11.29.15

Public Protests by European Patent Office (EPO) Staff Weaken the EPO’s Attacks on the Media

Posted in Europe, Patents at 1:34 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

People Power [1, 2] is power in numbers

Tahrir Square
Over 1 Million in Tahrir Square demanding the removal of the regime and for Mubarak to step down.
Photo source: Jonathan Rashad

Summary: Where things stand when it comes to the EPO’s standoff against publications and why it’s advisable for EPO staff to stage standoffs against their high-level management, which is behind a covert crackdown on independent media (while greasing up corporate media)

THERE is an occasional need for us to remind readers that the EPO besieges Web sites that upset its agenda, which judging by its priorities is to appease large corporations even when these are foreign (outside the EU). This is further exacerbated by privatisation of some key/core functions of the EU, such as litigation, investigation, and PR (the EPO has those internally, but it hires or contracts ‘reinforcement’ from the outside, where accountability is even worse or non-existent, and different laws may apply, e.g. in the US).

In the first two parts of this mini-series [1, 2] we showed how the EPO had been trying to silence us.

What has really become of the EPO? It doesn’t seem to behave like a public service run by public servants. It operates recklessly, misuses or poorly uses public funds, and has established a rogue reign of occupation over Europe, enjoying exemptions from laws and regulations that are consistent with human rights.

“How can it be?”

Some people actually ask that. They’re rather shocked by the very idea that this is even possible. But it is. Moreover, this rogue institution is becoming so threatening (menacing its opposition) that it sometimes seems untouchable even to European politicians. It’s like a very effective occupation of an institution, which revels in immunity/impunity and flaunts the privilege.

Back when the first batch of threats were no longer being dispatched I sent the following message to just a couple of people whom I trust:

A letter came in today. It seems like the EPO dumped their lawyers who sent me the bullying letters, perhaps realising that these did not comply with protocols and only caused an embarrassment to the EPO.

It looks as though the EPO is now approaching another firm; it’s not clear if anything will come out of it, but for the time being, I shall carry on writing as usual.

“Thanks for the update,” told me one person. “If they get better lawyers, those should understand proceeding is not a good idea.”

“The previous [legal] firm’s attempt did seem somewhat amateurish…”
      –Anonymous
“The previous firm’s attempt did seem somewhat amateurish,” told me another person, who is a professional in this field.

Please note that in our coverage no names have been mentioned, no sentences quoted from legal letters, no legal documents shown and so on.

For those who follow the EPO scandals, don’t expect legal documents to be published. I’m not getting down to the low level of the EPO’s thugs (who ‘leaked’ allegations from an ongoing ‘investigation’ to the media, in order to float the ‘armed Nazis’ narrative, thus discrediting critics). I am also not going to name people who are responsible for this, as that would make personal an institutional kind of abuse.

Judging by what I saw online two weeks ago, the vultures were still circling around me, as the following screenshot was taken from my LinkedIn account, showing that the EPO’s lawyers were keeping themselves occupied.

Mishcon

“Mishcons are an aggressive firm,” one person said to us. Well, the EPO itself is aggressive, so there’s no surprise there.

“Actions by staff (in the form of showing of public/internal backlash) help shield journalists and bloggers from retaliatory tactics, SLAPP, etc.”A little update from the EPO would be appreciated, but they refused to even supply the media with a comment, based on the WIPR article. They probably don’t know what to say as it can only make things worse. Basically, there’s no update and there has been no update for nearly a month. A legal firm (as above) said it had taken control of the matter, which probably meant the previous firm got dumped. It has been over 3 weeks now. I did notice that one secretarial (I think) member of staff at that firm was ‘checking me out’ in LinkedIn, but that too was almost three weeks ago; maybe an effort to get some additional ‘information’ on me or just innocent curiousness? Given the context, it is unpleasant curiosity. I haven’t added anything meaningful to LinkedIn since 2006 when a ‘friend’ had me set up an account there (I am in principle against such ‘social’ media, which gets more intrusive and privacy-infringing over time, after changing terms of services for people to waive away more their basic rights).

Given what Techrights has been writing and publishing recently (not to mention the EPO’s ‘spontaneous protests’) we hope they’ll realise that going after bloggers isn’t a wise decision. The math doesn’t add up as they have more points to lose than to gain in the long run. Actions by staff (in the form of showing of public/internal backlash) help shield journalists and bloggers from retaliatory tactics, SLAPP, etc. This is why we urge everyone at the EPO (except high-level management) to attend the imminent protests.

“They don’t seem to know what they are doing and what they’re up against, hence they hired peripheral union busters like CRG (Control Risks).”The EPO’s high-level management is really struggling these days; it took them no less than 4 days to come up with an answer to the basic question of who’s behind the SLAPP, as it was invalid a claim to begin with, so they had to try and use some dubious artistic interpretation of the law. They don’t seem to know what they are doing and what they’re up against, hence they hired peripheral union busters like CRG (Control Risks).

Tomorrow we start covering another (new) EPO scandal and we encourage staff to attend the public demonstration, at the very least to protect staff representatives if not journalists too. The more people attend, the more scared the high-level management will feel. It’s getting out of hand because they cannot just fire thousands of their highly-qualified specialist staff (examiners for example). Power comes from and is proportional to absolute numbers.

“I am Legion, for we are many”

New Testament

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This post is also available in Gemini over at:

gemini://gemini.techrights.org/2015/11/29/a-little-update-about-slepponia/

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