03.27.19

The EPO is Still a Software Patents Propaganda Machine and Thus an Enemy of Software Developers in Europe

Posted in Europe, Patents at 6:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Speaking as a software developer myself…

Guerra al Capitol

Summary: What today’s EPO boils down to is a boil on the face of programmers because it lacks the tact to even shallowly hide its eagerness to grant patents on algorithms in defiance of everything from common sense to law and caselaw

IT IS hardly a secret that the European Patent Office (EPO) nowadays works for patent trolls and massive companies, so half a dozen times week it must pretend that it exists “for SMEs” (here is an example from yesterday; there was another one earlier today and we’ll say more about that in our next post). Unlike the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the EPO cannot be sued and it effectively operates outside the law, so who can put an end to injustices? Apparently nobody. And nothing. Not even the highest court next to a bunch of international courts on Dutch territories. What is going on? How can Battistelli and Campinos keep promoting software patents in Europe even though courts, Parliament, the public and so on all oppose that? Therein lies one problem among many with the EPO. Examiners, we might add, are well aware of this problem. They are sufferers, not benefactors, unlike their managers.

“Examiners, we might add, are well aware of this problem. They are sufferers, not benefactors, unlike their managers.”Cutting straight to the chase, this post is an outline of new examples of the EPO promoting software patents. Of course they cleverly dodge this term, as does the USPTO. Mark Nowotarski, over at Watchtroll (combative pro-software patents site), published the following headline this week: “AI Patents Make a Comeback at USPTO, Finance Patents Are Still Struggling”

Familiar? They too misuse the term “AI”, just like the EPO. He just means software patents, but they’re being disguised as “AI”; courts would toss these patents straight in the trash if they got asserted in courts.

Decline in quality of European Patents is a real thing. It’s a thing. It’s real! Earlier today I reread the latest nonsense from Campinos, in which he made up some laughable claims of improvement in quality; he didn’t even name the methods. Nothing. Some very precise number was named without anything to back that up. Nothing.

Here comes Battistelli’s French ‘economist’, who has been promoting software patents under the guise of “4IR”, even in the Gazette. This is what the EPO said about him today: “Yann Meniere, chief economist of the ⁦ @EPOorg⁩, delivering the opening keynote of today’s #IPBCEurope in front of a sell-out crowd in Paris. pic.twitter.com/NqpvBIPbmo”

“He just means software patents, but they’re being disguised as “AI”; courts would toss these patents straight in the trash if they got asserted in courts.”And yesterday the EPO wrote the following about him (see image): “China and the Republic of Korea are growing particularly strongly in ICT-related patent applications at the EPO.”

Well, “ICT-related patent applications” are just software patents that the EPO’s examiners must not grant if they follow the EPC rather than their management (which flagrantly violates the EPC). So the supposed growth is faked.

The EPO has also just named “medtech” again, in relation to a conference that promotes software patents as “medical” and “for SMEs” (we wrote about it many times before). The EPO asked: Which #medtech inventions can be patented and what are some effective IP strategies to optimise their commercialisation? We’ll be discussing that and more here: https://bit.ly/2E5l03D” (the link makes it abundantly clear that algorithms are involved).

“These people openly promote software patents in Europe and the EPO not only links to Watchtroll but also does exclusive interviews with Watchtroll — a truly disturbing tactical decision.”Meanwhile (also today) Watchtroll has advertised a new “webinar” that promotes software patent in Europe by calling these “Computer Implemented Inventions”; behind the stunt there’s a familiar large law firm — one we wrote about many times before — and this is their abstract: “Under EPO practice considerations for what is technical and what is not technical are intrinsically bound up with assessment of inventive step: the problem to be solved must be technical and only technical features can contribute to inventive step. In addition, the Boards of Appeal have on occasion attributed a high level of skill to the person skilled in the art in the field of computer science. In this webinar, we will discuss the latest EPO case law on separating the technical from the non-technical and inventive step issues arising in specific areas of technology, such as machine learning and simulation.”

As Benjamin Henrion noted, this is their agenda:

* The “notional business person” and her role in examining claims
* Effective arguments for inventive step
* Machine learning inventions
* Inventions using blockchains or distributed ledgers
* Simulation and modelling, including the recent referral to the Enlarged Board of Appeal

We wrote about that last item about half a dozen times this month. Will all software patents be voided? Not likely due to lack of independence and thus deficient impartiality.

EPO management controls everything, even judges.

These people openly promote software patents in Europe and the EPO not only links to Watchtroll but also does exclusive interviews with Watchtroll — a truly disturbing tactical decision. The EPO is actively liaising with people who attack judges whose rulings are prohibitive (e.g. on software patents). When it comes to assessing patent quality, the EPO bribes publishers like IAM and then cites IAM ‘studies’ or ‘surveys’ that celebrate EPO ‘quality’. This is what the EPO has become. Is it broken and corrupt beyond repair?

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