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

05.17.18

Today’s EPO Financially Rewards Abuses and Violations of the Law

Posted in Europe, Patents at 11:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“This just confirms that EPO employees have no rights, and management is not held accountable for its behaviour. And the Admin council, who could/should hold management accountable, is silent.”Anonymous

Theranos and EPO

Summary: Battistelli shredded the European Patent Convention (EPC) to pieces and he is being rewarded for it, perpetuating a pattern of abuses (and much worse) being rewarded by the European Patent Organisation

BACK in March we wrote about the President of the EPO receiving a massive bonus for destroying the institution, reducing it to intellectual rubble which repels talent and literally rewards frauds or charlatans.

Should it be surprising at all that Battistelli is being rewarded? Even amid scandals like shipping of EPO money to his other employer? Will he be held accountable belatedly like Nicolas Sarkozy? He’s nearly 70 — probably a lot older than any of the wines in his collection.

Considering the latest spin from Team UPC and the upcoming keynote speech at an IAM event, Battistelli does have its share of supporters; they’re patent extremists and people whom he pays (from the EPO’s budget). He is to them what Donald Trump is to many of his supporters; the lies and the abuses don’t seem to matter to them as long as he serves some of their agenda, e.g. UPC and an abundance of low-quality patent grants. Notice how almost no law firm speaks out against him (except sometimes, albeit under conditions of anonymity). To give an example from yesterday, Shrey Pathak from Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP is still perpetuating this trend of Finnegan puff pieces for EPO decisions/policies. Finnegan works together with IAM towards patent maximalism and yesterday it wrote:

Once a patent is granted by the European Patent Office (EPO), it becomes a bundle of national patents. As a result when looking to amend a European patent after grant, despite attempts to harmonise national patent laws and practice, different countries may have different requirements as well as fees for making changes to the patent in those states.

The revision of the European Patent Convention (EPC) in December 2007 introduced Article 105a EPC and a relatively quick, cost effective and straightforward centralised procedure at the EPO to amend a European patent in all validated states after grant. In this respect the patentee may limit the scope of their European patent at any given time after grant, except when the patent is being opposed or appealed at the EPO.

Well, the European Patent Convention (EPC) no longer applies at the EPO; we’ve covered more examples than we can remember wherein Battistelli violated the EPC without any consequences. Even the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation did not seem to mind. They’re complicit.

Recently, staff representatives repeated their request for transparency, not demanding but politely asking to know why (and how much) Battistelli is being rewarded for his bad behaviour. Somebody sent the letter to us (it is an “Open Letter”) and we’re reproducing it below:

Date: 04.05.2018

OPEN LETTER

Governance and transparency

Dear Mr Battistelli,

The EPO is an international organisation at the heart of the patent system and (self-) financed by fees from applicants. With the introduction of the new career system the grades for EPO management were adjusted upwards for higher salaries and bonuses and functional allowances were introduced. Until last year functional allowances were not foreseen for managers and the award of individual bonuses for higher management was strongly denied. Not only has the possibility for functional allowances been opened for managers, the previous cap at the equivalent of two steps was considerably increased to two monthly salaries1. We have always argued against such additional rewards particularly for higher management who are already quite comfortably served with their high incomes. Requests for more transparency in the reward exercises of the past years have been ignored, such that the application of any rewards remains quite opaque to this day.

Different sources lead us to understand that in its March meeting the Administrative Council (AC) has approved an extraordinary bonus of some 600.000 Euro to be paid to you, Mr Battistelli. We are not aware of that bonus featuring on the agenda of the last AC meeting, nor are we aware of any consultation of the Budget and Finance Committee. It is unclear from which budget that bonus will be or has been paid and we would appreciate if reassurances would be given that it did not come out of the envelope earmarked for this year’s reward exercise, as it does not appear to have been exhausted yet with some 6,8m EUR not allocated2.

The Central Bureau of SUEPO has to date not received an answer to its request by letter (su14137cl) of 5 June 2014 for making your employment conditions public. For such additional benefit to simply and quietly materialise would appear not to be foreseen in the key elements of the EPO President’s contract (CA/186/09), officially published “in the interests of good governance and transparency”, and “with narrow scope for negotiation”.

Bonuses are frowned upon in the civil service. Rumours of extraordinary or individual bonuses have been circulating for members of senior management for this and the past years. The award of such a very substantial additional benefit in your case will be seen as inappropriate for an international organisation like ours and feed the perception that a self-service mentality lives at the EPO. If that bonus should have been argued on the grounds of the Office’s exceptional performance, then surely staff have provided that basis. Many users of the patent system will question whether that bonus is justified when reviewing your actions during your presidency3.

We feel that it is long overdue for you to provide full clarity “in the interests of good governance and transparency”.

Yours sincerely,
Joachim Michels
Chairman of the Central Staff Committee

cc: Mr Christoph Ernst, Chairman of the AC
____
1 manager rewards increases:
as of 2015: new career: for managers about up to 20% higher salary in first step. End salary reachable in extreme cases about 6 times faster – enabling to reach it within 3 years

as of 2017: functional allowance: up to 16% of basic salary December 2017: injection into SSP, advantage of about 10x by management to staff in
lower grades

spring 2018: individual / extraordinary bonus: €600k; equivalent to about 222% of yearly basic salary

2 May we suggest that the funds are turned into pensionable rewards for those who helped you look good – staff?

3 See for instance the poll by Juve: 87% criticise the low appreciation for staff; 71% the excessive emphasis on efficiency.

The letter referred to above is 4 years old and we’re reproducing it below as well:

Munich 05.06.2014

Transparency on your earnings

Dear Mr Battistelli,

European citizens demand today the highest level of transparency and accountability not only from institutions and organisations operating in Europe, but also from the leaders who manage them.

You have served as the head of the European Patent Office for almost four years. We understand you actively seek an extension of your current mandate which ends in June 2015.

Since you have regularly claimed to be a strong supporter of openness and transparency, we are sure that you will not object to disclosing information which has so far been kept under wraps and respond to the list of questions provided in the Annex.

SUEPO kindly requests full and frank disclosure, with clear answers to all the questions by close of business on 17 June 2014.

If no satisfactory answers are received, SUEPO will have to take appropriate steps and inform the public accordingly.

We copy the delegations of the Administrative Council for information.

Yours sincerely,

On behalf of SUEPO Central:
J. Michels
Chair SUEPO Central

D. Dickinson
Vice Chair SUEPO Central
Chair SUEPO Vienna

W. Manntz
Vice Chair SUEPO Central
Chair SUEPO Berlin

E. Hardon
Vice Chair SUEPO Central
Chair SUEPO Munich

A. Rose
Vice Chairman SUEPO Central
Chair SUEPO The Hague

cc.: Representatives of Administrative Council delegations

ANNEX: LIST OF QUESTIONS TO Mr BATTISTELLI.

1. How much does your salary including allowances and other benefits amount to each month, both gross and net of tax?

2. Have you received any additional financial benefits, e.g. bonuses, entertainment allowance or use of services and facilities since you joined the Office. If so: are these benefits defined in your contract with the EPO; what are the amounts; and what are the performance conditions attached to their award?

3. Does your contract with the EPO foresee an end-of-contract bonus? If so: is it conditioned to any achieved goal or performance?

4. Does your contract with the EPO foresee a pension to be paid by the organisation? If so, what is the basis for the calculation and the amount (gross and net of tax)? Are there conditions attached to the payment?

5. Did you receive any income or expenses for your position as an associate mayor of St. Germain-en-Laye after taking up your mandate as President of the EPO (from July 2010)? Following recent municipal elections in March 2014, do you continue to receive any payment for your new position of “conseiller municipal”?

6. Do you receive a pension from the French State, as a former civil servant? If so, how much is it each month, again gross and net of tax?

We don’t expect Battistelli to ever willingly disclose these figures/facts (it’s like asking Trump for his tax returns), but we certainly hope that one day he will be held accountable for what he did at the EPO and his ‘bulldog’ from Croatia will be held accountable for what he did in the Croatian SIPO. No person in this world should be above the law. The EPO seems to have become a harbour for abusers in need of immunity; Battistelli took it a step further and made it somewhat of a mental asylum.

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. Florian Müller's Article About SEPs and the EPO

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



  2. 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



  3. 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



  4. 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



  5. 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



  6. 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



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

    Links for the day



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

    Links for the day



  9. 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)



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

    Links for the day



  11. 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



  12. 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



  13. 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



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

    Links for the day



  15. 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)



  16. 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



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

    Links for the day



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

    Links for the day



  19. EPO Management Keeps Embarrassing Itself, UPC More Dead Than Before, and Nokia Turns Aggressive

    The EPO’s race to the bottom of patent quality continues, it’s now complemented by direct association with patent trolls and law stands in their way (for they repeatedly violate the law)



  20. The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO) and IBM Are Part of the Software Patents Problem in the United States

    IBM's special role in lobbying for software patents (and against PTAB) needs to be highlighted; even Ethereum’s co-founder isn't happy about IBM's meddling in the blockchain space (with help from Hyperledger/Linux Foundation)



  21. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Not Falling for Attempts to Prevent It From Instituting Challenges

    In the face of patent maximalists' endless efforts to derail patent quality the tribunal keeps calm and carries on smashing bad patents



  22. Links 2/12/2018: Linux 4.20 RC5, Snapcraft 3.0, VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 3

    Links for the day



  23. The Patent Microcosm Hopes That the Federal Circuit Will Get 'Tired' of Rejecting Software Patents

    Trolls-friendly sites aren't tolerating this court's habit of saying "no" to software patents; the Chief Judge meanwhile acknowledges that they're being overrun by a growing number of cases/appeals



  24. 35 U.S.C. § 101 Continues to Crush Software Patents and Even Microsoft Joins 'the Fun'

    The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) and even courts below it continue to throw out software patents or send them back to PTAB and lower courts; there is virtually nothing for patent maximalists to celebrate any longer



  25. The Anti-Section 101 (Pro-Software Patents) Lobby Looks at New Angles for Watering Down Guidelines and Caselaw

    By focusing on jury trials and patent trolls the proponents of bunk, likely-invalid abstract patents hope to overrule or override technical courts such as the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB)



  26. Patent Trolls, USPTO Director Andrei Iancu and Section 101

    The world’s most important patent office is now run by a courts-hostile person (an 'American Battistelli') who is happy to ignore the courts’ caselaw and listen to patent trolls instead; this means that science and technology, not to mention the law itself, will suffer



  27. Be Wary of the Latest Lies About the Unified Patent Court (UPC), Courtesy of CIPA and Marks & Clerk (Team UPC)

    It's rather noteworthy that no matter how grim things have become for Team UPC, which drafted and promoted new laws for self-enrichment purposes, these people persist with all the same lies that predate several more barriers, which no doubt will prove fatal to the Unified Patent Court Agreement (UPCA)



  28. Links 1/12/2018: 4MLinux 27.0, GNU Wget 1.20 Released

    Links for the day



  29. EPO Management High-Fiving Patent Propaganda Sites Like 'Managing IP' While Granting Illegitimate Patents on Algorithms

    Having mastered the art of hype and buzzwords, the management of the EPO carries on pretending that it does nothing wrong by rubber-stamping abstract patents on mathematics



  30. “ILO Gave the EPO Medical Committee a Good Slapping”

    The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation quits ILO (or its jurisdiction), whose tribunal has just released very few new decisions, only one of which regarding the EPO


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