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

03.12.19

EPO’s Latest ‘Results’ Show That António Campinos Has Already Given Up on Patent Quality and is Just Another Battistelli

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 7:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

…And the EPO’s PR People Write the Press Articles

Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Reference: Bureau of Engraving and Printing

Summary: The patent-granting machine that the EPO has become reports granting growth of unrealistic scale (unless no proper examination is actually carried out)

THE European Patent Office (EPO) is driving into a wall at full speed. António Campinos took over from Battistelli, but he’s still pressing the pedal for full throttle, adding yet more advocacy of European software patents in defiance of courts, Parliament, EPC and so on. Europe will pay for it. Businesses and people will get sued; frivolous lawsuits (or pre-settlement).

“Europe will pay for it. Businesses and people will get sued; frivolous lawsuits (or pre-settlement).”The EPO doesn’t care about patent quality anymore. Not one iota!

Here is yesterday’s post from Dr. Thorsten Bausch, a patent attorney. He remarks on the EPO’s shallow effort to divert away from discussion about patent quality in examination in Europe (focusing on speed instead). To quote:

The signals from the contracting member states and earlier user feedback were also mixed, thus raising the question what the EPO will now do with all of this. Spoiler: the EPO document provides no hint whatsoever in any direction; it merely lists the main arguments provided by both opponents and proponents and thus allows everybody to develop an informed own opinion.

For background, in autumn 2017, the EPO presented a proposal bearing the slightly unfortunate, if not downright misleading, title „User-driven Early Certainty“ (UDEC) offering applicants the possibility to postpone the start of substantive examination by a maximum period of 3 years. Let us forget about the title and focus on the substance and the rationale behind it. It was to provide applicants more time, where needed, to decide about the economic relevance and scope of protection for an invention before incurring significant prosecution and validation costs.

I must say that I always found this rationale quite sensible and liked the idea. This may possibly have to do both with my national and my technical background. In Germany such a possibility has existed for ages (more than 50 years, see §28b PatG 1968) and has never since caused a lot of problems or discussions, at least as far as I can remember. One can also hardly argue that the option of deferred examination has greatly harmed innovation or stifled competition in Germany, which was a fear expressed by some opponents against the EPO’s proposal for flexible timing of examination (abbreviated FTE in the following). And in my technical field, i.e. chemistry and pharmaceuticals, I am constantly reminded on how many inventions never make it to market for regulatory or economic reasons and how many applications are dropped in the course of the examination proceedings despite a positive evaluation of patentability by the EPO. If an opportunity existed to defer the examination of these applications at applicant’s request, I do not see why this would cause any harm to the public or applicant’s competitors. And the EPO would have more capacity to examine the urgent applications faster.

Another German has just published a report about Munich I Regional Court, where Qualcomm comes to discover that many of its European Patents are bunk. “It’s also very, very likely that the EPO will revoke those patents,” he wrote, “in which case Qualcomm will have to appeal the Opposition Division’s decision to a Technical Board of Appeal. All of his is taking time, but those cases are pretty clearly going nowhere.”

“The EPO doesn’t care about patent quality anymore. Not one iota!”Well, they know that these patents might never be challenged as it’s too expensive (especially when patents are leveraged in bulk). Herein lies the danger of the EPO’s overpatenting strategy — one that foreign companies are all too eager to exploit while they can.

This brings us to this morning’s “news” (or ‘news’ with scare quotes). Yesterday the EPO wrote: “Tomorrow is the day we will announce the Office’s achievements in 2018. Stay tuned to learn about the key players in innovation.”

“These “achievements” are the granting of false, low-quality, bogus, bunk and fake European Patents,” I told them, “that will cost the innocent accused parties billions in legal fees. Well done, EPO!”

The EPO has already signaled that it accepts all sorts of crazy patent applications (e.g. algorithms as “AI”), so guess what happened? The rubber-stamping operation reports ‘growth’ (in likely invalid monopolies). This was published this morning in the EPO’s site (warning: epo.org link) and then this tweet: “The EPO Annual Report 2018 is out! Demand for patent protection reaches a new high: 4.6% growth in applications filed and 21% more European patents granted.”

“The EPO has already signaled that it accepts all sorts of crazy patent applications (e.g. algorithms as “AI”), so guess what happened? The rubber-stamping operation reports ‘growth’ (in likely invalid monopolies).”“European Patent quality has collapsed and these numbers confirm it,” I told them. Curiously enough before they even published these results to the public there were already press articles about it in the US (Bloomberg) and Ireland (Irish Times). Those articles were published before the EPO even announced the results, which means that PR people had coordinated these articles in advance. As usual…

The takeaway is that the EPO is granting loads of invalid European Patents. But it’s expensive to invalidate these. So large multinationals exploit this corruption of the EPO’s goals. “U.S. companies submitted a record number of patent applications to the European Patent Office in 2018, retaining the country’s status as the most prolific filer,” said the outline from the US. A very high proportion of these won’t be really examined because the EPO has transformed into “rubber-stamping” status. Insiders say so too. The Irish article was eerily similar (same ‘script’) and it was pure spin; no doubt there are more like it right now (more such spin, more articles) and days to come will accompany that slant, just like every year; we shall see who just repeats PR talking points and who actually investigates the claims and puts them in context/perspective.

“Lowering patent quality and granting loads of monopolies is not a success story but a growing danger to Europe.”What are patents-centric ‘news’ sites doing? EPO PR.

Friday’s PR blitz/charm offensive (see our rebuttal in this post) led to puff pieces and PR like this from IPPro Magazine’s Ben Wodecki, who now serves as PR amplifier of EPO management. His colleague is the one who typically gives a voice to SUEPO.

And here we have Managing IP, another longtime megaphone of EPO management (including Battistelli himself), amplifying patent maximalism agenda:

In-house counsel at Barclays and Amadeus, plus a director at the EPO discussed the conundrum of global patent eligibility at a Managing IP conference in London

Yes, go on and suck up to EPO management, just like IAM and others. Wait and watch the amount of spin we shall see this week about EPO “success”. Lowering patent quality and granting loads of monopolies is not a success story but a growing danger to Europe.

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. Team Campinos Will Try to Make It Difficult to Go on Strike (But Won't Manage to Prevent It)

    The European Patent Office has a long and growing tradition of failing to respect staff's rights, including the right to go on strike (over violations of other rights of staff)



  2. Links 25/5/2019: Wine 4.9 Released, FreeBSD 11.3 Beta, Telegram Launches Fift

    Links for the day



  3. Links 24/5/2019: PostgreSQL 12 Beta 1 and Rust 1.35 Released

    Links for the day



  4. EPO Strikes Further Diminish Chances of UPC Ever Materialising (in Any Shape or Form)

    The EPO crumbles under the weight of its own corruption while an increasingly-insane Team UPC pretends all remains normal and a patent trolls-friendly system is ready to take off



  5. EPO Allegedly Becoming Insolvent (Pretext for Cuts), So Staff Gets Punished While Management Takes the Jackpot

    The corporate 'logic' at the EPO follows the "shareholders' value" propaganda line as if the EPO is a private company looking to maximise revenue rather than serve the public



  6. EPO President Still Not Obeying Courts' Rulings

    Federation of International Civil Service Associations (FICSA) sent a message to António Campinos yesterday (the same day SUEPO publicly made a call for strike)



  7. António Campinos Has Run Out of Time and EPO Staff is Going on Strike (Skipping Mere Protests)

    European Patent Office strikes are to resume; as SUEPO recently put it, people have come to accept that EPO leadership has not really changed and none of the underlying issues is being tackled



  8. Links 23/5/2019: Elisa 0.4.0, OpenSUSE Leap 15.1 Released

    Links for the day



  9. Links 22/5/2019: Mesa 19.0.5, Huawei and GNU/Linux, Curl 7.65.0, End of Antergos, Tails 3.14, ownCloud Server 10.2, Firefox 67.0

    Links for the day



  10. Quality of Patents is Going Down the Drain and Courts Have Certainly Noticed

    Uncertainty or lack of confidence in the patent system has reached appalling levels because heads of patent offices are just striving to grant as many patents as possible, irrespective of the underlying law



  11. EUIPO and EPO Abuses Growingly Inseparable

    'Musical chairs' at CEIPI and the EPO/EUIPO (Battistelli, Archambeau, Campinos) as well as joint reports never fail to reveal the extent to which EPO abuses are spreading



  12. Links 21/5/2019: China's GAFAM Exit, DragonFlyBSD 5.4.3

    Links for the day



  13. Links 20/5/2019: Linux 5.2 RC1, LibreOffice 6.3 Alpha, DXVK 1.2.1, Bison 3.4 Released

    Links for the day



  14. South Korea's Government Will Show If Microsoft Loves Linux or Just Attacks It Very Viciously Like It Did in Munich

    Microsoft's hatred of all things GNU/Linux is always put to the test when someone 'dares' use it outside Microsoft's control and cash cows (e.g. Azure and Vista 10/WSL); will Microsoft combat its longstanding urge to corrupt or oust officials with the courage to say "no" to Microsoft?



  15. Links 19/5/2019: KDE Applications 19.04.1 in FlatHub and GNU/Linux Adoption

    Links for the day



  16. The War on Patent Quality

    A look at the EPO's reluctance to admit errors and resistance to the EPC, which is its very founding document



  17. Watchtroll, Composed by Patent Trolls, Calls the American Patent System “Corrupt”

    Another very fine piece from Watchtroll comes from very fine patent trolls who cheer for Donald Trump as if he's the one who tackles corruption rather than spreading it



  18. Unified Patent Court Won't Happen Just Because the Litigation Microcosm Wants It

    Unified Patent Court (UPC) hopefuls are quote-mining and cherry-picking to manufacture the false impression that the UPC is just around the corner when in reality the UPC is pretty much dead (but not buried yet)



  19. Links 17/5/2019: South Korea's GNU/Linux Pivot, Linux 5.1.3

    Links for the day



  20. Q2 Midterm Weather Forecast for EPOnia, Part 4: Happy Birthday to the Kötter Group?

    This year the Kötter Group commemorates the 85th anniversary of its existence. But is it really a cause for celebration or would a less self-congratulatory approach be more fitting? And does it create the risk that a routine tendering exercise at the EPO will turn into Operation Charlie Foxtrot?



  21. Links 16/5/2019: Cockpit 194, VMware Acquires Bitnami, Another Wine Announcement and Krita 4.2.0 Beta

    Links for the day



  22. The EPO's Key Function -- Like the UPC's Vision -- Has Virtually Collapsed

    The EPO no longer issues good patents and staff is extremely unhappy; but the Office tries to create an alternate (false) reality and issues intentionally misleading statements



  23. Stanford's NPE Litigation Database Makes a Nice Addition in the Fight Against Software Patent Trolls

    As the United States of America becomes less trolls- and software patents-friendly (often conflated with plaintiff (un)friendliness) it's important to have accurate data which documents the numbers and motivates better policy; The NPE (troll) Litigation Database is a move towards that and it's free to access/use



  24. Q2 Midterm Weather Forecast for EPOnia, Part 3: “Ein kritikwürdiges Unternehmen”

    A brief account of some further controversies in which the Kötter Group has been involved and its strained relations with German trade unions such as Verdi



  25. EPO Had a Leakage Problem and Privacy of Stakeholders Was Compromised, Affecting at Least 100 Cases

    The confidentiality principle was compromised at the EPO and stakeholders weren't told about it (there was a coverup)



  26. Links 15/5/2019: More Linux Patches and More Known Intel Bugs

    Links for the day



  27. False Hope for Patent Maximalists and Litigation Zealots

    Patent litigation predators in the United States, along with Team UPC in Europe, are trying to manufacture optimistic predictions; a quick and rather shallow critical analysis reveals their lies and distortions



  28. The Race to the Bottom of Patent Quality at the EPO

    The EPO has become more like a rubber-stamper than a patent office — a fact that worries senior staff who witnessed this gradual and troublesome transition (from quality to raw quantity)



  29. Q2 Midterm Weather Forecast for EPOnia, Part 2: Meet the Kötters

    An introduction to the Kötter Group, the private security conglomerate which is lined up for the award of a juicy EUR 30 million contract for the provision of security services at the EPO



  30. Links 14/5/2019: Red Hat Satellite 6.5, NVIDIA 430.14 Linux Driver and New Security Bug (MDS)

    Links for the day


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

Recent Posts