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

03.08.18

The European Patent Office (EPO) Ought to Lead in Patent Scope, Not Slide to the Bottom of the Pile

Posted in America, Europe, Patents at 9:00 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

What good is patent examination that does not (or cannot, due to lack of time) assess underlying evidence and just rubber-stamps almost everything?

Three monkeys

Summary: The United States is getting tougher on the same sorts of patents that the EPO under Battistelli is extremely eager to grant — all in the name of so-called (fake) ‘production’

HAVING closely watched and written about the patent systems since my early twenties (even before Techrights existed), I’m genuinely worried to see the EPO — once the world’s best patent office (based on several criteria) — becoming even worse than the USPTO (historically notorious, especially since the Reagan years when policy was changed). The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) is a growing force at the USPTO, whereas the EPO’s equivalent (the appeal boards) is being marginalised. There are many ways by which to measure this marginalisation. It’s more like sabotage by the Office, which is in principle supposed to be completely isolated from the boards; the boards should be untouchable in order to assure independence of judges (and freedom to rule as they see fit, based on underlying laws, evidence/prior art, the EPC and so on).

“The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) is a growing force at the USPTO, whereas the EPO’s equivalent (the appeal boards) is being marginalised.”One of two areas we’ve always campaigned in is what we refer to as “patents as life” (there are other terms that can be used). Anticipat, a site which markets some products/services by bashing PTAB, has this new post today. It’s actually a couple of days old (but only showed up today) and it speaks of the PatCon8 conference, noting that the “State of Patent-Eligibility of Medical Diagnostics [is] Not Good” (in the US).

It’s good actually. Very good. No such patents should be permitted and many are indeed being denied. The USPTO has gotten tougher and early assessments suggest that the number of granted US patents — not to be mistaken for patent applications — will have declined by year’s end (which is not necessarily a bad thing, for constant expansion in monopoly power isn’t desirable). “The eighth annual PatCon hosted by the University of San Diego School of Law,” Anticipat wrote on Tuesday, “included a wide range of speakers and presentations. Perhaps due to the largely academic audience, participants openly disagreed on various points. But one point had almost universal consensus: patenting medical diagnostics in the US is very bleak due to patent-eligibility. And it’s unlikely to change any time soon.”

“The USPTO has gotten tougher and early assessments suggest that the number of granted US patents — not to be mistaken for patent applications — will have declined by year’s end (which is not necessarily a bad thing, for constant expansion in monopoly power isn’t desirable).”Good.

We recently wrote an article about the "cancer" which is patents on treatments (typically mere processes, not an invention) and the concept of "life sciences" as a Trojan horse for patenting things like genetics (nature’s ‘invention’, not a human invention, maybe just an explanation/revelation/reverse-engineering by humans).

The EPO was recently denying patents on CRISPR. These patents on life are laughable and should be voided so as to avoid going down the slippery slope of making DNA as a whole some corporations’ ‘property’. Hours ago a site dedicated to advocacy of patents on life (or “life sciences”) wrote about the ERS Genomics patent (we wrote about this exactly one week ago). This is what it said:

The European Patent Office (EPO) has granted a second CRISPR/Cas9 patent to a specialist genomics company, one month after revoking the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT’s patent relating to the technology.

[...]

The EPO’s granting of Charpentier’s second CRISPR patent came a month after it revoked a CRISPR patent (2,771,468) owned by the Broad Institute.

Will consistency/clarity come from the appeal boards (Boards of Appeal)? Will they be able to rule independently?

“We have never seen even a single European programmer defending software patents.”As we noted this morning, the Boards of Appeal were unable to rule properly (e.g. in lieu with the EPC and European Parliment) on software patents and one of their judges got put on a “house ban” shortly after he had vetoed a software patent of a company close to the EPO.

The “EPO annual report has replaced software patents by “4th Industrial Revolution” buzzword,” Benjamin Henrion wrote an hour ago. “4th Industrial Revolution” means software patents, I’ve reminded him, by IAM's and Battistelli's (almost conjoined) own admission. Where will the EPO put the barrier to patenting? Should we accept that mere concepts (like algorithms, not even code) or code of life are patent-eligible in order to artificially inflate the number of granted monopolies? Where would that leave public health and programmers? At the hands of vicious law firms like pretty much every single European advocate of software patents? We have never seen even a single European programmer defending software patents. Never.

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 12/12/2018: Mesa 18.3.1 Released, CNCF Takes Control of etcd

    Links for the day



  2. EPO Trust, Leadership and Commitment

    "Trust, leadership and commitment" is the latest publication from EPO insiders, who in the absence of free speech and freedom of association for the union/representation are an essential spotlight on EPO abuses



  3. Links 11/12/2018: Tails 3.11, New Firefox, FreeBSD 12.0

    Links for the day



  4. Number of Filings at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Highest in Almost Two Years

    Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) inter partes reviews (IPRs), which [cref 113718 typically invalidate software patents by citing 35 U.S.C. § 101], are withstanding negative rhetoric and hostility from Iancu



  5. With 'Brexit' in a Lot of Headlines Team UPC Takes the Unitary Patent Lies up a Notch

    Misinformation continues to run like water; people are expected to believe that the UPC, an inherently EU-centric construct, can magically come to fruition in the UK (or in Europe as a whole)



  6. The EPO Not Only Abandoned the EPC But Also the Biotech Directive

    Last week's decision (T1063/18, EPO Technical Board of Appeal 3.3.04) shows that there's still a long way to go before the Office and the Organisation as a whole fulfil their obligation to those who birthed the Organisation in the first placeLast week's decision (T1063/18, EPO Technical Board of Appeal 3.3.04) shows that there's still a long way to go before the Office and the Organisation as a whole fulfil their obligation to those who birthed the Organisation in the first place



  7. Patents on Abstract Things and on Life (or Patents Which Threaten Lives) Merely Threaten the Very Legitimacy of Patent Offices, Including EPO

    Patent Hubris and maximalism pose a threat or a major risk to the very system that they claim to be championing; by reducing the barrier to entry (i.e. introducing low-quality or socially detrimental patents) they merely embolden ardent critics who demand patent systems as a whole be abolished; the EPO is nowadays a leading example of it



  8. Links 10/12/2018: Linux 4.20 RC6 and Git 2.20

    Links for the day



  9. US Courts Make the United States' Patent System Sane Again

    35 U.S.C. § 101 (Section 101), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and other factors are making the patent system in the US a lot more sane



  10. Today's USPTO Grants a Lot of Fake Patents, Software Patents That Courts Would Invalidate

    The 35 U.S.C. § 101 effect is very much real; patents on abstract/nonphysical ideas get invalidated en masse (in courts/PTAB) and Director Andrei Iancu refuses to pay attention as if he's above the law and court rulings don't apply to him



  11. A Month After Microsoft Claimed Patent 'Truce' Its Patent Trolls Keep Attacking Microsoft's Rivals

    Microsoft's legal department relies on its vultures (to whom it passes money and patents) to sue its rivals; but other than that, Microsoft is a wonderful company!



  12. Good News: US Supreme Court Rejects Efforts to Revisit Alice, Most Software Patents to Remain Worthless

    35 U.S.C. § 101 will likely remain in tact for a long time to come; courts have come to grips with the status quo, as even the Federal Circuit approves the large majority of invalidations by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s (PTAB) panels, initiated by inter partes reviews (IPRs)



  13. Florian Müller's Article About SEPs and the EPO

    Report from the court in Munich, where the EPO is based



  14. EPO Vice-President Željko Topić in New Article About Corruption in Croatia

    The Croatian newspaper 7Dnevno has an outline of what Željko Topić has done in Croatia and in the EPO in Munich; it argues that this seriously erodes Croatia's national brand/identity



  15. The Quality of European Patents Continues to Deteriorate Under António Campinos and Software Patents Are Advocated Every Day

    The EPC in the European Patent Office and 35 U.S.C. § 101 in the USPTO annul most if not all software patents; under António Campinos, however, software patents are being granted in Europe and the USPTO exploits similar tricks



  16. Team UPC is Still Spreading False Rumours in an Effort to Trick Politicians and Pressure Judges

    Abuses at the European Patent Office, political turmoil and an obvious legislative coup by a self-serving occupation that produces nothing have already doomed the Unitary Patent or Unified Patent Court (UPC); so now we deal with complete fabrications from Team UPC as they're struggling to make something out of nothing, anonymously smearing opposition to the UPC and anonymously making stuff up



  17. Patents on Life and Patents That Kill the Poor Would Only Delegitimise the European Patent Office

    After Mayo, Myriad and other SCOTUS cases (the basis of 35 U.S.C. § 101) the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is reluctant to grant patents on life; the European Patent Office (EPO), however, goes in the opposite direction, even in defiance of the European Patent Convention



  18. EPO 'Untapped Potential'

    "Campinos is diligently looking for ways to further increase the Office’s output without increasing the number of examiners," says the EPO-FLIER team



  19. Links 9/12/2018: New Linux Stable Releases (Notably Linux 4.19.8), RC Coming, and Unifont 11.0.03

    Links for the day



  20. Links 8/12/2018: Mesa 18.3.0, Mageia 7 Beta, WordPress 5.0

    Links for the day



  21. The European Patent Organisation is Like a Private Club and Roland Grossenbacher is Back in It

    In the absence of Benoît Battistelli quality control at the EPO is still not effective; patents are being granted like the sole goal is to increase so-called 'production' (or profit), appeals are being subjected to threats from Office management, and external courts (courts that assess patents outside the jurisdiction of the Office/Organisation) are being targeted with a long-sought replacement like the Unified Patent Court, or UPC (Unitary Patent)



  22. Links 7/12/2018: GNU Guix, GuixSD 0.16.0, GCC 7.4, PHP 7.3.0 Released

    Links for the day



  23. The Federal Circuit's Decision on Ancora Technologies v HTC America is the Rare Exception, Not the Norm

    Even though the PTAB does not automatically reject every patent when 35 U.S.C. § 101 gets invoked we're supposed to think that somehow things are changing in favour of patent maximalists; but all they do is obsess over something old (as old as a month ago) and hardly controversial



  24. The European Patent Office Remains a Lawless Place Where Judges Are Afraid of the Banker in Chief

    With the former banker Campinos replacing the politician Battistelli and seeking to have far more powers it would be insane for the German Constitutional Court to ever allow anything remotely like the UPC; sites that are sponsored by Team UPC, however, try to influence outcomes, pushing patent maximalism and diminishing the role of patent judges



  25. Many of the Same People Are Still in Charge of the European Patent Office Even Though They Broke the Law

    "EPO’s art collection honoured with award," the EPO writes, choosing to distract from what actually goes on at the Office and has never been properly dealt with



  26. Links 6/12/2018: FreeNAS 11.2, Mesa 18.3 Later Today, Fedora Elections

    Links for the day



  27. EPO, in Its Patent Trolls-Infested Forum, Admits It is Granting Bogus Software Patents Under the Guise of 'Blockchain'

    Yesterday's embarrassing event of the EPO was a festival of the litigation giants and trolls, who shrewdly disguise patents on algorithms using all sorts of fashionable words that often don't mean anything (or deviate greatly from their original meanings)



  28. The Patent Litigation Bubble is Imploding in the US While the UPC Dies in Europe

    The meta-industry which profits from feuds, disputes, threats and blackmail isn't doing too well; even in Europe, where it worked hard for a number of years to institute a horrible litigation system which favours global plaintiffs (patent trolls, opportunists and monopolists), these things are going up in flames



  29. Links 5/12/2018: Epic Games Store, CrossOver 18.1.0, Important Kubernetes Patch

    Links for the day



  30. Links 4/12/2018: LibrePCB 0.1.0, SQLite 3.26.0, PhysX Code

    Links for the day


CoPilotCo

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

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts