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

07.29.19

The American Patent Microcosm Models Its Lobbying for Software Patents Based on the EPO’s Ongoing Violations of the EPC

Posted in America, Europe, Law, Patents at 2:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The “Evil Cows” meme seems appropriate

Evil Cows

Summary: There are worldwide consequences to the EPO’s gross violations of the very rules that govern its existence; the patent zealots who profit from misuse/abuse of the patent system couldn’t care any less (in fact they cheer for that)

THE António Campinos-run European Patent Office (EPO) continues to grant software patents in Europe, apparently more easily than even the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) grants them. So say various law firms, facing the ‘woes’ (to them) of 35 U.S.C. § 101/Alice (SCOTUS).

“Various high-profile sites also regard/consider Watchtroll a “troll” (not just lobby for patent trolls) and perceive the site as too intellectually-dishonest to even link to; but apparently with Team Battistelli and Iancu it’s absolutely fine.”The Federal Circuit, citing SCOTUS, does not care what Andrei Iancu says about 35 U.S.C. § 101. He’s not a judge, but he attacks tribunals such as the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) because of inter partes reviews (IPRs). It is very reminiscent of what Battistelli did 5 years ago. PTAB has been besieged (chief judge removed) and together with the litigation lobby — people like David Boundy [1, 2] — Iancu tries to discredit PTAB as a whole. Patently-O linked to this newly-revised paper from AIPLA Quarterly Journal a couple of hours ago. This one too is from Boundy.

“Recently (as recently as a week ago) Watchtroll did a series with the EPO which calls for software patenting and suggests ways to make that easier.”Iancu nowadays does to the rule of law what the EPO did to the EPC. In Watchtroll he and EPO officials have recently given ‘interviews’. For those who don’t know, Watchtroll is as radical as one can get in the patent sphere — it’s the only site we refuse to even link to because of its radical views. It’s attacking judges, politicians and officials who care about science as opposed to patent trolls and litigators. Various high-profile sites also regard/consider Watchtroll a “troll” (not just lobby for patent trolls) and perceive the site as too intellectually-dishonest to even link to; but apparently with Team Battistelli and Iancu it’s absolutely fine.

Recently (as recently as a week ago) Watchtroll did a series with the EPO which calls for software patenting and suggests ways to make that easier. Some hours ago Michael Borella, a proponent of software patents (he doesn’t develop software, he’s in the litigation ‘industry’), wrote about how EPO (mal)practices help the USPTO find excuses to grant abstract patents in defiance of Alice. To quote:

On July 1, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) designated four of its recent 35 U.S.C. § 101 decisions as informative. Each of these decisions came down after and applied the USPTO’s 2019 Revised Patent Subject Matter Eligibility Guidance. Two resulted in claims being found eligible, and two had the opposite outcome. While not binding on other PTAB panels or examiners, these cases are helpful in understanding how the PTAB is applying the Guidance. In particular, the PTAB appears to be utilizing the Guidance in a fashion that is similar to how the subject matter eligibility inquiry is employed in the European Patent Office and certain other jurisdictions — as consideration of whether the claimed invention is a technical solution to a technical problem.

[...]

There are a few lines of reasoning running through these four cases that are worth pointing out. For the two that were found meet the requirements of § 101, the claims therein are narrowly focused and provide a technical solution to a technical problem. For each, the technical problem and technical solution were described in the specification, and explicitly reflected in the claim language. On the other hand, for the two cases that failed the Alice test, the PTAB specifically stated that the claims were not addressing technical problems, and were broadly drafted.

This suggests that the PTAB may be following a variant of the European view that eligible subject matter must be directed to a technical solution to a technical problem. If so, that is problematic because there is no requirement in U.S. patent law that § 101 be applied so rigidly. In fact, the Federal Circuit found the claims in DDR Holdings v. Hotels.com to be eligible despite their being focused on a technical solution to a business (non-technical) problem.

This just comes to show how connected things are; EPO corruption is actively being exploited in another continent to harm software developers, bypass the courts, and help patent trolls.

“They break the rules and hope that buzzwords can help to obscure their illegal agenda.”As we mentioned the other day, IAM also paid some lip service to this agenda when it painted software patents as "blockchain" patents and hours ago blockchain enthusiasts linked to that; those are fake patents or abstract patents riding hype waves and exploiting officials whose sole objective is granting as many patents as possible. To quote:

South Korea has the highest blockchain patent grant rate, according to London-based law firm Withers & Rogers. Meanwhile, Japan comes at a distant second, intellectual property business media platform IAM reports on July 23.

It was actually the EPO, not the USPTO, which organised a whole event (with an American patent troll on the panel) to advance software patents under the guise of “blockchain”. It had done the same thing with "hey hi" (AI) — just as the EPO did with Watchtroll last week. They break the rules and hope that buzzwords can help to obscure their illegal agenda.

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. Recharging for 2020

    Techrights prepares for another big year with more coverage than past years (we have become more efficient and our team grows)



  2. Startpage and System1: Lying for Almost a Year and Nowadays Making Things Personal/Ad Hominem (Shooting the Messengers)

    As more people become aware of what a scam Startpage is (and has clandestinely been for nearly a year) the strategy seems to be further obfuscation and even personal attacks (demonising the critics/exposers)



  3. When You Cannot Convert GNU/Linux Into Windows (Mono, DLL Files Etc.) You May Try to Make It Subservient to Windows (Vista 10 and WSL)

    Microsoft needs people outside Microsoft to promote WSL; some of them have already entered GNU/Linux companies



  4. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 15, 2019

    IRC logs for Sunday, December 15, 2019



  5. GitHub is All About Control

    GitHub is not a platform for sharing and collaboration but social control and manipulation of the Free software community



  6. 2019 in Review: Worst Year Ever for Software Freedom

    A look back (and ahead) as the year's end fast approaches, marking the end of a mostly bad year



  7. Links 15/12/2019: Hacker-Friendly Hardware Success Stories and Mozilla Woes

    Links for the day



  8. European Patents Losing Their Appeal, Lustre and Glamour

    Years of assaults on EPO staff — including EPO judges — have taken their toll and the quality of patents is nothing like it used to be



  9. Software Freedom and The U.S. Constitution

    “We need to stand for the freedom to not use the software — we need to enjoy that freedom without giving up the rest of the existing Free software ecosystem.”



  10. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, December 14, 2019

    IRC logs for Saturday, December 14, 2019



  11. Links 15/12/2019: Wine 5.0 RC1 Released, KDE Frameworks 5.65.0, Qubes OS 4.0.2 RC3

    Links for the day



  12. It Matters a Lot What You Call the System

    Why the best name for the best operating system would be "GNU", not "Linux" (media has twisted the words so as to marginalise GNU and its politics/philosophy)



  13. Only the EPO Goes as Far as Bribing Publishers (the Media) to Promote Software Patents and Publish Fictional Stories

    The world’s patent offices are growing tired of granting software patents which courts later toss out (because these patents are not valid); not only does the EPO advocate such patents — typically using a bundle of buzzwords — it’s also bribing the media to help



  14. EU Needs to Show That It Cares About SMEs and Not 'European Champions' That Are Actually Foreign Monopolies

    Judging by the EU’s nearly blind and unconditional support for the management of the EPO — no matter how abusive and corrupt it has gotten — one has to wonder if the ex-EU official in charge of the EPO reveals a profound democracy deficit as well as growing dangers to Europe’s businesses — the productive firms to which patent maximalism often represents far more risk than opportunity



  15. Guest Article: The Free Software Movement Should Come Out From the Box

    "From now onwards we have to think from a user’s rights perspective and mobilise users of Free software. They should know what rights they ought to get."



  16. IRC Proceedings: Friday, December 13, 2019

    IRC logs for Friday, December 13, 2019



  17. Links 13/12/2019: QEMU 4.2.0, GNU Guile 2.9.7

    Links for the day



  18. Links 13/12/2019: Zorin OS 15.1, Vim 8.2

    Links for the day



  19. Linux Foundation Has Outsourced All the Licence Compliance Stuff to Microsoft, a Serial GPL Violator

    OpenChain Specification/OpenChain Project and Automated Compliance Tooling (ACT) are yet more examples -- the latest of many -- of the Linux Foundation being outsourced to Microsoft, not only for code but also documentation and hosting



  20. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, December 12, 2019

    IRC logs for Thursday, December 12, 2019



  21. Copyleft: Keeping Code Free

    Now that news about "Linux" is dominated by promotion of proprietary software we ought to remember what perpetrators of such a strategy seek to eliminate



  22. Plans That Worked, Plans That Failed

    "I am still looking for good news, but the more good I try to find, the more nastiness I uncover. This is by far, Free software's worst year ever. 2019 Sucks!"



  23. Links 12/12/2019: KDE Applications 19.12, Qt Creator 4.11, New VirtualBox

    Links for the day



  24. Brand Dilution in Action

    Microsoft's proprietary software which spies on people and businesses is getting a "free ride" on the "Linux" brand; and nobody seems to care, nobody seems to notice how perverse that it



  25. At the EPO Money -- Not Quality -- is King

    Financiers are ruining quality



  26. The EPO's Strategic Failure 2023

    Potemkin social dialogue



  27. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, December 11, 2019

    IRC logs for Wednesday, December 11, 2019



  28. EPO Promoting Software Patents in Countries Where These Are Illegal

    The EPO's vision of 'unitary' software patents (patents on algorithms in countries that disallow such patents, as per their national laws) won't materialise, but in the meantime a lot of Invalid Patents (IPs) are granted in the form of European Patents (EPs) and this is wrong



  29. We Support GNU and the FSF But Remain Sceptical and Occasionally Worry About an RMS-less FSF

    Richard Stallman (RMS) is not in charge of the FSF anymore (it's Stallman who created the FSF) and there's risk the decisions will be made by people who don't share Stallman's ethics or the FSF's spirit



  30. Links 11/12/2019: Huawei Lobbied by Microsoft (Because of GNU/Linux) and Microsoft Still Googlebombs Linux to Promote 'Teams'

    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