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03.25.17

Depressing EPO News: Attacks on Staff, Attacks on Life, Brain Drain, Patents on Life, Patent Trolls Come to Germany, and Spain Being Misled

Posted in America, Europe, Patents at 4:50 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: A roundup of the latest developments at the EPO combined with feedback from insiders, who are not tolerating their misguided and increasingly abusive management

THE thousands of EPO workers are concerned. The tens if not hundreds of thousands of EPO stakeholders are concerned too. Software developers like myself are growingly concerned about software patents in Europe, seeing what could soon become the European ‘Eastern District of Texas’ with Battistelli as its boss, having granted a lot of bogus patents. This article is an assorted mix of interrelated topics that we have sat on for a while, combined with the latest news. Readers might find these interesting.

“First We Take Munich then we take the Hague”

Tu quoque mi fili“, one person wrote to us, “I just remembered this song,” tweaking Leonard Cohen’s First We Take Manhattan:

They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom
For trying to free the system from the plague
I’m coming now I’m coming now to reward them
First We Take Munich then we take the Hague.

The famous original lyrics said:

They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom
For trying to change the system from within
I’m coming now, I’m coming to reward them
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

“With a bit of humour and philosophy,” our reader noted, “one would notice that history repeats and many don’t learn from the past mistakes. It is sad.”

“Battistelli is Playing With Death Not Only With the Suicides That He Has Directly or Indirectly Provoked”

Let’s talk about the “BBB effect,” wrote another reader, in reference to “Bikes brakes and Battistelli” (BBB).

thank you again for the excellent coverage of EPO matters. Your contributions are certainly a key toward the solution.

Allow to comment on one of the recent publications
.
About the brakes story (again!):

It is now clear for anyone that this incident was created by Team Battistelli in order to introduce additional security measures. However that was an insult to the staff (again) and an extremely dangerous move. It is an insult because the staff of the EPO are utterly pacifists and if they really wanted to “illegally” get rid of the tyrant they could do it and no one would find who did it. After all you have there more than 4000 scientists and engineers and I am pretty sure they could have Battistelli “disappeared” in a far more efficient way than cutting brakes. It was thus an insult to their competence.
The point that worries me is that by alluding that one may want to harm the boss, the management creates that perception that such things are possible and you know if there is a foolish thing to do, you will find a fool to do it. This is a recipe for a disaster. Mr. Battistelli is playing with death not only with the suicides that he has directly or indirectly provoked but also by orchestrating a, yet imaginary, plot against himself. Hence no wonder that he turns paranoid: his life must be a nightmare. He would be afraid to be in any public place, of traveling, taking a taxi, being in an airport, even being in the EPO basement carpark (which I would shut off as a precautionary measure because is is really a dangerous place), being in the lift or even shaking hands. All that is really dangerous, Monsieur le President, are you so tired of living? What about a stay in your beloved Haar nuthouse?

Brain Drain and Collapse of ‘Demand’ for Patents

“Brain drain,” another reader noted, is real, as “the figures the Euro Patent Office doesn’t want you to see” are as follows:

I have just heard this impressive figure: in 2016 over 60 persons retired at ages younger than 55, compared to 5 persons in 2015. Who says there is no brain drain?

We are sad to see the EPO failing so badly. The USPTO, by contrast, is improving. US applications for EPs have in fact just nosedived; even ‘artistic’ statistics by the EPO could not hide this.

EPO Patent Quality (or Scope) Now Worse Than USPTO

To clarify, as I did even a decade ago, I am not against patents (I never was), nor am I against patent offices. I just think that the US is improving patents-wide, whereas the EPO is a travesty that will damage Europe’s competitiveness. Patent quality sucks so badly under Battistelli that patents on life, which are rejected in the USPTO these days, are being accepted by the EPO. There was a new article about this yesterday at The Scientist. To quote the summary: “The European Patent Office will grant patent rights over the use of CRISPR in all cell types to a University of California team, contrasting with a recent decision in the U.S.” The confirmation goes one day earlier. To quote: “The European Patent Office (EPO) yesterday (March 23) announced its intention to award a broad-strokes patent for CRISPR gene-editing technology to the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Vienna, and the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research. The claims include the use of CRISPR across prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells and organisms, hitting upon the point of contention in a recent patent interference decision in the United States. In that case, the US Patent and Trademark Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) denied UC Berkeley the rights over the use of the technology in eukaryotes—the money-making application for CRISPR—leaving that intellectual property with the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.”

What a disaster. See our index about CSIRO and CRISPR. This will almost certainly bring patent trolls to Europe pretty soon.

Germany Already Attracts Patent Trolls

Speaking of CSIRO, see this new article from IAM (EPO and trolls proponent), which finally admits that patent trolls now infest Germany, attacking legitimate companies using patents. The Battistelli effect? Here is the relevant part:

Recent research from IP analytics firm Darts-ip has identified China and Germany as the two major patent jurisdictions in which NPEs enjoy the most success in infringement proceedings. However, the relatively low volume of cases being filed by NPEs in China suggests that significant monetisation activity is still some way off – though there are already signs that it is picking up.

The Darts-ip study looks at lawsuits filed by NPEs in several major jurisdictions outside of the United States from 2011 to 2016. The researchers pinpointed just over 250 non-US NPE cases over that period, compared to more than 12,000 US cases. While the number may seem “trivial”, as Darts-ip concedes, it is the trend over the five-year timeframe that is telling.

See what the EPO is doing to Europe? Same thing SIPO is doing to China. It’s destroying the domestic industry. Under Battistelli the EPO became just "SIPO Europe", as we dubbed it back in December.

The EPO moves from bad to worse while the USPTO is at least trying to improve. This new piece from Patently-O (also yesterday) speaks of “Regulatory Reform” using a new working group — like the sorts of groups that existed when Battistelli seized power and then proceeded to shutting down. “Under the direction of the White House,” Patently-O wrote, “the USPTO has formed a “Working Group on Regulatory Reform.” To implement the 2-for-1 regulatory agenda previously outlined on Patently-O. According to a release from Dir. Michelle Lee’s office…”

Lee has done a lot to improve the image of the USPTO. It became a lot saner and among the reforms was the suppression of software patent trolls.

Spain and the EPO

In Europe we are now receiving the exact opposite (see the news about Germany, to be further exacerbated and expand scope-wise with the UPC) and Barker Brettell LLP (mentioned before in relation to the EPO [1, 2] and its advocacy of software patents) insinuates that Spain becoming more like the EPO is desirable. To quote the relevant part from “Will the new Spanish patent law bring harmony in Europe?”

The changes will also alter the opposition process; this will move to a post-grant system like the EPO, except that the term for filing an opposition will be six months from grant rather than the EPO’s nine months. Harmony with the EPO is also achieved when it comes to ‘second medical use’ inventions; when patenting already known substances or compositions for use in new therapeutic applications the ‘Swiss type’ form of claim is no longer needed. Also mirroring the changes that EPC2000 brought in, there remains an exclusion from patent protection for surgical, therapeutic and diagnostic treatment methods but the legal fiction that these methods lack industrial application is removed.

The option will be available for post-grant limitation or revocation of the patent by the patentee. As with a central limitation or revocation at the EPO, a request can be made at any time during the life of the patent and will be retroactive in its effect.

“Since when are the Spanish people asking Franco for a comeback?”

That is what an EPO insider thought of it. As we noted yesterday, Spain continues to reject the UPC. Seeing what happens in Germany right now should be a strong defense of this decision. it’s possible that 4 days from now the UPC will be more or less officially dead in the water.

It Certainly Looks Like Microsoft is Already Siccing Its Patent Trolls, Including Intellectual Ventures, on Companies That Use Linux (Until They Pay ‘Protection’ Money)

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 4:00 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The patent strategy of Bill, Steve and Horacio seems to be alive and well even in their absence

Ballmer on patents
Full, 6-frame explanation of Microsoft’s strategy

“People that use Red Hat, at least with respect to our intellectual property, in a sense have an obligation to compensate us.”

Steve Ballmer

Summary: News about Intellectual Ventures and Finjan Holdings (Microsoft-funded patent trolls) reinforces our allegations — not mere suspicions anymore — that Microsoft would ‘punish’ companies that are not paying subscription fees (hosting) or royalties (patent tax) to Microsoft and are thus in some sense ‘indebted’ to Microsoft

THE analysis we presented here last month turns out to be very accurate. Our predictions didn’t take long to materialise.

Let’s start with some background. In spite of courts in the US limiting the patentability of software, the USPTO keeps granting these and failing to invalidate those already granted, unless someone petitions PTAB to look into particular patents. This means that, for the time being, even bogus patents continue to exist and they can be used for litigation. Challenging them, especially if they are used in bulk, can be very expensive (legal fees). Recently, some companies challenged Intellectual Ventures‘ claims against them and won. All of the software patents of Intellectual Ventures were found to be invalid. But at what cost? These cases had to be escalated all the way up to CAFC before that happened. How many companies out there can afford justice and how rarely would that be an option cheaper than just settling?

“How many companies out there can afford justice and how rarely would that be an option cheaper than just settling?”Nowadays, a lot of small companies choose the so-called ‘cloud’ for hosting. There are numerous reasons for this and they don’t typically receive legal protections or indemnification from the host. There have already been cases where companies got hit with a lawsuit (or more) for a bunch of virtual machines.

This new article by Richard Kemp, providing a good example of what we mean by cloudwashing of software patents (adding something like “on the cloud”, in order to fool examiners into granting software patents, thinking these are novel and combined with a machine).

“Cloud software patent claims will likely increase as more users migrate to the cloud,” it says in the summary, alluding in particular sections about trolls to this phenomenon. Here are the relevant parts:

As the public cloud services market continues to mature and grow – up from $178bn in 2015 to $209bn in 2016 according to research company Gartner – the concentration of computing resources into cloud data centres is increasingly attracting the attention of Non-Practising Entities (NPEs) as a target for patent litigation. At a time when data security and privacy risks are front of mind for cloud service providers (CSPs) and their users, the intellectual property (IP) risks to cloud service availability posed by NPE patent claims are rising up the business agenda.

NPEs are businesses that assert patents through litigation to achieve revenues from alleged infringers without practising or commercialising the technology covered by the patents they hold. NPEs are uniquely well placed to monetise their patents at each stage of the litigation cycle. They have access to capital and all necessary forensic and legal resources; and an NPE doesn’t practise its patents so is immune to a counterclaim that a defendant might otherwise be able to bring against a competitor, or a cross-licence that the defendant could otherwise offer.

[...]

From the CSP’s standpoint all this is bad enough, but software patent risks are further exacerbated by increasing use of open source software (OSS) in the cloud. OSS, long in the mainstream, now commonly powers cloud computing systems. OSS developments are created by communities of individual developers. With no single holder of software rights, patent infringement issues are unlikely to be top of mind, and if they are, developers will generally lack the resources to help them navigate the risks. Simply because they are open, OSS developments and communities are easier targets for NPEs than proprietary software as they don’t need to go to the same lengths to discover potential infringement. The softness of the target increases risk for CSPs using OSS and their users.

Cloud software patent risk is evident and growing, so it is perhaps surprising that it has figured so little in the register of perceived risks up to now, especially when data protection, privacy and information security figure so high. Yet an unsettled cloud software patent claim runs risks to cloud service availability that are arguably of the same order as information security risks. The reason why cloud computing IP risks have had little public airing so far is probably that, while implicitly acknowledged, they have yet to be thoroughly expressed and articulated. For example, in UK financial services, now one of the most heavily regulated sectors, cloud computing is treated as outsourcing and in its cloud guidance, the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority, the UK regulator) states that regulated firms should, amongst other things: “monitor concentration risk and consider what action it would take if the provider failed ….”

How does that relate to Microsoft? Now comes the key part. Microsoft is trying to turn Azure into its new cash cow and it is also trying to turn its patents into cash cows. It’s now doing in the cars what it’s planning to do in the ‘cloud’, namely demand payments for patents (where [GNU/]Linux is used), otherwise send a bunch of trolls to make a legal mess. The Mafia model.

“It’s now doing in the cars what it’s planning to do in the ‘cloud’, namely demand payments for patents (where [GNU/]Linux is used), otherwise send a bunch of trolls to make a legal mess. The Mafia model.”The other day we wrote about what Microsoft and its biggest troll (Intellectual Ventures) had been doing lately, having recently written about Microsoft marketing of “Azure IP Advantage” [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7] — eerily similar in many ways to the Microsoft-Novell patent deal.

It looks like Microsoft is already siccing its patent trolls on companies that don't pay 'protection' money, we noted, and now it looks like we have another new example, as covered yesterday by friends of Intellectual Ventures, IAM magazine. To quote the relevant bits:

The auto industry has been a hive of patent activity for several years. Manufacturers and suppliers are far more sophisticated players in terms of their own patenting, have become more assertive in fighting claims and are increasingly signing-up to defensive initiatives such as the LOT Network and Unified Patents. The emerging dynamics in the sector were on full display in two separate developments this week.

First up, on Monday, Intellectual Ventures filed seven lawsuits in Delaware against Toyota, Honda and BMW, and the suppliers Denso, Nidec, Aisin Seiki and Mitsuba. Each has been accused of infringing between one and five patents. IV has been attempting to license the auto sector for several years and in a significant boost to its efforts did a deal with Ford in 2015. Obviously not everyone in the industry has been as willing as Ford, hence this week’s move.

[...]

On Wednesday Microsoft announced that it had agreed a new patent licensing deal with Toyota that includes broad coverage for connected car technologies. That deal, the software giant says, is the first in its new auto licensing programme; and so we can presumably expect some similar announcements in the coming months. The deal release was light on details, but the two companies have an existing IP relationship thanks to Microsoft’s recent Azure IP Advantage initiative, which Toyota was quick to sign up to. What will be interesting to follow is how any upcoming deals are structured given that Microsoft’s recent focus has been on using its IP as leverage in getting more of its products onto devices rather than as a driver of licensing dollars.

The Japanese car giant is clearly looking to ensure it has freedom to operate in a rapidly changing market. That strategy, so far, has not included signing a licence with IV — which Microsoft was an early investor in — but the Delaware lawsuit might bring things to a head.

The Microsoft-Toyota patent deal was mentioned here the other day. We later said that Microsoft is using software patents against GNU/Linux and relies on secrecy around what’s covered (Android, file systems, etc.); for those who don’t yet know, Toyota was historically close to Microsoft, but it recently defected to the Linux camp. Microsoft can’t be too happy about that. Here are three items from the news:

  • Toyota licenses Microsoft’s portfolio of connected car patents

    In a blog post, Microsoft Intellectual Property Group chief IP Counsel Erich Anderson suggests the company’s software patents will play a significant role in the automotive industry’s “digital transformation” as more vehicles are connected to the internet and cloud services.

  • Microsoft expands connected car push with patent licensing

    Rather than trying to build a high-tech automobile of its own, Microsoft is focusing on providing carmakers with the tools they need to create smarter vehicles and the Toyota deal is the first of what it hopes will be a series of such agreements.

    [...]

    The deal signed with Toyota includes intellectual property {sic} related to information processing technology and communication technology used in connected cars. In typical Microsoft fashion, the terms of the deal beyond that have been kept secret.

  • Daimler Jumps on Linux Bandwagon

    Not long ago, if a major corporation were to take out membership in an open source project, that would be big news — doubly so for a company whose primary business isn’t tech related. Times have changed. These days the corporate world’s involvement in open source is taken for granted, even for companies whose business isn’t computer related. Actually, there’s really no such thing anymore. One way or another, computer technology is at the core of nearly every product on the market.

    So it wasn’t surprising that hardly anyone noticed earlier this month when Daimler AG, maker of Mercedes-Benz and the world’s largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles, announced it had joined the Open Invention Network (OIN), an organization that seeks to protect open source projects from patent litigation. According to a quick and unscientific search of Google, only one tech site covered the news, and that didn’t come until a full 10 days after the announcement was made.

That third one is particularly noteworthy as Daimler may be looking for some sort of protection though OIN — a protection that will not come for reasons we explained some days ago. There’s no redemption from trolls there, by OIN’s own admission. OIN has in fact done nothing against Microsoft’s latest patent manoeuvres against Linux. Nothing.

“Our prediction is that in various fields, be it security, car navigation, or anything “on a cloud” Microsoft will send trolls to wreak havoc unless/until the victims join some Microsoft ‘protection’ scheme such as “Azure IP Advantage”.”To clarify, Intellectual Ventures is not the only Microsoft-connected troll which is storming and suing companies that Microsoft dislikes, particularly Linux distributors (e.g. devices). There are a lot of Microsoft-armed and Microsoft-funded trolls out there (we’ve named many over the years). Last night in the news for example, we saw this patent troll which is connected to Microsoft (even financed by it) settling with Avast. Based on the wording, it’s maybe a settlement or ‘protection’ money (they don’t say), but the text does say “Finjan remains, in various capacities, involved in patent-associated cases against FireEye, Sophos, Symantec, Palo Alto Networks, Blue Coat Systems, ESET (and affiliates) and Cisco Systems.”

Finjan is a troll (as last mentioned earlier this year) and it seems to be going after every security company out there, equipped with nothing but software patents which we looked at closely in the past. Our prediction is that in various fields, be it security, car navigation, or anything “on a cloud” Microsoft will send trolls to wreak havoc unless/until the victims join some Microsoft ‘protection’ scheme such as “Azure IP Advantage”.

03.24.17

Bernhard Rapkay, Former MEP and Rapporteur on Unitary Patent, Shoots Down UPC Hopes While UPC Hopefuls Recognise That Spain Isn’t Interested Either

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 9:27 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

When even UPC proponents admit that the UPC (in its present form) may be dead in the water…

Bernhard Rapkay
Photo credit: Official Web page of Bernhard Rapkay

Summary: Germany, the UK and Spain remain massive barriers to the UPC — all this in spite of misleading reports and fake news which attempted to make politicians believe otherwise (for political leverage, by means of dirty lobbying contingent upon misinformation)

TODAY it’s Friday. Monday will be the 27th of the month, i.e. just two days before Article 50. Must be pretty depressing a time for UPC hopefuls… did all of their lobbying fail? Did they sacrifice what was left of their reputation in vain? The supposed ‘expectation’ of ratification on the 7th of March was a long time ago (false prediction, as usual) and we don’t expect anything to happen by the end of this month. Fallback dates are meaningless if nothing concrete has changed; in this particular case, things only got worse (read on for details).

“The supposed ‘expectation’ of ratification on the 7th of March was a long time ago (false prediction, as usual) and we don’t expect anything to happen by the end of this month.”With just 5 days left for Team UPC to lobby (even fewer weekdays that are working days), they are growing visibly irritated if not stressed. They have attempted to lie, spread fake news (or at best distortions), and shame politicians in an effort to bamboozle Jo Johnson into a Unitary Patent sellout, which defies the very fundamental interpretation of the law, taking into account Article 50.

Monika Ermert, writing for Intellectual Property Watch last night, caught the gossip about what Rapkay (German politician with the Social Democratic Party of Germany) had said and published this short piece, from which we quote the non-EPO/Battistelli part (totally aloof and disconnected from the reality):

Bernhard Rapkay, former rapporteur for the legislative package for the community patent, was highly sceptical.

The German Parliament on 10 March passed the ratification documents, and Rapkay said he does not expect a much longer delay there, despite some reports over a lack of a quorum for the middle of the night decision. But he was wary of the Brexit government in the UK. Slawomir Tokarski, director of Innovation and Advanced Manufacturing in the European Commission’s Directorate General Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW), said that ratifications have to be in by 29 May, otherwise it would be too late to finalise the process this year.

We spotted that earlier than the above as well, but there was no formal article about it. The UPC is a great sham that would give Europe nothing but patent trolls, lots of injunctions, and software patents (as the EPO seems ever so eager to grant them in spite of the rules). Nobody, not even patent examiners, should be interested in the UPC. Maybe a tiny portion of the population (less than a thousandth of Europe) would benefit from it.

“The UPC is a great sham that would give Europe nothing but patent trolls, lots of injunctions, and software patents (as the EPO seems ever so eager to grant them in spite of the rules).”Prior to the report from Ermert we caught this tweet which said: “Quote from today’s hearing on the Unitary Patent, Committee on Legal Affairs, EP (http://bit.ly/2nGfe19 ) #upc #unitarypatent”

This, in turn, quoted another person: “Bernhard Rapkay, ex MEP and rapporteur on unitary #patent: “unfortunately I hold no great hope that the UK will ratify” #Brexit”

So there he goes. Honest person, for a change.

“Fortunately,” he should have said, not “unfortunately.”

Nobody in Europe really wants this monster. It’s no more benign than ACTA and the TPP were.

“Nobody in Europe really wants this monster. It’s no more benign than ACTA and the TPP were.”UPC hopefuls try to look elsewhere, clawing or grasping at more positive visions, like Battistelli’s and the EPO’s delusional lies. Christopher Weber, whose views on the UPC are not necessarily all that positive (relatively apathetic), wrote a series of tweets to say [1, 2, 3]: “Former EU MP Rapkay very skeptic re. #UK ratification based on his years of experience w/ #UK reluctance wrt #ECJ [...] Battistelli replied that he believes in what the #UK government stated on ratification of #UPC [...] EU Parliament committee remains optimistic that #UPC will start soon.”

Which committee would that be? One that’s a bunch of moles, as a result of entryism by Team UPC and its lobbyists/facilitators?

Speaking of moles and lobbyists, Manuel Rey-Alvite Villar from Bristows vindicates us by proving we were right all along about Spain [1, 2]. All that fake news from Bristows (even published in the weekend!), including some about Spain, was all in vain. By Manuel’s own admission [1, 2], the Spanish government continues to reject the UPC. Mind the responses from Francisco Moreno, who includes citations and says [1, 2, 3]: “With the rules of procedure already adopted, what influence could have ES judges/representatives? So French judges would be able to influence the development of the CJEU (but not Spanish ones, as we joined the EU in 1986) [...] My understanding is that ES nationals who are European Patent Attorneys could qualify as representatives [...]”

They would be, bluntly speaking, just moles like Team UPC, which is stacking the deck (or panels) in an effort to accomplish the unthinkable and the outrageous.

“UPC hopefuls try to look elsewhere, clawing or grasping at more positive visions, like Battistelli’s and the EPO’s delusional lies.”Bristows wrote: “The minutes of the debate record that Ms Moraleja noted that she was initially inclined to support joining the system, but changed her mind after learning more about the background of the project and discussions with stakeholders. Most of the concerns she expressed are language considerations. It is PP’s view that the system discriminates against the Spanish language, and therefore benefits foreign companies. The MP noted that Spanish is an official working language of WIPO and the EUIPO, and that it is a strategic priority for Spain to defend the use of Spanish in European institutions and, more broadly, its position as a language of technology.”

Nonsense! Spain should defend its language and it should also defend its SMEs from the UPC, as it’s not just a matter of language (requiring interpreters, who are typically expensive). The whole thing is a coup of patent law firms and their richest clients.

We are still seeing loaded questions which wrongly assume that the UPC is inevitable, e.g. this one: “Which country will get the the third central #UPC court? Can the UK still get it after #Brexit?”

Maybe no country will get any courts. Dr. Ingve Björn Stjerna wrote a paper about it earlier this year.

“Spain should defend its language and it should also defend its SMEs from the UPC, as it’s not just a matter of language (requiring interpreters, who are typically expensive).”Bristows was not (as one might expect) alone in ‘damage control’ over Spain. Other outposts of Team UPC begrudgingly admit that all the lobbying in Spain (and fake news which was an integral part of the lobby) was in vain. To quote Team UPC itself: “Spain will not join the Unitary Patent system. That became clear today during a session of the Spanish parliament. Earlier this month, the parliamentary committee for economics, industry and competitiveness had approved a motion of the socialist party PSOE, requesting the government to reconsider joining the system. Only the Popular Party, which runs the minority government in Spain, voted against the motion.”

It was never really anything to begin with, but it was taken out of context by Team UPC and EPO mouthpieces like IAM. It’s rather clear by now that Team UPC was playing mental games earlier this month, basically lobbying at truth’s expense, not only in Spain but also in Germany and Britain. Only a fool would still trust anything that Bristows says. They’re not just the patent microcosm but core people of Team UPC, having been lobbying Spain with loaded statements, false headlines and so forth.

What good is a lawyer that lies for a living? It might be comforting for a day or two (maybe a week), but bad advice leads to pricier consequences. Guess who foots the legal bills?

“There is still time for Europeans to sign the UPC petition, which now has 133 signatures, including 24 from CEOs.”Here again is Manuel Rey-Alvite Villar from Bristows, stating: “I find it unrealistic that Spain remains out indefinitely, missing the formative years means no ES input in key case law and decision making…”

Well, get out of your Bristows bubble or echo chamber. It ain’t happening, but UPC events have been so thoroughly stuffed by the “choir” that nobody dares yell out that the emperor is naked. The UPC is a sham. In reply to the above, Benjamin Henrion wrote: “UPC will be a paradise for trolls, better stay away.”

Moreover, the “UK should use Brexit as an opportunity to avoid Software Patents,” noted a person who opposes software patents, knowing what the true implications of UPC would be (it’s against SMEs, not for SMEs). There is still time for Europeans to sign the UPC petition, which now has 133 signatures, including 24 from CEOs.

03.23.17

The Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation Has Just Buried an Innocent Judge That Battistelli Does Not Like

Posted in Europe, Patents at 1:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Having already halved his salary half a year ago, pending an illegal dismissal (unlikely renewal of contract)

EPO hiding evidence

Summary: An innocent judge (never proven guilty of anything, only publicly defamed with help from Team Battistelli and dubious 'intelligence' gathering) is one of the forgotten casualties of the latest meeting of the Administrative Council (AC), which has become growingly complicit rather than a mere bystander at a ‘crime’ scene

“Time for those AC members to admit to their political masters that they are powerless to exercise any form of control,” one person wrote the other day. That’s putting it too generously and politely. “Does anyone have an update on the current status of the suspended member of the Boards of Appeal?”

“Does anyone have an update on the current status of the suspended member of the Boards of Appeal?”
      –Anonymous
That’s the question that followed, and quite appropriately too.

“On other matters,” it continued, “it seems that the “rebel” AC members lost their bottle again and/or were comprehensively outmanoeuvred. It may be time for those AC members to admit to their political masters that they are powerless to exercise any form of control over this troublesome President. Their masters will not be happy, but it would be better to get this all out in the open before the inevitable action at the European Court of Human Rights causes a total s**t storm.”

“Their masters will not be happy, but it would be better to get this all out in the open before the inevitable action at the European Court of Human Rights causes a total s**t storm.”
      –Anonymous
Things are progressing and we have not forgotten about the judge who is one of the earliest casualties of Battistelli's reign of terror (2014). Nor did we forget about dismissed staff representatives, who should be entitled to get their jobs back (plus compensation).

Another comment said “about the DG3 judge” that there is “nothing to report bro ! The judge remains suspended until death follows… this is a huge disgrace not only for the EPO but obviously for the administrative council the level of lack of responsability is a shame. The EPO has definitively become a rogue organisation…”

IP Kat has officially quit covering EPO scandals, claiming quite falsely (we’ll get back to in the weekend) that issues seem to be close to a resolution. Merpel wrote that before the horrific (depressing to staff) meeting of the Administrative Council. Days ago the very last mention was made in “Never Too Late: If you missed the IPKat last week!”

“Things are progressing and we have not forgotten about the judge who is one of the earliest casualties of Battistelli’s reign of terror (2014).”“Merpel gives her last update on the happenings in the EPO,” it said. Well, it’s a sad shame that Merpel won’t be around to cover the latest travesty then. Neither will anyone else at IP Kat, which seems to have been busy lobbying for Battistelli’s ‘baby’ or pet project, the UPC (as recently as a few weeks ago).

Meanwhile, in Merpel’s absence (less accountability), Team Chinchilla is moving in for the kill. Its summary of the meeting (warning: epo.org link) is truly extraordinary for various reasons. Below is a copy of this shockingly short summary from the AC (Kluwer Patent Blog too was a bit stunned by it), which has hardly any mention of the Boards of Appeal (BoA). It just says something about “three appointments to the Supervisory Board of the Academy of the European Patent Organisation and a number of appointments and reappointments to the Boards of Appeal.” We already wrote about how dubious at least some of these appointments were (Battistelli too gets to decide on these, or at least veto to some degree, thereby debunking any illusion of independence). Here is the full thing:

Munich, 17 March 2017

151st meeting of the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation (Munich, 15 and 16 March 2017)

The Administrative Council held its 151st meeting in Munich on 15 and 16 March 2017, with Jesper Kongstad, Director General of the Danish Patent Office, in the chair.

After the Chairman’s activities report, covering in particular the last meeting of the Board of the Administrative Council, the Council noted the activities report given by the President of the European Patent Office, Benoît Battistelli. The Council was pleased with the excellent results achieved by the Office.

The Council had an exchange of views on the social situation at the Office and on the issue of the appointment procedure for the next President.

The Council re-elected the chairman of the Committee on Patent Law, Sean Dennehey (GB), for a term of three years. It then made three appointments to the Supervisory Board of the Academy of the European Patent Organisation and a number of appointments and reappointments to the Boards of Appeal.

Lastly, the Council heard brief oral reports on the unitary patent by the Maltese delegation representing the country holding the EU presidency in the first half of 2017, as well as by the representative of the European Commission and the chairman of the Select Committee.

Council Secretariat

Sean Dennehey is no friend of Battistelli and he will be the chairman of the Committee on Patent Law for quite some time to come (for three more years now that he is no longer in charge of the UK-IPO). What bothered us most was the opening paragraph. It spreads or at least legitimises the lies from Battistelli. “The Council was pleased with the excellent results achieved by the Office,” says the report probably led by Jesper Kongstad, who protects rather than supervises Battistelli. Did he never learn about patent quality during his time at DKPTO? Granting patents is easy, but doing so correctly is hard and very time-consuming a process.

The systematic attack on justice at the EPO (labour law/ILO, judges/BoA, high courts, patent laws and even constitutional laws when it comes to the UPC) is somewhat symbolic. The EPO, including the Organisation of Team Chinchilla (faction supportive of Team Battistelli, without any concrete authority over it), has ironically become antithetical to the Rule of Law. Where are Europol and Interpol when one truly needs them?

Nepotism at the European Patent Office and Suspicious Absence of Tenders for Big Projects

Posted in Europe, Patents at 1:09 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

We know who’s laughing all the way to the bank, but we don’t know why

Man laughing

Summary: Carte blanche is a French term which now perfectly describes the symptoms encountered in the European Patent Office, more so once led by a lot of French people (Battistelli and his friends)

Battistelli has turned the EPO into a laughing stock and he too seems to realise it (albeit still trying to shift the blame for it). Comments in The Register, for instance, already joke about the EPO’s apparent transparency, saying that it’s about transparency in the windows and in the panorama sense (alluding to Battistelli's secretive palace at the top floor).

“Battistelli still seems ever so eager to yank out lots of crappy patents, demonstrating his utter lack of real understanding of the process involved.”Why was Team Battistelli trying so hard to hide what had happened there at the top floor? Why was it so concerned about photographs showing up in a Web site (concerned enough to demand that they should be taken down immediately)? See, Battistelli does not really like transparency. Battistelli just likes publishing/composing (perhaps merely signing) so-called ‘blogs’ about “transparency”. It’s like those speeches where George Bush speaks about freedom and democracy. Nobody should take these words seriously.

Battistelli, along with the docile EPO management, continues to lie to the staff (example from last night), just like he lies to journalists. It’s utterly disturbing that he keeps getting away with it. Lying is a much lesser offense than those other things Battistelli can be accused of (his immunity from prosecution notwithstanding). Battistelli still seems ever so eager to yank out lots of crappy patents, demonstrating his utter lack of real understanding of the process involved. In France they don't do any of this and he seems to believe that computers can replace humans for such a monumental, complex task.

“If Battistelli has any dignity (an unrealistic expectation, no doubt!), he would have resigned and then publicly apologised.”Due to this reckless policy of Battistelli, the EPO will probably have many layoffs and decades of great pain ahead, having to ‘clean up’ (i.e. flush down erroneously-granted EPs). Expect a growing need for oppositions/appeals; it takes a lot of work and even more resources than ordinary examination. It’s very expensive to do all this and there are ramifications like refunds after licensing deals, which may or may not have already destroyed products if not companies (injunctions, bankruptcies and so on).

If Battistelli has any dignity (an unrealistic expectation, no doubt!), he would have resigned and then publicly apologised. He should give his new penthouse to the Boards of Appeal (BoA), then quietly walk away to exile in some fine Haar hospital. That in its own right would not fix the Office, but it would at least be a start. Here is a sarcastic new comment which we caught yesterday:

Don’t forget that the President and his friends earn considerably more for a work which, at best, can be described as mediocre.

“But is this really what the economy needs, as the EPO claims?”

Now we know what the economy needs.
New public-private partnership construction projects to kick-start the recovery …

King Battistelli’s swish penthouse office the Euro Patent Office doesn’t want you to see

Some readers of ours seem to believe that Team Battistelli foresees its end and hence tries to claw money from the future. In any other, i.e. accountable, patent office this would be a scandal so big that the media would be all over it. But not in Europe; certainly not in Germany, which seems to be gaining by turning a blind eye to it.

“Sometimes it’s depressing to see what people like Battistelli can get away with.”For all we know, the contractors chosen to design and build Battistelli’s palace could be nothing more than old friends of Lutz or whoever else guards Team Battistelli while milking the Office. There’s no way of telling when procurement is so obscure, especially in recent years. Judging by the lack of updates in the report from the The Register*, the Office never got back with any details about the costs associated with construction, design etc. And yet, the EPO keeps bragging about tenders recently, especially in Twitter (almost half a dozen times in the past month alone). Maybe they just try to proactively distract from something.

“You’ll understand the key aspects of patent litigation better after this free online class,” the EPO wrote the other day.

“With UPC,” I responded, “the EPO wants lots of litigation using bogus patents (EPs are BS now, due to Battistelli)…”

Sometimes it’s depressing to see what people like Battistelli can get away with. All of us — myself included — will suffer from this in the long run. Battistelli will have stashed millions of Euros and probably retire peacefully in Corsica, where the name Battistelli may be already associated with a Mafia.
_____
* The article says: “We have asked the EPO if it will break out the cost of Battistelli’s office, and we will update this story if it responds.” But a day and a half later there is no update.

“Terror” Patent Office Bemoans Terror, Spreads Lies

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 12:16 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Concerns over 'terror' Patent Office
Translation here

Summary: Response to some of the latest utterances from the European Patent Office, where patently untruthful claims have rapidly become the norm

TRUTH is a scarcity at the EPO these days. It has become the exception rather than the norm. Coming from an institution which has science and rule of law at its core (examination and prosecution that oftentimes follows), this is worse than embarrassing. It’s a disaster! It is an ever-deepening crisis, to quote the Board of the Administrative Council. Why don’t they pressure for immediate, wide-ranging change? The Register has had some nice comments to that effect; it’s all about nepotism and mutual protection at the top, including the Chairman of the Administrative Council, who protects rather than supervises the President (like he’s supposed to, as per the EPC).

“Europe has a balanced patent portfolio,” the EPO wrote yesterday. “with innovation spread over many tech fields.” But 'evil tongues' from inside the Office keep telling us that all of the EPO’s numbers are basically bogus numbers that include applications not paid for, applications in the ‘wrong’ language etc. They are desperate to bolster a misleading narrative, wherein the number of applications grows. But actually, as per the simple facts, it’s going down. See for example some recent rebuttals of ours, e.g.:

Yesterday the EPO wrote (belatedly) that “European patent applications from Iceland declined in 2016…”

“They are desperate to bolster a misleading narrative, wherein the number of applications grows. But actually, as per the simple facts, it’s going down.”At the time these ‘results’ were announced the EPO only trumpeted the positives by nitpicking — a very unscientific thing to be doing anywhere (especially so inside the EPO, which is supposed to stand for science).

“As in most European nations,” I responded to them, the EPO “is worthless to them under Battistelli” (most European nations saw a decline in the number of applications for EPs).

“To make matters worse, most of these nations miraculously vanish when the EPO pushes propaganda and lies,” I told the EPO after it had tweeted: “Check out the geographic coverage offered by European #patents!”

“At the time these ‘results’ were announced the EPO only trumpeted the positives by nitpicking — a very unscientific thing to be doing anywhere (especially so inside the EPO, which is supposed to stand for science).”Suddenly they show all the member states, but without any numbers on them (as it would mean minuses all over the map, except in few and sometimes very small nations/populations). Have they got no shame?

Most embarrassing, however, was this utterly improper message from Benoît Battistelli. It would be more or less acceptable coming from anyone but him and EPO insiders already fume at the sight of Battistelli stating “we firmly believe in the core values of tolerance, openness and equality…”

The EPO promoted this message early in the morning, whereupon I asked: “Do you realise how ridiculous that sounds coming from Battistelli?”

“It’s easy to see why Battistelli likes to exploit terror attacks any time they happen.”Battistelli is milking another terror attack, as usual. He has done that at least half a dozen times before. He is a hypocrite because his own regime is openly accused of terrorising staff, even in the mainstream media. The way he implements a regime of terror isn’t anything like ISIS; it’s not like a Battistelli-steered limousine is plowing through a crowd of SUEPO-led protesters by the Isar but rather psychological torture that sometimes leads to suicides and generally spreads fear. Battistelli wants people to fear him rather than respect him, so it’s no wonder 0% of stakeholders and 0% of staff tolerate him (when asked about it confidentially, not by a Battistelli-commissioned firm).

It’s easy to see why Battistelli likes to exploit terror attacks any time they happen. It’s a lot more powerful than a questionable bicycle tale. He is painting himself as the victim fighting a threat, failing to see how hypocritical he looks to his own ‘inferiors’ (who are vastly superior to him intellectually and ethically).

China Seems to be Using Patents to Push Foreign Companies Out of China, in the Same Way It Infamously Uses Censorship

Posted in America, Asia, Patents at 11:33 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

(Anti)Competitive advantage by unfair competition and outright exclusion?

Chinese money

Summary: Chinese patent policies are harming competition from abroad, e.g. Japan and the US, and US patent policy is being shaped by its higher courts, albeit not yet effectively combating the element that’s destroying productive companies (besieged by patent trolls)

Using legal aggression with patents — lots of patents which SIPO is granting sparingly these days — companies become ever more aggressive. China is becoming business-hostile (as we predicted) in some sense and IAM said earlier today that “Beijing IP Court slaps Sony Mobile with injunction based on SEP infringement” and “[a]ccording to Xinhua, the case was filed back in 2015, but negotiations between Sony and Iwncomm over the patent stretch back to at least 2009. The injunction is set to affect 35 Sony models, including the Xperia Z1 and Xperia Z2 in the country. China’s Lexfield Law Offices has helpfully translated the court’s reasoning for granting the injunction…”

One should note that, based on this from IAM [PDF], Iwncomm was a delegate in its conference. Other new posts about it say that it’s about a “standard (required in China) known as WAPI.” (WLAN Authentication and Privacy Infrastructure)

“Whatever the motivation may be, it will probably harm China’s ability to compete in the international scene.”Now that SIPO is allowing software patents, which are about to become even more permissible on April 1st, the above is made possible. WAPI is said to be “designed to limit trade into China,” based on Wikipedia, which adds that it’s “requiring foreign companies to provide confidential trade secrets to Chinese corporations.”

Maybe that’s the thinking behind patent maximalism in China? Similarly to the country’s censorship policy, which is often criticised as means of embargoing foreign companies and thus propping up local (domestic) companies?

Whatever the motivation may be, it will probably harm China’s ability to compete in the international scene.

Over in the US, Trading Technologies with its notorious patent lawsuits is mentioned by a blog of a pro-software patents firm which is closely involved. It’s about patents on interfaces (in relation to user interfaces) and the firm explains that “the Federal Circuit issued an opinion in Trading Technologies Int’l., Inc. v. CQG, Inc., its first decision finding a user interface to be patent eligible subject matter. The court designated the opinion as non-precedential. On Monday SHzoom LLC filed a motion under Federal Circuit Rule 32.1(e), which allows any person to request that the court reissue a decision as precedential. The text of the motion is set forth below.”

“But not all is positive as TC Heartland is looming and for the time being the US trumps China when it comes to patent trolling.”Being non-precedential means, much to the regret of patent law firms, that CAFC remains a colossal barrier to software patents. Most of its decisions are against software patents and these decisions are precedential too, just like Alice.

But not all is positive as TC Heartland is looming and for the time being the US trumps China when it comes to patent trolling. Moreover, as EFF lawyers have just put it, the US Supreme Court won’t stand in the way of trolls, as we noted briefly last night in relation to SCA Hygiene v First Quality ruling. Here is an explanation:

In a ruling this week that will cheer up patent trolls, the Supreme Court said patent owners can lie in wait for years before suing. This will allow trolls to sit around while others independently develop and build technology. The troll can then jump out from under the bridge and demand payment for work it had nothing to do with.

The 7-1 decision arrives in a case called SCA Hygiene v. First Quality Baby Products. This case involves a patent on adult diapers but has a much broader reach. The court considered whether the legal doctrine of “laches” applies in patent cases. Laches is a principle that penalizes a rightsholder who “sleeps on their rights” by waiting a long time to file a lawsuit after learning of a possible infringement. It protects those that would be harmed by the assertion of rights after a lengthy delay. For example, laches would work against a patent owner that saw an infringing product emerge yet waited a decade to sue, after significant investment of time and resources had been put into the product.

The ruling in SCA follows a similar decision in Petrella v. MGM holding that laches is not available as a defense in copyright cases. The Supreme Court has generally rejected “patent exceptionalism” and has often reversed the Federal Circuit for creating special rules for patent law. So this week’s decision was not especially surprising. In our view, however, there were compelling historical and policy arguments for retaining a laches defense in patent law.

Japan’s Sony, as in the above case in China, is currenly suffering embargoes due to patents (in China) and Japan’s Toyota is also in the patent headlines today. It uses Linux (or Android) in cars. It’s no longer a slave of Microsoft (like it used to be). So all that Microsoft can do, based on new articles from today, is demand payments for patents — undisclosed payments from Toyota [1, 2, 3, 4]. “The companies would not disclose the financial terms of the deal,” says one of the reports, but we can imagine that it means a flow of cash from Toyota to Microsoft. Days ago IAM complained about Japanese courts not being "friendly" to patent aggressors. Well, China’s courts certainly are, which makes one wonder what China has in mind with its extreme patent strategy (loosening control and attracting over a million patent applications in a single year).

03.22.17

The EPO is Lying to Its Own Staff About ILO and Endless (Over 2 Years) EPO Mistrials

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 7:56 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Maintaining convenient illusions using sheer lies and distortion of facts

Claude RouillerSummary: The creative writing skills of some spinners who work for Battistelli would have staff believe that all is fine and dandy at the EPO and ILO is dealing effectively with staff complaints about the EPO (even if several years too late)

ON “ILOAT decisions,” as per what the EPO‘s ‘Employment Law’ wrote a week ago (Target group: DG4, DG5, President-DG0, DG1, DG2, BoA), there aren’t many facts or much information. Lazy(ier) EPO staff might actually believe these ‘Employment Law’ people, in spite of the Office’s history defying labour law and then falling back on “immunity” (after losing high-profile cases). We don’t honestly think that ordinary staff is gullible enough to swallow this spin from ‘Employment Law’. It’s just an echo chamber (“DG4, DG5, President-DG0, DG1, DG2…”), telling one another what they want to hear and might actually believe. The statements can later be (re)used for lobbying purposes.

“Lazy(ier) EPO staff might actually believe these ‘Employment Law’ people, in spite of the Office’s history defying labour law and then falling back on “immunity” (after losing high-profile cases).”We wrote many articles on the subject and thought a rebuttal would be in order. “That’s how the ILOAT decisions were presented to the EPO staff,” a source told us, giving us the complete text for independent assessment.

Shall we start? In quotes, in the remainder of this article, are the EPO’s own words.

“ILO is not at all effective at dealing with EPO complaints. The ILO has repeatedly complained that it’s unable to cope with the load. It always blames the EPO.”“Report on the 123rd session of the ILOAT At its 123rd session, the Administrative Tribunal of the International Labour Organization (the Tribunal) delivered 97 judgments involving 21 Organisations. In total the Tribunal dismissed the complaints in 60 judgments and granted them, partly or in full, in 37 judgments.”

Notice the artistic pretense here (intended to disguise gross imbalance): 21 organisations. Among nearly 100, of which EPO is just one. About half of all the complainants are coming from the EPO. Mind this crucial omission. Does that not merit a mention? The above offers no breakdown of which organisations actually had judgments delivered. It is widely recognised as a fact that the ILO typically returns the complaints to complainants or to the Office (in other words, doing nothing at all, sometimes citing inadmissibility). ILO is not at all effective at dealing with EPO complaints. The ILO has repeatedly complained that it’s unable to cope with the load. It always blames the EPO.

“The EPO just implemented a workaround to more or less dodge compliance.”“The judgments have been exceptionally delivered in two steps with 4 judgments on 30 November 2016,” the EPO said. We’ll get to that, as we have repeatedly covered these judgments last year.

“The EPO took specific measures to address the orders contained in the two judgments delivered in November 2016.”

The EPO just implemented a workaround to more or less dodge compliance. We wrote about that. It’s a total disgrace.

The EPO says: “These judgments concerned the composition of the Appeals Committee (No. 3785) and the competent authority to hear a request for review (No. 3796).”

This has not been addressed.

“Nice selective quoting right there.”Now watch Team Battistelli leaping to exploit “immunity!” by stating: “The judgment delivered by the Dutch Supreme Court on 20 January 2017 whereby the Court upheld the legal protection available to staff of the EPO through the internal…”

What on Earth does it have to do with that? The judges there clearly did not understand, as per the ILO’s own statements, that ILO was incapable of dealing with the EPO’s ‘scatterback’ of complaints.

“As for the EPO,” says the EPO, “33 judgments were delivered in total, with 2 judgments on 30 November 2016 and 31 on 8 February 2017. In his introductory statement of the public delivery on 8 February 2017, the President of the Tribunal noted with satisfaction that: safeguarding the role of the Tribunal in the legal protection of staff of international organisations.”

“Notice terms like “high success rate”. It’s utterly offensive to the victims of Team Battistelli.”Nice selective quoting right there.

“Out of the 33 judgments involving EPO, the following figures are worth highlighting. 25 judgments confirmed in full the position of the Office. This is a high success rate in absolute (i.e. when compared to the EPO’s own figures) as well as relative terms (i.e. when the EPO is compared to other international organisations).”

Notice terms like “high success rate”. It’s utterly offensive to the victims of Team Battistelli.

“3 judgments in which the substance of the challenged decisions was not at stake but where, due to the length of the procedures, moral damages have been awarded to the complainants (Nos. 3782 and 3795 for the duration of the internal appeals procedure and No. 3792 for a medical issue).”

How much was that damage (compensation)? They don’t want to say. It’s so meager that it’s typically offensive; it doesn’t even cover the lawyers’ bills.

“…Team Battistelli will brush these under the carpet.”“2 cases were lost on the substance (No. 3781 regarding school fees – Article 120a ServRegs – and No. 3788 regarding the computation of reckonable experience).”

Yes, just 2.

“3 judgments referring cases back to the EPO for resuming the internal procedures, without any comment on the substance of the challenged decisions. The decisions concerned relate to the right to strike and the New Career system (Nos. 3786 and 3796).”

In other words, Team Battistelli will brush these under the carpet.

“On the substance the following needs to be highlighted. In judgments Nos. 3786 and 3796 the Tribunal confirmed its case law (No. 3700, consideration 7) concerning the competent authority to hear a request for review or an appeal. Hence the Tribunal interpreted the applicable provisions (Articles 107(2), 109(2), 109(4) and (110(1) ServRegs) as follows.

“For employees appointed by the President, all requests for review must be lodged with, and decided by, the President; For employees appointed by the Council: requests for review against individual decisions concerning them and taken by the Council must be lodged with, and decided by, the Council, whereas requests for review against individual decisions concerning them and taken by the President must be lodged with, and decided by, the President.

“Furthermore, the Tribunal conveyed the following messages to the stakeholders. Defendant organisations need to handle staff requests and internal appeals diligently (judgments Nos. 3782, 3795 and 3792). Thus the Tribunal confirms its case law that dealings between an organisation and its staff should comply with the duty of care and due diligence.

“The overall message from the EPO: don’t complain about the EPO.”“Complainants should pay attention to the following messages. Care needs to be taken to identify the right decision to be challenged and to exhaust all internal means of redress before filing a complaint (judgments Nos. 3779, 3780, 3791, 3811).

“If a given situation has already been settled through previous judgments further cases raising the same topic will therefore be rejected on the same grounds (judgments Nos. 3786, 3789, 3806, 3810).”

More creative nitpicking:

“Several cases were found to be clearly devoid of merits as they raised “entirely unsubstantiated allegations [of harassment] and amount[ed] to mere assertions” (judgment No. 3806, consideration 6) and a further complaint was considered as being “no more than a collateral attack on judgment 3426″ (judgment No. 3807, consideration 4) or “speculative assertions” (judgment No. 3808, consideration 5).

“Contact Claude Rouiller (ILOAT) at claude.rouiller@hispeed.ch to tell what the EPO thinks of his Tribunal.”“To conclude, the Tribunal stressed again the respective responsibilities of the stakeholders for the functioning of the legal protection of staff through a system of internal and external means of redress. It is of paramount importance for all stakeholders to preserve it by using it in line with the above.”

The overall message from the EPO: don’t complain about the EPO. The ILO is too weak and understaffed to handle these complaints and we’ll waste EPO budget on lawyers who will exhaust them to the point of inaction.

Of course, anyone who read the above message might have been led to the belief that all is “greener pastures” at EPO and Battistelli is just a victim of meritless complaint. Contact Claude Rouiller (ILOAT) at claude.rouiller@hispeed.ch to tell what the EPO thinks of his Tribunal. It’s disgraceful. He ought to know about this.

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