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09.08.16

A New Wave of the EPO’s Much-Expected Propaganda Push, Aided by ‘Managing IP’ and IAM ‘Magazine’

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 11:19 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Media as cheerleaders, not journalists

IAM logo and friends

Summary: Managing IP (MIP), in addition to IAM, is pushing the EPO’s agenda, including the antidemocratic UPC, which MIP dedicated an entire event (even a couple) to

THE EPO is not a friend of Europe. Heck, it’s not even a friend of its own staff! See staff surveys about it.

Two days ago we wrote about MIP-EPO intersections (we refer to Managing IP as MIP for abbreviation) and earlier this week, just after Labor Day in the US (a long weekend), the EPO kicked off a series of propaganda (a seemingly new campaign). This means we’ll cover the subject more often and issue rebuttals more frequently than last month. We have a lot of material that we are eager to publish.

Battistelli is trying to grease up delegates/participants of the Administrative Council and pave the way to the UPC even if by truly nefarious tricks like entryism and lobbying. We won’t let him have his way. The guy is a liar. That’s an understatement actually. He’s thuggish, he’s manipulative and one might even say “corrupt” based on some of the recent appointments at the EPO’s management. The reason he has managed to keep his job (thus far, maybe until the term’s end) is a serious set of flaws in the EPC (which Battistelli ignores anyway) and the EPO’s detachment from national laws (Eponia makes up its own laws with no external review or discretion, then changes the laws as it goes along while management is allowed to break these laws).

Margot Fröhlinger (mentioned here for her UPC lobbying before) came from the EPO to MIP’s UPC advocacy event (there are actually two such events this week, for maximal impact). According to this MIP account (they have several), “Margot Fröhlinger believes UPC will go ahead with or without the UK. UK’s participation post-Brexit not a problem.”

Really? Will the EPO be lobbying with wishful thinking and self-fulfilling prophecy attempts? Again? Another tweet said: “Fröhlinger says there is a risk, no guarantees, but hopes CJEU will agree to UK participation in UPC.”

There’s also a photo in there. The EPO is a rogue organisation, so we are expecting it to game this debate and do whatever it takes to push forth such an antidemocratic UPC deal. It would push TTIP/TISA/CETA/TPP as well if it had to. ISDS would be very much in ‘the spirit’ of Battistelli.

Watch how MIP emphasises EPO views, which MIP entertains by setting up those two events. “That’s certainly one view,” it said. Well, good, so where are the opposing views? Oh, wait… that’s not part of the programme. They have essentially created a platform for EPO and UPC lobbying, trying to steer policy in the presence of people whom they try to influence. We saw that before in the US. We’ll get to that in a moment (IAM was responsible for that).

MIP then notes that “Winfried Tilmann of @HoganLovellsIP thinks if UK doesn’t ratify UPCA before Brexit, then door will be closed.”

Nice alarmism there from Winfried Tilmann, who is a Battistellite that mentioned earlier this year and at the start of the year. The truly ‘balanced’ panel of MIP sure begins to smell rather fishy. Is this a debate or an echo chamber? Maybe it’s more like a church where UPC is the undisputable religion.

“Lots of ‘different’ [sic] views on UPC,” claims MIP, but it just happens to be the case that all of them are in favour of the UPC, even though in reality the UPC would probably harm more than 99% of Europeans. No public interest groups are present (or speaking) at this event. When Managing IP says “Lots of different views on #UPC” it means it in the same way that Presidential Debates in the US, controlled and funded only by the two major parties, call the debates “different views” (it’s controlled, scripted, no hard questions and no absolutely public representation/intervention).

Going back to notable tweets, “George Moore of Sandoz: UPC without UK isn’t fatal.System beneficial. Cordula Schumacher: UK’s experience in early stages ideal” (assuming that passing the UPC would be “ideal”, which is in itself overly loaded and presumptuous a statement).

As expected, anti-FOSS and pro-software patents promotion creeps into this EPO-leaning event, in the form of FRAND. “According to Joachim Feldges, there is difference in opinion between German courts on Huawei v ZTE SEP FRAND guidance,” one tweet said. Another said: “Matthias Schneider of Audi: Needs to be clarity on what good value is re security & FRAND isn’t all about royalty rate.”

They are talking about SEPs, i.e. patents you are not allowed (or unable) to work around. We already mentioned how FRAND was on the agenda as well (before the event) and why it’s about software patents a lot of the time. “There is a view here that @EPOorg & @The_IPO are predictable on computer-related inventions. But be careful with drafting,” said another tweet. Just renaming software patents “computer-related inventions” won’t magically make them patentable, as software patents are clearly NOT legal in Europe. Here is what the FFII’s Benjamin Henrion said about it: “yet another quote to show that UPC is about swpats [software patents] after all.”

Mind the fact that the EPO is now promoting next week’s event about software patents (in part). The EPO is going to America! Yesterday it said: “Why is it important for US industry to protect its inventions in Europe? Find out at this event”

Today it said: “Join this event to find out about the differences between US & European practice for ICT patent applications” (“ICT” is just the latest weasel word/phrase).

Going back to the MIP event, this tweet said: “Here is what Graham Burnett-Hall of @marksandclerk thinks of BREXIT. He remains optimistic on UPC” (picture/photo included in there).

Wow, what a ‘diversity’ of views. Everyone is in favour of UPC (as intended), even if they know it’s unlikely to ever happen. Someone left the following comment in Techrights regarding this event, possibly conflating IAM with MIP, but here is what it said:

{i}[IAM]“We’re not in the business of promoting #UPC or #Unitarypatent – just providing a platform for discussion!”{/i}
Well, they’re right. They get paid for,prviding a meeting space for discussions among IP professionals.
The issue is extremely few want to discuss the advantages of “status quo”, which is incidentally also the current status “post-brexit-vote”. There is not more money for those advocating this position, but there may be more money in it for those who hope to profit from a change. So one side sees a chance to “invest”, the other sees no improvement in their position, so no need to invest, as any investment into defending “status quo” can never earn that money back.
So only one side will come in large numbers…
So of course the discussions will go towards one topic, and within that one topic be very one sided…

The IAM panels will include the “UPC will not happen” opinions, but those will usually be brushed aside for being “opposed to changes”…
Also, too me it felt like they do not want to have a look at real politics. The current brexit situation does not allow politics to do much in this regard right now, but this seemed to be out of grasp for their minds.
They want a change to happen, and find it difficult that politics sometimes cannot and will not listen to “expert”.
And the VolksWagen diesel scandal showed us where it goes when politicians listened too long to the opinions of “experts”…

Whoops, I am mixing topics again….
Yes, it wll be one-sided, but there will be a few who are of the opinion to stop UPC for the time being,and continue discussions once Britain has finally filed their article fifty notification or officially decided to stop the whole brexit discussion. But no discussion=no money for panel organisers. So IAM will continue holding panels. And advertise them. I just wishes they would try to attract a discussion starting from the other side.
E.g. “UPC is dead, what now?”
The discussion in situ may still go the old ways, but they would appear less biased.

Here we have Maarten Mooij of Nokia lying. It’s well established that the UPC would help patent trolls (they too know it!), yet this tweet said: “Maarten Mooij of Nokia doesn’t see a major change re NPE activity in Europe if UPC comes into force. Depends on case law though” (NPE is a euphemism for troll; Nokia itself helps patent trolls right now, as we last covered earlier in the week).

Jumping the gun again (as there's no UPC_, here is another UPC ‘genius’. “David Barron @GowlingWLG_UK: panel on SEP litigation in Europe, incl how it might play out in UPC (if)” (photograph in the tweet).

Nice propaganda event MIP has got going on for Battistelli in both France (his home country) and Germany (home of the EPO). Does all this lobbying pay well in attendance fees? Maybe favours in the long run? We don’t know for sure, but they’re now running a series of puff pieces with Battistelli. From the “litigation panel,” says this morning’s tweet, we have “Joachim Feldges @AllenOvery estimates there are about 100 SEP cases pending in Germany” (see what we wrote about SEP above).

That’s good for the patent litigation industry (patent law firms), no doubt about it. It’s also good for the patent mafia, firms like Sisvel that raid expos/events and confiscate (or steal) products “because patents!”

Is this the vision of Europe that we want? Where is the public in all this? What we have MIP presenting to us are very large corporations, their patent lawyers, and the EPO. Where are the rest of the European stakeholders? Maybe they cannot afford to pay over 1,000 Euros to attend a one-day event in which they cannot even speak (just listen). We wrote and complained about this a month ago.

Wise men and women are in the audience after all, but they’re paid to lie and promote the UPC. They can’t quite admit in public that the UPC is a sham. According to this: “In Munich for #EUPATENT16: no one in audience thinks that UK will ratify #UPC agreement”

Right…

Meanwhile in IP Kat Annsley Merelle Ward from Bristows (major UPC boosters) tries to create some more false hopes that UPC will happen, piggypacking David Davis and manufacturing a misleading headline (“Does David Davis want to ratify the UPC Agreement?”). Read the sole comment there from Ellie Wilson. It says: “I noticed that at the Managing IP European Patent Forum this week Margot Frohlinger of the EPO has suggested that UK could either join UPC via a separate agreement or under Article 142 of the EPC.

“This is not really news – in terms of the massive uncertainty, or the need for external agreement if the UK is to participate at all – as much as it is perhaps interesting because of the source.

“Maybe, maybe it justifies having a bit of optimism, but, like Amerikat, I’m not holding my breath.”

“No one except [the EPO's] Fröhlinger,” Henrion joked about (almost religious) belief in the likelihood of UPC. Fröhlinger is bossed by Battistelli who does not tolerate dissent (he has already proven this with extreme actions).

So what’s all this charade about and why are they not just going on stage (not audience) to acknowledge this pessimism? EPO and Team UPC (mostly self-serving litigators) will likely rename and redo UPC, then try to implement it without the UK. Nym-shifting or eternal morphisms isn’t new for for UPC. It has had many names and identities over the years, dodging criticism all the time. Battistelli has been promoting this since well before it was known as “UPC”.

Speaking of Battistelli, do rumours of a UPC based in Paris with Battistelli as its head not far-fetched after all? The above event is in France too and this tweet says: “Caroline Casalonga of Casalonga leading session on getting evidence in patent litigation in France/UPC” (photograph therein).

Here is why we think a lot of this charade is very closely connected to the EPO, and MIP isn’t just commissioning or organising such an event for spontaneous desires. The EPO retweeted its Managing IP puff piece (interview with Battistelli) a very short time after it had been published (maybe minutes). It’s like they had the whole thing timed and coordinated all along. Did it work as planned, Battistelli et al? An intersection between the event and this puff piece? They are going to cover the ‘social’ [sic] nonsense of Battistelli in future part/s. More lies, more money and power for Battistelli. Will some of this money ‘trickle down’ to MIP? The EPO certainly launched a well-executed (if not so shallow) propaganda campaign so we shall do a reactionary anti-propaganda series of posts.

Regarding claims that AMBA’s views were ignored by MIP (while Battistelli continued to lie about the boards), MIP responded (via) to one who asked: “I heard also you interviewed amba. Will you be soon publishing it?”

“We haven’t interviewed AMBA yet,” MIP replied, “but have written to request an interview – watch this space.”

Well, perhaps they need to ask the EPO for permission. After all, reality check with AMBA might interfere with Battistelli’s interview (the already-published part 1 in particular).

For those who think that the EPO’s latest wave of propaganda involves only MIP, think again. A self-selecting survey (just ~600 people who are already inside the IAM cult) is being used to spread EPO propaganda about patent quality. They are relying on a very small and biased sample set (population), as any scientist with the faintest clue about statistics should be able to immediately tell. The editor in chief of IAM published this piece, not disclosing the very close if not incestuous relationship with the EPO. “In order to get a better idea of why the EPO does so well and the USPTO lags behind,” he wrote, “earlier this year we worked with Professor Colleen Chien of the Santa Clara University School of Law, and a former White House senior IP adviser, to develop a follow-up survey designed to drill deeper into our readership’s opinions of both offices. During June readers were emailed and invited to take part. We got approximately 650 responses. Below Colleen Chien summarises some of the main findings.”

With “approximately 650 responses” from people who are self-selecting, how legitimate is this bound to be? Also, they are not even sure how many people exactly have participated (notice the word “approximately”)? What kind of survey is uncertain about th size of the data? it’s just very easy to rig such things, e.g. to select who to E-mail and how often, in order to get the desired outcome, never mind loaded questions or push-polling. Remember that IAM has EPO money on its table, so will it risk delivering an output that’s not desirable to the Battistellites? We very much doubt that. By spreading a lot of money through PR agencies, the EPO has polluted a lot of news sites and metaphorically poisoned the well. IAM is not a legitimate source of information about the EPO and we are going to show that behind the scenes Battistelli uses this propaganda from IAM, and occasionally drops citations into letters to “media partners” (i.e. paid-for coverage) of the EPO in support of his ludicrous claims, just like the most dishonest politicians out there.

Going back to MIP, they don’t take our criticism too well. They offer so much “balance” that their STARS account blocked me in Twitter. They don’t like opposing views, do they? They blocked me in Twitter not because I abused them (I didn’t even talk to them!) but because I highlighted their bias by linking to things they said. They want invisibility. They just don’t want me to see what goes on in their UPC events. As I put it yesterday, “Managing IP is going to learn, just like IAM, that blocking someone from visibility is 1) ineffective 2) increases criticism 3) futile” (someone then added: “4) a mark for very poor journalistic performance”).

With advocacy of the antidemocratic UPC and a human rights violator, Battistelli of the EPO, we cannot assume that information from MIP can be taken without a grain of salt. Earlier today we showed how it published a “Sponsored Post”. That was last night! MIP is rapidly going down the bin, along with IAM (it too does sponsored posts)…

The timing of EPO propaganda is perfect because they try to push several objectives/talking points ahead of October’s meeting of the Council. They not only dump Battistelli lobbying on all Twitter followers but they are also still 'spamming' universities. Here are the latest 5 examples [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]. They don’t quite realise how foolish it makes them look. They are wasting millions of Euros on this nonsense.

Regarding Battistelli’s “Social Conference”, one EPO insider sent us the following (to illustrate the attitude of staff towards Battistelli these days):

Dear Roy,

The mere thought of it makes me feel sick…

This is no joke: the EPO will organise in October a “Social Conference”. They dare! After having disciplined dozens of staff, fired staff representatives and union officials, downgraded others, put thousands under huge pressure, deny sickness to many, refuse promotion to pregnant women and soon (according to well placed insiders) stop granting social leave which are in the Codex with all sorts of “friendly advise” such as “think of your career….”.

The official EPO propaganda has it (quote verbatim):

“The conference will focus on all social-related aspects and will be based on the outcomes of the Financial Study, Social Study and OHSRA currently under finalisation. Themes to be discussed will be Social Dialogue, Financial sustainability and social package,
Well-being at the workplace, and Change management and readiness to change.

All interested stakeholders will be invited to participate: representatives from the Office’s management and staff, as well as members of the Staff Committees and recognized trade union, and delegates of the Administrative Council. To facilitate the discussions and interactions, general presentations by the consultants in charge of the studies will be followed by 8 to 12 thematic workshops.

The Social Conference will take place in Munich, Isar building, over the course of a full day on Tuesday 11 October. It is a unique opportunity for a wide range of participants to assess and discuss the challenges faced by our Organisation. If you wish to participate in the conference, please contact your line management by 14 September at the latest as places in the meeting rooms are limited.”

HERE THE RESULTS OF THE 2016 TECHNNOLOGIA OFFICE WIDE SURVEY (AFTER 2010, 2013 WITH THE SAME QUESTIONNAIRE)

https://suepo.org/documents/43311/54961.pdf

https://suepo.org/documents/43311/54951.pdf

So not only does the EPO ignore the Technologia survey (from a renowned French consulting which worked among many others on France Telecom’s debacle, the Renault Technopole one) but when they are about to sack Laurent Prunier, Central Staff Representative and SUEPO Official in TH (and perhaps others who too are in the death row, in particular in TH), they dare to write about “well-being at the workplace”.

Wicked!

Furthermore, to illustrate the attitude of staff towards Battistelli, one person has just come up with the following ode that spells out EULOGY:

E UREKA was the former in-house publication
U ncensored, informative and short of fabrication
L atest Gazette, lots of pictures of our Batters
O nce again Pravda style, credibility in tatters
G lorified half-truths, with a hand of sleight
Y es, only the obituaries seemed to be dead right

The “usual problem,” one person explained, is that “the EPO is not part of the EU…” (“…but a part of Hell!” added this remark about it). Here is a new comment from Tuesday. It too speaks about the structural deficiencies:

The AC has a clear conflict of interest, which under a different situation would be considered intolerable. But who cares about the EPO? It is a bit like putting the CEOs of Samsung, LG, Nokia etc. in the governing board of Apple. It is clear that this would not work to improve Apples success, and it is the same at the EPO.
The ILO does not respect the right to be heard, because she does not hold hearings even when they are requested, but this is apparently legally acceptable. Who cares?
I believe the drafters of the EPC were honest and upright men who could not envision that a generation would come after them who had a different moral standard.
The ILO is the only independent review employees of the EPO have when in dispute (the first two instances are internal and cannot be considered independent).
But hey, if you get paid a lot you should just accept being robbed of your rights…. so stop complaining, you are still not doing so bad. “We consulted you (according to the management of the EPO), even though the representatives did not agree to the changes requested, “so we can change your work contract, rules an regulations. WE only need to consult you, it is nowhere written that you have to agree for us to introduce changes which are detrimental to you”. In a national setting this would be unacceptable, and an employer would be taken to court. But not so with the EPO because the EPO has immunity.
But no immunity is absolute, and should never be, because absolute immunity corrupts.

We invite feedback and information regarding the EPO even through we already have plenty which we intend to publish soon. September is going to be a very busy month.

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