Well, pray tell what Microsoft was thinking when it came up with this latest (‘privacy’ themed) PR charade
Summary: More of the patently ridiculous claims that Microsoft combats state-sponsored attacks are being further disseminated by corporate media
The newest PR strategy of some Internet-centric companies, fitting the privacywashing pattern*, is something along the lines of “will inform users of/about state-sponsored attacks” (Twitter, for instance, made a lot of positive coverage for itself this way). Microsoft inevitably joins in, probably in an effort to garner some positive coverage for itself, however ridiculously and opportunistically.
The LA Times, which based on recent revelations occasionally authors its articles with help from the CIA (i.e. helping to promote the agenda of Deep State, like those who used US-sponsored attacks and Brennan-supported efforts to crack the PCs of US Senate members who had probed CIA torture), has just pushed out there to the broad public Microsoft’s propaganda, based on Microsoft’s lobbying blog (that’s what this blog really is). How pathetic is that? It’s not journalism, it’s lobbying amplified. To quote the LA Times, “Microsoft pledged on Wednesday to notify people with Microsoft accounts (which include Outlook.com emails and OneDrive) if it believes those accounts have been targeted or hacked by people working on behalf of a nation or state.”
“It’s not journalism, it’s lobbying amplified.”To quote Microsoft’s lobbyists: “We already notify users if we believe their accounts have been targeted or compromised by a third party, and we provide guidance on measures users can take to keep their accounts secure. We’re taking this additional step of specifically letting you know if we have evidence that the attacker may be “state-sponsored” because it is likely that the attack could be more sophisticated or more sustained than attacks from cybercriminals and others. These notifications do not mean that Microsoft’s own systems have in any way been compromised.”
Well, “the question is,” XFaCE wrote in the
#techrights IRC channel, “why there are successful state-sponsored attack in the first place?” He was perhaps referring to back doors, which Microsoft deliberately creates for so-called ‘law enforcement’, with ‘terror’ as a convenient pretext.
As XFaCE put it, sarcastically, “don’t worry, trust Microsoft.”
“The same goes for those who cover Microsoft’s publicity stunt in Ireland (show trial) and so-called ‘secure’ facilities in Germany.”Microsoft helps state-sponsored attacks by Putin et al (attacks on Russian dissidents) and even by the US government (attacks against the entire world). Even NSA attacks against US citizens and perhaps many others, including members of Congress (who according to the latest developments came under surveillance for purely political purposes). Will Microsoft tell people about state-sponsored attacks that Microsoft itself is aiding?
Microsoft’s lobbyists are being laughable here. Those who help these lobbyists get out their message are not journalists or even stenographers. They’re what Stalin would have called “useful idiots”. The same goes for those who cover Microsoft’s publicity stunt in Ireland (show trial) and so-called ‘secure’ facilities in Germany.
There is a reason why the FBI’s Director has been silent about Microsoft’s ‘encryption’; there are back doors already (don’t forget CIPAV for instance). They have been there for a long time. As Micah Lee put it some days ago, “Recently Bought a Windows Computer? Microsoft Probably Has Your Encryption Key” (we covered this a long time ago). Microsoft Peter has already responded to this with an utterly ridiculous article (widely ridiculed on the Web and in forums). Microsoft cares about privacy and security like BP cares about the environment or like Microsoft “loves Linux” (baloney). █
* When companies that are among the worst privacy offenders try to paint themselves “privacy champions”, much like oil/coal companies try to undergo "greenwashing" treatment, whereby they’re viewed as friends of the Earth.
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Summary: How the controversial European Patent Office (EPO) is working behind the scenes in order to police its portrayal and also shape news about the EPO
ONE aspect of the EPO which we never explored in depth is the so-called ‘communications’ department (a more recent euphemism for propaganda). Don’t forget the circumstances under which Vincent Bénard left (there were other such stories — some even more shocking — at that time).
Based on our reliable sources, who had experience with the EPO’s media- or trend-setting team, the PR team of the Office has the “sweet talkers”. These are the people who will pretend to be your friends or “buddies”, as journalists who were subjected to similar treatment from Microsoft PR agencies called it. This is what some of these people are professionally trained to do. Moreover, we managed to learn that they also have the people who are actually pressuring (even over the phone) not to publish certain things. Well, pressuring publications is not PR, it’s almost a form of bullying. We learned that editors and publishers are given marching orders for writers (commissioning work). If there was a propaganda minister at Munich, who would it be?
“Moreover, we managed to learn that they also have the people who are actually pressuring (even over the phone) not to publish certain things.”We learned that the EPO’s PR team has, at times, attempted to change existing (to be published) stories by asking publishers to make them balanced rather than “biased”, meaning not favourable to the EPO’s image. Rainer (“Press spokesperson” is his job title) is allegedly doing a lot of the communications, sometimes Jeremy also (watch how he and IAM ‘magazine’ worked hand in glove, so to speak). We can’t help but wonder what made the BBC spike a negative story about the EPO. Jana Mittermaier is not directly involved all that much, at least not with media organisations. She had studied in the UK, where Jeremy also came from.
Remember that the EPO is an international body, not a European body, so wasting money on improving its image isn’t even designed/intended to serve European interests. The “E” in EPO is very misleading. Recall the greenwashing PR campaign (expensive EPO-commissioned ‘study’), coinciding with climate talks in Paris. This one example and other patterns of PR as of late serve to show just how desperate the EPO is for positive messages (it’s willing to pay to ‘manufacture’ these).
“The EPO is quite a greased-up propaganda machine.”One other thing we learned is that — much as we predicted all along — it is now confirmed that the EPO’s PR team sends (in mass or bulk) press releases to a lot of sites, attempting to seed their so-called ‘story’ du jour (sometimes commissioned ‘study’). This method is rather effective at getting one's message out there if one is not shy to stoop down to this level. A lot of PR people lost this sense of shame as do this habitually (“everyone’s doing it!”), sending lots of junk even to complete strangers whom they never ever spoke to.
Perhaps the most shocking thing that we learned is that the editors in some publications put pressure on their writers to write articles or something similar (more like “announcements”) based on press releases sent by the EPO. This is based on what we learned privately. It’s not just hearsay.
The EPO is quite a greased-up propaganda machine. Techrights is up against something that calls itself “patent office” but has a massive PR operation (and fancy events for so-called ‘inventors’ of the year); it’s something which calls itself “European” but is run by and for globalists. A lot of the PR too (operating at a budget of nearly $100,000 per month!) has been outsourced to the United States. █
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Watch out and be prepared for the massive Unitary Patent PR campaign
Summary: A look at highly expensive lobbying for personal gain by Bill Gates in just one area (among many) and how this relates to EPO lobbying for the UPC, which basically helps make the rich even richer
BASED on the EPO’s spendings of nearly a million dollars for a US company to promote the Unitary Patent in the US, there is definitely something going on and we cannot help thinking of Gates’ promotion of Common Core, which he profits from (we no longer cover this, having written hundreds of articles on the subject). It’s all about Big Business, which is already treated more favourably than others at the EPO.
A few days ago we found this promotional EPO article that says: “Reflecting in statistics, the European Union is the second-largest overseas filer with the SIPO, accounting for 28% of foreign filings in 2014. In the same year, Chinese filers contributed more than 9% filed with EPO, mainly clustering around the sectors of digital communication, computer technology and telecommunications.”
“It’s all about Big Business, which is already treated more favourably than others at the EPO.”Well, actually, many of the filers are big businesses from China (some are government-connected and enjoy a fast lane at the EPO). Battistelli has been visiting China and posing a lot with Chinese officials recently, not because they have so much in common in terms of human rights but because Battistelli serves globalists, not Europeans. He serves the world’s billionaires, people like Bill Gates.
Incidentally, last night as we reorganised some old feeds we found alarming headlines from the past 2 years. In them, Bill Gates’ push of Common Core came under fire. Like the Unitary Patent in Europe, there’s a big PR campaign behind it. See articles (written by teachers) such as “An Audit of Bill Gates’ Common Core Spending” or “Bill Gates: An infographic”.
“It’s an information war.”Having essentially bribed the Seattle Times for favourable coverage before [1, 2] (like Adelson does right now in Las Vegas, despite getting caught), Bill Gates is doing it again. To quote some headlines, “Bill Gates funded the Seattle Times “Education Lab””, “Bill Gates funds the media then secretly meets with them” and “Bill Gates funds the media, including the Seattle Times’ Education Lab, then secretly meets with them”. He gives them marching orders like he did in the New York Times with his occasional visits. Gates also pays notable British press like the BBC and The Guardian in exchange for favourable coverage. It’s an information war. He is buying out the media and the front groups, making them incapable of resisting and rendering them just puppets catering for his agenda, masquerading as lots of interest groups of various different stakeholders. Here are some headlines from the aforementioned teachers’ blog:
A lot of the above reminds us of Battistelli and his precious Unitary Patents. He has an agenda to sell and obscene amounts of money are now being (mis)used for an unacceptable PR campaign. Who benefits? Certainly not the public.
Don’t believe anything that EPO management says, including whatever it may say about the Unitary Patent. Sadly, the EPO is now poisoning also the media and it sets up events that serve as Unitary Patent propaganda. █
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Below is a self-explanatory screenshot
Summary: Benoît Battistelli’s EPO has paid a lot of money to FTI Consulting, which is in turn paying an untold amount of money to IAM in order to help create a pro-UPC forum, stuffed with biased (for their pockets) attendants, keynotes, etc.
IAM’s MANY writings about patents have been followed by yours truly for over half a decade. I’m no stranger to their ‘work’. As noted here before, IAM glorifies patent stockpiling (irrespective of the consequences), it promotes software patents everywhere, and it puts at risk people who are critical of the EPO. It recently blocked anyone who dared to expose IAM’s pro-EPO agenda as if they try to prevent communication and perhaps even have a lot to hide (they already admitted receiving money from the EPO).
“As noted here before, IAM glorifies patent stockpiling (irrespective of the consequences), it promotes software patents everywhere, and it puts at risk people who are critical of the EPO.”The UPC isn’t bad for everyone. It gives money to patent lawyers (who along with large corporations that employ them stand to benefit from more lawsuits, injunctions, etc.), but what about the rest of European society?
Last night we spotted what looks like some kind of a new EPO campaign hosted and run by its (paid by their own admission) ‘buddies’ from IAM. Remember that FTI Consulting was paid €880,000 a few months ago.
The event site is quite revealing. The agenda is made clear right at the front page. Regarding the UPC, for example, before it’s even approved they dub it “Europe’s New Patent Market” and then they use positive language like “Winning Strategies for the UPC Regime” (winning in the litigation sense?).
Who’s winning? Patent lawyers? Europe certainly would not win, and Battistelli is trying very hard to silence high-level EPO staff that antagonises the UPC, even after leaving the EPO.
The EPO’s FTI Consulting AstroTurfing campaign is becoming quite a disaster. Once made visible and known to more people, everything the EPO does looks like manipulation of media. What on Earth was Battistelli thinking? The implications of this are severe and even French politicians are complaining about it (we still need a translation from French, both of the letter and of this new article).
It is starting to look more plausible (or probable) that IAM blocked many people because it had become the girlfriend of Battistelli and the EPO. Trying to defend such a relationship isn’t easy. FTI Consulting is essentially an EPO purse right now, serving as somewhat of a proxy, almost like a money-laundering operation (budget for one year: nearly $1 million). Just watch what FTI Consulting apparently did for fracking clients.
“Just watch what FTI Consulting apparently did for fracking clients.”We have researched this a little further and found that, based on tweets such as this, the site’s section has been around for at least a week (maybe a lot longer).
whois.net lookup shows “Creation Date: 11-sep-2014″ and does not reveal who registered it. We previously saw how lobbying groups or front groups of Microsoft hid their lobbying domains quite cleverly but then exposed that. Looking a little deeper (identity is partly concealed) we find who set up the domain:
Admin Name: Christopher Proud
Admin Organization: Globe Business Publishing
Admin Street: New Hibernia House
Admin Street: Winchester Walk
Admin City: London
Admin State/Province: London
Admin Postal Code: SE1 9AG
Admin Country: GB
Admin Phone: +44.2072340606
Admin Phone Ext:
Admin Fax: +44.2072340606
There was also an event for patent trolls organised just months after this site’s setup. Is this a way to start a venture? Collecting money from trolls to promote trolls or at least improve their image? Others do so too and when challenged online they failed to defend it.
“Shameless lobbying with the veneer of an ‘independent’ ‘news’ site. Clever stunt from FTI Consulting?”See the “NPE 2015″ pages. Among the sponsors (which paid IAM) were infamous anti-Linux, Microsoft-connected trolls such as MOSAID (renamed since) and Acacia, both as “Gold” sponsors. They’re joined by other trolls, famous lawyers of trolls, and Microsoft-connected aggressors like Finjan. There’s no FTI Consulting in sight, so the EPO connection (not the IAM connection) seems likely to have put them in the UPC event. Among other sponsors we only see the world’s most vocal proponents of software patents, which serves to reinforce our perception of the principal forces behind UPC.
Isn’t that wonderful? Shameless lobbying with the veneer of an ‘independent’ ‘news’ site. Clever stunt from FTI Consulting? Or will it simply backfire? █
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Besieged from many directions, the EPO can’t just ignore bad news, only attempt to bury these by manufacturing ‘good’ (somewhat faked) messages to be embedded in news sites
Summary: A roundup of this week’s news (with focus on late week in particular), serving to show what the EPO’s management is really up against when it comes to shifting public opinion
Benoît Battistelli’s EPO has paid truly outrageous amounts of money to seed the press with positive publicity. It’s more or less clear why Battistelli wants and needs that. The EPO has become a byword for gross institutional abuse not just in Europe but internationally. Battistelli paid nearly a million dollars for an international firm (based in Washington) to whitewash the EPO in a period of one year. That’s almost $100,000 a month in out-of-the-ordinary (additional) PR budget. Good use of budget? What next, private limousines for Battistelli? There are rumours that he wants these too, having gotten tired of just private bodyguards.
Battistelli’s focus (as of late) on PR has been rather gross or crude. The greenwashing aside (it’s now a fortnight old), there is the “compliance” spin right now. Here is a new puff piece derived from this EPO spin, as covered here the other day. What is this, “media presence” again?
“The EPO has become a byword for gross institutional abuse not just in Europe but internationally.”Let’s look at some real news, not regurgitation of official press releases (seeded in
epo.org and probably sent en masse to thousands of lazy journalists all across Europe). After the press release about the Unitary Patent (which the EPO openly lobbies for) we even found this article whose headline can be translated into “Unitary patent system in the EU on the spot” (according to EPO). Is this the desired outcome of the PR campaign? Either way, it only tells part of the story and is an effort at self-fulfilling prophecies.
Days ago in PTAB Watch we spotted this article which said: “With respect to the European patent, despite the acknowledgement by the PTAB that laws and rules are different in Europe, and a previous PTAB decision (Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. v. Emerachem Holdings, LLC, Case IPR2014-01557, slip op. at 15 (PTAB Mar. 16, 2015) (Paper 13)) that held that whatever happened in the European Patent Office (“EPO”) is essentially irrelevant, the Board determined that the European prosecution history evidence was probative of whether a cited reference is analogous art to the patent under review, and admitted the evidence for this limited purpose. The Board also determined that the post-dated publications submitted in District Court litigation that discussed terms and features recited in the claims were relevant to show how the Patent Owner had been interpreting its claims during proceedings to enforce the patent.”
“The thing about the EPO is, it’s going nowhere fast and heading into irrelevancy.”The significance of this in light the recent events and the context (see full article for details) is that there’s not much respect for the EPO’s judgment. As the article put it, “whatever happened in the European Patent Office (“EPO”) is essentially irrelevant” (irrelevancy or irrelevance imply there is no perceived superiority over the decisions or judgments in the US).
The thing about the EPO is, it’s going nowhere fast and heading into irrelevancy. Battistelli has accelerated this by orders of magnitude because the dysfunction increased in many areas (or aspects) and new areas of dispute emerged; it used to be mostly about patent scope. Not many people would bother pursuing patents at the EPO unless it maintains a high enough quality to justify the high cost. The EPO charges a lot of money (application and renewal fees from applicants) for several examiners to examine together/simultaneously, but the Office still rushes the process (speed over accuracy). No wonder EPO patents such as those granted to Apple are later -- once scrutinised by a court -- get invalidated. It serves to show that Battiselli’s approach shames the Office and harms its reputation.
“19 years to be granted a patent!”Eversheds International, an international legal practice, mentioned the EPO a couple of times yesterday [1, 2], reminding us of Baxter's notorious patent application at the EPO.
Eversheds wrote: “The patent was only granted by the European Patent Office (EPO) on 27 November 2013, despite having been filed on 9 July 1994, with a priority date of 19 July 1993. The extraordinarily long examination stage (19 years), meant that the period of effective patent protection was less than 1 year. Had a SPC been granted, its duration would have been approximately 3.5 years, a highly desirable extension to the term of patent protection.”
“In Twitter too we were told by lawyers about patents which took two decades to process, so the above is not an isolated incident.”19 years to be granted a patent! Some people complain about applications taking ten years. In Twitter too we were told by lawyers about patents which took two decades to process, so the above is not an isolated incident. People right here in the UK experience the same thing when they apply at the EPO.
More interesting in the media right now is actually the response of (real) journalists to this statement from the Parliament. The EPO is under attack from the European Parliament because it compromised patent scope/quality for the sake of short-term profit.
One new article says: “A ban on the patenting of products obtained by conventional breeding techniques, such as crossing, is essential to sustain innovation, food security and small businesses, says a non-legislative resolution voted by the European Parliament on 17 December.”
“This is a good example of patent scope gone awry for the sake of profit and protectionism for large corporations such as Monsanto.”EPO is being shamed in this article, which is one among many (some non-English sites have covered this too). EUbusiness wrote about it and noted that “No Patents on Seeds! is an international coalition of civil society organisations. It recently published a report containing an overview of patents granted by the EPO and a legal analysis. The report further highlights the need for more political action.
“The call made by the international coalition No Patents on Seeds! to stop these patents has the support of several hundred organisations all over Europe. The coalition No Patents on Seeds! is supported by Arche Noah (Austria), Bionext (Netherlands), The Berne Declaration (Switzerland), GeneWatch (UK), Greenpeace, Misereor (Germany), Development Fund (Norway), NOAH (Denmark), No Patents on Life (Germany), ProSpecieRara (Switzerland), Red de Semillas (Spain), Rete Semi Rurali (Italy), Reseau Semences Paysannes (France) and Swissaid (Switzerland). They are all calling for a revision of European Patent Law to exclude breeding material, breeding processes, plants and animals, their characteristics, their genetic components, the harvest and food derived thereof from patentability.”
“The latter involves Gillette, so we cannot help recalling the intervention of Željko Topić regarding razor blades in Croatia.”This is a good example of patent scope gone awry for the sake of profit and protectionism for large corporations such as Monsanto. Some companies are now spreading press releases about EPO patents on drugs and there are articles about US patents as they’re being used for protectionism and monopoly (to protect a notorious business model). The latter involves Gillette, so we cannot help recalling the intervention of Željko Topić regarding razor blades in Croatia. █
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The EPO’s marketing/PR people just put bad news on hold, won’t comment on it
Summary: The management of the European Private [sic] Office (EPO) continues to congratulate itself every other day, almost as though nothing has gone amiss and the EPO is an heroic leader of green energy, humanitarian unity, and compliance
Yesterday (late at night in particular), due to a quickly-growing backlog we published about half a dozen articles about the EPO. Watch Battistelli milking ISO 9001 (warning:
epo.org link), taking advantage of something which we covered in this old article and of ISO, another rubber-stamping organisation. After greenwashing and additional UPC glamourisation it’s apparently time to spread the false perception of EPO being in compliance (e.g. with the law). Clever spin.
It’s no secret that the Office is now lobbying (and wants a monopoly on this kind of lobbying, as we showed last night) for the UPC. Words like “Community”, “Unitary”, “European” and so on are supposed to make occupation of Europe by large (and usually foreign) corporations sound not just benign but also desirable. Watch Éanna Kelly from Science|Business acting as some kind of megaphone or courier for Battistelli in this new article that’s looking more like a press release. Is this part of the expensive PR campaign? As one person put it earlier today in IP Kat comments, “880k euros well spent?” (alluding to this leak of the FTI Consulting contract)
Here is the article in which this comment can be found. Among the comments we also see mentioned “AIPPI and Epi finally woke up from their long sleep. Better, because more courageous and complete, is the letter of AIPPI. Now BB [Battistelli] will get slaps from all directions on all issues: wrong on DG3, unrespectful of rules of law, disregard for due process, harassment of employees etc. He will have to get out of here with his team, and quick. At last…!”
The article is relatively short and in it Merpel wrote about letters which we already covered (before IP Kat) and added: “It’s anyone’s guess where this will go next. Merpel’s guess, based on another rumour she has heard, is that the AC will take the reform of the Boards entirely out of the hands of Mr Battistelli, and will develop its own proposals, perhaps through a sub-committee or within Board 28 (its internal management committee).”
In IP Kat comments, more so than in any other site, we suspect that the EPO (or some kind of PR proxy or EPO apologists) use distraction as an art form. In Merpel’s article there happens to be a link to this AMBA letter. Here is the full text of the letter:
Re: Orientation Paper on the Structural Reform of the BoA
AMBA has seen the Presidium’s letter to the AC in response to CA/98/15 (see Annex 1) and fully endorses it. We would like, however, to make some further comments.
1. The short timeframe foreseen in CA/16/15 was used to justify provisional measures, notably a freeze on recruitment. After nine months, CA/98/15 represents a rather small change with respect to CA/16/15. In this time, however, the staffing situation in the Boards has become critical, approaching 20% of posts are vacant, despite considerable user protests about backlogs and timeliness. Boards in some technical areas have insufficient members to handle cases.
2. AMBA has put forward concrete written proposals to the Task Force. We, however, have never seen a single document or proposal before the publication of CA/98/15. Moreover, the document manifestly takes no account of our submissions, despite assurances that they would be reflected in any proposal. The paper also takes no account of the comments of the AC members in the Council meeting of March 2015, or of the user survey results; rather, it misrepresents them (see Annex 2).
3. The paper states that the Office has asked an independent expert about the legality of the delegation of presidential powers and functions . We understand that this advice was first sought after the problems of CA/16/15 were highlighted. If there is no answer after nine months of study, it must be doubtful whether the delegation can possibly have the desired effect of clearly separating the judicial function from the executive. But, if delegation turns out not to be legal or not clearly to increase independence, the whole proposal is without foundation. It is premature to consider further measures, especially ones that the Council, board members, and users have identified as entirely secondary or misconceived, before resolving this crucial issue.
4. In our view, all the changes introduced in CA/98/15 are detrimental to both actual and perceived independence and do not solve the problem highlighted in decision R 19/12. The proposal now places considerably more power in the hands of the President of the Office: proposing the President of the BoA  and the Rules of Procedure , and involvement in setting up the BoAC . The BoAC now has more influence from the AC and still no voting representative of the BoA  despite the fact that AMBA, the Presidium, some delegations, and virtually all the responses to the user consultation have raised doubts as to whether a body of the AC should be involved in the running of the BoA. Contrary to what is stated , the BoAC is in no way limited to general advisory and consultative roles. There is no explanation of, and no mechanism for, assuring the Boards’ autonomy under the BoAC or the new President of the BoA. The removal of control from the Boards of the Rules of Procedure and conditions for re-appointment must reduce autonomy. Association of the Members of the Boards of Appeal / European Patent Office
5. AMBA and the Presidium jointly presented an alternative proposal (see Annex 3), involving a Senate for the Boards of Appeal, based on the existing Presidium, but in an extended composition that balances the independence of the BoA with the understandable wish of the AC to be more informed, and more involved about the functioning of the BoA (accountability). It is a proposal that requires minimal changes to the existing structure and which does not rely on delegation of presidential powers, but which is compatible with a BoAC as a sub-committee of the Council.
6. The setting of Rules of Procedure in national jurisdictions is a complicated matter that must be understood in their proper contexts. CA/98/15 glosses over this  and does not present the Council with sufficient information to make an informed judgement. It may be noted, however, that the CJEU and the ECHR decide their own Rules of Procedure. Amendments to the Rules of Procedure for the UPC are proposed by its Presidium (Art. 15(3)(a)).
7. The proposal puts the Boards back in the Office’s “technical” career path (as defined in Art. 47 ServRegs) . The Council recognised this as inappropriate for the Boards, which is why a transitional system was adopted. Not mentioned is the Boards’ paper regarding a career system. The main points were that the principles of judicial independence and security of tenure require that re-appointment should not be based on performance and that all board members (or chairmen) do the same job so that proficiency levels and promotion within a job level make no sense and would give a strange impression to the parties. The paper also proposed various scenarios to address these problems, by having grade advancement at re-appointment.
8. No delegate or user group has indicated any conflict of interest if an ex Board member works as a patent agent. If there were such a conflict, it would, a fortiori, not be possible for practising patent attorneys to sit as judges in the UPC.
9. Since a move outside Munich appears to be against the EPC, it provides an additional argument for those challenging the legality of the whole system. Moreover, again no delegate or user group sees a need to move out of Munich and most see no need to move at all. The alternatives presented in the paper are all associated with major disruptions and/or increased costs. We think that the alternative of remaining in the Isar building should be seriously considered.
The Boards of Appeal will be an essential part of the European Patent system for many years to come. AMBA therefore appeals to the Council to stop the ad-hoc interim measures that impede their functioning, and to critically analyse alternatives before taking any decisions that might damage their standing and their reputation and might be difficult/costly to reverse (relocation, reduction of posts, legislation etc.). We also support the idea of meeting with members of the AC and independent external experts to help find a common solution to this issue.
The AMBA Committee.
Not all is well at Eponia (understatement of the decade), but outsiders who just follow the EPO based on its “news” section and/or Twitter account won’t know a thing!
There’s a lot of malicious stuff going on inside the EPO right now (irrespective of the imminent Christmas break, which is exploited by patent bigwigs to the detriment of examiners), so we will definitely release many documents later today. It’s my birthday today, but defending law-abiding staff representatives at this crucial time is a lot more important. Some believe that the EPO plans to just sack (if possible) the suspended staff representatives before Christmas. We strongly doubt it, as it has been over a year since a judge was suspended and it’s still an ongoing issue of heated dispute. █
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Tired of exploiting refugees and cancer for public relations (PR) purposes?
Summary: The European Patent Office is now pulling the greenwashing card in an effort to improve its image
WIKIPEDIA defines greenwashing as “a form of spin in which green PR or green marketing is deceptively used to promote the perception that an organization’s products, aims or policies are environmentally friendly.”
“Media “presence” objectives spring to mind; the EPO is now interjecting itself into media after this sort of publicity stunt (usually coordinated with some partners such as IAM or UNEP in this latest case).”Well, the EPO is now doing exactly that (warning: this is an
epo.org link) and we can’t help but wonder if this is part of the media presence campaign, or seeding of positive publicity. Around the same time that the EPO was negotiating with and working towards ~$1,000,000 in budget to fracking AstroTurfers from FTI Consulting the EPO also came up with the headline “EPO to donate EUR 100 000 to help refugees in Munich” (small money compared to what was spent manipulating the media).
The EPO’s latest charm offensive (of the greenwashing kind) is already in rather obscure British media and Chinese state media. Media “presence” objectives spring to mind; the EPO is now interjecting itself into media after this sort of publicity stunt (usually coordinated with some partners such as IAM or UNEP in this latest case).
“As many can probably agree, the cute and cuddly narrative which the EPO’s management is trying to prop up is enough to make some people vomit.”Speaking of opportunistic charm offensives, see this new article titled “EPO intends to grant patent to its cancer immune primer INTUVAX”. This will become very relavant when we cover future scandals. We are going show how the EPO uses cancer to advance its political agenda while also pretending to fight cancer. In reality, the EPO uses cancer to crush ‘unwanted’ staff.
As many can probably agree, the cute and cuddly narrative which the EPO’s management is trying to prop up is enough to make some people vomit. █
“When good men die their goodness does not perish, but lives though they are gone. As for the bad, all that was theirs dies and is buried with them.”
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“In the Mopping Up phase, Evangelism’s goal is to put the final nail into the competing technology’s coffin, and bury it in the burning depths of the earth. Ideally, use of the competing technology becomes associated with mental deficiency…”
–James Plamondon, Microsoft
Summary: A roundup of rigged press coverage, intended purely to serve Microsoft’s agenda
MICROSOFT makes a mockery and a joke out of the media. Today we cover some of the latest examples.
The latest Microsoft marketing and pseudo-technical mumbo jumbo from Microsoft's propagandist Mary Branscombe was published by IDG the other day. It’s a Microsoft ad, basically masquerading as an article not about Microsoft. Even worse was Ed Bott‘s (Ad[vertising] Bot[net]) Microsoft spin for Vista 10, pretending that privacy is not an issue at all. This article is so Orwellian, deceptive, and detached from reality that it’s not even worth responding to. It’s just more ZDNet (CBS-owned) propaganda and it’s executed by a longtime Microsoft propagandist that Microsoft pays. It’s not even journalism, it’s just a Microsoft comedy, dismissing every concern about privacy in Vista 10 and using derogatory labels like “tinfoil hats” (much like the author did “Linux fanatics” before). The piece was translated to other languages and further disseminated by the CBS-owned ZDNet for maximum impact, masquerading as “opinion” because it’s not at all objective and it is not journalism. “Microsoft boosters all around the world (even in Czech Republic nearby) link to this FUD,” wrote to us Martin earlier today.
Attacks on GNU/Linux have also come from Beta News last week. The site is mostly Microsoft propaganda these days (see the managing editor’s recent articles to better understand his agenda). Some of the people who work under him are even more closely connected to Microsoft and are actively showing this by attacking GNU/Linux and constantly promoting Microsoft. Microsoft MVPs are not journalists, they’re Microsoft loyalists, like external staff.
A Microsoft propaganda site whose strong links to Microsoft we covered here many time before has just published a piece that is openwashing Microsoft. Originally written by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols (SJVN), the message is repeating Microsoft’s PR, including Microsoft’s moles inside the Linux Foundation. For example: “Ramji believes that under Nadella, “Open source is catching on and it’s on the verge of being mainstreamed at Microsoft. The real proof will come when open source is used in product groups.””
No, Microsoft is actively attacking Free/Open Source software in order to sell its proprietary software. This is well documented. Microsoft is not only attacking Munich and distorting a story from Italy (making up ‘facts’, i.e. “marketing”); it attacks FOSS as a whole. Here is last week’s timely rebuttal to Microsoft’s claims in Italy (the City Council of Pesaro to be precise). The article from Paolo Vecchi says that “Microsoft’s marketing team published a press release recently saying Office 365 is about 80% cheaper compared to the open source office suite, OpenOffice – with the figures stemming from reports in Italy and the City Council of Pesaro. The Redmond giant claims that to roll out Open Office, Pesaro incurred a one off cost of about €300,000 and had lots of problems with document formatting.
“But equally how would you convince a public sector organisation to migrate to your cloud services instead of using ‘expensive’ open source software?
“The obvious way would be to present a case study from a similar organisation together with a well written report commissioned to an “independent” consultancy firm. At this point your future customer has all the data and justifications required to sign on the dotted line.
“And some journalists are now presenting this case as fact of Microsoft Office 365 being 80% more economical than open source alternatives.
“I would argue that this is an isolated case and the PR efforts by big technology vendors, like many other methods, are being used to trick private and public organisations into signing contracts based on data or claims that may be not completely true.”
Microsoft’s PR is not factual at all. Offering massive discounts to manufacture false stories and change perception is no better than bribery. When a proprietary software giant (like Oracle or Microsoft) says “deliver savings to taxpayers” it means give shackles/lock-in with discount. The British government likes to make dumb statements like these every now and then, whenever it chooses to stay a slave of unbelievably greedy corporations with shoddy ‘products’ that the government has zero control over, proprietary software which is foreign too (with security flaws and national security-threatening back doors).
Microsoft’s efforts to pretend to be “open” don’t quite stop there because days ago we found misleading articles about “Open-Source” (with a dash, i.e. not really Open Source) Microsoft browser. Microsoft Emil (Emil Protalinski) was openwashing the browsers of Microsoft (we saw more of that several weeks ago with "Edge"), despite them being purely proprietary and standards-hostile.
Microsoft is just trying to re-brand IE and escape the bad name by means of deception, including some deceptive marketing and openwashing. “Unfortunately,” says the article, “Microsoft didn’t say how long, or how many developers, it took to build this proof-of-concept browser.”
A “proof-of-concept,” eh? Enough to generate some misleading headlines for PR.
At the bottom there’s promotional language advertising Microsoft with words like: “Microsoft Corporation is a public multinational corporation headquartered in Redmond, Washington, USA that develops, manufactures, licenses, and supports a wide range of products and services predominantly related to computing”
This could also be rewritten (while remaining, still, factually correct) as follows: “Microsoft Corporation is a convicted monopolist financially headquartered in tax havens so as to illegally evade taxes. It licenses products it does not own (like Android), blackmails competitors, engages in various competition crimes, helps marketing companies accumulate extensive data about Windows users, and aids large-scale espionage by the NSA.” █
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