11.27.15

Leaked: EPO Award of €880,000 “in Order to Address the Media Presence of the EPO” (Reputation Laundering)

Posted in Europe, Patents at 7:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Propaganda and media distortion, but at whose expense?

Summary: The European Patent Office, a public body, wastes extravagant amounts of money on public relations (for ‘damage control’, like FIFA’s) in an effort to undermine critics, not only among staff (internally) but also among the media (externally)

TODAY is Black Friday and there might be something black at the EPO (like black budget), whose documents, which show how public money is (mis)used, keep being leaked for us to publish. It took less than a day after our request.

Having already absorbed anti-corruption people (who were supposed to investigate the EPO) into its own ranks, the EPO now wants to devour the media too.

The following is self-explanatory really.

EPO media spendings page 1

EPO media spendings page 2

EPO media spendings page 3

The above 3 images can (and probably should) be shared widely.

The source of this material referred to our recent article and wished to highlight the following bits from the document. They may be of interest to those who are too lazy to read it. It confirms the allocation of €880,000 “in order to address the media presence of the EPO” and to quote the detailed breakdown:

13. Main Project with a duration of 1 year
with a campaign in Germany and the Netherlands : EUR 600K

14. Additional Project
with support for Dir. External communication: EUR 280K

According to the Summary on the title page, the beneficiary of the contract in this case was FTI Consulting:

In accordance with Art. 57 (b) FinRegs a report is provided on the award of 2 direct placements to FTI Consulting for EPO’s positioning campaign and support for Directorate External Communication.

We are going to write a lot more about it in the future. Please note that this was submitted by “President of the European Patent Office” (that’s Battistelli). It is an “award of urgently required direct placements,” which doesn’t sound so benign at all.

“In order to address the media presence of the EPO, a targeted positioning campaign has been launched,” says the document. When people in this field say “targeted positioning campaign” it implies something against the spirit of journalism.

“Proposals from 3 PR agencies were submitted,” says the document, “evaluated and decision taken.”

It is “new positioning campaign”. There’s that word again: positioning.

“Foreseen time-frame is 1 year.”

Almost a million dollars in just one year? Wow. “Main Project with a duration of 1 year,” the bottom part states.

Why do all this? The document says “reputational risk issue and crisis communication.” In simple terms? Reputation laundering.

Here is the full document as text:

CA/F 19/15
Orig.: en
Munich, 24.09.2015

SUBJECT: Report on award decisions owing to urgency pursuant to Article 57 b) of the FinRegs and Article 2.4.1 (2) of the Tender Guidelines

SUBMITTED BY: President of the European Patent Office

ADDRESSEES: Budget and Finance Committee (for information)


SUMMARY

In accordance with Art. 57 (b) FinRegs a report is provided on the award of 2 direct placements to FTI Consulting for EPO’s positioning campaign and support for Directorate External Communication


CA/F 19/15 e
LT 1659/15 – 152440001


I. STRATEGIC/OPERATIONAL

1. Operational.

II. RECOMMENDATION

2. To take note.

III. MAJORITY NEEDED

3. n/a

IV. CONTEXT

4. Under Article 57(b) of the FinRegs, a report is to be provided on the award of urgently required direct placements where it is not possible to await the outcome of the forms of invitation to tender and the award decision exceeds EUR 250K.

V. ARGUMENTS

5. In order to address the media presence of the EPO, a targeted positioning campaign has been launched.

6. Proposals from 3 PR agencies were submitted, evaluated and decision taken.

7. To maximise the effectiveness of communications, the new positioning campaign had to be prepared and implemented without delay.

8. Foreseen time-frame is 1 year.

9. To have one single strategy towards the media, the support of Directorate for External Communication must be provided by the same PR agency.

10. Support is required in the analysis for the current communication work, achievements and aspirations after 5 years of reforms and to pilot a project on reputational risk issue and crisis communication.

11. This need also to be implemented with the same time line as for the main project.

CA/F 19/15 e
LT 1659/15 – 152440001
1/2


VI. ALTERNATIVES

12. n/a

VII. FINANCIAL IMPLICATIONS

13. Main Project with a duration of 1 year
with a campaign in Germany and the Netherlands : EUR 600K

14. Additional Project
with support for Dir. External communication: EUR 280K

VIII. LEGAL BASIS

15. n/a

IX. DOCUMENTS CITED

16. n/a

X. RECOMMENDATION FOR PUBLICATION

17. n/a

CA/F 19/15 e
LT 1659/15 – 152440001
2/2

Journalists should probably be made aware of the EPO’s plot to distort the media. That’s some very high-budget campaign.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

This post is also available in Gemini over at:

gemini://gemini.techrights.org/2015/11/27/epo-reputation-laundering/

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

2 Comments

  1. katkatkat said,

    November 27, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Gravatar

    Dr Schestowitz, you’ve got hold of some concrete evidence. Congratulations! Excellent job! Let’s know see how the users and the public respond. This should raise considerable concerns. As you said, almost one million dollars in just one year! Crazy!

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    There are follow-up stories to come, I just want to organise them in a sensible order so as to better document the catastrophes going on inside the Office. There are some articles we hope to receive translations of. We also hope that some courageous journalists will have the will to cover the above in European newspapers (not just in English). It’s noteworthy and the public not only deserves to know but needs to know.

What Else is New


  1. GNU/Linux Turns 38 This Year, But the (Partly) Microsoft-Led Linux Foundation Wants You to Think It's Only 30 and a Good Friend of Microsoft

    What the Linux Foundation calls “Linux” (as its PR staff members refer to it in their new press release) is 38 years old, not 30. “Open Source” as a term did not formally exist yet, so this latest waffle makes no sense at all (the press release keeps mentioning a term that’s designed to attack and replace the original). But it’s part of a broader pattern of deception, attacking software freedom and pretending GNU never existed. Did money corrupt everything and is it too late to salvage truth, let alone freedom?



  2. Richard Stallman on Paid Smear Campaigns

    Dr. Richard Stallman on people who lie about him online (4 years after the older campaign of hate and distortion and half a decade before the current one, coordinated by groups funded by monopolies that dislike GPL)



  3. Links 22/4/2021: Grafana Goes for AGPLv3, Godot 3.3 Released, Mesa 21.0.3 Available

    Links for the day



  4. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, April 21, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, April 21, 2021



  5. Behind the Curtains of Cheap and Cheesy PR the EPO is a Machine of Oppression (Against Its Very Own Staff), Tribunal to Rule on Strike Busting

    The laughable regime of Campinos is a naked emperor with nothing but diplomatic immunity (almost not a single member of staff trusts the President) and the PR strategic front is becoming worse than pathetic; it's like the place is run by infantile career-climbing sociopaths with no qualifications, trying to weaponise a sea of money against staff, inquisitive media, and states (by bribing them or hiring lawyers to intimidate/bankrupt them); while the EPO still swims in money its reputation drowns too quickly to ever resurface, recover



  6. Links 21/4/2021: University of Minnesota Blacklisted Over Defects, Red Hat Satellite 6.9 is Out

    Links for the day



  7. Links 21/4/2021: VirtualBox 6.1.20, GCC 11.1 Release Candidate, Nginx 1.20.0

    Links for the day



  8. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, April 20, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, April 20, 2021



  9. Some People Who Asked to Be Removed From the Slanderous Hate Letter Against the FSF Are Still Being Denied Removal (But Not All)

    I am aware of some people (evidence is in the public domain for all to see) who asked to be removed from the hate list; their requests have not yet been processed, or simply denied. Maybe they should ask again. There are silent and selective changes.



  10. Overt Abuse and Mischaracterisations by Bully de Blanc

    The campaign to ruin the FSF and silence its founder, Richard M. Stallman (RMS), goes months prior to the hate letter set up by Bully de Blanc, her boss, and the Microsoft-sponsored OSI; they just attack the licence (GPL/copyleft) and they try to redefine things for the corporations which fund them



  11. According to StatCounter, This Month GNU/Linux Market Share on Desktops/Laptops Exceeded 2% (Based on Sites They Monitor)

    StatCounter does not monitor everything and not every machine connects to the Web, but in relative terms, based on the chart above, no doubt GNU/Linux continues growing relative to other operating systems (chart plotted based on the latest raw data, rendered in LibreOffice Calc)



  12. At the EPO, Lawlessness Has Become “a New Normal”

    Without as much as a real consultation with those who are impacted (by the EPO's gross infringements) the management of the EPO rushes ahead again, enjoying zero oversight, no legal review, and no accountability or scrutiny of any kind



  13. Links 20/4/2021: Tails 4.18 and Mark Surman in Mozilla's Board of Directors

    Links for the day



  14. Microsoft as a Censorship Machine Working to Undermine Free Software and Code Sharing (Also Sharing in General)

    Microsoft is, as usual, a tool of destruction rather than creation; it seems to be better at ruining things and censoring things, notably things that compete against Microsoft or pose a threat to Microsoft's business model (and close partners, such as RIAA)



  15. Phoronix Needs to Exercise Caution and Stay Vigilant/Careful of Microsoft

    Taking note or lessons from the blunder of Raspberry Pi (back in February), Phoronix should be careful of Microsoft 'freebies' as they're never free and there are strings attached, destined to alienate longtime supporters



  16. IRC Proceedings: Monday, April 19, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, April 19, 2021



  17. Links 20/4/2021: EasyOS Dunfell 2.7.1, Phoronix Takes Microsoft 'Freebies', Microsoft Trying to Steal Credit for Linux on Mars

    Links for the day



  18. Richard Stallman on How UPC is a Trojan Horse for Software Patents in Europe

    Dr. Richard Stallman, the Free Software Foundation's founder, offers his analysis of the Unitary Patent (or UPC) and what it means for software patents in Europe now that the EPO increases its influence over continental law



  19. Technology Can Make Life Worse, Even in the Public Sector, Not Just the Private Sector

    There are growing concerns — increasingly justified concerns as a matter of fact — that customer service is universally going away and “COVID” has become the impenetrable shield or a cover in the face of facts, laws, and basic rights



  20. Links 19/4/2021: LibreSSL 3.3.2, OpenSSH 8.6, Firefox 88

    Links for the day



  21. Time to Move to Gemini, Wherever/Whenever Possible, as the World Wide Web is a Burden on Everybody

    A 30-minute rant about what the Web has become and the promise of gemini:// (designed to simplify everything, enable self-hosting, preserve privacy, and empower communities rather than military-connected monopolies)



  22. The Number of Signatures in the Anti-FSF Petition is Decreasing, Not Increasing

    A reader has notified Techrights that belatedly, perhaps where people’s job is at risk (we’ve heard of stories and situations wherein the employer’s view and a worker’s view diverge), the GNOME Foundation/OSI did in fact remove some people from the hate letter they had set up for their monopolistic sponsors. We do, however, still see some names in there of people who asked to be removed, so it must be a very selective process. They don’t want to lose face, so they must have made it very difficult to revoke one’s name. Exceptional circumstances? We have checked to confirm, based on the available archives, and indeed that number decreased since 10 days ago, whereas 6,415 people have thus far signed the support letter (it's still growing), so we’ve just re-plotted the chart.



  23. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, April 18, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, April 18, 2021



  24. How Many People Developed GNU (Maybe Hundreds) in the 1980s

    Dr. Richard Stallman, the Free Software Foundation's founder, explains how code was managed and contributed in the early days of GNU



  25. Links 19/4/2021: Linux 5.12 RC8, GNU Poke 1.2, EndeavourOS 2021.04

    Links for the day



  26. Proprietary Software (BT Hub) Has Ruined My Whole Day

    While we did have some plans to publish long articles, those plans were curtailed or at least delayed due to the fact our sole device at home not to be controlled by us (a so-called 'Smart' Hub from BT) decided to break itself and by doing so bring productivity to a standstill (that firmware update, silently installed without notice or any form of consent, managed to screw with the local network)



  27. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, April 17, 2021

    IRC logs for Saturday, April 17, 2021



  28. Tolerating the Intolerant and Lacking Tolerance for Opposing Views

    The person who shouted...



  29. Letter of Support for Richard Stallman - Doing Better in Community

    "How do you support someone you’ve known for years who is unfairly attacked and publicly maligned?"



  30. Richard Stallman on Rejecting Workplace Bureaucracy in the 1970s

    Dr. Richard Stallman, the Free Software Foundation's founder, explains what inspired him to get involved in non-software matters


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