The effect of the EPO’s SLAPP-happy lawyers in London or FTI Consulting’s branch in London? (or both, or maybe just good old entryism)
Summary: Criticism of the EPO has become harder to find not because people have come to accept the EPO’s management but because there’s a censorship campaign and people are growingly afraid to speak
FEWER and fewer publications nowadays cover EPO scandals, for reasons we attempted to explain some days ago. SUEPO too hardly publishes anything. The other day we mentioned censorship at IPKat (or IP Kat) — an issue we had been writing about for a while now, especially in recent months.
“Very mysterious things [are] going on at the IPKat recently,” this one comment said this week. To quote in full: “Good to see that my comment submitted on 10/06/16 at around 11:30 CEST and again on 10/07/16, 10:41 CEST has now finally been published. Remarkable, however, is the alleged publication date and time of 10/07/16, 9:42 BST. It was not published (yet) when I looked for it on 10/08/16 and in the morning of 10/09/2016; I first saw it this morning (10/10/16). Has the publication date/time been backdated and if so, why? And what happened to the first comment filed on 10/06/16?
“Apparently — and over time it seems ever more plausible — there is just an attempt by the EPO’s management to cause media blackout and information lockdown, not just by shutting down critical media (or critical elements within it) but also scaring EPO staff.”“Very mysterious things going on at the IPKat recently.”
A reply like “Yours is not to question why, yours but to grant or reject” (sounds like pro-management slant) was posted in reply to “We have even been urged not to discuss among ourselves or with our union committee(s)…”
Apparently — and over time it seems ever more plausible — there is just an attempt by the EPO’s management to cause media blackout and information lockdown, not just by shutting down critical media (or critical elements within it) but also scaring EPO staff. Self-censorship is an incredibly powerful weapon they have attempted to use even against non-profits. Regarding IP Kat, not a single EPO-hostile article has appeared there since the one-day censorship by the EPO. IP Kat is not responding to my queries about this.
“New rumour [is] circulating at the EPO,” said this new comment, showing that rumours get around whether the management likes it or not. Laughably enough, it’s believed that Battistelli’s bulldog is being considered for the job of managing the boards of appeal (which Battistelli cannot help bullying). If true, that would be a new low for the EPO and for the independence of the boards. “It is being whispered in the corridors of the EPO Isar building,” wrote this person, “that VP4 has applied for the job as President of the Boards of Appeal citing his vast experience in litigation matters and his extensive knowledge of court procedures including appeals.”
Is it also being whispered in the corridors of the EPO Isar building that he faces many criminal charges in Croatia? Does that count as experience in litigation matters? These boards, one might add, face risk of getting replaced by UPC courts. Battistelli promotes the UPC like it’s his sole baby and he keeps demolishing the boards by all means possible. He just can’t help himself. It has gotten so bad that it’s difficult for outsiders to believe and the media hardly covers the matter. Watch what IP Kat has turned into; it’s like a textbook example of vendor captive/capture. As we put it recently, "IP Kat is Lobbying Heavily for the UPC, Courtesy of Team UPC" (notably Bristows, which continues to stomp on EU citizens by UPC lobbying).
“Laughably enough, it’s believed that Battistelli’s bulldog is being considered for the job of managing the boards of appeal (which Battistelli cannot help bullying).”The latest from Bristows says that “In a press release (here) on 7 October 2016, the Italian Ministry of Justice announced that the Unified Patent Court (UPC) in Milan will be located in an existing court building at via San Barnaba 50.”
They just refuse to give up and they are willing to mislead even politicians. “UPC, Brexit and swpats are on the agenda of next 22nd November,” Benjamin Henrion wrote the other day. “I give you the benefit of doubt.”
Red Hat’s Jan Wildeboer said he was “Thinking of returning to Brussels a bit more often. Lobbying for Open the @hintjens way is needed. Be very afraid :-)”
“Sadly, and not to suggest that it was ever not the case, IP Kat spends a lot of time advocating/promoting the UPC, occasionally software patents, and apparently it now suppresses or self-censors particular EPO criticism.”Wildeboer speaks about software patents, which he campaigned against a decade ago. UPC threatens to bring this curse back in a very big way. See the entire thread in [1, 2] to witness who’s pulling the strings. “Of course,” Dr. Stefane Fermigier wrote to Henrion about proponents of software patents, “but then they shouldn’t pretend they are working for the common good.”
Sadly, and not to suggest that it was ever not the case, IP Kat spends a lot of time advocating/promoting the UPC, occasionally propping up software patents, and apparently it now suppresses or self-censors particular EPO criticism. █