12.14.19

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EU Needs to Show That It Cares About SMEs and Not ‘European Champions’ That Are Actually Foreign Monopolies

Posted in Europe, Patents at 8:35 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The UPC would be an SME killer and they very well know it

Benlogo tweet
New tweet by someone incredibly thin-skinned

Summary: 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

“Assisting the Second day of the training for [EU] @IPRHelpdesk ambassadors at the [European Patent Office (EPO)] in Berlin,” wrote a patent maximalist in Twitter shortly before blocking me for merely replying to him. He was retweeted by EPO PR people, revealing (yet again) close connections between the EU and the EPO. Remember that the management of the EPO insists that it is not an EU institution (it certainly predates the EU) and therefore it’s above the law and nobody can hold EPO officials accountable for their corruption. That may sound OK on the surface, but the overlap and connections are very clear to see and abuses are also clear to see. So the immunity ought to end. António Campinos probably did not break laws himself, but he helps cover up Battistelli‘s and he perpetuates all the old crimes. He’s also promoting software patents in Europe and inappropriately meddling in cases before BoA (to push for software patents). Imagine the Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) meddling in PTAB cases or even Federal Circuit/SCOTUS cases regarding 35 U.S.C. § 101. Sure, the existing Director ignores their caselaw, but he’s not attacking those judges. It’s nowhere as bad as in the EPO, where judges are literally being bullied by the President of the Office and his bulldog from Zagreb.

“It’s nowhere as bad as in the EPO, where judges are literally being bullied by the President of the Office and his bulldog from Zagreb.”On the same day the EPO mentioned “Patent litigation, from A to Z,” whereupon I said that “EPO should focus on patent EXAMINATION and SEARCHING!! NOT litigation. But today’s EPO is so unhinged and debased that it goes out of its way to help bullies, trolls, and litigation conglomerates” (such as LESI).

Remember that the EPO — like those litigation firms — wants the UPC, which is an EU system!

“Remember that the EPO — like those litigation firms — wants the UPC, which is an EU system!”SMEs do not need an EU system or an EU-wide/pan-European litigation system as they don’t operate outside their country (otherwise they’re probably not SMEs). “There were already amendments for a cheaper path for SMEs,” Benjamin Henrion noted, quoting: “6. Emphasises the need for preferential treatment for smaller actors, in particular researchers, SMEs and innovative companies, in the form of a differentiated and simplified cost and procedural structure;”

More “SME” ‘tweets’ from EPO have just been posted, distracting from the harm caused to them by the EPO. “Even pending patents can contribute significant business value,” the EPO wrote. “That’s one conclusion of our SME case studies.”

Who funded those ‘studies’ and what was their required outcome? Are those SMEs representative of the whole? The UPC lobby spent a number of years lying about SMEs, pretending to speak for them and pretending that the UPC would favour them (the exact opposite is true).

“I am not alone to think the UPC will have to be renegotiated,” Henrion wrote, “due to the departure of the UK from the list of the 3 countries that are needed in order to enter into force. UK, heavily lobbied by the patent industry, asked CJEU to not be involved in patent law [] Yesterday, there was a smell of hope for software patents and the UPC. I learned about a bomb which I cannot tell at the moment…”

He had organised a protest against the UPC one day before he wrote that.

“The UPC lobby spent a number of years lying about SMEs, pretending to speak for them and pretending that the UPC would favour them (the exact opposite is true).”“They can try to rename the whole thing again,” I responded, “taking another half a decade with additional constitutional barriers as the public caught up and the litigation lobby caught by the flashlight in the dark…”

As an aside, Henrion took note of an old article regarding IP2Innovate. To quote the article: “The new industry body is primarily concerned about the impact of patent trolls on innovative companies in Europe and believes that the situation will exacerbate dramatically if and when the Unified Patent Court is put in place.”

“CDU/CSU moving on software patents under the car industry lobby,” he wrote, but “no abolition yet, bifurcation…”

From the said page (in English): “Patents registered in software and telecommunications in particular often turn out to be unjustified in the end. This has to be clarified quickly and legally.”

“How often do SMEs enforce a patent EU-wide? Almost never.”“Copying Germany as a model is not good,” Henrion added. “Germany has a bifurcated patent court system which is a magnet for patent troll. German Minister is now considering removing bifurcation…”

One patent attorney who is occasionally sceptical if not critical of the UPC responded: “You have a point. I love the bifurcated system when I have to enforce, and I hate it when I have to defend…”

How often do SMEs enforce a patent EU-wide? Almost never.

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