Also see: Independent and Untainted Web Sites About Patents Are Still Few and Rare
“The major media-particularly, the elite media that set the agenda that others generally follow-are corporations “selling” privileged audiences to other businesses. It would hardly come as a surprise if the picture of the world they present were to reflect the perspectives and interests of the sellers, the buyers, and the product. Concentration of ownership of the media is high and increasing. Furthermore, those who occupy managerial positions in the media, or gain status within them as commentators, belong to the same privileged elites, and might be expected to share the perceptions, aspirations, and attitudes of their associates, reflecting their own class interests as well. Journalists entering the system are unlikely to make their way unless they conform to these ideological pressures, generally by internalizing the values; it is not easy to say one thing and believe another, and those who fail to conform will tend to be weeded out by familiar mechanisms.”
Summary: Another timely walkthrough (journey through the past week’s supposed news) which demonstrates how several self-acclaimed/self-proclaimed “news” sites and even “blogs” operate (which helps explain why they don’t cover EPO scandals among other inconvenient — to them at least — realities)
WE NOW know that Michelle Lee is definitely the Director of the USPTO (it's officially confirmed now), so sites like IAM and Watchtroll are obviously not happy (IAM is a special case, or a case apart, which we debunk regularly). They spent a lot of effort casting doubt, attacking Lee, and even promoting replacements to her (even though she had not been fired). We will never forget what they tried to accomplish; neither should Lee.
“Therein lies the power of lobbying.”Shedding of doubt and uncertainty where there was none to begin with is a classic lobbying tactic and even Joe Mullin fell for it. He asked “Who’s in charge?” even when we already knew it was Lee and those who cited Mullin said “a FOIA request which could have been fulfilled by answering the simple question “Who is the office’s acting director?” Instead, the patent office asked for a delay until March 10, citing a section of the law that allows for delay in “unusual circumstances.””
There was no legitimate basis for doubts about her place (secured by default) other than her face not yet showing up on the official site (after Trump’s inauguration, whereupon many other faces disappeared from the site too). She was still effective in her position and signed documents accordingly. There was nothing mysterious about it. There was no scandal.
“Watchtroll is a very malicious site.”Therein lies the power of lobbying. And lots of that lobbying, as even TechDirt pointed out at one point, could be traced back to Watchtroll — a site that attacked Lee so often that we’ve lost track of the number of times.
Watchtroll (a.k.a. “IP Watchdog”)
Watchtroll is a very malicious site. It not only promotes software patents; it promotes patent maximalism, litigation maximalism, and basically a whole lot of chaos. Watch this latest nonsense from Watchtroll. It’s just incredible! This headline and the entire premise of this Watchtroll ‘article’ is completely bunk (not just false), and this is the latest example of low-quality lobbying for software patents, composed by one whose qualification is just writing (not a technical person by any stretch of imagination). With all sorts of events and other peripheral activities, Watchtroll is more than just a blog now. It’s akin to a pressure/attack/front group. IBM seems eager to use these ‘services’, no matter how nefarious. It pays off to — or there’s plenty of money in — being malicious.
“IBM seems eager to use these ‘services’, no matter how nefarious.”To break down the latest software patents brainwash, it’s just some incoherent nonsense with absolutely no connection between one thing and another. The author was just picking something random from the news (with the buzzwords of the day, “AI”), then wrongly asserting that it shows a need for software patents, even if the UK-IPO does not grant software patents. Here is an except: “Of course, not every step the government can take is a positive one, especially if it’s a backwards step, and nowhere is this more painfully apparent than in the United States. At the same time that our own federal government is evincing a great deal of skepticism as to the patentability of subject matter important to the AI sector, namely software, other nations are moving ahead with plans to improve intellectual property protections for such innovations. For example, new patent examination guidelines set to go into effect in China during early April will increase patent eligibility for software and business method inventions.”
“It pays off to — or there’s plenty of money in — being malicious.”AI moves forward in spite of patents, not owing or thanks to them. But never mind all those pesky ‘facts’ and “so called judges”. What Watchtroll is after is just some “alternative facts” or gross misinterpretations. That’s just the usual from them (when they’re not busy attacking the Director of the USPTO, the Justices, various judges and also appeal boards whose work they don’t tolerate).
Watchtroll is actually a symptom of a much broader problem. A lot of so-called ‘news’ is not at all news but PR and lobbying. The other day at IP Watch, typically a good site, we saw this guest ‘article’ from “Content Manager at Morningside IP” (apparently that’s an actual job title). She wants us to think that the whole world is about patents (guess what “IP” stands for; not patents) and here is one portion of her “content”:
If you want to know where technology is headed, a great place to look is in a patent application database like the USPTO. One of the qualifications for getting a patent granted is “novelty,” which means new, similar innovations won’t appear anywhere else. Once enough data is collected from the database, it can be used to map out and predict unique advancements in specific areas of technology.
How many things are being developed outside or irrespective of patent offices? In the field of software almost everything! So this Content Manager would be better off looking at source code in sites such as Github, rather than take the risk of willful infringement (far higher damages if found guilty) that examination/surveying of granted patents would entail.
“Why do readers out there think there is barely any coverage of EPO scandals other than in Techrights?”We are very much saddened to see the state of so-called ‘IP’ blogs and several months ago we wrote a long rant about it. There are barely any sites at all countering that sort of nonsense; Groklaw no longer operates and few good sites like Against Monopoly seem to have gone defunct quite some time back.
Why do readers out there think there is barely any coverage of EPO scandals other than in Techrights? It just doesn’t suit their business model, it does not attract advertisers and they would rather reprint “guest” posts or “sponsored” articles. It’s a lot less risky, especially from a legal standpoint. There is no money in ideology, unlike PR/marketing/advertising.
Yesterday we showed how Managing IP had set up yet another -- far from the first -- lobbying opportunity for Team UPC (that’s big money right there, with visitors paying £995 + VAT to enter) and days ago the site wrote about designs cases (not just patents), taking a short break from supposed “endorsements” of law firms and people in “IP” (we have to wonder how they turn this “endorsement” system into money, and the same goes for IAM). There was plenty of that recently and we needn’t necessarily link (feed) to it!
“There is no money in ideology, unlike PR/marketing/advertising.”Managing IP also wrote about this Sprint verdict (gigantic $140m patent case), but the above author, Joe Mullin, did a far better job covering it. He is at least balanced. To quote: “Sprint has been filing patent lawsuits over VoIP for more than a decade now, and the company may have just scored its biggest payout yet. On Friday, a jury in Sprint’s home district of Kansas City said that Time Warner Cable, now part of Charter Communications, must pay $139.8 million (Verdict Form) for infringing several patents related to VoIP technology. The jury found that TWC’s infringement was willful, which means that the judge could increase the damage award up to three times its value.”
$139.8 million in one single case. Sites like IAM would likely hail/praise it as some sort of fantastic “success story” and proof of “innovation” or whatever, rather than what it really translates into (rich people getting a lot richer).
Even IP Kat, which we once respected, appears to have devolved into a part-time front group of Team UPC, Bristows in particular (even as recently as one week ago). It no longer covers EPO scandals and some people are not entirely tolerant of the explanations/excuses. To quote some comments, “This smacks Of a dishonourable Retreat,” the following poem said:
Of a dishonourable
Some people are so angry at IP Kat for letting EPO management (basically crooks) off the hook that the write a comment like this (not sufficiently grateful to Merpel for what she did do)
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing”.
Shame on you, Merpel. It’s impossible not to lose all respect.
“I feel as well betrayed to see a major help leaving us,” another person wrote, “while Eponia goes deeper into its Orwellian  world…”
As EPO employee, I have mixed feelings, which cannot be understood by someone from outside I guess.
I am very thankful to The Kat for sharing well documented, precise news with a british humor. We found necessary that the outside world, and in particular the IP-world understands what the situation.
I feel as well betrayed to see a major help leaving us, while Eponia goes deeper into its orwelian world: cameras everywhere, spy softwares on our computers, a kafkaian investigation unit, directors going mad if the world “quality” is whispered, heavy recruitement despite a files shortage preparing a future all in “flexibility”, examiners working on short term contracts and distress in every corners. We are not allowed to speak.
It is not an article in one generalist newspaper per semester, which will help broadcasting the situation.
Dear Kat, I understand that you want to take some rest but WE NEED YOU.
“I cannot understand you stop covering the EPO news,” another person wrote. Are you a IP and European blog?”
Well, that’s self-censorship after intimidation (on the face of it). To quote the entire comment:
one of the commenters consider the examiners to dig their own grave. It is easy to say when you rest comfortably on your couch not knowing what it means to work in a toxic environment everyday year in year out. Even a first class IP blog like IPkat is giving up commenting the terrible situation of Eponia (pressure? threats?), how is staff supposed to have sufficient means to say no to the sick, delirious demands we get from the management? Staff is suffering and every day adds a little more, up to the day where one gets a serious illness, depression, burn out or in the worst cases commits suicide.
IPkat, I cannot understand you stop covering the EPO news. Are you a IP and European blog ? If so, not mentioning the EPO anymore simply means we are not doing your duty of informing about IP news.
Renaming your blog IPkat “passionate about IP (except EPO – too dangerous) ” would be more appropriate.
There are more comments to that effect, but it ought to suffice for now.
We used to believe, however briefly and perhaps naively, that Professor Dennis Crouch was reasonably balanced, but that has changed recently, and the last straw was reached with his anti-PTAB diatribe (negative posts in the face of improved patent quality). Earlier this month his blog wrote about CAFC as follows:
In a non-precedential opinion, the Federal Circuit has affirmed the district court’s confirmation of the arbitration award with the minor exception of interest calculation. Here, the arbitrator awards are powerful becaues they can only be overturned based upon quite “demanding standards” involving “manifestly disregard the law.” A portion of the award included what appears to be post-expiration royalties. However, the Federal Circuit held that the manifest-disregard standard is so high that even those damages cannot be vacated (one of the five patents has not yet expired).
Another new post by Dennis Crouch spoke of the same court’s history overruling lower courts (in one particular aspect), as they rightly should (including Alice these days):
This decision by Judge Moore recalls the Federal Circuit’s long history of rejecting district court claim constructions and also highlights Judge Moore’s formalistic approach to claim construction.
Now watch the blog referring as “reasonable” (as in RAND/FRAND) to payments of a ‘mere’ $30,000,000… for just two patents. To quote:
The Nebraska jury found Sprint liable for infringing Prism’s patents and awarded $30 million in reasonable-royalty damages. U.S. Patent Nos. 8,127,345 and 8,387,155.
Patents at $15 million apiece? Against just one single company? It doesn’t take a genius to see that something is seriously wrong here. How about the patent troll whom we wrote about last week, after he had made about $50 million from just one invalid patent?
“As is often the case in life, those who survive in the long run are those well funded (or greased up) by people who look to gain something from interjected bias and agenda, either lobbying, shameless self-promotion, self-censorship, or a wider combination of several/all those things.”I truly miss Groklaw myself; this is the one site about so-called ‘IP’ which I knew was written by a legal professional (paralegal) who in no way had a stake in any corporation covered, nor in advertisers. As is often the case in life, those who survive in the long run are those well funded (or greased up) by people who look to gain something from interjected bias and agenda, either lobbying, shameless self-promotion, self-censorship, or a wider combination of several/all those things. It’s a sordid world with sordid, submissive corporate media. █
“If the media were honest, they would say, Look, here are the interests we represent and this is the framework within which we look at things. This is our set of beliefs and commitments. That’s what they would say, very much as their critics say. For example, I don’t try to hide my commitments, and the Washington Post and New York Times shouldn’t do it either. However, they must do it, because this mask of balance and objectivity is a crucial part of the propaganda function. In fact, they actually go beyond that. They try to present themselves as adversarial to power, as subversive, digging away at powerful institutions and undermining them. The academic profession plays along with this game.”
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Even Saddam Hussein will soon ratify the UPC!
Summary: For lobbying purposes, Team UPC frames a very small bunch of people who gathered in the small hours of the morning as “Bundestag” (and “green light”), in order to make it appear as though the UPC is coming to Germany very soon
LAST night we wrote about why Germany cannot ratify the UPC. There was far too much noise about it from Team UPC (wolves who guard sheep), and perhaps soon the pathological liars who control the EPO‘s news [sic] section.
“So the turnout rate was 5.5% (19 out of 20 MPs were not present) and we can imagine what kind of politicians would turn up at 2am to vote on something like that.”Dr. Ingve Björn Stjerna recently wrote about the UPC lobbying and said that the UPC’s “entry into force is not at all secured,” contrary to what Team UPC keeps saying. Team UPC just uses some truly malicious lobbying tactics. There is nothing they won’t do to manufacture a pile of lies, akin to these “Weapons of Mass Destruction” lies that proved to be very costly. They want war. They want patent wars all across Europe. They would profit from it at the expense of all ordinary Europeans, not just producers but also customers who would bear the ‘downstream’ costs of litigation, patents royalties, monopolies through injunctions (no competitive pricing) and so on.
For us, it’s relatively hard to check the facts on Team UPC’s claims regarding Spain (fake UPC news there, as even Spaniards confirmed to us after we had posted an article about it). The same goes for Germany, unless one examines long videos and understands German. The UPC vote in Germany, as it turns out, was somewhat of a farce. A reader pointed out to us this morning that regarding “the German Parliament voting unanimously in favor of the UPC, please consider most recent update here.” (Stjerna’s site).
“Why is the Bundestag even open at such ridiculous hours?”“What the [UPC] proponents’ tweets do not tell you,” the reader emphasised, is this: “The vote took place at 1:30 a.m., with only 35 of 630 MPs participating.”
This in incredible. So the turnout rate was 5.5% (19 out of 20 MPs were not present) and we can imagine what kind of politicians would turn up at 2am to vote on something like that. Smells almost like a deliberate plot if not some kind of collusion, not a legitimate vote. Why is the Bundestag even open at such ridiculous hours?
Here is what Stjerna wrote:
On 09/03/2017, the German Parliament adopted the draft legislation on the ratification of the UPCA and accompanying legislation without a debate (cf. the protocol, p. 22262 A, German language). Both drafts were adopted with the approval of all attending Members of Parliament. The vote had been shifted from the originally envisaged time of 8:15 a.m. to 4:40 a.m., finally taking place at 1:31 a.m., attending were apparently only 35 of 630 Members of Parliament (cf. the Parliament TV recording here, German language).
Prior to this, on 08/03/2017 the Committee for Legal Affairs and Consumer Protection had unanimously recommended to adopt the drafts in unchanged form, shared by the unanimous approval of both the Committee on Affairs of the European Union and the Committee on Education, Research and Technological Impact Assessment (cf. the recommendation in Parliament printed matter 18/11451, German language).
Currently, the Legal Affairs Committee of the Federal Council will discuss both drafts on Wednesday, 15/03/2017 (cf. items 5 and 6 on the agenda (date: 09/03/2017), German language). The vote by the Federal Council, which will complete the Parliamentary procedure, may be held in one of the two next sessions on 31/03/2017 or 12/05/2017.
As regards the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities of the UPC, the Federal Council acknowledged the government’s draft legislation without objections in its session on 10/03/2017 (cf. Federal Council printed matter 81/17 [decision], German language)
The very fact that sites like Bristows repeatedly wrote about it (even on a Saturday!) without pointing out the turnout rate of 5.5% and the time of the day reinforces our view that Bristows are a bunch of liars (we single them out because they wrote the most to that effect). If they repeat the lie often enough, as the saying goes, for some people the lie will become a truism. Look back at previous posts such as these:
Be extremely careful reading anything from Team UPC. Better yet, read nothing from them at all. Truth is casualty of their infinite greed and Hubris/arrogance. What kind of job is this and how do they go to work each day, knowing that what they do is lie to society, mislead politicians, and trample on technical people in their country? For shame. █
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Unless they went back to the drawing board and restarted all the negotiations, with Britain ruled out and the UPC being something altogether different (maybe renamed, too)…
U.P.C. is the new U.F.O.
Summary: The chorus of the German patent microcosm and Team UPC, including several IP Kat writers, who collectively in their echo chamber want to believe — and also to convince all of us — that the UPC will be ratified in Germany “real soon now!” (but no, they cannot without the UK changing its mind on “hard Brexit”, amongst other tall barriers and legislative obstacles across Europe)
THE source of many deliberate lies, the EPO, continues to amaze us with its incredible lobbying push for the UPC. It’s not only expensive but it also corrupts European media and harms its reputation (e.g. fake news, which we have just learned is spreading to Spanish media). Previously in this evening’s series we summarised the past week’s developments as follows:
Now it’s Germany’s turn. That’s like the heart of this monster, not just the EPO’s but also the UPC’s. There are probably veiled reasons behind Maas refusing to enforce the law against Team Battistelli. With the UPC, unlike with the US patent system (which includes the notorious state of Texas, capital of litigation), there is federalism and fragmentation. Countries like the UK, Poland, and Spain (very large countries) still seem far from joining or being assimilated to the Borg, so to speak. Don’t believe the fake news and the hype from Team Battistelli and Team UPC. They have a long track record of lying and they have already shouted “Wolf!” more than thrice.
“It’s not only expensive but it also corrupts European media and harms its reputation (e.g. fake news, which we have just learned is spreading to Spanish media).”So, what’s the deal with Germany? Not much. Team UPC, Bristows for example, toes the party line. A day ago, on a Saturday, Richard Pinckney said that “German parliament passes two bills required for UPC ratification” and he hopes to give the impression that Germany’s ratification is now imminent and inevitable. But it’s not. Germany won’t ratify as long as the UK does not (and it cannot!).
Watch tweets from UPC proponents who repeatedly use terms like “green light”. This is all conditional, contingent upon lots of things. Citing the Bundestag’s site, this person says “German #Bundestag gives green light to #UPC. Actual #ratification to happen later.”
Look at the certainty. Here is another tweet to that effect: “Lower House of German Parliament #Bundestag has given green light to implement #unitary #patent in Europe”
What do they even mean by green light? Something like Chinese government officials giving the green light for Siemens to relocate to China. It doesn’t mean it will actually happen.
“Don’t believe the fake news and the hype from Team Battistelli and Team UPC. They have a long track record of lying and they have already shouted “Wolf!” more than thrice.”A pro-UPC account (“UPC tracker”) said “Bills providing basis for ratification of UPC passed unanimously by DE Bundestag. Speaker: “doesn’t happen often.””
Well, how often does one vote on UPC? Only once.
Talking about the FFII, Benjamin Henrion urged for action in Germany when he wrote: “You wonder if it is useful to have a German association if no German don’t do shit when UPC goes through Bundestag…”
Alexander Esslinger (a.k.a. “patently German”) wrote: “This news will probably dampen rumors about Germany not ratifying #UPC due to some open questions in connection with Brexit” (not really, unless you are Esslinger, in which case the UPC is desirable to you).
Esslinger alludes to discussion among people from IP Kat (former writers). Birgit, as I told her, should know about this as a German working in the UK. Tufty wrote to her: “I’m suspicious of everything about the #UPC. It would make sense for DE to delay ratification until effect of #brexit is clearer.”
She had said that “all these suspicions… you Germany will still play the Article 50 waiting game? They could have stalled it yesterday?”
She also wrote “Let’s just hope the Bundestag calls the #UPC by its correct name… (not “unified software patent” or similar,” linking to this tweet from a dubious pro-EPO site. It says that “UK has signed the UPC Protocol on Privileges and Immunities ahead of its ratification of the agreement, but whether the country does ratify in the fallout of its vote to leave the EU remains to be seen.”
“What do they even mean by green light? Something like Chinese government officials giving the green light for Siemens to relocate to China. It doesn’t mean it will actually happen.”It does recognise that Germany depends on what happens in the UK. Time is running out for Team UPC (EU-wide) because of Article 50. They know what it would mean to the whole scheme when invoked in as little as weeks from now, so they resort to dirty deeds (like those covered here earlier this evening).
Here comes another UPC proponent, this one also from IP Kat, which never criticises the UPC and only ever promotes it (as recently as a week ago). So much for a ‘balanced’ blog, only ever sobbing if there’s a setback or lack of progress for the UPC.
Mr. Smyth, an occasional booster of the UPC (he does a lot to promote it), wrote: “New #UPC rumour – Germany may not ratify until result of Art 50 negotiations known. Could that be true? If so catastrophic #patentforum2017″
“Catastrophic to your employer,” I told him. “What about people who actually make stuff?”
“I honestly don’t believe that Jo Johnson cares about what’s good/bad for the UK e.g. UPC,” I added later. “Just like his brother on Brexit…”
It increasingly seems like Johnson does not care about legal aspects, either, as he cannot ratify the UPC and pray that it will miraculously survive after Brexit (or that they can ‘patch’ the UPC ‘on the go’ so as to ‘retrofit’ it to an untenable ratification). Might Battistelli pull that famous trick that involves money/gifts?
“Here comes another UPC proponent, this one also from IP Kat, which never criticises the UPC and only ever promotes it (as recently as a week ago).”The whole thing is insane!
“Making rules of procedure of a court with an administrative committee like for the UPC is undemocratic,” Henrion noted, and “against German Constitution….”
A couple of days ago Bristows said in its blog that “PPI will give legal personality to the Unified Patent Court and provide the Court and its judges, Registrar and other staff with the various privileges and immunities.”
How does the post-Brexit UK feel about such ‘freedom’ and ‘independence’ from the EU? This just serves to remind everyone out there how crazy this whole thing is. This would not only bring software patents to the UK from the back door (including litigation and enforcement from courts that don’t speak English!). It would also invite patent trolls from other countries and continents to the UK. All those Chinese companies with sloppily-granted EPs can do a lot of damage here if the UPC passes (not that it’s expected to happen, not in the UK anyway).
The loudest proponent of software patents in Germany asked FFII, “do you really think the #UPC will change anything for the #patentability of #software?”
That’s obvious. One has to be seriously misinformed and deliberately in denial about it to say the above. We covered this subject many times before, citing various luminaries and experts to support that assertion.
As Henrion put it, “yes, it will rubberstamp the insane EPO practice.” (the EPO grants software patents, unlike UK-IPO)
“The whole thing is insane!”Imagine what would happen if, instead of national courts (tied to NPOs like UK-IPO), the above-the-law EPO with its taste/savour for software patents gained prominence here. Imagine what would happen if the UPC ever gained a political foothold. Disaster!
Henrion concluded with, “the unitary patent is an ugly mixture of EU law and international law, not even an EU court [and thus] undemocratic…”
If at any point this month Johnson does the unthinkable and slips in a ratification (without even a debate in Parliament), there will definitely be protests. And if the UK goes ahead with Brexit before ratifying (as should be the case, as per the law), then all the above gossip about Germany is just a crazy pipe dream. █
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At relatively short notice, Managing IP helps Battistelli promote the UPC in the UK (by incredible coincidence while he makes a surprise visit to Jo Johnson)
Follow the money, and be prepared to pay £995 + VAT to enter another short pro-UPC event (unless you are in the patent microcosm, in which case you can “attend the Forum completely free of charge.”)
Summary: The latest echo chamber, misleadingly titled “International Patent Forum 2017″ and scheduled or set to overlap heavy lobbying by Team UPC and Team Battistelli, serves to create even more confusion and almost breed consent for the UPC, even though it is neither possible nor desirable in post-Brexit Britain
THE previous post reminded readers that EPO budget travels a long way in promotion of UPC — to the point of sort of bribing the media to play along and set up pro-UPC events, perhaps even produce these habitual UPC puff pieces. Is this what EPO stakeholders, who are paying this money, prefer to see it spent (wasted) on? Corrupting European media to play along with Battistelli, which only 0% of stakeholders tolerate anyway? The US patent system looks like an ethical angel compared to the EPO.
Not too long ago we wrote about Managing IP organising pro-UPC events with stacked panels [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]. All those fake news articles on the subject are apparently not enough [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] and as scheduled, coinciding with Battistelli's surprise lobbying trip to the UK (last week), Managing IP does it again! Shame on Managing IP, who are not even good at hiding their motivations and intentions.
Who was at this event? The UPC echo chamber, of course. To quote Managing IP‘s account: “Here’s @EIP_Elements asking a tricky question about #upc at #patentforum2017 The answer involved the Isle of Man! pic.twitter.com/DL4pXjN1Bd”
“Shame on Managing IP, who are not even good at hiding their motivations and intentions.”Guess who weighed in? Bristows, the enemy of British interests and democracy. “Hello,” they wrote, “thanks for your tweet. IoM will be part of unitary patent territory despite not being in the EU – @dominic_adair”
“Isle of Man is not part of the EU,” Benjamin Henrion told them, and “UPC is only open to EU member states…”
But never mind facts. The UPC echo chamber is just there to googlebomb the whole Web with misinformation and self-serving propaganda. Battistelli supplies a lot of money for this propaganda and he wants to get his (actually, EPO stakeholders’) money’s worth.
Obviously, as an outsider might expect, the event was so full of too much one-sided ‘information’ that quoting anything from it would only do harm (without detailed rebuttals). Facts are not convenient to them, but lobbyists try to just make up the law and spread fake news to that effect. That fake news is music to their ears. Garbage in, garbage out.
“Facts are not convenient to them, but lobbyists try to just make up the law and spread fake news to that effect.”Here is Managing IP stating: “Us #upc more of a risk or an opportunity? Interesting responses from #patentforum2017 panel moderated by David Barron of @GowlingWLGIPUK”
Where are the opposers to UPC? Oh, that’s right, they were not invited. And even if they managed to put together a lot of money to actually attend (it’s expensive, about a thousand pounds!), they would receive no speaking position. Opposition is not allowed. It’s a lobbying event and its target audience is British officials and other members of Team UPC, who already drink the Kool-Aid and wish to share it with others.
This, in our view, represents not just lobbying but institutional corruption if not collusion between parties that look to gain behind closed doors, not because it’s acceptable but because they’re allowed to get away with it. We suppose that Team UPC and CIPA feel greatly empowered in the EPO’s presence, as though they almost inherit the same immunity and impunity Battistelli gloats and brags about.
Dr. Luke McDonagh, a scholar who has repeatedly explained why Brexit and UPC cannot coexist, said that “[f]or all those who love/hate referendums – Irish voters will have to vote on the #UnifiedPatentCourt http://www.newstalk.com/reader/47.301.343/92546/0/#.WL1t0DtgkwE.twitter … #patents”
That’s something that we in the UK never had. Now, see the comment in there (Twitter), about “posters” in Ireland….
The cited article is actually news from a month ago. “Action against the Unitary Patent will be needed in Ireland,” Henrion wrote. “going for a referendum on it…”
Commenting on the tweet from McDonagh, one firm wrote: “Establishment of a Unified Patent Court would be “the more complicated part of the reform”, IP manager of Enterprise Ireland points out…”
“Where are the opposers to UPC? Oh, that’s right, they were not invited. And even if they managed to put together a lot of money to actually attend (it’s expensive, about a thousand pounds!), they would receive no speaking position.”Ian Dunt, a journalist who had spoken to McDonagh for quite some length of time before producing an article on the subject, was told that “The UPC is beyond the reach of the national legislator and courts…”
Another person said that “It’s not just a normal EU regulation. It’s #EnhancedCooperation. You can’t have that outside.”
Sadly, a lot of people in the UK don’t grasp patents and the UPC. “Scientists for EU”, for example, wrongly/erroneously chose to view opposition to the UPC as some kind of UKIP thing (maybe because of the source of some articles about it).
To quote: “Brexiteer and tabloid extremists try to sabotage UK jobs, growth and innovation by attacking EU patent system…”
Actually, I was against Brexit and still am. At the same time I am against the UPC. It’s nothing to do with Brexit and people’s stance on the UPC unhypocritically applies irrespective of one’s view on the status of Britain in the EU (or outside the EU). Fools who equates UPC to “UK jobs, growth and innovation” are dangerous fools or useful idiots, who possibly read some EPO-funded puff pieces about the UPC. We have no other explanation for that. Maybe some of them even read something which came out of the staged lobbying event of Managing IP. Remember this older article of ours (from last week), The Very Thought of UPC in the UK “is a Perfect Example of What Lobbying Can Achieve!”
Thankfully, “Scientists for EU” has already received quite a few dissenting responses. Promotions of the UPC using patently false claims are not tolerated, but one person wrote: “All those researchers and industries wanting to be part of a unitary patent system to protect us. Bah! Typical know-all experts.”
“Sadly, a lot of people in the UK don’t grasp patents and the UPC.”“UPC means EU-wide software patents, and trolls that goes with it,” Henrion explained, “tell me that it is good, when you loose your job because of trolls.” (separate tweet)
Some people seem to have gotten the point: “Thanks for that. So outside of EU protection we are more open to trolls?”
Well, it means software patents and more. As or Henrion put it, “as long as EPO grants them, you are still open to trolls.”
Quoting from another thread, one person pointed out that the “plant varieties & Biotech can go to ECJ but see http://ipkitten.blogspot.co.uk/2016/12/epo-bows-to-eu-commission-on.html?m=1 … The Epo want a common interpretation so ECJ matters anyway…”
Henrion added, “especially when EPO is not strictly and legally bound to it.”
ECJ being involved serves to remind us again that Brexit and the UPC simply cannot coexist, and patent maximalism at Battistelli’s EPO threatens to intrude EU member states. Who would want that except patent lawyers and large clients like international pharmaceutical giants, lovers of broad and harsh injunctions?
“Actually, I was against Brexit and still am. At the same time I am against the UPC. It’s nothing to do with Brexit and people’s stance on the UPC unhypocritically applies irrespective of one’s view on the status of Britain in the EU (or outside the EU).”Going back to the original thread, people quickly realise that they got fooled on the UPC. A UPC sceptic asked: “So does leaving EU make any benefit or harm?”
When it comes to patents, it is a benefit because it makes the UK more attractive as a safe haven from something like the UPC (if something similar ever becomes a reality outside the UK).
“I am not an expert in this,” Henrion humbly responded, “but Unitary Patent is special beast.”
Yes, when it comes to patents, especially now that the EPO is out of control (patent quality, brain drain [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6], human rights violations etc.) and barely hires any Brits anyway, the UK is better off outside. But don’t expect Battistelli’s lobbying events to include any discussion whatsoever about this. Not while he is lobbying Mr. Johnson. █
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Weaponised, fake news, courtesy of the militant Team Battistelli
Posted one week ago: The Very Thought of UPC in the UK “is a Perfect Example of What Lobbying Can Achieve!”
Summary: The aggressive lobbying campaign coordinated by self-serving opportunists and partly funded by EPO budget (even through proxies such as FTI Consulting) is proving to be fruitful, as many people out there have embraced the wrong idea that Spain intends to join the UPC and now operate on that false assumption
THE EPO discriminates against the Spanish language and the Spanish government is not interested in the UPC. That’s not news. We recently wrote about some fake news about Spain, including easily-debunked claims from UPC propagandists such as IAM (paid by the EPO's PR firm and supported by the EPO to set up pro-UPC event/s). We can imagine that Spanish media already has seeded in it some puff pieces from the EPO (maybe ghostwritten), but we are not keeping abreast of publications in Spanish.
Over the past week, perhaps in an effort to pressure the UK and Germany, elements of Team UPC in or around Spain tried to stir up some propaganda again. It was despicable. We have never seen anything quite as disgusting from the US patent office or American patent lawyers. What we have here is some fake news recycled/disseminated (people cannot face-check if they cannot comprehend Spanish), sheer distortion of facts, and just about any nefarious trick from lobbyists’ textbooks. Maybe if they keep repeating the lie (lobbying), then people will give up and believe it, accepting an outcome that was far-fetched to begin with.
“We recently wrote about some fake news about Spain, including easily-debunked claims from UPC propagandists such as IAM (paid by the EPO’s PR firm and supported by the EPO to set up pro-UPC event/s).”Watch this tweet from this dodgy new site (no idea who’s behind it, but it’s SUEPO-hostile) that says “Spain edges toward unitary patent” (not true, even patently untrue). Team UPC wants us to believe we’re powerless and that all nations now fall in line with its agenda; they need us to believe that the Unitary Patent is inevitable and there is no reason for anyone to fight back. It’s a classic lobbying tactic that we’ve witnessed with attempted passage of SOPA, ACTA, TPP and so on. Don’t fall for it. Don’t be an easy victim.
The above article says: “Political support for the EU unitary patent system is growing in Spain, where a non-binding motion asking the government to begin talks to join has been passed.”
So that’s all it is? A “non-binding motion”? Watch how a mountain will grow out of this molehill, thanks to endless determination — it not sheer desperation — from Team UPC. Lobbying for UPC has, in our humble opinion, intensified lately because the EPO and Team UPC are growing very nervous. They know the door is closing very soon with Brexit (perhaps end of this month). For them — it’s now or never!
“Watch how a mountain will grow out of this molehill, thanks to endless determination — it not sheer desperation — from Team UPC.”Many parallels can be found and drawn between UPC lobbying right now and what Microsoft did for OOXML about a decade ago: breaking rules, bribing the press, setting up bogus events with stacked panels and whatever else they could get their hands (or wallet) on so as to ram it down all nations’ throats (for ISO approval).
“Spain is now the UPC lobbying target,” a local told me. “Socialists involved…”
Well, they have been involved in this for years, so there’s not much to see here.
IAM, however, greased up for UPC promotion (payments from the EPO’s PR firm for it), has already spread some fake news about it and it just cannot stop. Maybe it’s trying to impress Battistelli for another wad of cash.
“Debate and vote on Spain joining the EU unitary patent system in the country’s Parliament tomorrow,” it said last week. It’s just a debate.
Josep Maria Pujals retweeted Francisco Moreno as saying something in Spanish. “If Spain decides to join the UPC,” he continued, “a local division could be established in Spain working in the Spanish language…”
“IAM, however, greased up for UPC promotion (payments from the EPO’s PR firm for it), has already spread some fake news about it and it just cannot stop. Maybe it’s trying to impress Battistelli for another wad of cash.”But “have you ever tested automated translation in Spanish? An insult to every European citizen,” Benjamin Henrion told him. Yes, it will never work for Spain. Why should the Spanish language not receive priority over French and German? It makes no sense given the popularity of the Spanish language worldwide.
The lobbyists, IAM, later wrote: “Breaking News: the Spanish Parliament has voted in favour of Spain joining the EU unitary patent system.”
This is a lie.
Even IAM knew it was a lie, so then came this correction: “Important to note that vote was non-binding and merely asks the government to do it. All parties voted in favour, apart from governing PP.”
So the lobbyists from IAM posted a lie and never deleted it, either. Maybe they hope that this lie, retweeted by 37 people (far more than is usual for IAM), will help influence the outcome. These people from the patent microcosm heard what they wanted to hear, but not what was true. Money well spent by the EPO and its PR firm?
“So the lobbyists from IAM posted a lie and never deleted it, either.”There’s no UPC without the UK, as we noted in our previous post, so it’s still a limbo scenario (deadlock) for the Unitary Patent either way.
Found via Team UPC (Bristows) was this recycling of bogus or misleading news about the “Committee on Economy, Industry and Competitiveness”. Watch how they rephrased it. Manuel Rey-Alvite Villar wrote the headline “Spanish parliament calls on the government to join the unitary patent and UPC system” (picked up by Dr. Luke McDonagh).
See what’s misleading here? The government is not voting for that, but Team UPC is just misleading people — yet again — with fake news, hoping to make the distortions/lies a reality. Have they no shame?
What the ‘article’ says does not even match the headline.
As Henrion pointed out, “Spanish parliament voting for UPC means Spanish citizens will have to appeal at the Spanish Constitutional Court https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitutional_Court_of_Spain …
“How many people fell for it? How many people passed (e.g. retweeted) such false statements and never corrected these, even once they realised these statements were misleading at best?”Contrary to some ‘reports’ (lobbying from Team UPC), the UPC isn’t happening in Spain. But IAM will carry on with tweets like this: “Opposition PSOE has today demanded that Spain’s minister for economy explains to Parliament the government’s opposition to joining the UPC.”
That’s very different from what Team UPC blogs are saying. Consider what the Dutch team is saying in its blog. To quote: “The Spanish parliament will vote today on a non-binding motion of the socialist opposition party PSOE, which calls on the government to reconsider joining the Unitary Patent system.”
Now compare this to the headline which is a quote from one side only, without even an attribution. It says “Parliament votes in favour of Spain joining Unitary Patent system”
How many people fell for it? How many people passed (e.g. retweeted) such false statements and never corrected these, even once they realised these statements were misleading at best? From what we could gather this past week, the fake news is now a sort of consensus, so British and German politician might easily be fooled/bamboozled into the idea that Spain is no longer a barrier to the UPC.
“UPC would be highly damaging to Spanish companies as the vast majority of them are small and currently not susceptible to ruinous litigation from other countries — something that only the UPC would facilitate.”Watch another new blog post of UPC lobbyists, again a selective quote that’s being cast as fact: “It is detrimental to Spain to stay outside the Unitary Patent system”
This is of course an utter lie right there in the headline. First of all, Spain would not stay out of the UPC if there was no Unitary Patent to begin with. The lobbyists pretend it’s inevitable, but they are liars. It’s a lobbying technique. But more to the point, UPC would be highly damaging to Spanish companies as the vast majority of them are small and currently not susceptible to ruinous litigation from other countries — something that only the UPC would facilitate.
Still believe that Spain is about to ratify the UPC? Then send me an E-mail, I can get you a discount on some Martian land and the nicer parts of the Moon. Order today and get a free oxygen bubble. █
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They said we’d have UPC ratified in the UK on March 7th. Nope! Didn’t happen. As usual, it’s faked optimism (a lobbying tactic akin to learned helplessness).
Summary: For lobbying purposes, the EPO pretends that the reality of Brexit in no way undermines UPC and proponents of the UPC (few law firms looking to profit from a transition) keep lying about it, in a coordinated effort — EU-wide — to induce defeatism among UPC opponents, causing political panic and near surrender amid a perceived rush, as if UPC will definitely start soon and those not joining will be left behind
THE EPO recently had the media reprint and repeat its lies, maybe owing to these massive PR contracts that Battistelli had secretly signed and later even expanded with fracking lobbyists. They are truly desperate to sell lies to the public — as facts are not convenient — and as we have witnessed before, that form of lobbying from paid media extends to UPC puff pieces.
The EPO makes it no secret that it meddles and intervenes in UPC matters (politics). “This online course provides easy access to the main concepts involved in patent litigation,” the EPO wrote last week. The chart in the page contains a fictional (wishful thinking) element, Unitary Patent, as if they take it for granted before it even exists, except in draft papers. Meanwhile, the same media which habitually produces puff pieces for Battistelli (silly lies about Apple patents with this publication, and never even a single article about the EPO conflict) helps spread fake news about the UPC. It’s lobbying disguised as news, with the headline “Unitary patent expected this year, despite Brexit” (expected by who? The liars who lobby for it? Or those who want others to believe so and then make it so?).
“The EPO makes it no secret that it meddles and intervenes in UPC matters (politics).”As we showed here before, based on a very recent poll, the large majority of patent professionals does not believe this. “EU will find a way to keep UK in unitary patent, says EPO chief” is another new puff piece. It’s even worse than a puff piece; it’s just a Battistelli placement, not in any way an investigative report (typical for lazy people in the corporate ‘journalism’ business). Éanna Kelly from Science|Business apparently thinks that copy-pasting Battistelli makes this a “report”.
“Brexit is clouding its future role in the new common patent,” says the author, “but Benoit Battistelli, head of the European Patent Office thinks there are ways to keep the UK in the system” (like lobbying and manipulating the media?).
“Meanwhile, the same media which habitually produces puff pieces for Battistelli (silly lies about Apple patents with this publication, and never even a single article about the EPO conflict) helps spread fake news about the UPC.”“The latest EPO “puff piece”,” one reader told us shortly after this press release [1, 2] (warning:
epo.org links), reminds us that Battistelli keeps making photo ops with subservient British politicians who don’t know what they’re doing. “The patent posterboys,” another one of our readers called it. “EPO President meets with Jo Johnson, the new UK intellectual property minister,” says the headline. It’s a lobbying trip, like the one with Lucy (exactly coinciding with the EPO strike).
Here is what this puff piece says:
EPO President Benoît Battistelli met the UK Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation Jo Johnson in London on 8 March to discuss recent developments in patents and their role in supporting innovation. Mr Battistelli and Mr Johnson discussed the European patent system and recent reforms at the EPO to further improve the quality and efficiency of the patent grant process, ahead of the EPO’s future role in the unitary patent system.
Minister Johnson said: “It was a pleasure to meet with President Battistelli today to discuss the European patent system and wider efforts to support innovation. Driving economic growth across the UK is a priority for this Government and therefore IP has never been more important.” He added: “Successful intellectual property regimes protect the hard work of inventors, underpin innovative economies, and help inspiring ideas become a reality.”
EPO President Battistelli said: “I was very pleased to hear the reconfirmation by the Minister that the UK government is committed to finalize the national ratification of the UPC treaty in order for the Court to be operational on 1 December 2017 and thus for the EPO to be able to deliver the first Unitary Patent at the same time.”
These words (the above quotes) sent a wave of shock among UPC sceptics and antagonists, who don’t know that everything the EPO says these days contains a lot of lies. Does Johnson even realise the ramifications of such a move? Brexit is not compatible with the UPC (legally and technically impossible), as we already explained in a series last year. It came in 7 parts:
A few days ago MIP posted: : “Will Poland become a safe haven from the #UPC for manufacturing/service companies? Litigation strategy panel at #patentforum2017 discuss” (there is also a photo in there, it’s a UPC lobbying event/opportunity which we will revisit later).
“But if the brother of Brexit proponent Boris Johnson, together with his new friend
ErdoganBattistelli, defies British law as well as common sense, then Britain will not only lose this advantage but also become easy prey to patent trolls.”The UK would become that safe haven, assuming other countries go on with something resembling the UPC (they need to redo it because the UK would not participate). But if the brother of Brexit proponent Boris Johnson, together with his new friend ErdoganBattistelli, defies British law as well as common sense, then Britain will not only lose this advantage but also become easy prey to patent trolls. Why?
Well, last week we drafted a press release with FFII, with the goal of getting a debate in the British Parliament as soon as possible. We got some quotes from 3 or 4 business people (from the UK). Among the quotes put forth towards the end:
- “The Unitary Patent will be the nail in the coffin for the european software industry. This court will be populated by members of the patent industry, which has broaden the scope of patents to software for the last 30 years.”
- “UK has still 2 years to ratify, the rush is coming from the patent industry and foreign governments who blackmailed the UK government ‘if you don’t ratify now, we will rewrite the UPC and go without you’. The rush for Mr Johnson is to ratify without a new debate in Parliament before the end of March, when Brexit is triggered. No impact analysis of UPC has ever been made for the software industry.”
- “UPC means job losses. Small software companies can’t defend themselves against threats by patent trolls, and this is the biggest risk for the UPC. In the US, the only line of defense for small companies is the Alice decision. But with UPC, the fox will be in charge of the henhouse.”
- “Many other software companies accross Europe are opposing the Unitary Patent. American patent trolls are already lurking at Europe as a better place to do litigation than in the US.”
- “The UPC is a luxury castle for those multinational companies who can afford litigation. This is not the case for small software companies.”
“The worst thing about this is UK companies which trade only in the UK can be hit by Patent Trolls from the EU regardless,” one person wrote the other day.
An E-mail was also sent out by the FFII regarding a new UK-centric campaign against “Unitary Software Patents ratification” (to better target those who are affected in the software industry). Alex Macfie, of FFII UK, eventually sent around the following mail to FFII supporters, expressing concisely what’s at stake:
Dear FFII UK supporter,
Today FFII UK is launching a campaign in order to oppose the ratification of the Unitary Patent treaty. The failed 2005 software patent directive was replaced by the Unitary Patent Court at the request of large software companies, and we are now 12 years later where they are very close to achieve what they wanted.
We are inviting to you to sign the petition, and more importantly, to call your Member of Parliament, and ask him on a parliamentary debate on the consequences of UPC on the software industry:
The UK government wants to ratify this international treaty before the end of March, when the Brexit process starts. This can happen at any day now, and only a Parliamentary debate can stop it.
Please call your MP now, and help us to stop the ratification of this undemocratic treaty.
About 25 companies and more than 100 people have signed the UPC petition, in spite of not many people comprehending patents and knowing what the UPC is actually about. There is still time to sign some more and send the link around (to solicit more signatures). The date which Team UPC said would be the day for ratification is already 5 days behind, so their optimistic prediction (as always) turns out to have been bunk. Just like their job advertisements — for openings that did not even exist and probably will never exist.
“The date which Team UPC said would be the day for ratification is already 5 days behind, so their optimistic prediction (as always) turns out to have been bunk.”But don’t think that Team UPC is defeated. As we shall show in the next few posts, Team UPC works tirelessly and resorts to dirty tricks in an effort to ram the UPC down the UK’s throat by this month’s end. They know it’s going to take a miracle, or simply mischief. Bird & Bird, a large part of Team UPC (trying to profit from this), wrote this a month ago: “#UPP2017 insight. Want to know how to prepare for the #UPC and #UnitaryPatent this spring? Okay, @twobirdsIP have got you covered: pic.twitter.com/TuN3wiRl7r”
So they’re so optimistic about it that they already approach clients for money, as one might expect. One of their vocal workers, Wouter Pors, even takes advantage of Merpel's throwing of the towel to promote the UPC. Here is his self-serving (promotional towards the end) comment:
It is indeed a pity that so far no majority could be reached in the Administrative Council to take the decisions that would improve the situation at the EPO. It is also a pity that the decision to move the Boards of Appeal to Haar, which doesn’t seem to serve any sensible purpose, was not stopped by a majority in the Administrative Council. However, that doesn’t mean that nothing is happening. In my view, it is important that those delegations that do strive for improvement and spend enormous amounts of time and effort to achieve positive results continue to be supported. An independent and critical press can play an important role in the process. Your posts are widely read thoughout the EPC conutries and I think it is worthwhile to keep this up.
The EPO as such is a wonderful organisation for patent harmonization and will become even more crucial with the introduction of the Unitary Patent. It is and will remain important to closely monitor developments and stimulate progress, certainly also towards and after 30 June 2018.
Wouter Pors, who has been pushing for the UPC for personal gain, weighs in and pushes the perception that the UPC is inevitable and unstoppable. This isn’t the first time he comments in this British blog to promote the Unitary Patent; of course not. We covered other examples and later on we’ll show how he and his colleagues in the Netherlands use their own blog to advance misleading stories. █
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The litigation lobby rears its ugly head,
but much to its chagrin,
Lee’s career is not dead
Summary: The insulting and condescending nature in which the patent microcosm lobbies for its interests these days, all for the sake of the bottom line of non-practicing and parasitic elements that keep taxing practicing human beings and practicing companies
WE previously gave examples of shame-lobbying for UPC, e.g. in Germany by IAM. That subject will be revisited later on when we publish a series about the UPC. We have been seeing the same thing, however, also in the United States. IAM, which loves patent maximalism (it is promoting software patents, too), has played a key role in the attacks on Michelle Lee. It also promoted if not lobbied for Randall Rader as a replacement to her. Such despicable moves, with despicable proposals on behalf of the despicable Rader (look back at his disgraced history), are the type of things we’ll never forget.
“Such despicable moves, with despicable proposals on behalf of the despicable Rader (look back at his disgraced history), are the type of things we’ll never forget.”Watchtroll meanwhile smears the US Supreme Court for merely improving the patent system, by improving quality. Failing to grasp that software patents ARE what he labels the “weak patents”, Gene Quinn also shames some other entities. It’s a sad shame that a person who doesn’t even know how computer programs work keeps promoting them by insulting judges, insulting PTAB (appeal boards) and so on… Watchtroll is a special case, as it has become an attack site which smeared Lee at least half a dozen times (that we have kept track of).
The patent propaganda site, IAM, views companies as nothing but a pile of patents (this new article has it all over the headline alone) and days ago it said “[e]xpect extreme lobbying from all quarters as a result,” in relation to Lee. Who has been behind this “extreme lobbying” if not IAM, Watchtroll and the likes of them? And watch their highly loaded headline, “The Trump administration’s USPTO silence tells us all we need to know about its patent priorities” (as if they insult the administration for not caring at all about patents). Here is a key part:
Well, I wonder if that silence tells us all we need to know. It was over six weeks ago that the new US leader was sworn in and during that entire time there has been no word from the USPTO about who is in charge at the agency. The very strong rumour just before inauguration day was that Michelle Lee was to carry on in the job – and that does seem like it may now be the case; but if it is, there has been no confirmation. All attempts to find out where things stand have been met with a firm no comment from USPTO spokespeople who, you must imagine, are as frustrated as the rest of us about their inability to say more.
Michelle Lee's position has been officially confirmed actually; uncertainty was cast by malicious actors who sought to undermine her career for personal gain. IAM plays a massive role in the attacks on Lee’s legitimacy, e.g. by promoting Randall Rader and giving a platform to those who spread malicious rumours about Lee. Trump might write something about it, perhaps to the effect of “IAM keeps insulting my staff to accomplish commercial goals. SAD!”
“It’s not news but lobbying disguised as constructive advice. At whose behalf? Look at the income sources of IAM.”In other (fake) news from IAM, here is another new headline: “The Trump administration sees IP-driven profits as a top trade priority; but it should look closer to home too”
IAM, herein, keeps using "China!" to lobby Trump. It’s not news but lobbying disguised as constructive advice. At whose behalf? Look at the income sources of IAM. It’s like a pressure group, yet it’s syndicated by Google as though it is “News”.
“It’s like a pressure group, yet it’s syndicated by Google as though it is “News”.”What China is doing right now (broadening patent scope) is a very bad move which will prove regrettable. It’s bad for Chinese people. Bastian Best, linking to Watchtroll, repeats/amplifies the “China!” lobby (those calling for patent maximalism “because China!”). I kindly asked him to read about the pitfalls such a move would entail, negatively impacting both Chinese and American people. I don’t know if he is receptive to opinions that don’t favour his bottom line, but I certainly hope so. He is at least very courteous.
Speaking of China, see this new article from LexField Law Offices. It’s not hoax for April 1st but repetition of a subject we covered here before, namely:
On March 1, 2017, the State Intellectual Property Office of China (“SIPO”) of China announced formal amendments to its Patent Examination Guidelines. The formal amendments are almost the same as the version SIPO previously published for public comments last year. The amendments will take effective as of April 1, 2017 (and it remains to be clarified whether and how the amendments will be retrospectively applied to existing patent applications and patents).
In a sense, as we have explained here countless times before, China shoots its own foot. Singapore, similarly, is trying to attract and/or create patent trolls rather than foster innovation in a place that is safe/secure from them. Here is what IAM had to say about Singapore last week, being the trolls proponent that it has always been:
Just a couple of weeks back, IAM reported on a Singapore government proposal which suggested that the city-state may consider attracting or creating its own IP commercialisation entities. During last Friday’s IPBC Southeast Asia – our first conference focused on the region – IP Office of Singapore (IPOS) chief executive Darren Tang made clear that he is a big believer in IP monetisation as a way for companies to realise their full value creation potential. Most companies in the region may be far off from monetising large patent portfolios, but they revealed many other reasons why they are getting serious about IP.
What IAM means by “monetisation” and “value creation potential” is basically trolling and aggression. They have been using these euphemisms a lot recently.
Watching the proponents of patent maximalism is essential as they resort to rather nasty tactics and unless they are challenged for that, they are likely to carry on undeterred, causing human suffering and commercial suffering to plenty of productive firms. █
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Lobbying by front/pressure groups disguised as news sites versus the actual facts, which were recently studied by the Harvard Business School Working Knowledge
Summary: More examples of the ongoing “reputation management” by IAM, on behalf of partners and a target audience; A new Harvard HBS study about the real, dire impact of patent trolls
Whenever IAM says “NPEs” it means patent trolls. Everyone knows that IAM is in the business of softening the image of paying stakeholders, including trolls, the EPO, and so on; we often use the analogy of an ATM; some deposit subscription money or event sponsorship in order to later withdraw influence, inaccurate public perception, puff pieces and so on. And watch what is coming; like those that pay IAM to launder their reputation, trolls collectively improve their image through sites like IAM. We don’t mean to be rude but merely to point out what IAM stands for; it’s like a lobbying site, not a news site. Not too long ago the EPO‘s PR firm deposited some money at IAM’s coffers and they seem to be getting their money's worth.
“The term “value-creation effort” is a euphemism for litigation, usually against vulnerable firms.”Here is Richard Lloyd, one of their biggest proponents of patent trolls (others are too, but to a lesser degree), writing about Via Licensing (just a troll or a front for a practicing company). This other new article from IAM teaches us that Broadcom wants to be another Qualcomm (another patent bully) and we believe, based on recent reports, that Softbank (new owner of ARM) is increasingly doing the same thing. Gradually. The trend seems to be the setup of patent-asserting proxies, which are essentially trolls that are immune from legal retaliation (balance of powers). “Broadcom,” IAM explains, “launched a number of patent infringement lawsuits against Asian and US companies this week, in what looks to be the Singapore-based chipmaker’s first concerted assertion campaign since its reconfiguration through merger last year. The litigation is the latest step in an escalating value-creation effort on the part of the new entity.”
The term “value-creation effort” is a euphemism for litigation, usually against vulnerable firms. Herein lies the big problem. They cannot even afford to challenge so many patents, hence their knees buckle and they cough out ‘protection’ money. Hallmark of trolling!
As the figures serve to show, trolls are typically motored by software patents so in order to get rid of both, remove the latter.
United for Patent Reform took note of this new study about “Patent Trolls and Small-Business Employment” (paper title).
“New study by @HarvardHBS finds legislation to combat #patent trolls has positive economic impact on tech startups,” it summarised and here is the complete abstract:
Patent trolls are organizations that own patents but do not make or use the patented technology directly, instead using their patent portfolios to target firms with patent-infringement claims. This paper provides evidence that state anti-troll laws have had a net positive effect for small firms in high-tech industries. There is no significant effect for larger or non-high-tech firms.
Put in simple terms, small businesses suffer the most and the litigation industry gains the most. This is relevant to the debates about the UPC, which would definitely attract trolls. Revisit this position paper from the European Digital SME Alliance. █
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