02.28.21

On Gangstalking and Victim-Blaming

Posted in Australia, Debian, Deception, Free/Libre Software, Google at 4:05 pm by Guest Editorial Team

Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock


I will destroy you, threat, Washington

IT is ironic that the first person to depart the Biden administration was sanctioned for threatening somebody else’s career.

This week Marko Rodriguez went public with news that rogue members of the Apache Software Foundation had decided to persecute him for his commentary on social issues. The board had voted to reclassify satire as a form of prose that “borders” on hate speech. Either it is hate speech or it isn’t. To suggest it “borders” on hate speech is a fudge. The sly comparison of these very different types of writing is simply a smear to hurt his career.

To put this in perspective, board members who disagreed with this defamation did not only vote against it but also choose to resign.

Around Valentine’s Day, Brittany Higgins, a former employee of Australia’s defense minister went public with news about being raped on the ministerial sofa. The questions this woman raises are extraordinary, for example, if the Minister for Defense, Linda Reynolds, cannot defend her own direct reports, how can we rely on her to defend our country?

Brittany Higgins, AustraliaHiggins chose not to name the accused publicly. It appears she wishes to focus attention on the culture and the cover-up. Two independent news organizations, True Crimes News Weekly and independent journalist Shane Olsen have identified a suspect. There is now a twitter hashtag too. A Youtube video shows the former Attorney General, George Brandis, praising Bruce Lehrmann and other former staff in the presence of high court justices.

George Brandis (former Attorney General): All of us know how important staff are to us. We spend so much time together, mostly away from home. We share so many experiences that they become like a second family.

As the man departed days after the incident in 2019, it appears that the Government have had plenty of time to remove his name from virtually all official web sites although there is no super-injunction (yet) to prevent discussion of his identity.

Against this backdrop, Google admitted two female researchers subject to high-profile sackings may have been doing legitimate research. Like Rodriguez and Higgins, both of Google’s female victims had been threatened to self-censor, they refused, they were shamed, they bravely chose to put their persecution in the public domain.

All these cases inevitably remind me of other cases, the growing body count in the free and open source software world.

Higgins’ decision to go public helps us all see how a cover-up was built from day one. Her boss, Linda Reynolds, had suggested that pursuing a criminal justice complaint would destroy Miss Higgins’ career. In effect, the victim was blackmailed to stay silent. This is the thread that draws all these cases of oppression together. In December 2018, two long standing volunteers in the free, open source software world, Dr Norbert Preining and I, revealed how we were subject to blackmail and coercion in our respective roles. In our cases, we both received the veiled threats in writing:

Knife at throat, Debian Account Managers, DAM, blackmail

We are sending this email privately, leaving its disclosure as your decision (although traces in public databases are unavoidable)

In other words, they are saying that if we call out the coercive nature of their communications, they will seek to destroy us.

When you receive a threat like this from somebody with a history of publicly shaming people on a hideous scale, it really feels like they are holding a knife to your throat.

Chilling.

In my case, the community of volunteers and donors had clearly elected me as the fellowship representative so this blackmail was an attack on all those who voted. It was my duty to inform people and call it out.

The crimes were very different but the message seems to be the same: the organization must be protected at any cost. When those in authority do something wrong, the victims have to stay silent, grin and bear it or some gang will impose a bigger pain on the victim.

More on the former Debian Project Leader (DPL), Chris Lamb, giving negative references for volunteers

One volunteer sent me the following comments about Chris Lamb. Many people receiving copies of defamation have showed it to the survivors:

Volunteer: But I am scared that Lamb actually also hosed an application for a company in NY, a job related to Debian. If that has happened, and I can reasonably document it, I would consider a defamation law suit

When the leader of any organization, whether it is Apache, Debian or Google, uses the authority of their position to push defamation, it is like using the height of a bridge to stand above a freeway and drop bricks onto the cars underneath. Lamb may not fear consequences for his actions, his father is a barrister, Robert Lamb, who appears well qualified to stifle any volunteers seeking redress.

07.01.20

Corporate Media Blames ‘China’ and ‘Open Source’ for Back Doors in Microsoft’s Intentionally Flawed Proprietary Software That’s Causing Chaos

Posted in Asia, Australia, Deception, FUD, Microsoft, Security, Windows at 11:16 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Corporate media has long helped Microsoft distract the public, oftentimes leveraging nationalism to achieve this

The red flags

Summary: ‘Red Scare’ tactics are being used to divert attention away from Microsoft’s incompetence and conspiracy with the NSA (to put back doors in everything, essentially making all software inherently vulnerable, by design)

LAST month we published our hospital series. It was about hospital managers and media, in cohesion, blaming or punishing Microsoft’s competition for Microsoft’s own failings. Hospitals are being taken out of service because of Microsoft and somehow, perhaps miraculously, everything gets blamed except Microsoft. It’s part of a media cover-up and hospital blame-shifting pattern.

“It’s almost as though someone is in deep denial about the nature of the real culprit, instead blaming people who exploit the holes (as they can).”It’s barely surprising to hear — as I did earlier this week — that: “An analysis of the ongoing massive cyber attack on Australia finds mostly Microsoft vulnerabilities exploits.”

The official page speaks of “tools copied almost identically from open source.”

They focus on how the exploits were put together, not the holes that they exploit. But this part is telling: “During investigations, a common issue that reduced the effectiveness and speed of investigative efforts was the lack of comprehensive and historical logging information across a number of areas including web server request logs, Windows event logs and internet proxy logs. The ACSC strongly recommends reviewing and implementing the ACSC guidance on Windows Event Logging and Forwarding and System Monitoring.”

This part is pretty clear about Windows being the issue. “Stop public spending on Microsoft,” the person who highlighted to to me said. “Public Money, Public Code. Media blames China.” The above page also link to this page: “The actor has been identified leveraging a number of initial access vectors, with the most prevalent being the exploitation of public-facing infrastructure — primarily through the use of remote code execution vulnerabilities in unpatched versions of Telerik UI. Other vulnerabilities in public-facing infrastructure leveraged by the actor include exploitation of a deserialisation vulnerability in Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS), a 2019 SharePoint vulnerability and the 2019 Citrix vulnerability.”

IIS, SharePoint, Citrix…

It’s almost as though someone is in deep denial about the nature of the real culprit, instead blaming people who exploit the holes (as they can). Not the people are blamed but the tools. Or sometimes the people, especially if they “foreigners”…

Another person highlighted to us this new piece which he says demonstrates “Windows TCO,” albeit it is “Microsoft marketeering spam” because it sort of rewrites the history of Maersk incidents, which years ago the media said had a major catastrophe due to Windows. This page entitled “Maersk, me & notPetya” says: “Within a couple of hours, it was clear this had impacted every single domain-joined Windows laptop, desktop, virtual machine and physical server around the planet.”

So Windows, with its notorious NSA back doors (for which there are remote access tools — tools which leaked online), is the actual culprit. Maybe stop using something which you know to be flawed (and often by design)?

06.13.20

Contrary to What ‘Managing IP’ Tells Readers, Australia Still Rejects Software Patents

Posted in Australia, Deception, Patents at 8:49 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Megaphones and loudspeakers of lawyers who profit from frivolous lawsuits

Harvesting Intellectual Property. It is not property. AYE PEE.

Summary: We live in an age when patent offices may be eager to grant/allow patents on things courts would reject; but moreover, the media in the pockets of litigation firms plays a role (lobbying for such invalid patents, based on falsehoods)

THE lies being disseminated with regards to software patents are hardly new. We already know, based on US courts, that software patents are generally abstract. They’re therefore not valid, even if the USPTO grants some, having cherry-picked 35 U.S.C. § 101 cases to misinterpret caselaw. We also know that all those software patents in Europe barely stand a chance in European courts. The next batch of Daily Links will contain several more outcomes where European Patents got squashed. It’s not cheap (the process takes money), but at the end we see that the European Patent Office (EPO) under António Campinos and Benoît Battistelli just issues a load of junk. Even examiners complain about it; it harms morale.

“We already know, based on US courts, that software patents are generally abstract.”A few hours ago we caught up with Managing IP, a site bought by a nefarious bunch that promotes litigation and fronts for lawyers. Well, Managing IP is at it again, posting spam for private companies (for a fee!) and even for firms that viciously lie to promote software patents in Australia. So you get a rough idea where their money comes from…

They’ve also just published summaries and headlines which use the term “IP harvesting”; aside from “AYE PEE” (IP) being a deliberate lie (propagandistic misnomer), harvesting? Seriously? What a disgraceful site… and this one comes from an author who’s a megaphone of patent trolls and Team UPC.

“A few hours ago we caught up with Managing IP, a site bought by a nefarious bunch that promotes litigation and fronts for lawyers.”Days apart the site was calling software patents “CIIs” or “computer-implemented inventions,” then speaking of “certainty” rather than validity. It’s about Australia, under the headline “Rokt decision boosts certainty on CIIs in Australia” (no, Australia does not allow software patents, but law firms try to figure out ways around that). From the outline:

Businesses will need to think carefully about how to draft claims for computer-implemented inventions – and may need to protect them as trade secrets

Notice the wording: “how to draft claims…”

“That’s just Managing IP in a nutshell; like the other site founded by the same scholar (IP Kat), this one became the very opposite of honest and anything remotely scholarly.”It’s about finding loopholes and sneaking in patents that likely aren’t eligible. So at the end they might get some fake patents that don’t stand a chance in courts; but since not many parties have sufficient budgets for a challenge/day in court, they might settle or desist anyway. Managing IP is crafting propaganda pieces like these on average twice per day. Nowadays the business model also includes ghosting for law firms. That’s just Managing IP in a nutshell; like the other site founded by the same scholar (IP Kat), this one became the very opposite of honest and anything remotely scholarly.

05.20.20

Amid Lock-Down the EPO is Still Laughing at the Law

Posted in Australia, Europe, Law, Patents at 3:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The European Patent Convention (EPC 1973) is just a fossil made deprecated by sheer neglect and endless violations

EPO 2020, EPC 1973

Summary: There’s a major discord/disconnect between the EPO as originally envisioned by its founders and today’s EPO which just serves the litigation ‘industry’ along with Monsanto/Bayer, Microsoft, and a large bunch of patent trolls glorified by the EPO

THE tyranny of EPOnia is no laughing matter. People’s lives are being devastated by it. Workers sink into deep depression, which in turn leads to chronic conditions and severe health problems. European scientists and technologists are being blackmailed by a bunch of trolls and other bullies using bogus European Patents that should never have been granted. The European public pays immeasurable patent tax and few people in EPOnia — along with law firms and international ‘patent barons’ — pocket a lot of public money. This contributes to inequality, concentration of power, decrease in competition, and retardation of innovation this necessarily entails. Society suffers profoundly.

To make matters worse, there’s no legal basis for it.

Rose Hughes wrote a second and more detailed post about the Friday (announced on Friday anyway) decision [1, 2, 3, 4] from the Enlarged Board of Appeal (EBA/EBOA) of the EPO, this time focusing on the sausage factory of António Campinos (which resembles Benoît Battistelli‘s war on judges). There were previously worthwhile remarks on how this was done by Campinos also in the corresponding referral regarding software patents in Europe. The short story is, EPO management has just reaffirmed that it violates the EPC by meddling in the affairs of judges; or as Benjamin Henrion put it: “Democracy in patentland [...] Same undemocracy with the UPC, they are allowed to change it on the fly.”

Here are some key parts:

The EPO President referred two questions to the EBA. The President’s first question effectively asked whether the AC is permitted to amend the Rules of the EPC so as to be in conflict with previous interpretations of the Articles by the EBA.

The EBA considered this question too broad, referring as it did to the general question of the competencies of the AC and EBA. The EBA didn’t feel it was necessary to answer such a question. To the EBA, the real issue of the referral was to address the question of the patentability of natural plant and animal products. The EBA further noted that were they to answer “yes” to the President’s first question, this would effectively give the AC “carte blanche to deviate from established case law and give a particular meaning to any Article of the EPC by means of the Rules of the Implementing Regulations. This would open the door to the possibility of circumventing the statutory procedures for amending the Convention itself”. So instead of answering either yes or no, the EBA decided it would be pertinent to re-phrase the question. The EBA therefore combined the President’s questions into a single re-phrased question relating to whether the meaning of the Articles could change over time in view of changes to the Rules.

Admissibility of the Question

To be admissible, a referral from the President to the EBA must relate to a point of law of fundamental importance (Article 112(1) EPC). The EBA acknowledged that the point of law was of fundamental importance because of the wish of the legislator to harmonise the EPO’s and EU’s approach to biotech inventions.

A second requirement for admissibility is that a referral from the President’s to the EBA should relate to a question on which there are conflicting Board of Appeal decisions (Article 112(1) EPC). The Board of Appeal was clear in T 1063/18 (Pepper) that new Rule 28(2) EPC was in contradiction to the previous interpretation of Article 53(c) EPC in G2/12 (Broccoli/Tomato II). Thus the Board of Appeal found that the AC was not competent to amend Article 53(c) EPC by means of Rule 28(2) EPC.

[...]

Simply put, the EBA’s question asked to what extent the interpretation of Article 53(c) EPC may have been changed since G2/12 (Broccoli/Tomato II) by the AC’s introduction of Rule 28(2) EPC. The EBA first reiterated its previous position from G2/12 on the “grammatical, systematic and teleological” interpretation of Article 53(c) EPC. Namely, the EBA interpreted the wording of the Article as clearly excluding essentially biological processes from patentability but not the products of such processes.

The EBA further confirmed that the opinion of the EU commission on the interpretation the EU Biotech Directive was not legally binding on either the EU or EPO. The EU commission had itself accepted that only the CJEU is competent to interpret Union law. As the EBA noted, “to date, no decision concerning the exception to patentability in respect of animals, plants or plant materials obtained by an essentially biological process and the interpretation of Article 4 EU Biotech Directive has been handed down by the CJEU”. The EBA also pointed out that the EPO is independent of the EU, and thus not bound by Union law:

The EBA was further of the opinion that the actions of roughly a quarter of the EPC member states to amend their national legislature to exclude products produced by natural process from patentabilty, was irrelevant. In particular, such actions did not themselves amount to an agreement between the contracting states on the interpretation of Article 53(c) EPC.

[...]

The EBA’s decision in G3/19 can be simply summarised as follows.

EBA: Article means P (under a grammatical, systematic and teleological interpretation)
AC: The New Rule changes meaning of Article to Q.
EBA: Because of the New Rule, Article now means Q.

Therefore, whilst the EBA rephrased the referred questions so as to not consider the appropriateness of Rule 28(2) EPC, G3/19 still seems to none-the-less open the door to the AC to change the EPC by amending the Rules, without unanimous agreement from the contracting states or a diplomatic conference. Finally, the fudging by the EBA to reach its decision in G3/19 will raise questions as to its functioning as an independent body, free from the political influence of the President and AC.

Mind the first commenter (“Anonymous”) and the first comment that says: “May a crude parallel be drawn, pehaps [sic], with the BVerfG’s decision that the UPCA contravenes the German constitution due to violation of the proper procedure for its ratification…?)”

Here’s the full thing:

An excellent account of the distinctly iffy manouevres employed by the EBOA to reach the conclusion desired!

At least one elephant is now situated in the room. Namely, if new Rule 28(2) was not introduced legally – which the EBOA side-stepped considering – can a “dynamic interpretation” of Article 53(c) legitimately arrive at the conclusion reached by the EBOA, if that very interpretation rests upon a rule which was not adopted in a valid manner?

I wonder if we have not seen the last of this. Surely a clever representative can try to get the Boards to look at the issue of whether Rule 28(2) was adopted in a legal manner – and perhaps a Chairman or two close to the end of their careers with the EPO could be persuaded to take a look at this question without the threat of (non-)reappointment hanging over them.

(May a crude parallel be drawn, pehaps [sic], with the BVerfG’s decision that the UPCA contravenes the German constitution due to violation of the proper procedure for its ratification…?)

Someone corrected the above: “I think you mean Article 53(b) not 53(c)?”

“It seems to have become standard practice to just ‘invent’ rules for the sake of patent maximalism.”And another person asked: “I am sure this is a stupid question, but can anyone tell me why the EBoA didn’t say “this doesn’t apply to patents/applications with a filing/priority date before 1 July 2017″. The wording, which refers to grant dates, makes no sense to me. What does this mean for a patent granted on 2 July 2017?”

So the EPC does not matter before some particular day? That does not make sense at all…

It seems to have become standard practice to just ‘invent’ rules for the sake of patent maximalism. This is lawlessness, it is a form of deep corruption.

Here’s a new article from Australia about the EPO’s “video conference (VC)” (promoted under the droll title “Australia can now visit the European Patent Office without jetlag“).

Well, for one thing, this should not be done. This is illegal. Phillips Ormonde Fitzpatrick’s Mary Munroe misses that point. Like all those law firms we’ve mentioned, they never highlight this simple fact. They just don’t care. It’s all about money and “show must go on” (and be charged at $200+ per hour). To quote:

COVID-19 has affected many aspects of conventional life and business and the European Patent Office (EPO) is no exception as social distancing requirements have recently resulted in a decision that all Oral Proceedings before the EPO’s examining divisions are to be held via video conference (VC). While VC facilities have been available to the EPO for more than 20 years, the vast majority of oral proceedings during examination have been held in person at one of the EPO branches in Munich, The Hague, or Berlin. More radically, the EPO have initiated a pilot project to assess the suitability of VC for opposition division oral proceedings which will run from 4 May 2020 until 30 April 2021.

These are interesting developments for Australian applicants of European patent applications for obvious cost savings where representatives no longer incur travel expenses in attending oral proceedings, but more excitingly, for the opportunity to join the VC proceedings, particularly where the EPO agree to schedule an early morning VC.

A couple of hours ago the EPO tweeted: “Want to know how oral proceedings by videoconference work? Find out in this online training course, which includes mock oral proceedings by ViCo in opposition…”

This is not legal, but who cares, right?

Going back to the above thread, the sausage factory gets yet worse. “One could even ask if the EBA has now overstepped its bounds by declaring Article 3 of the AC’s decision void,” said another anonymous comment, reproduced in full below.

I believe the EBA may have overlooked Article 3 of the “Decision of the Administrative Council of 29 June 2017 amending Rules 27 and 28 of the Implementing Regulations to the European Patent Convention (CA/D 6/17)”, which introduced Rule 28(2) EPC. Article 3 states:

“This decision shall enter into force on 1 July 2017. Rules 27 and 28 EPC as amended by Articles 1 and 2 of this decision shall apply to European patent applications filed on or after this date, as well as to European patent applications and European patents pending at that time.”

Hence, Rule 28(2) EPC was introduced with RETROACTIVE effect, including for those pending applications otherwise relying on G 2/12 as laying out the law. I therefore think that the argument for admissibility of G 3/19, namely that T 1063/18 did not interpret the law dynamically and therefore is conflicting with earlier decisions does not hold. Rule 28(2) as introduced by the AC was not introduced dynamically in the sense used by the EBA and the Board in T 1063/18 correctly found that a conflict existed between Rule 28(2) and G 2/12.

One could even ask if the EBA has now overstepped its bounds by declaring Article 3 of the AC’s decision void…

Welcome to the “2020 EPO” (or “EPO 2020″) — a tyranny that mirrors the 2020 Trump Regime — one in which oversight is not allowed (one gets fired for merely looking into allegations of ethical violations) and the rules are made up irrespective of any law, set aside constitutions. The sole goal is absolute power and ‘trickle-up effect’ (passing more wealth to those who already hoard it, then spend waste a tiny portion of it to control the whole system). This is how democracy dies.

11.22.19

Guest Post/Off-Topic: Koalas Caught in Australian Bushfire

Posted in Australia at 2:16 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

By Rianne Schestowitz

If you donate I can go home safely

Summary: Australian volunteers and rescuers need help to rescue helpless animals facing danger

Watching videos/photos of Koalas being rescued from a charred/burning forests in Australia is heart-breaking and devastating. More than 350 Koalas are reported being dead and these numbers are growing. Those who live far from Australia (just like me) can’t help physically rescue them, but a small amount of money/donation to sustain the hospital/facilities, volunteers and rescuers is of great help. Koala is just one of the many species that perish from the bushfire and they need our help, so please donate through the GoFundMe page and through other legitimate websites. Help those who support animal welfare.

03.23.19

Patent Law Firms Still Desperate to Find New Ways to Resurrect Dead Software Patents in the United States

Posted in America, Australia, Europe, Patents at 11:00 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Resurrected

Summary: There’s no rebound and no profound changes that favour software patents; in fact, judging by caselaw, there’s nothing even remotely like that

THIS morning and afternoon we took a look at US affairs, seeing that 35 U.S.C. § 101 remains unchallenged and even if the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) grants a software patent (or patents) — as happens a lot — courts will likely reject it (or these). The Federal Circuit follows Alice (SCOTUS) and so does the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) when assessing inter partes reviews (IPRs). We’ve hardly seen any exception to the rule lately (patent maximalists have stooped as low as to cherry-pick mere applications, e.g. yesterday, or revisit rather old cases); it is possible that, as per this report and another from Patently-O, § 101 will be revisited in SCOTUS. And even if it does happen, it will not necessarily bring back software patents to the US; it may as well force another long(er) nail into their coffin of software patents. Suffice to say, law firms and law students casually spread propaganda about software patents, even as recently as days ago. They want people to believe that software patents are both desirable and attainable (maybe at the Office, but courts are another matter). Here’s another new example. The patent microcosm (“Attorney Julie Reed is a member of Miller Nash Graham & Dunn’s patent team”) keeps lobbying the USPTO and American courts for software patents even though this microcosm never writes any code.

“There’s a similar problem in Europe. Voices are being hijacked and software developers are routinely spoken ‘for’ (without their consent).”The patent microcosm of Australia (Ken Simpson and David Webber of Davies Collison Cave in this case) is still looking at one very old decision in an attempt to sell bogus software patents that Australian courts would likely reject. Maybe the office would reject that one too (if there was a lawsuit over it). There’s this new article about IP Australia at IDG, but it does not deal with this subject.

There’s a similar problem in Europe. Voices are being hijacked and software developers are routinely spoken ‘for’ (without their consent). Patent law firms pretend to care about them, even though all they care about is themselves. But the European Patent Office (EPO) will be the subject of our next post.

03.01.19

Why Justin Simpson is Wrong About Software Patents

Posted in Australia, Deception, Patents at 1:43 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

CEO and Patent Attorney at Billtrader Pty Ltd

Summary: Yet another boring article lectures us on why software patents are ever so wonderful, based on people who make a living from software patents without having written any software/code

TECHRIGHTS already wrote/published a lot of articles about why software patents are bad. I’ve been writing on the subject since a decade before Alice/35 U.S. — i.e. when the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) had to begrudgingly accept that software patents almost always perish in American courts; the same is happening in European courts, never mind if the EPO promotes software patents in Europe under the guise of “AI”, “4IR”, “ICT”, “CII” “Blockchain”, “IoT” and all sorts of other ridiculous buzzwords.

“It’s some new (albeit tiring, repurposed) propaganda from Justin Simpson.”We were therefore a little curious to see a CEO and Patent Attorney at Billtrader Pty Ltd (small firm) publishing this piece titled “A new type of patent: the software patent”; Australia’s litigation ‘industry’ has been writing more and more about it lately (see this index of articles), but this one page is 15MB in size (yes, 15 megabytes for just a few paragraphs of text; very bad implementation). It’s some new (albeit tiring, repurposed) propaganda from Justin Simpson. Debunking this propaganda is very easy, albeit highly time-consuming (due to length), so let’s just break apart two consecutive paragraphs and dissect these.

“Debunking this propaganda is very easy, albeit highly time-consuming (due to length), so let’s just break apart two consecutive paragraphs and dissect these.”Simpson wrote: “Software has value. Google, Facebook, and Amazon are software companies.”

Water also has value (billions of people depend on water for their very survival) and utilities/water treatment companies make billions of dollars each month. Should we patent water?

“Their core value is created by the clever software they have built.”

Software that is covered by copyrights and is often kept secret (proprietary) anyway. The above three companies very rarely use patents to sue, unlike IBM and Microsoft.

“Those three companies alone are worth nearly $2 trillion. That’s nearly double the GDP of my home country, Australia.”

“Water also has value (billions of people depend on water for their very survival) and utilities/water treatment companies make billions of dollars each month. Should we patent water?”Is he trying to imply that it’s the patents that add up to value? Putting aside the fictional aspects of these speculative valuations…

“So why is it that software is not patentable?”

Well, because empirical evidence does not support claims that they’re needed for innovation and copyright alone already covers the need. There have been a lot of studies about it (scholarly, too).

Here is his explanation however:

“The reason is that the courts must base their decision on existing laws and past cases that were written well before software was invented. Laws that could not have envisaged the nature and role software plays in modern society.”

Similar arguments are being made for patents on life and nature. Will he defend patents on human beings too? Or seeds?

“Articles like these have become common and they’re always pretty shallow.”These boring old arguments (nothing novel about them; every sentence or paragraph is dingo droppings) aren’t going to sway or convince anyone but the target audience of the site, with its patentism (like a religion revolving around worship of patent monopolies).

So the bottom line from Mr. Simpson is, make software patents possible and “bam!” Suddenly the GDP of Australia will be tripled. Right? It’s all about him looking for more clients (more billing opportunities), earning at the expense of people who actually write code.

Articles like these have become common and they’re always pretty shallow. Pure marketing (shameless self-promotion).

12.28.18

Australian Law Firms Fight to Bring Software Patents Back to Australia

Posted in Australia, Patents at 4:03 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: An appeal of a rejection of a patent application at IP Australia has been spun by the litigation industry of Australia; people are expected to believe that something truly massive has just happened and that software patents are miraculously rendered valid now

THE importance of Australia’s patent office (IP Australia) isn’t high because of the country’s relatively small population. Software patents in that country, however, matter to us because Australia is an English-speaking country whose policies sometimes influence (but are more often influenced by) the West. This is why we keep track of Australian patent affairs as well, albeit not so often.

The Australian Financial Review, part of the corporate media in Australia, published this misleading headline earlier this month. “ROKT win against IP Australia a victory for tech start-ups,” declared the headline (not even with quote signs, i.e. attributed to someone’s mere claims), but that’s a lie. Software patents harm startups the most. ROKT is trying to prop up some dubious patent in Australia after examiners/courts repeatedly said no. This is the latest:

The ruling sets a precedent for how IP Australia assesses innovation in software, almost four years after the authority started knocking back more software patents after a 2015 case in which the full Federal Court ruled only patents for technical innovations (like hardware developments) were acceptable, not business model innovations or methods.

The case deals with just one patent and the Federal Court isn’t the highest court. But one can be sure that law firms in Australia will leap at this opportunity nonetheless, looking to influence the outcome and market such patents to potential clients (applicants, litigation and so on).

“One can trust law firms to always twist and spin the smallest of things as monumental changes, albeit only when it suits them (and ignore those things when the outcome isn’t desirable to their bottom line).”The above case may have impact and set a precedent; but it does not mean that software are back to Australia as it’s about one single patent.

FB Rice’s Madeleine Kelly wants lots of litigation, so anything that gives legitimacy to software patents in Australia makes her eager to mislead and gets her excited. “New lease of life for software patents in Australia” was the title of her article. A more moderate headline was “IP Australia lose patent dispute over software patent” (yes, just one). To quote:

Ecommerce marketing company Rokt has won the right to have its software patent granted following a dispute with IP Australia.

In a ruling, justice Alan Robertson overruled a previous ruling from the Australian IP commissioner which denied Rokt’s patent.

Robertson found the patent to solve “not only a business problem but also a technical problem” and ordered the patent to proceed to grant.

So one patent is being granted. That is all.

Firms that aggressively lobbied for software patents (lawyers obviously!) have reared their ugly heads again. An article by Brook Dyer and Anton Blijlevens (AJ Park) said this: (mind the bizarre use of the term “computer-implemented business method”)

In Rokt Pte Ltd v Commissioner of Patents [2018] FCA 1988, a recent decision by the Australian Federal Court, it was found that a computer-implemented business method is patentable subject matter in Australia.

This decision has provided clarification regarding the extent to which computer-implemented business methods can be eligible subject matter for patent protection in Australia, which has been an area of uncertainty in recent years.

Not uncertainty; it was a ban. Moulis Legal’s Warren Wong used an artistic headline, “Between Rokt and a hard place,” and as one might expect from law firms it’s just mostly marketing wrapped up as ‘analysis’.

Just because some company managed to get a software patent granted (after expensive appeals) at a court below the top court does not mean that software patents are in general, overnight, valid in Australia. Notice that this doesn’t even deal with a lawsuit but mere examination (the lowest form of appeal). One can trust law firms to always twist and spin the smallest of things as monumental changes, albeit only when it suits them (and ignore those things when the outcome isn’t desirable to their bottom line).

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