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12.10.15

Surveillance Audits at the EPO

Posted in Europe, Patents at 12:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Point-Haired Boss

Summary: Alberto Casado Cerniño (Vice-President of DG2) uses managers’ incomprehensible language to insinuate that all is fine and dandy inside the EPO

THE European Patent Office (EPO) became infamous in Europe because of its insatiable appetite for (or endless pursuit of) mass surveillance with visitors to the Office as ‘collateral damage’, especially amid surveillance backlash in Europe and outside Europe, partly because of leaks from Edward Snowden and several people after him (including some inside Germany).

We found it amusing that the EPO now brags about a surveillance audit. A “surveillance audit” is an ongoing periodic review of an organisation’s quality management system. It’s basically management nonsense, designed to keep managers occupied with self-serving things. An ISO 9001 Certification (in the British context) “is a Quality Management Standard. It suits all organisations large or small and covers all sectors, including charities and the voluntary sector. It aims to help organisations become structured and efficient.”

That’s because, as everyone probably knows by now, people are treated like machines inside the EPO these days. There is extreme disregard for human factors, as mass surveillance itself serves to show.

“On 12 October Mr Cassado,” we’ve learned (that’s just a few days before the EPO sent me the first threatening letter), “Vice-President of DG2 and Management Representative for Quality informed staff as below.”

ISO 9001 surveillance and certification audits show we are on the right track… Recently I informed you of upcoming surveillance audits in the patent granting process from 5 – 9 October. At the same time, the new procedures extending the scope of the Quality Management System (QMS) to PD 54, were audited for ISO 9001 certification… On all sites, colleagues at all levels were interviewed by external auditors. I am pleased to inform you that preliminary results are very positive for both the surveillance and certification exercise… A recommendation will be made to extend our current patent granting process to the full patent process… This confirms both the positive results of the work done this year in patent information to enhance our QMS and the continual improvement of the quality of our core processes.

What Cassado is basically saying here — or at least trying to insinuate using mumbo jumbo PHB speak — is that everything is alright, even when it clearly isn’t (recall the first part, second part and third part of an old scandal implicating Cassado).

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