All about litigation (legal aggression), in the spirit of the UPC
Summary: Quality of patent examination is being abandoned at the EPO and those who disobey or refuse to play along are being fired (or asked to resign to avoid forced resignations which would stain their record)
THE EPO, by the admission of Board 28, is in crisis. Every EP (European Patent) ever granted is at risk now. How can the accused or the defendant be expected to assume that EPs are valid (also upon scrutiny by a court) when EPO leaks such as these show that patents are being granted after very shallow searches? The only winner here is the litigation business. It’s a massive tax on innovation and a distraction from productive activities.
We are extremely concerned about what happens at the EPO and what this will inevitably cause to the European economy. The social conflict/fiasco at the EPO is a symptom if not a side effect of this. There is growing resistance to abandonment of quality and reputation; EPO management responds by attacking figureheads, essentially crushing the unions (and beyond) that represent the interests of EPO workers — people to whom the integrity of the EPO also assures their job security (they are bound to be made redundant unless things are turned around).
“Social atmosphere for patent examiners at the European Patent Office,” one reader explained to us, will go “from bad to worse soon…” (alluding to the imminent departure of Minnoye (VP1), who recently attacked truth-tellers). Here is an explanation of what is happening and is about to happen:
VP1 is two months away from retiring (thank God) but fact is that he lost control over DG1 years ago whilst pathetically following orders from above like the docile private he actually is. PD 43 is the one now controlling HR policies over 4500 examiners all by far better educated and more qualified than herself. Sources from within DG 4 reports that a non-public policy for DG1 exists that foresees a scenario 1 and a scenario 2.
Examiners falling under scenario 1 e.g. examiners having difficulties to cope with the pace of work, or refusing to produce low quality level of work (since they were professionally trained not to cut corners but to deliver solid patents) are now being told baldly by their superiors to resign or they will be fired.
Obviously many scientists, who are not the most outspoken profiles among EPO staff, are scared and do not even speak to their union or staff reps, choosing to resign since the psychological pressure is too painful for them.
Examiners falling under scenario 2 will be punished without any further discussion. The aim of PD 43 would be to fire every year at least 2 examiners per cluster (one in TH and one in MUC/BE), so that each examiner no matter where he/she works, hears and/or knows about one colleague having been dismissed.
Education for the masses so to speak.
>From the same source, PD 43 would plan to introduce a policy (this time it should become public) where in a soon future, EPO staff can be fired for lack of professional competency/efficiency or-the-like, in any case a very vague and utterly subjective wording, without having to remit the case to a disciplinary committee.
Indeed since PD 43 and her minions do not apply (much less understand) the current (simple) rules for disciplinary procedures, the best is to be able to circumventing them so that they do as they please without taking the risk to violating them.
The recently conveyed grotesque disciplinary boards during which several SUEPO officials were harshly (and very likely illegally) sanctioned should not be repeated in the future.
But all this being said, have not worry, the EPO is a great place to work for: according to PD 43 the EPO respects the rule of law, human rights, unions, staff reps, pregnant females, handicapped staff, coloured staff etc
We actually have a lot more stories to publish (regarding abuses of workers’ rights), but if anyone else can elaborate on decline in patent quality, potentially with supporting evidence, we would greatly appreciate it. We can be reached anonymously.
The EPO’s management is clearly driving into a wall here; the sooner it’s removed, the better for everyone. Even EPO stakeholders’ complaints are growing louder over time. With no EPO left, they too would suffer. █