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06.09.18

Shawn Ambwani (Unified Patents) Refutes the US Chamber of Commerce on Patents, But the Patent Trolls’ Lobby (IAM) Uses Him to Trot Out Yet More Misleading Propaganda

Posted in Deception, Google, Patents at 2:49 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Having run out of factual/legitimate arguments, they nowadays resort to nutty conspiracy theories about Google

IAM logo and friends

Summary: Coming to grips with the strengthening of patents (quality) in the United States, those who rely on low-quality patents for blackmail purposes fire back at opponents of patent trolls and some persist with the crazy conspiracy theory that claims “Google” is behind everything

THE SCOTUS-complying USPTO will have to narrow down patent scope or risk being repeatedly embarrassed by the Federal Circuit (for having granted patents in error, reducing confidence in US patents).

Unified Patents, which we support, keeps demonstrating that some notorious US patents (used extensively for litigation or shakedown) are in fact bogus patents. It has just happened again to Roaring Brook Advisors, which certainly looks like a patent troll to Unified Patents. There was a bounty (they now offer those) and here’s the outcome:

Unified is pleased to announce the PATROLL crowdsourcing contest winner, Rohit Sood, who received a cash prize of $2000 for his prior art submission for U.S. Patent 6,909,359, allegedly owned by Roaring Brook Advisors, LLC, a suspected NPE. The ’359 patent generally relates to a medical notification device that may be worn as a wristwatch. To help the industry fight bad patents, we have published the winning prior art below.

The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) came to the rescue yet again, combating bad patents of Silver State Intellectual Technologies. To quote Jain:

On June 8, 2018 the Board granted Silver State Intellectual Technologies’ request for adverse judgment and cancellation of all challenged claims in IPR2017-01198 filed by Unified Patents. This request comes after the PTAB’s decision to institute trial (and mere weeks before the Board’s anticipated final decision) on all claims of US 8,538,498 directed to an information and control system for use in a vehicle capable of communicating with remote servers through a communications network.

As one might expect, Unified Patents has come under attack from patent extremists who are connected to trolls. We gave some examples of these attacks before. It certainly seems like patent quality is a scary concept to some people and Unified Patents is a convenient ‘whipping boy’.

Recently, the patent trolls’ lobby (IAM) worked hard to deny and discredit a study from IP2Innovate, refusing to accept the simple fact that patent trolls are a growing problem in Europe. IAM is IP2Litigate. This is basically IAM’s job; they’re the voice of patent trolls. Recently came a ‘study’ they could actually embrace, not because it was rooted in facts but because the message suited the bogus narrative trotted out by the litigation ‘industry’. These patent maximalists were just trying to improve their profits by lying to officials with a bogus 'ladder' that IAM would soon boost along with Watchtroll and even Iancu himself.

Something a little surprising happened yesterday because on the face of it IAM permitted a refutation by Unified Patents’ Shawn Ambwani. “The authors of a much-quoted ranking that records a big drop in the standing of the US patent system have serious questions to answer about their methodology,” said the tweet. Sounds promising, right?

Patent maximalist Richard Lloyd precedes Unified Patents’ views with the usual nonsense. He dismisses this by promoting the controversial ‘study’ and attacking others’ studies, like one about patent trolls in Europe (IP2Innovate). This is how Lloyd writes, in essence attacking the very text he’s about to copy-paste:

In recent years much has been written and spoken about the relative decline of the US patent system recorded by the Global Innovation Policy Center’s “IP Index”. While in IP generally, the Index states that the US remains in number one place overall, its patent score has slipped. Last year the US lost its number one ranking, falling to 10th, level with Hungary. This year, while the US patent score went up, it still slipped two places.

The centre is an affiliate of the US Chamber of Commerce and its analysis of the American patent system has been seized on by various members of the patent community who are highly critical of recent changes introduced by both the courts and Congress. But should the index be relied on as an accurate measure of relative global standing?

We have been highly critical of how data has been used and abused with regard to patents in both the US and elsewhere over the years. For example, decidely dodgy claims have been made about the activities of NPEs over the years to justify patent reform in the US – something that is now spreading to Europe. Patents are a subject that legislators know little about and because of that the way data is presented really matters.Given how important innovation policy is, decsions have to be based on reality not on spin. And that applies to all sides in the argument.

According to Unified Patents’ Shawn Ambwani and Jonathan Stroud there are serious question marks over the methodology used by ththose who compile the rankings. These, they say, should be addressed before the index is used by anyone to advocate for a particular position.

How many people will ever read further? Lloyd just used this as an opportunity for lobbying, which is basically what he does in the US (under the guise of “journalism”).

“Shawn Ambwani is chief operating officer and Jonathan Stroud is chief IP counsel at Unified Patents,” it says at the bottom, but many paragraphs at the top are the lobbyists’ own.

Here’s what Ambwani said (excerpt):

The index also lacks context. The GIPIC starts its analysis by asking: “Does a given economy’s intellectual property system provide a reliable basis for investment in the innovation and creativity lifecycle?” But it never addresses or defines those terms; if innovation, investment and economic benefit aren’t defined in the index, how are they measured?

The report ostensibly spends substantial effort developing methodology and scoring to compare countries based on self-selected “baselines” on the pro-enforcement policies of the GIPC, but it does not show how its scoring correlates to or reflects “investment in the innovation and creativity lifecycle”. There is no suggestion, much less proof, that the US economy has suffered at all, much less at the hands of patent policies. There is also no evidence connecting the eight indicators to historical “investment”. The correlation between IP enforcement to economic benefit for US companies or the US economy (absent equal detriment to other US companies) have yet to be shown by any quantitative measurement.

Until innovation can be demonstrably related to the scores in the index, it remains little more than a transparent lobbyist’s tool. The first step toward repairing credibility would be to demonstrate that the scores affect innovation before trying to measure them for the future; that is, unless the purpose of the index is really just to provide talking points to lobbyists and policy hawks to support the ease of patent monetisation against other US companies.

We already wrote some responses to this, but we don’t have the ‘fire power’ or ‘access’ of well-funded (by trolls and law firms) lobbyists. They keep brainwashing USPTO officials (more on that later this weekend) and spreading ridiculous conspiracy theories, insinuating that patent law is improving just because of “Evil” Google (the latest headline from Steve Brachmann, published on June 8th, is “Google Changes Its Code of Conduct After Years of Being Evil Towards Patent Owners”). What have they got to show for it? The core paragraph is this: “To accuse Google of operating with malevolent intent in recent years in order to serve its own corporate interests. First of all, consider Google’s ample financial largesse to D.C. politicians around the time that the America Invents Act (AIA) was signed into law. This includes the $800,000 contributed to former President Barack Obama’s 2012 election campaign (making it the third-largest contributor to the Obama campaign), the nearly $900,000 contributed to federal candidates running in 2012 for the House and the Senate (which was split 49 percent to Democrats and 50 percent to Republicans) and the $18 million total lobbying expenditures during 2012, the eighth-largest federal lobbying total among all entities. If spending money to influence political debate towards unjust ends is evil, Google’s been guilty of that for years.”

What about law firms? And pharmaceutical companies? And countless others that are patent maximalists? What about technology companies other than Google? Google is like a drop in the ocean compared to the whole, but never let sites like Watchtroll (or IAM for that matter) digest reality, facts etc. that threaten loyalties with their own funding sources.

Data From the USPTO Almost Confirms Suspicions That People Named in Patents Are Likely Unrelated (Nothing to Do With These Patents)

Posted in America, Deception, Patents at 1:20 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

And it’s only getting worse and more severe over time

On too much of a good thing

Summary: Dennis Crouch on the growth in the number of supposed ‘authors’, citations/priorities, and the copy-paste culture of patent law firms (introducing patent applications which approach 1,000 pages in length, over-encumbering examiners)

BACK when I was writing and (peer) reviewing papers we used to joke about papers with dozens of authors. Surely it’s impossible for all of them to have actively participated in the research and the typing of a paper, but it was mutually agreed that one person would enlist everyone else as “author” and others would recipricate, artificially inflating people’s citation score (as measured by number of papers authored or co-authored). Nowadays it’s quite rare/hard to find published academic work with just one author on it. It was a lot more common the past, but perhaps with scoring mechanisms becoming digitised and easy to game/rig (knowing the formula) practices have generally ‘evolved’ to help one get promoted.

“Nowadays it’s quite rare/hard to find published academic work with just one author on it.”Just like what happens in academia/scholarly papers, people now game the patent system by throwing lots of names (“the whole Office” is what we used to call that) into patent applications (like paper “submissions”) and there may therefore be an illusion of greater participation. People are inflating their egos by having their names ‘slapped’ onto more and more patents, whose overall number (patents granted per year) rises as well.

“Back in the 1970s and 1980s,” Crouch notes, “most patents listed only a single inventor. Since then, the percentage of one-inventor patents has steadily dropped while larger teams (3+ inventors) have flourished.”

“Some CEOs of very large companies, such as Steve Jobs (extremely unlikely to have participated in drafting of patents), get listed in perhaps a thousand patents.”The graph is quite telling. It also explains a lot. Some CEOs of very large companies, such as Steve Jobs (extremely unlikely to have participated in drafting of patents), get listed in perhaps a thousand patents.

Another new chart from Crouch “shows the percentage of issued utility patents that claim priority back to a prior U.S. patent application – either a prior non-provisional (via continuation, continuation-in-part, or divisional application) or to a provisional application. Data goes through May 31, 2018.”

Last year we explained how law firms reusing texts and broadening their templates over time would likely mean an increase in the number of cited patents, cases etc. The ‘maturity’ of many patents is likely ‘faked’ to some degree; a lot of that is a copy-paste job. They conflate/mistake quantity for quality, failing to realise (or deliberately ignoring the fact) that information overload merely discourages the reader and therefore devalues the whole.

“Last year we explained how law firms reusing texts and broadening their templates over time would likely mean an increase in the number of cited patents, cases etc.”This isn’t intended to generally bash the patent system but merely to point out that there’s a real problem which needs tackling. To demonstrate just how bad it has gotten (overwhelming examiners for sure), IAM now speaks of an EPO patent application that is almost a thousand pages long (which reminds us of Microsoft’s bogus ‘standard’, OOMXL, with over 6,000 pages). What is this? A joke? One heck of a copy-paste job? “What is quite possibly the longest patent application ever submitted continues on its merry way to grant,” IAM wrote, saying that “Ericsson has recently received a positive international preliminary report on patentability from the European Patent Office on a PCT filing submitted last year that describes a detailed 5G architecture reading on a wide range of applications with varying requirements and characteristics. It purports to set out higher bandwidth, lower latency, better reliability, longer battery life and less interference than anything contained in the prior art.”

How is an examiner even supposed to assess such a thing? We heard similar stories from the USPTO (and covered these), but now we see this in Europe as well. Patents are not books (saturating the index/search results) and examiners oughtn’t be shy to reject patents based on length. Concision matters.

A Post-TC Heartland (and Post-Alice) Patent System is Bad if Not Fatal News to Patent Trolls Like Microsoft’s Intellectual Ventures

Posted in America, Microsoft, Patents at 12:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Intellectual Ventures is connected to some Texas-based 'offspring' trolls

Microsoft and trolls

Summary: The gold rush for patents on algorithms (disguised as “AI” or “blockchain” among other hype waves which are being popularised nowadays) and why it’s going to be a lot harder to enforce these in the courtrooms now that the Eastern District of Texas is ever more isolated (recent rulings which deny ‘forum shopping’ or litigation venue hopping)

THE USPTO is improving (quality of patents). Patent courts in the US are improving (standards/bars). Innovation carries on. Patent litigation is declining (we shall cover that separately).

“We are pleased to see the way things are going and we receive online abuse from the aforementioned types, who are very angry because they’re used to making money from lawsuits.”Go to all (or virtually any) of those sites that tell us patents of any kind encourage innovation (any patent, even patents on life or algorithms). Check the background of the author/those quoted. It’s almost always lawyers with law degrees, i.e. the nontechnical types who make money from patenting and litigation. Did innovation suffer/stop because the US became tougher on patents? No. There’s no evidence of it. Did law firms earn less money? Probably. But they never produced any innovation anyway.

We are pleased to see the way things are going and we receive online abuse from the aforementioned types, who are very angry because they’re used to making money from lawsuits. They lose sleep over what’s going on.

“The trolls are struggling and quite a few have gone out of ‘business’ (when we say business we mean suing and engaging in extortion, as they do nothing else).”This post will focus on patent trolls, especially those that are exploiting lenient courts and now find it difficult to access those. We’ve been seeing nothing but good news on this front, except perhaps in Europe, where Samsung has just been extorted by a European patent troll.

The patent trolls’ lobby (IAM) currently celebrates Sisvel’s latest blackmail. Joff Wild says this:

The deals come on the back of other recent positive developments for Sisvel, including US litigation settlements with LG Electronics and Buffalo, which saw both companies agree royalty-bearing licences to the same Wi-Fi patents that Samsung now has access to; and Columbia University joining the Wi-Fi licensing programme, the first Ivy League university to do so. The programme now has over 100 licensees.

Sisvel began life in 1982 as a joint venture between Italian TV set manufacturers and now operates out of offices in the US, Europe and Asia, through which it offers a variety of pooled rights covering technologies, including wireless, digital display and audio/video coding. Its portfolio runs to thousands of patents – both managed on behalf of others, such as Fraunhofer, KPN and Orange, and acquired – with well over 1,000 licences in place.

Techrights wrote about Sisvel dozens of times in the past. They’re like Europe’s patent Mafia (and they happen to be Italian too, so maybe there’s a source of inspiration from the Italian Mafia).

“…AI is just software and in very few places in the world will such patents have real value (except outside the courts).”In the US, however, things have changed. The trolls are struggling and quite a few have gone out of ‘business’ (when we say business we mean suing and engaging in extortion, as they do nothing else). We have given many examples and we shall continue to give more. Several days ago we wrote about Intellectual Ventures losing a lot of money — mostly money that had been invested in it by Microsoft. Intellectual Ventures lost a lot of staff — managers and executives included — and Ericsson hired from Intellectual Ventures not too long ago (seeking trolling expertise).

As we covered here last week (owing to Docket Navigator’s coverage), Ericsson and Intellectual Venture now have a patent dispute between them and earlier today Watchtroll said more:

Ericsson Inc. v. Intellectual Ventures I, LLC, No. 2016-1671, 2018 (Fed. Cir. May 29, 2018) (Before Prost, C.J., Newman, and Wallach, J.) (Opinion for the court, Newman, J.) (Dissenting opinion, Wallach, J.)

The ‘408 patent, owned by Intellectual Ventures I LLC (“IV”), covers a method of frequency hopping used in wireless systems in which a base station communicates with other entities on varying radio frequencies to reduce interference among communications. Ericsson petitioned for inter partes review of the ’408 patent, and the PTAB upheld its validity. Without separately analyzing the challenged dependent claims, the PTAB held that claim 1 was not anticipated or obvious. On appeal, the Federal Circuit reversed with respect to claim 1 and vacated and remanded as to the remaining claims.

We expect the Federal Circuit to relay this back after the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) found the patent ineligible. What will happen at the end? Well, in the meantime (amid all these court battles/motions) only the lawyers profit. Who loses? Both Intellectual Ventures and Ericsson, which itself feeds patent trolls and often acts like a troll itself.

“…patents on “AI” should therefore not be accepted (algorithms are abstract; they’re not patentable) and are not patent-eligible in the eyes of most courts worldwide.”In other news about Intellectual Ventures (Microsoft’s truly massive patent trolls network which likes to distribute its patents to thousands of other trolls), IAM indicates another gold rush for blockchain patents, i.e. software patents. An Intellectual Ventures ‘veterans’ is named:

The IP market officially has its first blockchain start-up. A group of executives with experience across patents and finance have launched a company called Operem, which will enable the tokenisation and trading of IP assets. Unveiling the new project exclusively to IAM, CEO Tim Londergan explained why his team believes the distributed ledger technology behind blockchain brings something radically new to the traditional IP exchange model.

[...]

Londergan, who spent eight years across several senior roles in Intellectual Ventures and more recently has been running a start-up incubator in Singapore, faces the challenge of building a business that combines two complex fields – IP and blockchain – which are often misunderstood by the uninitiated. But he thinks intellectual property, which Operem describes in a slide deck as “one of the last massively closed asset classes”, is ripe for disruption.

Remember that all of these patents are software patents. Mastercard too has been using the blockchain hype to disguise software patents as something patentable (courts would invalidate them). Here’s the latest on this:

Mastercard has won a patent for a travel itinerary system that uses a blockchain for a travel auction platform.

Consumers enter their planned itinerary and merchants submit bits for each request. The blockchain would connect travelers, travel agents, and other travel companies; along with a middle party that would vet the travel providers.The system could cut into travel providers’ marketing costs while making it easier for travelers to shop.

Mastercard is also pursuing patents for several other blockchain use cases, mostly with an eye on improving merchant and consumer navigation.

Over at a Japenese patents blog, Satoshi Watanabe takes note of so-called ‘FinTech’ patents (similar to the above) and starts by saying that “new technologies such as AI and IoT are progressing,” alluding to patents on these. Well, those are just buzzwords which are being exploted for bunk software patents (likely invalid). “As previously reported,” he wrote, “patent applications of business-related inventions have been on an increasing trend since 2011, and approximately 7,900 patent applications for business-related inventions were filed in 2016 (increase of 11.1% over the previous year), in spite of the downward trend in the number of domestic patent applications. Especially, patent applications in the financial sector (which should include FinTech) markedly increased in 2016 (increase of 40% over the previous year). The patent grant rate for business-related inventions is almost 70%. Therefore, many business-related patents have been generated in Japan.”

“Stop using meaningless old buzzwords to urge for patents on things that are clearly abstract.”Those are more like software patents, which are related in many ways to patents on business methods (both covered by Alice and to a lesser degree Bilski).

This new article relaying Withers & Rogers talking points (basically marketing for a law firm) speaks of an upcoming “event, which runs from 9-20 July 2018, featur[ing] patents in eight different categories from AI to software.”

Well, AI is just software and in very few places in the world will such patents have real value (except outside the courts). The “AI” buzzword is nowadays being promoted by the EPO and by IP Kat, which keeps painting software patents as “AI”, even as recently as a few days ago when it wrote: “DeepMind is a London based artificial intelligence (AI) research company, widely recognized as being at the forefront of the field. DeepMind was founded in 2010 and acquired by Google in 2014 for £400m. In 2017, DeepMind famously developed AI capable of defeating a world-champion at Go (Silver et al. Nature).”

The title of it was “DeepMind: First major AI patent filings revealed” and the sole comment says:

Just sounds like a company trying to pilfer all companies with patent trolls. All this will do is prevent AI from progressing because someone wants to make a $. AI should be banned from patent requests imo.

Well, it’s difficult to tell where these patents might end up. “AI” is just a vague term that applies to most algorithms; patents on “AI” should therefore not be accepted (algorithms are abstract; they’re not patentable) and are not patent-eligible in the eyes of most courts worldwide.

“In places like the Eastern District of Texas (E.D. Tex. or TXED) the judges might say “yes” to such patents, but not elsewhere.”Here goes another mindless tweet: “Should #AI created inventions be eligible for #patents? If so, the standards for what is considered patentable need to change…”

Stop using meaningless old buzzwords to urge for patents on things that are clearly abstract. In places like the Eastern District of Texas (E.D. Tex. or TXED) the judges might say “yes” to such patents, but not elsewhere. Therein lies the importance of TC Heartland, which very recently turned one.

“From “venue/forum shopping” we’ve meanwhile moved to “judge shopping”…”In an effort to keep abreast of TC Heartland and what goes on in the Eastern District of Texas we’ve found some interesting new developments. The court that is notorious for its patent trolls epidemic decided as follows: “The court granted defendant’s alternative motion to transfer for improper venue because defendant did not have a regular and established place of business in the district through its “necessary” distributor.”

This is basically another fight over interpretation of the Supreme Court’s ruling on TC Heartland. Quite a few such cases became public recently and Watchtroll wrote about one of them a couple of days ago:

In an opinion made public on May 9th, a federal judge in the Eastern District of Texas denied a motion to dismiss for improper venue. See Tinnus Enters. v. Telebrands Corp., Case No. 6:17-CV-00170-RWS (E.D. Tex. May 1, 2018). Notably, the Court in Tinnus found that a “regular and established place of business” can exist when a manufacturer or wholesaler leases a space within a brick-and-mortar retail store. Id. at 4-5.

District Judge Robert W. Schroeder supported the report and recommendation of Magistrate Judge John D. Love which found that defendant Telebrands consistently leases space with retailers in the district, creating ongoing, long-term relationships with those retailers. Id. at 4. Judge Schroder concluded that the defendant had crafted a regular and established place of business for patent venue purposes by holding out leased store space as their own, paying fees to construct the leased space, and controlling product placement, sales, and displays within that space. Id.

[...]

The Supreme Court’s recent decision in TC Heartland reset the definition of residency in § 1400(b), divorcing the patent venue statute’s construction from § 1391(c). TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Grp. Brands LLC, 137 S. Ct. 1514, 1520 (2017). In TC Heartland, the Supreme Court held that “residence” in § 1400(b) refers only to the state of incorporation, and further held that the expanded definition of “residence” in § 1391(c) was not intended to alter § 1400(b)’s construction of the term. Id.

As noted by Mark Deming yesterday, this is one among a “trio” of such cases: “The Federal Circuit issued a trio of decisions this month further clarifying the application of the patent venue statute in the post-TC Heartland era. The case specifics are: In re HTC Corporation, No. 2018-130 (May 9, 2018); In re ZTE (USA) Inc., No. 2018-113 (May 14, 2018); and In re BigCommerce, Inc., No. 2018-120 (May 15, 2018).”

“This means that companies like Microsoft, for instance, may struggle to float patent trolling (and selling ‘protection’) as a long-term business model.”From “venue/forum shopping” we’ve meanwhile moved to “judge shopping” — a practice which is considered rogue and regarded as serious misbehaviour based on the latest Docket Report:

Following a dismissal for failure to prosecute after six years of litigation, the court granted defendants’ motions for attorney fees under 35 U.S.C. § 285 because plaintiff’s litigation tactics were unreasonable.

This case, yet again, demonstrates that the attempts to pursue some particular judge or district are risky; these can now collapse or sink entire cases. The legacy of TC Heartland, including its ‘edge cases’ (like non-US companies), has aged pretty well. This means that companies like Microsoft, for instance, may struggle to float patent trolling (and selling ‘protection’) as a long-term business model. This is what Microsoft has been aiming for with “Azure IP Advantage” [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19].

Benoît Battistelli Should Have Received an Award for Corruption, But He Completely Controlled the Show in His Own Theatre

Posted in Europe, Finance, Patents at 8:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Battistelli has just ‘pulled a Henry Kissinger’

Son of Campinos

Summary: Having abused/misused diplomatic immunity for about 8 years, Benoît Battistelli now passes this immunity to his old friend (António Campinos) and arranges to receive an award in France, for fighting what they call “piracy”

THE king of EPO corruption is about to officially — at least on paper — finish his term, but not before he gets some 'royal' treatments in the unfinished Dutch branch. It’s pretty incredible what he got away with; like a true king, he’s demonstrably above the law and he’s never reluctant to break laws which he subjects others to. The USPTO, which is a federally-enshrined institution, operates differently, so staff does not enjoy the same sort of immunity (not even the chiefs).

“We wish to remind our readers that Battistelli’s immunity expires in a few weeks with no imminent role (anywhere) to expand this thug’s protection from the Rule of Law.”Speaking of immunity, remember what happened at EU-IPO. Caricatures like the above were made about it last year (and circulated inside the EPO).

Currently, the EU-IPO is all about António Campinos, who starts his job at the EPO in about 3 weeks, taking over from another Frenchman whom he knew for many years. He made the EU-IPO 'study' all about himself this past week (we’ve seen him explicitly mentioned in about 50 articles; here’s one in English) — a very Battistelli-like style of personification and self promotion.

We wish to remind our readers that Battistelli’s immunity expires in a few weeks with no imminent role (anywhere) to expand this thug’s protection from the Rule of Law. As for Campinos, he has enjoyed diplomatic immunity for a number of years and 5 years inside the EPO’s management team may mean that it will be impossible to sue him until 2023 (if not much later). Will he exploit such immunity the way Battistelli did? That remains to be seen. Can lawsuits be filed against monsters/mobsters like Battistelli for what he did whilst immune? We’re not lawyers (none of us), so we’re not sure about the scope and limits of diplomatic immunity; we urge EPO staff (past and present) to investigate this matter and consider action. Battistelli and his thugs were very eager to hire several law firms and legally bully me, knowing that they enjoyed disproportionate legal power because they’re resistant to prosecution and probably to subpoenas too.

“Battistelli and his thugs were very eager to hire several law firms and legally bully me, knowing that they enjoyed disproportionate legal power because they’re resistant to prosecution and probably to subpoenas too.”Battistelli won’t leave the Office without insulting everything and everyone associated with the Office. He already tarnishes any remnant of reputation, falsely believing that hiring not one but several PR agencies (external to the EPO itself) will help compensate for it. We’ve quietly and patiently observed puff pieces from “media partners” (as usual) and press releases over the past few days. We would rather not link to these but only point out that the EPO works again (just like last year) with Shepard Fox Communications. From one of the press releases (trying to appeal to the cause of feminism, emphasising an ethical aspect, at least a perceived one after that "diversity" ploy celebrated a day beforehand) we have extracted the role of Shepard Fox Communications, but from another press release we extract the following again:

UK media contact:
Barbara Geier
echolot pr
Tel: 0044 (0)7983 242 195
barbara@bconnects.net

We have mentioned her before [1, 2]; they’re literally writing some of the ‘articles’ (their name remains in the metadata).

Now, on to the event — the one that the EPO wastes a fortune on (European Inventor Award). It’s all about the ‘king’, who is presenting the show in his own theatre that he’s responsible for! From the EPO’s official account: “President Battistelli: “We are here to celebrate these inventors and I would like you to consider that all our nominees deserve our congratulations and out thanks” [] We wouldn’t have been able to produce this shortlist of impressive nominees without our international jury, says President Battistelli. [] President Battistelli officially opens the Ceremony: “I would like to offer you a very warm welcome to the European Inventor Award 2018”…”

So the star of the show is — as usual — the ‘king’ himself.

“…they’re [PR firms] literally writing some of the ‘articles’ (their name remains in the metadata).”Here’s what the EPO wrote at the end (warning: epo.org link), after about 60 (re/)tweets that day. Yes, this charade of Battistelli is all about Battistelli himself. He pays not a dime for it (not his own anyway) and gains financially from it, as do his colleagues in France. We prefer not to heckle scientists who were there, e.g. to accept prizes (they’re not part of the abuse and some may not even be aware of how they’re being used for a money-passing ‘cover’). We prefer not to name them or give ‘free’ publicity to this terrible festival, which Battistelli celebrates for his own personal interests.

Call it laughable or call it outrageous, but crooked Battistelli is ‘giving’ a bogus award to himself on the same day that he loots the EPO (the ‘crime’). We believe that crooks like him and Sarkozy would get away with murder, albeit what happens after he loses his immunity remains to be seen (Sarkozy got arrested some months ago, well after he was leader of France). The award of Battistelli was “presented to him in Paris,” according to the EPO (warning: epo.org link). It looks like a prearranged and staged ceremony, wherein “Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group” (we never heard of it before!) was trying to frame a likely criminal as an anti-crime person. It’s like that Nobel peace prize granted to Henry Kissinger. It took decades for the Nobel ‘franchise’ to recover from that (if it ever recovered at all). Battistelli is trying to legitimise himself while he’s engaging in serious corruption in the theatre which he manages. Yes, published “7 June 2018″ (same day as European Inventor Award) and also in France:

The Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group (GACG) today honoured EPO President Benoît Battistelli with a special award for his services to intellectual property. The 2018 prize in the individual achievement category was presented to him in Paris on the occasion of an Awards ceremony celebrating the World Anti-Counterfeiting Day- which recognises national and international efforts to curb counterfeiting and piracy.

“Marking their 20th year, the GACG Awards were held at the Museé de Contrefaçon, housed at the Headquarters of the Union des Fabricants (UNIFAB),” it says. So they didn’t even exist until the late nineties and we never ever heard of them before. Sounds dodgy or what?

“Even the Oscars don’t reach these levels of corruption,” I told this person, who laughably enough wrote (to soon be retweeted by the EPO):

European Inventor Award 2018 – think the Oscars for Patents – EPO put on an incredible program. Block out your calendar for this in 2019. @aipla @EPOorg #inventoraward pic.twitter.com/OiK9TnSrAt

Oscars?!

Got to be joking! It’s not even remotely comparable. The Oscars are watched by hundreds of millions worldwide. How many people tuned in for European Inventor Award? Several thousands on a live feed?

“…this scheme will soon be managed by a former banker, whose employer (the bank) is notorious for corruption. How’s that for EPO hope or optimism?”What the European Inventor Awards are nowadays stigmatised for (past and present) is fraud, scams, and corruption. This is Battistelli’s legacy. He kept placing them in France, in spite of the long tradition of hosting in the EU Presidency’s nation, and he ended up landing the event in the theatre that he’s managing.

Märpel has just brought up the word “corruption” in relation to the lack of accountability at the EPO. To quote:

After the last article, some people approached Märpel with questions. The word “corruption” was used.

Märpel would like to point out that she did not use that word.

Let us just say that there are many ways to win people to one’s cause but that it is always much easier when they believe that your cause is also theirs. Mr. Petrović was always convinced that this cause was just.

[...]

Märpel believes that this is exactly what happened at the EPO. President Battistelli saw the opportunity to seize power and turned the organisation to a ghost of its former self: it does not fulfil its mission of examining patents any more, it is haemorrhaging staff, its financial assets have been seized by what could be a Ponzi scheme (over 2 billions Euros). All what was needed was complacency from the judiciary.

What Märpel refers to as “Ponzi scheme” was recently covered by Märpel. Well, this scheme will soon be managed by a former banker, whose employer (the bank) is notorious for corruption. How’s that for EPO hope or optimism?

Battistelli is Still Patently Delusional About the Unitary Patent (UPC)

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 7:22 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

But no more delusional than Team UPC

German Team UPC

Summary: The world — or the parallel universe — of Team UPC (they even call themselves that, with terms like “German Team UPC”) is about as delusional as EPO management that’s facilitating and enabling them, in effect trampling over European patent law, national constitutions and public input/interest

A VERY loud minority, including few pharmaceutical behemoths, strive to patent nature and life. They want a monopoly on food, medicine, treatments etc. They strive to easily enforce or assert this monopoly worldwide. They’re represented by selected law firms, which lobby — among other things — for the UPC.

“They even delete comments that are critical of the UPC.”A couple of days ago we saw "Kluwer Patent blogger" (likely Bristows) writing in the UPC boosters’ blog about unitary SPCs, which are of interest to pharmaceutical/medical giants. It sounds just like Bristows (they echo similar positions at IP Kat) and the EPO would no doubt be pleased to see what Kluwer Patent Blow, IP Kat and other blogs have turned into. They even delete comments that are critical of the UPC. Following the EPO’s worst traditions (Battistelli and his flunkies censor even true statements). Team UPC (as shown at the top) is trying to float rumours that it does not even have; the original poster, who habitually uses the term “Team UPC”, is among those who censor views that are hostile towards the UPC. Given the antidemocratic nature of the entire UPC/A process, at least they’re consistent (consistently intolerant of plurality of views).

Thorsten Bausch responded calmly: “The latest rumor that I heard is that the Rapporteur Prof. Huber has meanwhile „ordered the files“. Whatever this may mean… Procedurally, the big question is whether the UPC case will be handled in conjunction with the EPO cases or separately.”

“EPO abuses are still ongoing and they’re part of the constitutional complaint.”This can take years. EPO abuses are still ongoing and they’re part of the constitutional complaint. They’re an integral part of it. Team UPC is just desperately trying to seed doubt or misinformation about this complaint, hoping to bias the outcome (insinuating that FCC judges are only being a ‘nuisance’ and a ‘spurious barrier’ amidst an inevitable and trivial outcome, supposedly hindering public/greater good). Even ad hominem attacks (against the complainant) have already been attempted, all in vain of course. They mostly attempted to question the motivations.

A “media partner”of the EPO meanwhile wrote (also 2 days ago): “Benoit Battistelli, President of the EPO, leaves office in a few weeks. His legacy, he says, is a European Unified Patent.”

No, it pretty much COLLAPSED! The puff piece from this “media partner” of the EPO will be the subject of our next post, in which we try not to give any ‘free’ promotion to the event or name/shame people who won awards (other than Battistelli himself!!!).

Patents on Nature, Life and the Environment: Lessons From EPO and Australian Courts

Posted in Australia, Europe, Patents at 6:35 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Monopoly does not solve issues; especially when granted on things that always existed

Iguazu Falls

Summary: The subject of patent scope revisited in light of news and views about patents “on life” (typically DNA, genetics, plants, seeds, animals); we focus on Europe and on Australia, which is known for CSIRO’s controversial patent-related activities

THERE are different types of people in the patent “profession” (or domain), ranging from examiners to litigators. There are also different mindsets, ranging from patent rationalists to patent extremists, where the extreme views pertain to patent scope, litigation zeal, and sometimes boil down to fundamental hatred of science and technology (that’s what sites such as Watchtroll stand for).

“It’s important that — in order to avoid protest if not revolt from the public — patent law should be restricted or confined to public interest.”We don’t want to generalise and we also recognise that many people read this site because they want to read alternative viewpoints, recognising that Techrights is not against patents but pro-patent reason. It’s important that — in order to avoid protest if not revolt from the public — patent law should be restricted or confined to public interest. It should adhere to common sense, economic models, and scientists’ interests, not law firms’ interests. Lawyers should ideally be there to help the scientists, not just to help themselves. In practice, however, this rarely happens, as we shall explain in our next post (about UPC).

“Lawyers should ideally be there to help the scientists, not just to help themselves.”Hogwash from Joanna Rowley (Haseltine Lake, LLP) came just before the weekend, both in their Web site and others (throwing copies elsewhere), titled “World Environment Day – How patents are saving our environment”.

They’re piggypacking “World Environment Day” for self promotion. Giving people a monopoly on how to improve things actually harms, prevents solutions from being implemented. We wrote this many times before in response to greenwashing of patents by EPO management. There’s also the class of patents which pertains to nature and life; those are even more problematic.

EPO insiders are generally aware of the limits of patenting and why these limits are needed. “Stop patents on life,” one of them told us the other day, is something we “might be interested in.” The insider linked to “Patente auf Leben stoppen!” (in German). We wrote about this subject many times before, since more than a decade ago. So did many patent critics like Kinsella, whose latest episode is titled “Nothing Exempt”. Kinsella is one of those former and disgruntled insiders, who nowadays advocates even abolition of so-called ‘IP’. He’s pretty high-profile a voice and we assume many of our readers are already familiar with his work (we covered that many years ago).

“This was a subject of much/great debate earlier this year when oppositions folks at the EPO denied a CRISPR patent, overturning some prior decisions (by extension at least).”That brings us to some news from Australia’s top court. As should be obvious, at the very least based on the “Australia” section of our “Software Patents Around the World” page, we are mostly interested in Australia because of its software patents stance/policy. On few occasions we wrote about Australian patents on life itself, as ‘championed’ by CSIRO in Australia. This was a subject of much/great debate earlier this year when oppositions folks at the EPO denied a CRISPR patent, overturning some prior decisions (by extension at least). People and firms have begun questioning whether it’s even worth pursuing patents on DNA/genetics in Europe anymore.

A new article by Michael Zammit and Scott Philp (from the software patents booster, Shelston IP) speaks of “strategic use and management in the resources sector” (in relation to patents). Another new article by Kazumasa Watanabe, Anthony Muratore and Stephanie W. Wang (Jones Day) has just been plugged into Mondaq, taking note of a new case at the High Court of Australia. Background and conclusion/outcome/closing words below:

Pfizer manufactures and supplies the biological medicine Enbrel (etanercept), used in the treatment of autoimmune diseases. Pfizer brought an application pursuant to rule 7.23 of the Federal Court Rules 2011 for preliminary discovery of certain SB confidential documents that Pfizer believed would enable it to decide whether or not to commence proceedings for patent infringement against SB. The patents in suit concerned processes relating to one of the phases in the development of biological medicines.

[...]

On appeal, the Full Court allowed Pfizer’s appeal: Pfizer Ireland Pharmaceuticals v Samsung Bioepis AU Pty Ltd [2017] FCAFC 193, holding that preliminary discovery applications are not intended to be mini-trials. The essence of rule 7.23 focuses on what “may” be the position. The foundation of any application is that the prospective applicant reasonably believes that it may have a right to relief; that is, the belief must be reasonable and about something that “may be”, not “is”, the case.

In practice, to defeat such a claim, it will be necessary either to show that the subjectively held belief does not exist or, if it does, there is no reasonable basis for thinking that there may be such a case. Showing that some aspect of the material on which the belief is based is contestable, or even arguably wrong, will rarely come close to making good such a contention. Many views may be held with which others disagree, but that does not make the views necessarily unreasonably held.

Therefore, the relevant question was not whether one scientific view was more or less persuasive than another but, rather, whether Dr Ibarra’s views so lacked foundation that Mr Silvestri’s reliance on them did not demonstrate that he reasonably believed that Pfizer may have a right to obtain relief. As Dr Ibarra’s views were not criticised as ones that could not reasonably be held by anyone in her position, this question was answered in the negative.

In its special leave application to the High Court, SB argued, inter alia, that the Full Court shifted focus away from an objective assessment of the facts as to whether a reasonable basis was provided for the prospective applicant believing it may have the right to relief to an assessment of the subjective state of mind of the particular deponents who asserted the relevant belief. However, the High Court was not persuaded to grant special leave to appeal.

The Australian system (especially the legal system) follows the structures and standards of the old English system and is heavily inspired by the US. When it comes to patents, there’s not much difference either. We are glad to see that software patents are on their death throes in Australia and hope that the same will happen to patents on nature/life. Those aren’t the sorts of ‘inventions’ the patent system’s founders had in mind at this system’s inception time.

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