU/Linux (GNOME Foundation) for New Breed of FUD Campaigns

    The patent troll of Bill Gates and Nathan Myhrvold has fed a patent troll that's attacking GNU/Linux and a firm owned by Microsoft's former litigation chief says it proves "Open Source Software Remains a Target"



  7. "Widespread Adoption" (Did You Mean: Takeover by Monopolies?)

    "Quite a few of them are people that would rather replace David with Goliath, just because he's bigger. Quite a few are already taking money from Goliath."



  8. Links 13/10/2019: Red Hat CFO Fired and KDE Plasma 5.17 Preparations

    Links for the day



  9. Bill's Media Strategy Amid GatesGate

    There are many ways by which to game the media’s news cycle — an art mastered by the groper in chief



  10. Hard-Core Micro-Soft

    The word "core" is increasingly being (mis)used to portray user-hostile proprietary software as something more benign if not "open"



  11. Free Software Timeline and Federation: When Free Software Advocacy/Support is a Monopoly Expansion Becomes Necessary

    Support for Software Freedom — like support for Free software (think Red Hat/IBM and systemd) — should be decentralised and compartmentalised to make the movement stronger and adaptable



  12. Projection Tactics

    The corporate media hasn't been doing its job lately; it has systematically defamed the wrong people, perhaps in an effort to distract from 'big fish'



  13. Meme: Richard Stallman Irrelevant

    Saint IGNUcius — Richard Stallman — just isn’t the Saint Bill Gates is



  14. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, October 12, 2019

    IRC logs for Saturday, October 12, 2019



  15. Links 13/10/2019: Mastodon 3.0, GNU Binutils 2.33.1, and the Road to KDE Frameworks 6

    Links for the day



  16. The New York Times About the Real Epstein-Software Scandal (Nothing to Do With Stallman)

    The media is belatedly catching up with and covering the real MIT scandal which extends far beyond MIT



  17. Openwashing Reports Are on Hold

    The need to stress Software Freedom and shun all that "open" nonsense has quickly become apparent; some of the people who oppose Stallman turn out to be "Open Source" proponents who don't even value freedom of expression (free speech)



  18. Support the GNU Project and Support Free Speech

    Techrights is loyal to Software Freedom and those eager to promote it; it cannot, however, support those who don’t support free speech



  19. Today's EPO is Working for Patent Trolls and the 'Aye Pee' (IP) 'Industry' Instead of Science

    The EPO is making allegiances and alliances with groups that represent neither science nor businesses but instead push for monopolies, litigation and extortion; lawlessness appears to have become the EPO's very objective instead of what it intends to tackle



  20. The Campinos Car Crash

    The EPO is crashing and we know who’s to blame other than Battistelli



  21. Software Patents (or Monopolies on Algorithms) Are Not 'Property' and They're Not Even Legally Valid

    The EPO insists that it's OK to grant patents on just about everything and propaganda terms are being leveraged to justify this dangerous attitude



  22. The EPO's Universal Patent Injustice Concealed With Polyglottic Tricks

    The EPO is fooling nobody; it's desperate to hide the very simple fact that Battistelli did something illegal and over the past few years every decision issued by the EPO was legally invalid (as per the EPC)



  23. Microsoft Tweets in Linux Platforms

    This observation about the Linux Foundation seems very appropriate (and true) now that Linux.com’s sole editor is (re)posting Microsoft tweets (shades of Jono Bacon)



  24. Links 12/10/2019: Rspamd 2.0, Kdenlive 19.08.2, Plasma Mobile Progress, FreeBSD 12.1 RC1

    Links for the day



  25. IRC Proceedings: Friday, October 11, 2019

    IRC logs for Friday, October 11, 2019



  26. MIT Scandal in a Nutshell

    What happened a month ago, explained using a meme



  27. António Campinos, With Diplomatic Immunity, Continues Breaking the Law by Granting Patents the EU and EPC Forbade

    The EPO shows how immunity leads to crimes being committed with total impunity; at this point the EPO's immunity must be removed and judges should be permitted to do their job, which is enforcing the law



  28. EPO is Trying to 'Force-Feed' Europe Some Fake Patents by Hijacking Courts

    Having granted a lot of dubious European Patents (to maintain constant growth despite a decreasing number of applications) the EPO seeks to subvert the court system; so far only the constitutions and the laws are being subverted — to the point where these ambitions are collapsing in Europe’s highest courts



  29. If the EPO Plans to Go 'Virtually' Private (Outside Contracting), Then Failing It Would be Deliberate

    Sooner rather than later EPO workers need to entertain the possibility that so-called 'plan Battistelli' is to enrich a bunch of well-connected people rather than improve the Office or its services



  30. Linux Oughtn't Be Just a Brand

    The non-Linux-using Linux Foundation and how it views the Linux project


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts