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

02.13.17

Leaked E-mails From the EPO’s Roberto Vacca Reveal That Patent Quality at the European Patent Office Has Become Farcical

Posted in Europe, Patents at 4:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

A production line mentality at the EPO, which is now simply “drunk” on so-called ‘production’

A production line

Summary: Roberto Vacca, an EPO officer, points out what everyone at the EPO already knew; “Quality First,” as one reader put it to us, “Welcome in the era of Post-Patents!”

THE EPO under Battistelli is so obsessed with so-called ‘production’ that it might as well turn into a registration office like in France. Why does Battistelli keep pretending that he cares about patent quality? All he cares about is so-called ‘production’ that is measured using the wrong yardstick. He’s thinking like a Chinese factory manager whose employees just jump out the window (which is why so-called 'suicide nets' get installed).

“Are people paying thousands of Euros for a person to just have a quick glance for an hour or two before issuing a report/determination (obviously limited and flawed)”Inside sources have leaked to us some valuable information. “We are talking about 85 hair-dresser containers here,” one of them wrote. “Production/Productivity” is not what it used to mean; now it’s the assembly line mentality.

“In the Directorate of Mr Vacca,” we got told, “someone produced 62 searches and 23 final examination actions in January 2017 alone.”

That means almost 5 per day, assuming a 5-day week (working days). That is absolutely ridiculous! Are people paying thousands of Euros for a person to just have a quick glance for an hour or two before issuing a report/determination (obviously limited and flawed)? Maybe the unrealistic demands imposed on staff have made them so stressed that they cannot afford to care anymore and as a matter of survival at the job (not being “disciplined”) they turn into robotic beings. Disaster!

“Maybe the unrealistic demands imposed on staff have made them so stressed that they cannot afford to care anymore and as a matter of survival at the job (not being “disciplined”) they turn into robotic beings.”“The productivity is 3.05 (9 (!) times the reference),” we got told. “It is a team manager (he has managerial tasks next to his production ones). This followed a Cluster management meeting (team managers incl.) in which the high prio 1 backlog of ex-Hedemann teams was an issue.”

We have already explained some of the above terminology. Terms like “prio 1″ just mean very high priority. “Obviously,” we got told, “this created waves, within and outside of the directorate. The Director Mr Vacca sent two e-mails to his directorate.”

See below.

Dear all,

Some of you have been surprised by the PAX figures for our directorate released yesterday. One of the bubbles in the diagram is quite out of scale, and I must say that, without knowing very well the colleague, the quality of his work, and also some special circumstances, I would have also been more than surprised.

However, I know the colleague in question very well and I know that he has a record of excellent performance, and consistently excellent quality, since many years. His files go through the divisions and chairmen check as all the others and are CASEd as those of everybody else in our directorate. His searches have a % of A-docs only, much lower than the average and the number of intermediate communications is well in line with the average of the directorate.

The numbers, which are really excellent since many years, have been further boosted this time due to a number of files which had been completed just before Christmas but for organisational reasons have been coded only in January, and also by a large number of doublures which have been treated all together. The special circumstance have led to an out-of-scale that (unfortunately for the Directorate…) will be only a one-off.

I would like to stress that this is not to justify our colleague: excellent performance deserves praise rather than justification! It is to address your concerns and reassure you that this is in no way a sign of deterioration of the attention to quality we all share!
Ciao
Roberto

Then this (bold in the original E-mail, not our emphasis):

Dear colleagues,
With my email yesterday I have explained to all of you the background of such an extraordinary performance, for which I am really grateful to our colleague.
However, it seems that information was not enough for some of you. It has been reported to me that colleagues have been repeatedly disturbed in their daily work with questions and remarks they were not interested into. Comments and discussions are going on, also in public areas such as the canteen, with tone which are not far from configuring harassment against our colleague, and have spread also to other directorates.
I want this to stop now.
Those who are acting this way have probably not realized how offensive it is for a colleague who is doing an excellent work for our Directorate and our Office.
If any of you wants to have more information and discuss the issue further, just come to see me, I will be more than happy to do so.
But stop disturbing other colleagues and making unsubstantiated allegations. We have all far too much work to do this year, to spend timé and energy this way.

I do count on the support of each of you.

Roberto

When will Battistelli get sacked, if not for his very serious abuses then for failure to maintain quality at the Office and for receiving a 0% approval rating from those who apply for patents, request searches, and so on? The situation is untenable and unsustainable. The EPO has become a laughing stock and it will soon run out of "stock", rendering the examiners redundant/obsolete. Does the clueless (no scientific qualification) Battistelli envision humans/field experts being replaced by robot operators? Is he that senile or just maliciously selfish?

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. 'Cancel Culture' as 'Thoughtpolice' Creep

    Richard Stallman spoke about an important aspect of censorship more than 2 decades ago (before “Open Source” even existed); it was published in Datamation (“Censoring My Software”) 23 years before a campaign of defamation on the Internet was used to remove him from MIT and FSF (censoring or ‘canceling’ Stallman himself)



  2. Microsoft Still Hates GNU/Linux and Mark Shuttleworth Knows It (But He is Desperate for Money)

    We're supposed to believe that a PR or image management (reputation laundering) campaign alone can turn Microsoft from GNU/Linux foe into friend/ally



  3. Actions Against EPO Corruption and Unitary Patent (UPC) Injustice/Lobbying

    The EPO is apparently going on strike again and an action against the UPC is scheduled for later this week (protest in Brussels)



  4. “The Fifth Freedom as a Meme”

    The issue with systemd (or SystemD) has provoked or at least stimulated discussions about the limits of the famous Four Freedoms



  5. IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 09, 2019

    IRC logs for Monday, December 09, 2019



  6. Demonstration Against Unitary Software Patents, Thursday 12 Dec in Brussels

    FFII's call to demonstrate against the UPC



  7. Links 9/12/2019: China on GNU/Linux, Canonical Wants Help to Improve Ubuntu

    Links for the day



  8. Links 9/12/2019: Linux 5.5 RC1, EasyOS Buster 2.1.9

    Links for the day



  9. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 08, 2019

    IRC logs for Sunday, December 08, 2019



  10. Mandatory Education for Those Who Use and Misuse Buzzwords Would Go a Long Way

    In an age of substitution — where marketing terms replace meaningful words and concepts — it has gotten more difficult to have honest debates, for example about the scope of patents



  11. Once Upon a Time Banter Was Allowed on Mailing Lists

    Hours ago Torvalds announced RC1 of the next Linux (kernel) release; it has been a while since he last said something ‘controversial’ (following his month at the penalty box); free speech deficit can make us weaker, not stronger (advantage to those who work in the dark)



  12. Links 8/12/2019: Debian Init Systems GR, NomadBSD 1.3

    Links for the day



  13. Can We Quit Celebrating DRM in GNU/Linux?

    Over the past couple of days various news sites and "Linux" sites expressed great satisfaction [1-5] over the passive embrace of Disney's DRM ploy (Disney+), even when Disney itself rejects DRM, seeing the harms practically caused by it [6,7]



  14. You Know WSL is Bad for GNU/Linux Because Anti-Linux People, Microsoft and Its Propagandists, Want People to Use That

    Microsoft and its boosters (and media partners) haven’t grown tired of spreading falsehoods to stigmatise and take control of GNU/Linux by creating their own versions and traps for it



  15. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, December 07, 2019

    IRC logs for Saturday, December 07, 2019



  16. 5 Years Ago the Linux Foundation Turned Linux.com Into a Non-Linux Site

    One can leverage the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine to better understand how, over time, the Foundation called “Linux” deviated or diverged away from its mission statement for the sole purpose of raising corporate funds and selling influence to corporations (passing the community’s hard work to them — a form of tacit privatisation)



  17. Microsoft Redefining Ownership and Identity of GNU/Linux

    The idea that “Microsoft loves Linux” is as insane as it gets; but the lie which is “Microsoft loves Linux” is a powerful enabler of Microsoft entryism, e.g. if Greg steps down, does a Microsoft employee become the deputy of Linus Torvalds?



  18. Things That Cannot Be Said

    The limits on what we can say are mostly defined by what sources permit us to say publicly (for the sake of source protection)



  19. Fake European Patents (on Algorithms) Leading to Fake Embargoes

    Law firms have gotten their way in Germany; instead of supporting the productive workers the patent system is nowadays promoting the litigation 'industry' and it ought to be corrected



  20. From Moderate Advice to FUD and Misinformation: The Case of a VPN Vulnerability (CVE-2019-14899)

    What should have been a trivial bugfix in a variety of operating systems and bits of software — both proprietary and Free software — somehow became anti-Linux FUD, clickbait and worse



  21. Dangerous Thinker

    Society oughtn't be alarmed by people who say unusual things; it should be wary and sceptical of those corporations ever so eager to silence such people



  22. Unitary Patent (UPC) Died Along With the Credibility of Managing IP and the Rest of the UPC Lobby

    It is pretty astounding that Team UPC (collective term for people who crafted and lobby for this illegal construct) is still telling us lies, even in the absence of underlying supportive facts, and pressure groups disguised as "news sites" latch onto anything to perpetuate an illusion of progress (even in the face of a growing number of major barriers)



  23. IRC Proceedings: Friday, December 06, 2019

    IRC logs for Friday, December 06, 2019



  24. Links 7/12/2019: Fedora 31 Elections Results, Lots of Media Drama Over VPN Bug

    Links for the day



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

    Links for the day



  26. 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



  27. 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



  28. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, December 05, 2019

    IRC logs for Thursday, December 05, 2019



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

    Links for the day



  30. 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')


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