05.18.19

Gemini version available ♊︎

Unified Patent Court Won’t Happen Just Because the Litigation Microcosm Wants It

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 9:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

UPC boat sinks

Summary: 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)

THERE are some topics that refuse to go away; Rather than focus on EPO abuses and USPTO reforms we’re often dragged back to the UPC, which died about 2 years ago (summer of 2017). António Campinos never mentions it anymore. The EPO very rarely uses that acronym (or even speaks of “unitary” anything) because deep inside they know it’s doomed. The litigation ‘industry’ hoped it would usher in a plaintiff-friendly system that bypasses national laws, encompassing raids, embargoes and even software patents in Europe (those are typically rejected by European courts, as per national laws). Even the United States, the ‘home of software patents’, barely tolerates such patents anymore (courts almost always cite 35 U.S.C. § 101 after defendants leverage it).

Let’s be frank. We never liked the UPC, even when it was called “EU” or “Community” (way before “unified” and “unitary”). One need not be against the EU or against communities or against unity to openly oppose the UPC. I’m personally very pro-EU (it’s no secret), but at the same time I’m strongly against the UPC, which is inherently an EU project. Similarly, myself and many others oppose the Copyright Directive not because we oppose the EU but because it serves to discredit the EU.

As usual, as with most things (like copyright law), someone stands to benefit from changes. Law firms, especially those that have many litigators (offensive), want as many lawsuits as possible. That’s understandable. Right now there are arms manufacturers drooling (maybe even literally) over wars in Iran and in Venezuela.

Just before the weekend JUVE’s editor (M.K.) spoke of a new puff piece from their English site. Recall "JUVE Creates English Site, Promotes Unified Patent Court (UPC)" (01.20.19). It’s a puff piece in “interview” form — similar to those Kluwer Patent Blog used to issue aplenty with Team UPC minions. This one is pro-FRAND, pro-UPC and all those usual things patent trolls absolutely adore.

As I put it last night, “JUVE continues to lobby for UPC on behalf of its subscribers base. They want lots of litigation with patents. A selective quote as a headline in JUVE shows the sheer bias of the site. It’s not news, it’s lobbying thinly disguised as ‘news’, as usual from Amy Sandys, amplifier of Team UPC liars.” (alluding to her previous work in that site)

“JUVE Patent interviews UK Supreme Court judge, David Kitchin,” the editor said. “We cover FRAND, injunctions, and why Kitchin thinks the UPC project is still likely.”

Those three things are connected because they’re weapons of patent aggressors and trolls — those who stand to benefit most from the UPC, along with their legal representatives.

“This one is pro-FRAND, pro-UPC and all those usual things patent trolls absolutely adore.”The headline says, in quotes, “The UPC has the support of UK judges,” but here what he actually said:

Do you still believe in the UPC?

The UK is fully committed to the UPC. The government believes that the UPC and Unitary Patent project are an important way to simplify the protection of innovative products and processes across the Union. It has the support of the UK judges in this field too.

He was talking for jurists, not Brits in general. British businesses are not “fully committed to the UPC” and many speak out against it. Funny how he then speaks for the government too (he knows its beliefs, maybe alluding to IPO’s actually) and then speaks for all judges. Kitchin is one of several judges in the UK Supreme Court; so his words are akin to those of one single player in a football team, alleging to be speaking for the FA, for his team, and maybe for a whole city/country. We saw something similar in a Bristows post at IP Kat earlier this month (one German judge).

Suffice to say, Team UPC is all jubilant about this interview and is citing it, e.g. in Twitter; the article speaks of mere will (of one person), no actual news, no progress.

And whose will? Obviously, those looking to profit from it, those who share corridors at events that are echo chambers. This judge’s argument boils down to, “I want it, so it’ll happen” — how so typical of UPC boosters. What about other judges? They weren’t even asked for their views on this. Maybe ask the Boards at the EPO about it, only to realise that virtually all judges there oppose the UPC (it makes them redundant and obsolete).

Facts and desires are often mutually-contradicting; such is the case when it comes to almost every article about the UPC. Just look who’s writing these articles! Law firms, directly or by proxy. Nobody else gets given a voice or a platform whilst apathy (or misunderstanding of the underlying issues) gets exploited by Team UPC. This morning we saw this new press release from a very large American law firm. To quote from it:

Pegram is a leading expert on patent reform and the EU Unitary Patent & Unified Patent Court. He served as a staff member and then editor-in-chief of The Trademark Reporter, where he worked with members of the Trademark Trial & Appeal Board to establish the basis for the Board’s Manual of Procedure. After the Copyright Law was rewritten in 1976, he advised the president of the Special Libraries Association and clients regarding compliance with the copying and fair use provisions.

So he keeps changing occupations, including a media career. A lot of people who cover patents in the media even admit to me (as recently as a week ago) that they write for lawyers. What kind of journalism is that? Admission of bias upfront?

Earlier today we saw this new article from Alex Woolgar. Can one ‘borrow’ foreign patent law to sue a company in its own country using these ‘imported’ laws? That’s what UPC strives to achieve, but here’s what happens in practice (here in the UK):

Another judgment, another instance of the English court seizing jurisdiction in a patent dispute. In Ablynx NV and Anor v VHsquared Limited and Ors [2019] EWHC 792 (Pat), His Honour Justice Hacon (sitting as a High Court judge) has provided a useful judgment concerning the application of the Brussels Regulation to patent disputes where there is also a purported choice of jurisdiction by contract. Even in circumstances where the parties have made such a choice, a forum shopping defendant might well find the shelves to be bare.

Ablynx is the exclusive sub-licensee of certain fields of use for three patents (now expired) protecting an invention relating to immunoglobulins derived from camelid antibodies [“camelid” refers to several even-toed ungulates, not just camels, so we can leave puns involving humps and deserts at the door, please]. Broadly speaking, the Defendants were licensees in relation to other fields of use. The Defendants are alleged to have infringed the UK designations of the patents during their term by encroaching on Ablynx’s field of use. This allegedly provided an illegitimate springboard for work completed following the expiry of the patents. There is ongoing litigation relating to the same subject matter in the Netherlands and Belgium, and there was earlier litigation in the Netherlands.

[...]

Therefore, the question of jurisdiction turned simply on the meaning of “concerned with…the validity of patents”.

Different countries have different patent laws; this may actually be a feature rather than a fault/defect because different nations have different specialty and so their patent priorities/strategies should vary; a country that exports a lot of fruit, for example, might rightly oppose patents on seeds, plants and all that malarkey. The UPC mindset wants to blur everything for the sole purpose of expanding the scope of litigation (geographically) and scope of patents (bypassing national laws). It’s not hard to see to whose advantage.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Links 26/10/2021: Vulkan 1.1 Conformance for Raspberry Pi 4 and Tor Browser 10.5.10

    Links for the day



  2. [Meme] Sounds Legit

    When not cheating on the wife, the EPO‘s “doyen” cheats in the exams and makes it into the epi Council, in effect working “[t]owards a common understanding [sic] of quality” with “patent attorneys nominated as “assessors” by the EPO, epi and BusinessEurope” (notorious lobbyists for dictators, litigation, and monopolies, neither business nor science)



  3. [Meme] Mayoral Patent Office Chief

    As it turns out, political 'double-dipping' isn't just a thing in North Macedonia, Austria, and EPOnia



  4. Romania's Patent Office (OSIM): Nine Different Chiefs in Just Eight Years

    The Romanian State Office for Inventions and Trademarks (OSIM), being the equivalent of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in the sense that it covers both patents and trademarks, is a very flaky institution with no shortage of scandals; for our English-reading audiences we now have a summary of a decade’s worth of blunders and leadership changes



  5. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXIV: The Balkan League - Romania

    Romania’s patent office has been in flux this past decade, occasionally led by people with no relevant experience, but rather political connections (like EPO President António Campinos) and sometimes forged documents and fake degrees



  6. IRC Proceedings: Monday, October 25, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, October 25, 2021



  7. [Meme] “Social Democracy” at the EPO

    Some comments on the current situation at the European Patent Office from Goran Gerasimovski, the new EPO Administrative Council delegate for North Macedonia and Social Democratic candidate for mayor of Centar (a municipality of Skopje)



  8. [Meme] António Campinos Visits the OSIM

    António Campinos visits OSIM Director-General Ionel Muscalu in February 2014



  9. [Meme] [Teaser] Meet the President

    Later today we shall see what Romania did for Battistelli



  10. Links 26/10/2021: Latte Dock 0.10.3 and Linux 5.15 RC7

    Links for the day



  11. Gemini Protocol's Originator: “I Continue to Care About This Project and I Care About the Community That Has Formed Around It.”

    'Solderpunk' is back from a long hiatus; this bodes well for Geminispace, which grew fast in spite of the conspicuous absence



  12. Bulgarian Like Bavarian Serfdom

    Bulgarian politics seem to have played a big role in selecting chiefs and delegates who backed Benoît Battistelli‘s unlawful proposals, which treat workers almost like slaves and ordinary citizens as disposable ‘collaterals’



  13. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXIII: The Balkan League - Bulgaria

    Today we examine the role of Bulgaria in Benoît Battistelli‘s liberticidal regime at the EPO (as well as under António Campinos, from 2018 to present) with particular focus on political machinations



  14. Links 25/10/2021: New Slackware64-current and a Look at Ubuntu Budgie

    Links for the day



  15. Links 25/10/2021: pg_statement_rollback 1.3 and Lots of Patent Catchup

    Links for the day



  16. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part III — A Story of Plagiarism and Likely Securities Fraud

    Today we tread slowly and take another step ahead, revealing the nature of only some among many problems that GitHub and Microsoft are hiding from the general public (to the point of spiking media reports)



  17. [Meme] [Teaser] Oligarchs-Controlled Patent Offices With Media Connections That Cover Up Corruption

    As we shall see later today, the ‘underworld’ in Bulgaria played a role or pulled the strings of politically-appointed administrators who guarded Benoît Battistelli‘s liberticidal regime at the EPO



  18. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, October 24, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, October 24, 2021



  19. Links 25/10/2021: EasyOS 3.1 and Bareflank 3.0

    Links for the day



  20. The Demolition of the EPO Was Made Possible With Assistance From Countries That Barely Have European Patents

    The legal basis of today's EPO has been crushed; a lot of this was made possible by countries with barely any stakes in the outcome



  21. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXII: The Balkan League - North Macedonia and Albania

    We continue to look at Benoît Battistelli‘s enablers at the EPO



  22. Links 24/10/2021: GPS Daemon (GPSD) Bug and Lots of Openwashing

    Links for the day



  23. Links 24/10/2021: XWayland 21.1.3 and Ubuntu Linux 22.04 LTS Daily Build

    Links for the day



  24. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, October 23, 2021

    IRC logs for Saturday, October 23, 2021



  25. Links 24/10/2021: Ceph Boss Sage Weil Resigns and Many GPL Enforcement Stories

    Links for the day



  26. GAFAM-Funded NPR Reports That Facebook Let Millions of People Like Trump Flout the So-called Rules. Not Just “a Few”.

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  27. Some Memes About What Croatia Means to the European Patent Office

    Before we proceed to other countries in the region, let’s not forget or let’s immortalise the role played by Croatia in the EPO (memes are memorable)



  28. Gangster Culture in the EPO

    The EPO‘s Administrative Council was gamed by a gangster from Croatia; today we start the segment of the series which deals with the Balkan region



  29. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXI: The Balkan League – The Doyen and His “Protégée”

    The EPO‘s circle of corruption in the Balkan region will be the focus of today’s (and upcoming) coverage, showing some of the controversial enablers of Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos, two deeply corrupt French officials who rapidly drive the Office into the ground for personal gain (at Europe’s expense!)



  30. Links 23/10/2021: FreeBSD 12.3 Beta, Wine 6.20, and NuTyX 21.10.0

    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