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

06.03.19

An Office of Patent Extremists

Posted in Europe, Patents at 12:25 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Maximum volume of patents so that signal gets lost in the noise

Maximum volume

Summary: With maximal quantity of patents the litigation ‘industry’ hopes to start as many legal battles (or ‘assertions’) as possible, in effect taxing Europe rather than spurring innovation in it

LAST year every weekend was spent writing a great deal about 35 U.S.C. § 101/Alice (court cases in particular) and USPTO affairs. This year, seeing that EPO President António Campinos promotes software patents in Europe, we must turn almost all our attention to Europe. Patent maximalism is ruining the continent. Not only patents on mathematics are a symptom; there are also patents on life and nature. It’s just insane. Last night Hanns-Juergen Grosse, partner with D Young & Co, had this post republished by a site of patent maximalists from the US, citing the EPC in relation to double patenting. To quote the gist of it (we covered this subject before):

The approach of the European Patent Office (EPO) to prohibition of double patenting is well established and may, at a first glance, also seem well founded.

Broadly speaking, the prohibition of double patenting is meant to mean that two patents cannot be granted to the same applicant for one invention (in the same jurisdiction). At a closer look, there is a plurality of facets, layers and aspects, producing an exhilarating spectrum of double patenting.

[...]

After the Examining Division decided to refuse European patent application EP 10 718 590.2 in accordance with the applicable Guidelines for Examination at the EPO (Guidelines), G IV, 5.4 under Art. 97(2) EPC in conjunction with Art. 125 EPC, allowing subordinate application of principles of procedural law generally recognised in the contracting states of the EPC, the applicant appealed the decision and auxiliary requested, as occasionally done, that the responsible Board of Appeal (BoA) refers a pivotal question to the Enlarged Board of Appeal (EBoA).

The BoA did not, as usually done, discard the idea of referring the question to the EBoA, but also helped to develop the applicant’s question into a two-tier question, and decided at the end of oral proceedings held on 07 February 2019 in appeal case T 318/14 to refer a detailed set of questions to the EBoA.

[...]

For answers to the questions raised in T 318 /14, the EBoA may have to probe the real intentions of the legislators by going back to the archives and interpreting the Traveaux Préparatoires, the draft documents and minutes produced when the EPC was conceived back in the early 1970s.

Well, the EPC is already violated routinely, including against the Boards themselves.

We worry that the EPO nowadays measures everything in terms such as quantity of patents, never quality. It’s distracting from it all by conflating quantity with quality — a contradictory thing to be doing as one cancels the other (assuming a steady set of resources). We also know, based on leaks, that the EPO prioritises large businesses. It’s all about size and quantity. Of course IAM has done a puff piece for the EUIPO and the EPO, based on their joint 'study' (which they sponsored to glorify themselves and portray themselves as small businesses’ friends).

“The bottom line is, today’s EPO and the likes who lobby the Office don’t care about science, they just want lots of litigation, which necessitates and lot of patents, including low-quality (and invalid) ones.”Again on Sunday this was brought up by IAM, summarised with: “A report by the EUIPO and EPO shows that SMEs which file for patents, trademarks and other IP rights are more likely to enjoy high growth and increasing incomes.”

The EPO mentions “SMEs” several times a week; it’s hoping to distract from its betrayal of SMEs. There’s systematic discrimination against them. It’s a serious credibility issue in a continent with so many SMEs. Does the EPO work for Huawei or for European SMEs? Does it protect monopolists or innovation?

Either way, it certainly seems like the EPO became a lost cause when the litigation ‘industry’ took it as hostage, putting in charge nontechnical people who rarely speak to or meet with scientists. It’s like another Watchtroll, a site of patent extremists that lobbies the US and to a lesser extent Europe as well (and today’s EPO gleefully associates with it!). During the weekend (June 1st) Watchtroll published something titled “A Proposal for Reforming the Current UK Patent Law System Post-Brexit” by Oskar Luong, who “is a law student at Heidelberg University, Germany” (his own description). He claims to know that programmers absolutely need patents and lobbies for software patents in another country. Never mind if he never wrote any software. That doesn’t seem to matter to him. He just lobbies for software patents here in the UK (and no, he’s not a programmer!) and speaks of “Post-Brexit” (as if Brexit is a certainty; it isn’t). Typical Watchtroll, amplifier of parasites vandalising industries for legal fees. “The UK legislator should reconsider its current position” he wrote, “especially vis-à-vis computer programs, which are of paramount importance in today’s business world.”

This logic is illogical. Many businesses use software, hence we need patents?

Many people also breathe air, so let’s start patenting air and lawyers will tell us all how much we ‘owe’ them. Right?

The rest speaks of a “technical contribution” or a “technical effect” — the usual nonsense that the EPO uses to bypass if not grossly violate the EPC. The EPO has been trying to do the same thing (to spread software patents everywhere in the world) while British courts keep telling it off.

The bottom line is, today’s EPO and the likes who lobby the Office don’t care about science, they just want lots of litigation, which necessitates and lot of patents, including low-quality (and invalid) ones.

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. Patent Extremism: Stacking the Panels, the Surveys, the Hearings, the Debates

    Projection tactics would have the public believe that those who oppose corruption are simply radicals; patent polarity has come to the point where if one isn't a "true believer" in blackmail (patent trolls) or opposes bribery, then one is simply a "fringe" and akin to terrorists



  2. Links 24/6/2019: Linux 5.2 RC6, Skrooge 2.20.0, ZFS vs. OpenZFS

    Links for the day



  3. The EPO Needs a President Who Obeys the Law, Not One Who Obeys Battistelli

    Succession based on nepotism at Europe's second-largest institution served to shown how inherently broken things had become and why cover-up of injustices is nowadays paramount (not fixing the flaws/ills but merely perpetuating them)



  4. With Water (Treatment) Already Patented It Won't Take Long for Patents (and Patent Royalties) on Air

    A 'paper economy' is what Europe turns into if the current trajectory is followed (led by lawyers, not producers)



  5. Bill Gates Said He Was on a “Jihad” Against GNU/Linux, But GNU/Linux Users/Developers Engaged in Self-Defense Are Foul-Mouthed 'Microsoft Haters'?

    Microsoft, which routinely commits very serious crimes, tries to come across as some sort of philanthropy whereas those who share their work with the public (for greater good) are described as erratic, rude and unworthy of respect from corporations (outcasts basically, deprived of income source)



  6. What Patents the EPO Has Just Awarded (With a Special Reward), Not Just Granted

    The EPO's practice of elevating some patents over the other patents (European Patents) is perhaps more of a societal liability than the EPO cares to realise



  7. Required Reading: Mental State of Team Battistelli/Campinos

    On the heels of yesterday's article about Team Battistelli/Campinos, here are some recommended/required papers on the problem which likely plagues the Office



  8. Links 23/6/2019: Wine 4.11, FreeBSD 11.3 RC2

    Links for the day



  9. Microsoft Apparently Did a Patrick Durusau on Wim Coekaerts to Broaden Its Control Over GNU/Linux

    Microsoft tactics for defection and takeover of the competition (without coming across as hostile) aren't new tactics; internal documents from Microsoft explain how to achieve this



  10. EPO Directors Would be Wise to Rebel Against Team Campinos While They Still Have the Job

    As the EPO continues its bold journey towards dictatorship (where presidencies are passed between friends and ‘circles’ are former colleagues or close confidants) Techrights urges those who have power to speak out — e.g. EPO judges and Directors — to do something before it’s too late



  11. American Front Group Open Invention Network (Riding the Linux Brand) is a Proponent of Software Patents in Europe

    The impact of American multinationals in Europe is difficult to deny; in fact, we're observing the same old lobbying/lobbies still working hard albeit more covertly (typically using front groups)



  12. Say 'Hey Hi' to Software Patents

    Using the “AI” (“HEY HI”) hype the ‘community’ of patent maximalists hopes that every little (and possibly very old) algorithm will suddenly sound amazing and innovative — to the point where it becomes unthinkable to deny a patent monopoly on it



  13. A Personal Note From Ted MacReilly (How Microsoft Works Against GNU/Linux)

    A tongue-in-cheek write-up highlighting the ways Microsoft insiders think and how they strategise against GNU/Linux and Free/libre software



  14. The Linux Foundation's New Vice Chair, Wim Coekaerts, Worked for Microsoft

    The Linux Foundation is boosting the Microsoft boosters and calls that "community"



  15. Links 21/6/2019: GNOME 3.33.3, 32-Bit Support Further Neglected, DragonFlyBSD 5.6.1 Released

    Links for the day



  16. Leaked: Harassment of EPO Directors by Team Campinos

    “New BIT organisation and staff changes,” a novel kind of newspeak, means that Directors are being severely punished without due process at all (“hidden disciplinary measure without disciplinary proceedings”)



  17. Patent Professionals in Europe Have Devolved Into a Marketing Industry

    Lies, buzzwords and hype waves is all that the patent bubble in Europe boils down to these days; loads of bogus patents get granted only for European judges to smack these down (if one can afford the court battle)



  18. Almost Six Months After Iancu Said He Would Make Software Patents Great Again Nothing Has Actually Changed

    We're just a fortnight away from the ludicrous plan of Iancu celebrating 6 months (without accomplishing anything)



  19. Links 20/6/2019: Kubernetes 1.15, Alpine 3.10.0 and Librem 5 June Software Update

    Links for the day



  20. Ignore the EPO's Dumb Festival and Focus on the Abuses Against the Workforce and Its Quality of Work

    Don’t lose sight of the appalling behaviour of the management of the EPO; the last thing it wants is press coverage about its gross abuses and corruption — an aspect it spent literally millions of euros to bury (gaming the news cycle)



  21. Microsoft Attempting to Destroy the Careers of Its Critics, Including Free Software Proponents

    Microsoft isn't changing and has not changed; the tactics described above are still being used, even by its "Open Source" (or "Open at Microsoft") people, who did this to me



  22. Links 19/6/2019: Linux Mint Vs Vista 10, Qt 5.13 Released

    Links for the day



  23. The Linux Foundation's Business Model

    The Linux Foundation's plan, illustrated



  24. Links 18/6/2019: i386 Abandoned by Canonical and a New osquery 'Community'

    Links for the day



  25. Indifference or Even Hostility Towards Patent Quality Results in Grave Injustice

    The patent extravaganza in Europe harms small businesses the most (they complain about it), but administrative staff at patent offices only cares about the views of prolific applicants rather than the interests of citizens in respective countries



  26. Links 18/6/2019: CentOS 8 Coming Soon, DragonFly BSD 5.6 Released

    Links for the day



  27. 'AI Taskforce' is Actually a Taskforce for Software Patents

    The mainstream media has been calling just about everything "HEY HI!" (AI), but what it typically refers to is a family of old algorithms being applied in possibly new areas; patent maximalists in eastern Asia and the West hope that this mainstream media's obsession can be leveraged to justify new kinds of patents on code



  28. Patent Maximalism is Dead in the United States

    Last-ditch efforts, or a desperate final attempt to water down 35 U.S.C. § 101, isn't succeeding; stacked panels are seen for what they really are and 35 U.S.C. § 101 isn't expected to change



  29. Links 18/6/2019: Linux 5.2 RC5 and OpenMandriva Lx 4

    Links for the day



  30. Weaponising Russophobia Against One's Critics

    Response to smears and various whispering campaigns whose sole purpose is to deplete the support base for particular causes and people; these sorts of things have gotten out of control in recent years


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