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02.22.16

Germany, Which Allows People in Europe and Abroad to Patent Software (EPC Shunned), Simply Cannot be Trusted With the EPO and UPC

Posted in Europe, Patents at 8:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

A Germany-centric court and filings system would further empower the software patenting agenda

Keep clean

Summary: Germany’s attitude towards software patents makes it even more abundantly clear that it’s not suitable to take the lead in a Europe-wide patent system

THE situation in Europe is dire because of ill-situated bureaucracy. Just look at what Team Battistelli has done. It’s Europe’s embarrassment and shame. Europe needs to put the EPO under control of citizens and/or their representatives. Right now it’s above the law (detached from the European Union), thus dangerous. It’s largely controlled by German authorities that shelter it (see how German media treats this subject [1, 2]) because it’s beneficial to the German economy in various ways.

Now that patent trolls penetrate Europe along with software patents (close correlation exists between these two) we are reminded that: “The costs of a lawsuit from a patent troll are astronomical, and can reach tens of millions of dollars.”

“Just look at what Team Battistelli has done. It’s Europe’s embarrassment and shame.”This mostly hurts small businesses, which Europe is composed of in many pertinent countries (more so than in the US). “How NOT to make EU innovative” is what Professor James Bessen wrote about the article “Get Ready for Patent Wars as IP Europe Consortium Is Unveiled” (we mentioned this article before).

Bastian Best, a German national who is a patent lawyer, wrote again about last month’s post (the blog is in favour of software patents, as is the case with every lawyer’s blog) about German’s acceptance of software patents under certain scenarios, provided lawyers cleverly use words to mislead examiners and judges. Of interest to this bizarre situation (Germany being open to software patents) are the following older articles of ours (among others):

Recall Microsoft’s FAT patents in Germany — patents which were used against a lot of companies that use Linux, even a Dutch company (TomTom) which Microsoft took to court over it. These are software patents which are still being used against Linux (we last covered an example earlier this month). We recently wrote about Germany’s special role in the UPC [1, 2] and we continue to worry that Germany’s notable tolerance of software patents (never mind tolerance of Battistelli’s abuses) will spread to other countries, including the UK where the UK-IPO has also been relatively friendly towards software patents.

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