Bonum Certa Men Certa

French Media Says Benoît Battistelli Turned the Patent Office Into a Sort of North Korea

North Korea flag and EPO



Summary: A new article from the French media shares some interesting new tidbits of information about the autocrat who has inadvertently come to destroy the European Patent Office

THE EPO continues to attract negative media attention, in spite of paying the media, which is Battistelli's way of wasting millions of Euros of the EPO's budget, corrupting the media in the process (the casualty outside Eponia, bloggers included).



Articles such as the aforementioned Le Canard Enchaîné article (mentioned last week) are good enough to be worth an English translation, so that is exactly what one reader sent to us. Here is the full translation:

Rich pickings at the European Patent Office



Completely out of control, this little-known but extremely rich organization treats its staff like in the old days – but not the good ones.

Imagine an offshore enclave, but in the heart of Europe, a sort of micro-state which dictates its own laws, completely out of control. Don’t imagine any more: It exists. The European Patent Office (EPO) is a discreet but extremely rich international organization, which answers to no-one. And no-one more so than its President, who turns out to be a Frenchman, and a graduate of the prestigious National School of Administration. Since he took over at the EPO in July 2010, Benoît Battistelli has behaved, according to his many detractors, like some kind of oriental potentate. Under his reign the Office has turned into a sort of North Korea.

On paper, working at the EPO is a good deal. The 7,000 officials, who are responsible for registering the patents for 38 countries, feature as among the best paid in Europe. More than half of them take home an average monthly wage packet of 11,000 Euros, and that’s after tax. Established forty years ago, the EPO, which sports a budget of two billion Euros, has never cashed in as much as it does under Battistelli’s iron rule, chalking up a profit of 300,000 Euros annually.

Strikes and pickets

But there’s a problem: Money doesn’t buy happiness. Last year, angry employees demonstrated in front of the headquarters in Munich, protesting against the management methods of the President, which are far from being patented. This has never happened before in the history of the organization. The staff union representing the majority of the employees, Suepo, pointed up the suicide of four staff members, two of which occurred at the workplace. What a coincidence; a number of Suepo representatives were then singled out for disciplinary procedures. To muzzle the competition better, the President of the Office, who in his off-duty moments is a Republican municipal councillor in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, decided to shut the union down. Faced with a democratic backlash, the National School of Administration graduate, who also holds the award of the Legion of Honour, also imposed restraints on the right to strike.

From now on, if the union wants to call a stoppage, it has to ask the management nicely, who will then arrange for the strike to be supervised. In order for a strike to be authorised, a majority of the staff members have to vote in favour of the principle, with a participation rate of 40%, if you please. And if, by some miracle, the strike is authorised, it cannot, under any circumstances, go on for longer than one month. This Friday, the High Court of Appeal of the Netherlands will be ruling on the complaint lodged by Suepo, advised by the French advocate William Bourdon, on the grounds of “Violation of fundamental rights against the rulings regarding the right to strike”.

Bercy backing all the horses

The French government is massively irritated by a situation which could damage the image of France abroad. Christophe Sirugue, Secretary of State for Industry, gives assurance that he “views with great disquiet the social climate which prevails within the Office, and which has seriously deteriorated over the past two years”. He hopes this will get up Battistelli’s nose – but Battistelli doesn’t give a damn.

With his six bodyguards, his diplomatic passport, and his CD plates on the official limousine, Battistelli is a lot more powerful than some under-minister.

One stash, more than one double deal

To help him run things, the President of the Office has recruited a dozen Frenchmen, close on half of whom come from the National Institute of Industrial Property (Inpi), of which he was the director for many years. It’s with them in tow that he is running the EPO milch cow in his own inimitable style. A veritable cornucopia, which in 2016 generated a profit of 560 million Euros. On the Administrative Council, the main management body, those who risk questioning the directives from the top are rare indeed.

“The only thing that matters to the members of the Administrative Council is that their countries get their cut from the patents registered with the EPO” was the sarcastic response from one EPO official, who preferred to remain anonymous. An annual manna of 500 million Euros. Germany alone, European champion when it comes to patents, pockets 150 million Euros every year. For having dared to stir things up, France has itself had to pay a price. French patents straight away went to the bottom of the pile....

That’s what you call a patented method.

Christophe Labbé


That last part was confirmed by a leak in 2015; if true, as evidence does seem to suggest, then Battistelli not only 'buys' votes but also 'punishes' countries that vote down his proposals or 'dare' criticise him. Not even North Korea went as far as this...

March on Battistelli, and worry not when the Office you once 'led' simply collapses. After the imminent retirement (Battistelli is too old to have been given this post in the first place) there will always be the memories and delusions of grandeur.

North Korean EPO

Recent Techrights' Posts

Sheriff of Cork & Debian Edward Brocklesby or Brockelsby Street confusion
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Who Is This Backup FOR, the NSA?
As Admfubar put it, "backups for everyone..."
Microsoft's Siege of Libya Coming to an End
One might be tempted to guess the users deleted Windows and installed something else
New Talk by Dr. Richard Stallman Published Two Days Ago By CeSIUM - Centro de Estudantes de Engenharia Informática da Universidade do Minho (Portugal)
The FSF no longer mentions Richard Stallman's talks, but we will
Name the Threats and Threat Actors
Looking back to 2006, there was Novell and gregkh (partly salaried by Microsoft), so these are familiar territories
The "Other" SPLC
You know you're winning the debate when censorship is explored
Microsoft: By Default, Destroy Linux
Here is what the very "polite" Microsoft Boccassi had to say
Perens on a Stick
Remember what Novell did and how few (barely anyone) sided with Novell
Andrew Tanenbaum Gets an Award for His Work on MINIX
ACM one week ago
Twitter's Fall to Irrelevancy in Europe
Musk bought a dud
 
Links 25/06/2024: Julian Assange Freed From Prison, "AI" Bubble Imploding Some More
Links for the day
Three Points About Julian Assange Plea Deal
There is still a secret problem
[Meme] EFF Became a 'Bunch of Pussies' Working for GAFAM (and Sponsored by GAFAM)
It won't protect people, except very rich people's interests
IBM Does Not Care for the Blind (Wayland Harms Accessibility)
What a punch in the gut
Tux Machines Past 20: Still Thriving
Now 20 years and 2 weeks old
[Meme] Microsoft is Coming /Home
"LOL, REAL SORRY!!!"
Gemini Links 25/06/2024: Old Computer Challenge; An Opinionated GNU/Linux Guide
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Monday, June 24, 2024
IRC logs for Monday, June 24, 2024
IEEE Computer Society on Andrew Tanenbaum, Winner of ACM Award, Who Also Inspired Linux Development
10 years ago
FSF Looking to Raise Money by Adding 200 New Members by July 19
The FSF is in good shape, according to Alexandre Oliva
Not Only Does It Not Add Security... (UEFI as a 'Bug Door')
SecureCore?
Data From Monaco Should Alarm Microsoft
Just how many people are deleting Windows and installing something else this year?
Linux in Central Sahel (Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger)
Vast area, vast number of "Linux users" (if one counts Android as such)
[Meme] Gagging One's Own Staff as a Signal of Corporate Distress
Censorship at Microsoft
Staying the Course
censorship isn't easy against sites that understand ways to resist it
The 'All-Seeing' Microsoft Eye
Microsofters are observing us closely
Links 24/06/2024: Long COVID and "How I Write Blogs"
Links for the day
Allegations That Microsoft is Covering Up Employee Dissatisfaction and Using a Survey to Catch 'Risk' to the Cult Mentality
This favours or gradually socially-engineers a company for sociopathy
'Linux Hint' Inactive for Nearly a Month (It Used to be Very Active)
Their Twitter account hasn't been active for a long time and it's not too clear what's going on
An Unexpected GNU/Linux Trend
Burkina Faso is changing and not just politically
Android (Linux) at New Highs in Burkina Faso, Now Measured at 72% (Windows Was Measured at 98% 15 Years Ago)
based on this month's estimates
With 0.76% for ChromeOS and 3.7% for GNU/Linux (4.5% Total) Burkina Faso Approaches 5% for 'Linux'
More if one counts Android as "Linux"
Gemini Links 24/06/2024: Being Dull and OpenSSH Autoban
Links for the day
EPO Issues in The Hague
a report dated 4 days ago about a meeting that took place 12 days ago
[Meme] Garbage in, Garbage Out (EPO Patent Quality)
"Get back to work"
When the Employer Makes You Too Sick to Go to Work (New EPO Document)
"registering when you are sick"
[Meme] 'Useless' Kids of EPO Examiners
malnourished?
Granting Loads of Monopolies in Europe (to Foreign Corporations of Epic Size and Far Too Much Power Inside Europe) is Vastly More Important Than Raising European Kids Properly?
"Efficiency" first? Whose? Corporations or families? No wonder so many young families are hesitant to have any kids these days; that's particularly true in east Asia and also in north America, not just Europe
[Meme] Putin's Red Flags
Firefox ESR or Firefox USSR
The Corporate/Mainstream Media and Even Social Control Media is Distorting the Record About What Mozilla Actually Did (It Originally Surrendered to Vladimir Putin)
Mozilla being avoided for purely technical reasons (sites not being compatible with it) is one thing. Foolishly, Mozilla is giving people more political reasons to also shun Mozilla. This is suicide.
GNU/Linux Up Some More This Morning, Windows Down Sharply Even in Rich Countries
Microsoft is in trouble in the Muslim world
United Arab Emirates (UAE) Rising... Towards 5% for ChromeOS and GNU/Linux
the latest numbers show it growing from about 0.1% to around 2.4% for GNU/Linux, plus 2.01% for Chromebooks (ChromeOS), i.e. about 5% in total.
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Free Speech (Online) Angle
Free speech is a fundamental tenet of a free society
Links 24/06/2024: New Research, New Attacks on Justices Sceptical of Patent Maximalists, European Commission for Copyright Maximalists
Links for the day
[Meme] 12 Years a Fedora Volunteer
IBM gives me a 'free' Fedora badge as recognition
IBM Slavery: Not a New Problem
When IBM got rid of Ben Cotton it showed the world how much it valued Fedora
Why They Want to Abolish Master/Slave Terminology (Because This is What They're Turned Free Software Into)
It used to be about community; GAFAM turned that into exploitation and worse
Roy and Rianne's Righteously Royalty-free RSS Reader (R.R.R.R.R.R.) Version 0.2 is Released
They say summer "officially" started some days ago
Torvalds' Number Two Quit Linux a Decade Ago and Has Since Then Earned an Honorary Doctorate
Revisiting Fuzix and Alan Cox
GNU/Linux Reaches All-Time High in Tunisia
Based on statCounter
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Sunday, June 23, 2024
IRC logs for Sunday, June 23, 2024
Edward Brocklesby (ejb) & Debian: Hacking expulsion cover-up in proximity to Oxford and GCHQ
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
You Know the Microsoft Products Really Suck When...
"Qualcomm and Microsoft go 'beyond the call of duty' to stop independent Copilot+ PC reviews"
IBM and "Regime Change"
Change of regime is not the same as freedom
Microsoft Windows in Nicaragua: From 98% to Less Than 25%
Operating System Market Share Nicaragua
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Community Angle
Somebody needs to call them out on their BS
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Software Angle
Gemini Protocol has just turned 5 - i.e. roughly the same age as our Git repositories
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Patent Angle
Next month marks 10 years since we began covering EPO leaks
Wookey, Intrigeri, Cryptie & Debian pseudonyms beyond Edward Brocklesby
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
[Meme] Choice Versus Freedom
So When Do I Start Having Freedom? Freedom is choice between the GAFAMs
Digital Liberation of Society at Times of Armed Conflicts and Uncertainty
We have technical contributions, not just written output
Links 23/06/2024: More Microsoft Cancellations, Growing Repression Worldwide
Links for the day
Gemini Links 23/06/2024: The Magician and the Hacker, tmux Tips
Links for the day
Links 23/06/2024: Twitter/X Wants Your Money, Google Reports a Billion DMCA Takedowns in Four Months
Links for the day
Digital Restrictions (Like DRM) Don't Have Brands, We Need to Teach People to Hate the Underlying Restrictions, Not Companies That Typically Come and Go
Conceptually, the hens should fear humans, not the farmer who cages them
Going Above 4% Again
Maybe 4% (or above) by month's end?
[Meme] Debian's 'Cannon Fodder' Economics
Conflicts of interest don't matter
Conviction, jail for Hinduja family, Debian exploitation comparison
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
According to Microsoft, It's Not a Code of Conduct Violation to Troll Your Victims Whose Files You Are Purging
The group of vandals from Microsoft think it's "funny" (and for a "nominal fee") to troll Microsoft critics
Microsoft Inside Debian is Sabotaging Debian and Its Many Hundreds of Derivatives With SystemD (Microsoft/GitHub Slopware With Catastrophic Bugs is Hardly a New Problem)
What is the moral of the story about The Scorpion and the Frog?
Links 23/06/2024: Hey Hi (AI) Scrapers Gone Very Rogue, Software Patents Squashed at EPO
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, June 22, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, June 22, 2024
Gemini Links 23/06/2024: LoRaWAN and Gemini Plugin for KOReade
Links for the day