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Growing Acceptance That There’s No Future to the UPC System and the Unitary Patent

Posted in Europe, Patents at 7:49 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Even those who are paid by the EPO to promote the UPC are giving up

IAM events

Summary: There are growing pains and more signs that even key elements of Team UPC move on, accepting the demise of the UPC

THE European Patent Office (EPO) of António Campinos is the same institution run by his appointer (who gave him this job and swapped chairs at CEIPI). They both promote software patents, which they hope the UPC would accept (as existing courts do not). These Frenchmen have a track record of law-breaking; they both lower patent quality (granting illegal/invalid patents) and they never value their staff or actual skills (they have none themselves; they have connections).

“These Frenchmen have a track record of law-breaking; they both lower patent quality (granting illegal/invalid patents) and they never value their staff or actual skills (they have none themselves; they have connections).”Just like 35 U.S.C. § 101 discussions in the US (very hot topic a couple of years back), discussions regarding EPO abuses have sort of faded away. It’s like nobody is left to cover this subject but us. It’s not like SUEPO says much (sometimes it shares some links), but we’re aware that it does a great deal. There’s definitely a desire to correct things at the EPO. The goal is to fix the EPO, not to make it go away.

Regarding the UPC, it definitely needs to vanish. For good. The very premise of it was all along flawed, not only the proposed legal implementation (as per UPCA).

While it’s possible that UPC will resurface under yet another name (with entirely different nature, excepting some clauses, excluding the UK and perhaps much more), this can take several more years to happen. And even then, ratification would still depend on constitutionality, not lobbying, bribery and various other dirty tricks.

Spotted in Lexology yesterday was this piece entitled “IP after Brexit: consequences and checklists” by Robert Guthrie, Richard May and Michelle Radom (Osborne Clarke). In their own words: “The UK will no longer be part of the new Unitary Patent and its involvement in the proposed new Unified Patents Court (a quasi-EU institution) is now open to doubt.”

The loudest pro-UPC voices of Bristows recently left the firm.

This is the kind of admission or acceptance we don’t often see (not from law firms anyway); the UK is ‘out’ and hence there’s no relevance to the UPCA. Without the UK, UPCA is simply invalid. Milan cannot be renamed “London”; Italians would not permit such a rename, either. We’ve meanwhile noticed that Managing IP writers begrudgingly come to the realisation that UPC is no longer possible.

Highlighted by its parent company this week (promotion in Lexology), IAM has just mentioned the UPC (“the future of the UPC system and the unitary patent” is a loaded statement, but IAM is still a paid megaphone of corrupt EPO management).

Authored by Editor-in-chief Joff Wild, feeding off the EPO’s PR firm, it reveals itself as nothing but a campinos puff piece or promotion of a new IAM issue:

EPO president António Campinos has said that the office’s user community can expect to see “significant advances” as his Strategic Plan 2023 rolls-out over the coming years. Speaking exclusively to IAM in his first detailed interview since succeeding Benoît Battistelli in July 2018, the Portuguese national explained how what he termed a “digital transformation” will lead to the patent-granting process becoming more efficient. “Practically, that should result in more online user services that keep users better informed on the progress of patent applications and more timely communications,” he stated.


Since becoming president, Campinos has rarely spoken to the press about his plans and priorities, or his more general views on the IP system. But over the course of a month in a series of email exchanges with IAM, he opened up on a number of topics, including: the office’s commitment to patent quality; the role that AI will play in the patent system of tomorrow and the patentability of AI-created inventions; the future of the UPC system and the unitary patent; his relationship with the examiner corps; competition between the IP5; and the EPO as a lever of European soft power; as well as much more besides.

From what we can gather, IAM may be in a slow-motion state of collapse. Quite a few writers have left, there’s a very stubborn paywall, hardly any interactions in social control media and their sponsors, notably the patent trolls, aren’t doing too well.

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