EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

12.16.16

Why EPO Staff is Up in Arms

Posted in Europe, Patents at 7:06 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Pitchforks come from management of the EPO, which keeps threatening if not also attacking the staff

Pitchfork

Summary: A 12-point explanation of why EPO staff is right to be mad and anger is justified not just for ethical reasons but legal reasons too

THE COMMENTS in The Register are rarely posted by EPO insiders, so there’s usually not much (new) information in them. An exception, however, could be found yesterday because someone expressed lack of understanding regarding the motivation for protests and strikes. Someone who is likely an EPO insider posted a detailed, enumerated response, which we have decided to reproduce below:

Where to begin…

1. Staff elected representatives. The EPO decided a new system was better and organis ed it’s own vote half way through the year, with different rules. The same people were elected basically but now they are under the direct control of the head of HR.

2. Three elected members have since been dismissed. Another has been demoted. We don’t know why. It is a disciplinary offence to reveal why or even that you are subject to disciplinary proceedings. Others are rumoured to be also threatened.

3. The EPO recognises a union with about 50 members (out of ca. 6900 staff). The union of ca. 3000 members is not.

4. The staff must ask the EPO if it (the EPO) will agree to organise a strike ballot. The EPO has said no on occasions but the ballot is organised according to the EPO’s rules – no communication to staff is allowed. The staff still voted overwhelmingly for a strike.

5. The Dutch High Court declared that the staff did not have the rights according to the UNHRC. The EPO declared immunity and ignored it (but also appealed – to a court it will ignore…).

6. The ILO-AT has just decided that the current appeals system at the EPO is not legal (since 2014). All decisions should be re- done as the EPO chose the staff representatives themselves. The EPO had demoted the two previous representatives for their attempt to have a fair syste.

… will I go on….

[...]

OK. And:

7. Staff are concerned that a suicide on-site could not be investigated by Dutch authorities (immunity!).

8. A member of the Boards of Appeal (a judge so to speak) has been suspended for 2 years (s/he is not allowed to say why but the top management have made particular negative statements to the press concerning the person which are not part of the case, it seems). Internal bodies have not supported the President’s actions but the member is still suspended on reduced pay.

9. The Administrative Council have urged and “stressed” that the President should involve them or independent judges in disciplinary cases involving elected staff representatives. He has still dismissed one since that, without informing the AC in advance.

10. Public computers at the EPO were discovered to be being monitored by software, seemingly contrary to Bavarian law.

11. Staff’s contracts of employment (and future pensions) have been unilaterally altered with no consultation.

12. In all disciplinary matters the committee recommends but the President decides irrespective. Under the committee formed by the EPO, judged deficient by the ILO, the proportion of successful appeals by staff has hit rock bottom.

If someone out there can think of anything to add to the above list (there’s plenty more), consider adding comments below.

EPO management has repeatedly attempted to invert the narrative, painting unions as aggressors and management as the victim. Battistelli even paid some newspapers to construct and reinforce this bogus narrative. With over a million Euros per year spent on peripheral PR agencies, well… some people might actually fall for it. The rebellious element at the EPO is the management with its so-called ‘reforms’ that are totally irrational; Extremely upset, indignant staff is trying to actually protect the Office from this clueless management. We too wish to save the Office.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Links 6/12/2019: DRM in GNU/Linux and Sparky Bonsai

    Links for the day



  2. The EPO Rejects Innovation

    The EPO ceased caring about the needs of scientists whose work involves invention; instead, EPO management crafts increasingly lenient guidelines that yield illegal European Patents (not compatible with the EPC) that heavily-besieged EPO judges are unable to stop



  3. Startpage CEO Robert Beens in 'Damage Control' Mode, Trying to Get Startpage Relisted After Selling to a Massive Surveillance Company

    PrivacytoolsIO is being lobbied by the CEO of Startpage to relist Startpage, based on no actual refutations at all



  4. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, December 05, 2019

    IRC logs for Thursday, December 05, 2019



  5. Links 5/12/2019: qBittorrent 4.2.0, Expensive Librem 5 and OpenBSD Bugs

    Links for the day



  6. Microsoft Staff Repeatedly Refuses to Tell How Many People Use WSL, Defends Patent Extortion and Blackmail of Linux Instead

    The people who develop WSL (mostly Microsoft employees) get easily irritated when asked how many people actually use this thing; but more interestingly, however, they reveal their disdain for GNU/Linux and support for Microsoft blackmail (for 'Linux patent tax')



  7. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, December 04, 2019

    IRC logs for Wednesday, December 04, 2019



  8. Links 4/12/2019: Tails 4.1, UCS 4.4-3 and Proxmox VE 6.1

    Links for the day



  9. Google Tightens Its Noose

    Now it’s official! Google is just a bunch of shareholders looking to appease the Pentagon at all costs



  10. Europeans Still Need to Save the European Patent Office From Those Who Attack Its Patent Quality

    Patent quality is of utmost interest; without it, as we're seeing at the EPO and have already seen at the USPTO for a number of years, legal disputes will arise where neither side wins (only the lawyers win) and small, impoverished inventors or businesses will be forced to settle outside the courts over baseless allegations, often made by parasitic patent trolls (possessing low-quality patents they don't want scrutinised by courts)



  11. We Never Accepted and Will Never Accept Corporate Money

    Corporate money is a unique problem because of its magnitude and the fact that it's impersonal; shareholders can only ever accept its supposed justifications if they're receiving something in return (of proportional worth to the payment/transaction)



  12. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, December 03, 2019

    IRC logs for Tuesday, December 03, 2019



  13. Links 3/12/2019: elementary OS 5.1 Hera, Plasma 5.17.4, Firefox 71

    Links for the day



  14. Laundering the Reputation of Criminals: That's an Actual Job

    An important reminder that the manufactured, paid-for (media is being bribed) image of Bill Gates is the product of the PR industry he enlisted to distract from his endless crimes



  15. 'Priceless' Tickets to the EPO's Back End and Team UPC

    CIPA's and the EPO's event (later this week) is more of the same; the EPO exists not to serve European businesses but a bunch of law firms and their biggest clients (which usually aren't even European)



  16. IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 02, 2019

    IRC logs for Monday, December 02, 2019



  17. New EPO Leak Shows That the Rumours and Jokes Are Partly True and We Know Who 'Runs the Show'

    Europe’s second-largest institution is so profoundly dysfunctional, a reprehensible kakistocracy of tribalism, money-grabbing career-climbing autocrats and possibly major fraud; today’s leak looks at what motivated and enabled the formation and latest incarnation of “Team Campinos”



  18. Links 2/12/2019: Linux Mint 19.3 Beta, DPL Sam Hartman Talks About SystemD

    Links for the day



  19. What Former Debian Project Leader (Second to the Late Ian Murdock) Thinks About SystemD in Debian GNU/Linux

    Now that Debian is debating and voting on diversity in the technical sense the thoughts of Bruce Perens merit broader audience/reach



  20. Free/Libre Software Will Eventually Become the Norm, 'Open Source' is Just Proprietary Software Trying to 'Buy Time'

    More people are starting to ask questions about Free software while “Open Source” languishes (people can see it’s just a mask for proprietary software); it was a two-decade delaying tactic that’s wearing off (people see GitHub and the OSI/Linux Foundation for what they really are)



  21. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 01, 2019

    IRC logs for Sunday, December 01, 2019



  22. Richard Stallman is Active and Doing Well

    The rumour mill may still be humming along; but against all odds — as Chief GNUisance of the GNU Project — Stallman keeps fighting the good fight (in the face of growing resistance)



  23. Banning Former Microsoft Employees Who Complain About Microsoft Lies, Abuses and Crimes

    The official account of Windows Insider is banning people whom it never even spoke to; this seems like a way of 'punishing' people who are not 'true believers' in Microsoft



  24. Wikileaks: Thierry Breton May Have Misused Regulatory/Government Positions to Attack His Competition (in the Market)

    Thierry 'revolving doors' Breton as seen by the United States government



  25. 13 Years of UPC Promises

    The anatomy of UPC 'fake news' or lobbying tactics along the lines of self-fulfilling prophecies and false predictions



  26. Is Water Wet?

    The criteria for patent eligibility reduced only to this question: will allowing these patents increase ‘production’ (number of patent grants)?



  27. The EPO's President Admits He's Illegally Granting Software Patents (CII, 4IR, IoT, AI and Blockchain Mean Software Patents at the EPO)

    The EPO's chief liar is openly and proudly promoting software patents using buzzwords and hype waves (and mysterious acronyms that are rather meaningless but spread by the media in exchange for money received from the EPO)



  28. Tone Policing and the Linux Foundation

    A timely example of situations where the Linux Foundation can seemingly 'cancel' people (using the Code of Conduct) for political opinions



  29. It EEEsn't Just a Microsoft Thing Anymore

    The EEErosion of Python's independence is a known problem and Microsoft is not the sole culprit



  30. Links 1/12/2019: KDE's GTK CSD Support, Skrooge 2.21.0

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts