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07.21.18

The EPO (European Patent Office) Under António Campinos is Just Another Battistelli EPO; Still UPC and Software Patents Lobbying

Posted in Europe, Patents at 11:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

While staff representatives are hung out to dry, judges enjoy no real independence, corruption isn’t being tackled, and patent quality isn’t cared about

Campinos in the penthouse

Summary: Campinos has done pretty much nothing but a single blog post since taking Office; it makes one wonder what he’s doing all day and whether he ever intends to tackle all the abuses that compelled the Council to replace Battistelli

THE EPO scandals aren’t over. In fact, none has been addressed, not to mention resolved (the new President just ignores virtually all of these scandals). His first step as President was UPC promotion (on his second day on the job). A new article by Shrey Pathak and Sanam Habib (Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP) and another by George Tebbutt (Haseltine Lake LLP) shows that Team UPC hasn’t grown tired of lying. They’re both wrong about Brexit and what the government says about UPC; it's merely "exploring", which is a polite way of saying "we can't quite promise anything" (because it’s an untenable situation, legally speaking).

“For those who aren’t aware, the UPC is also — inter alia — a Trojan horse for software patents in Europe. They’re trying to cement what they already do illegally, namely the granting of software patents.”IAM, a UPC lobbyist on the payroll of the EPO’s PR firm, has just begun advertising this event for software patents. It’s a Trojan horse for software patents lobbying in the US — the same sort of thing Battistelli did with IAM on their tour of horror back in June. For those who aren’t aware, the UPC is also — inter alia — a Trojan horse for software patents in Europe. They’re trying to cement what they already do illegally, namely the granting of software patents.

The António Campinos-led EPO is still promoting software patents. The verified account of the EPO (European Patent Office but with “Org” in its username, creating an ambiguity) wrote: “Innovation using #artificialintelligence is eminently patentable at the EPO – find out how from EPO experts at this event in Chicago.”

The page even uses the term “CII”, which is just software patents, as noted by us in this recent post and also many others about software patents in Europe. We wrote about this in relation to IBM’s latest campaign of patent blackmail (this time Groupon is in the firing line). Groupon fires back, supported by new articles such as this one: (titled “Groupon accuses IBM of patent shake-down”)

A lawyer for discount e-commerce company Groupon this week told a court in Delaware that International Business Machines Corp has shaken down practically every large tech firm for patent fees.

IBM is suing Groupon for US$167 million, accusing it of infringing four basic internet technology patents, in a case that is being closely watched by the tech industry.

Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM has portrayed itself as an innovator whose licensing fee requests are reasonable in light of its research and development costs. But Groupon is defending itself by trying to portray IBM as using outdated patents to squeeze money out of other tech companies with threats of litigation.

Those are software patents and we hope that Groupon will have these sent to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) for invalidation. The inter partes reviews (IPRs) of IBM patents almost always result in invalidation. What would be the fate of similar European Patents if the appeal boards of the EPO actually enjoyed independence and sufficient capacity (staff for starters)?

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