From EPC to the EU and the UPC: how Microsoft and the EPO are shaping (or rigging) the law in their favour
Photo credit: Managing IP
Summary: Another fine example of the European Patent Office (EPO) and a serial meddler in EU policy doing their spiel, this time in an event organised by Managing IP (in Germany and France)
HAVING TAKEN IMAGES or photographs at its recent charade/event (a pro-UPC push, as we noted here before), Managing IP reveals what happened inside this expensive event (more than a thousand Euros for just one day, per person) and we get the picture — pardon the pun — of who was there and what was said. There are no transcripts for this rather exclusionary event.
We are deeply concerned that the EPO as we know it is dying. Examination for patentability may not last (it looks as thought Battistelli is ending it, one piece at a time*) and the vision of UPC is all the Battistellites can think of, like a bunch of zombies that kill everything in their path towards UPC. Large businesses like Microsoft would benefit the most.
“Good discussion on #upc,” writes Microsoft after the event, “with Microsoft’s Sonia Cooper @ManagingIP #EUPATENT16″
It is not entirely shocking to see Microsoft lobbying Europeans regarding patent law and promoting the great UPC scam. Microsoft has been doing this for quite some time and Managing IP provides yet another platform for this. It’s basically an event for lobbying, as we expected all along. The above photo shows Microsoft and the EPO side by side again. This may sound innocent, but not when it happens so often. The event’s organiser wrote: “Could member states revise #upc in mini-diplomatic conference? @HoganLovellsIP @EPOorg & @MicrosoftIP at #EUPATENT16″
So, Microsoft and the EPO want to legislate or steer our policy. Benjamin Henrion, who drew attention to it, correctly said that “diplomatic conferences are fundamentally undemocratic.”
If a Microsoft-EPO-led (ish) UPC push sounds familiar, it may be because we wrote about it before. See the following articles:
- Unitary Microsoft: EPO Excludes People Who Are Not Microsoft Customers From UPC Participation
- You Need to Become Proprietary Software Customer (Microsoft Recommended) to Interact with the European Patent Office
- European Patent Office a Microsoft Stronghold: GNU/Linux and Mac Support Seemingly Just Dumped
- Microsoft at EPO: A Look Into the Relationship
- Scandalous: European Patent Office Serves Only Microsoft Customers With Filing Software
Remember that the EPO’s management sent me several threats, always regarding articles that point out connections between Microsoft and the EPO. Are they that worried that people might dig deeper? Microsoft has a very long history of meddling in European patent laws (e.g. FRAND, EIF). We should know as we wrote hundreds of articles on this subject alone. █
* To quote a recent explanation of the current situation, “the rat race continues… at the cost of [patent] quality” and “with adequate and economical rule changes will then allow the management to exchange the staff of the EPO more rapidly, while keeping the pressure on those staying in. It needs no foretelling skills, nor crystal ball, to see what a rat race for survival of the remaining EPO staff will do to the already damaged quality of the European Patent search and examination processes.”