Bonum Certa Men Certa

We Will Never Have a Meaningful Debate About Patents When the Media Calls Algorithms “AI” and the EPO is Called “EU Patent Office”

Had they called it “EPO Patent Office” we'd have a recursive acronym like GNU

dad                    yes, son               what is AI again?                                 something smart                                smart?                  algorithm! Then he realised any algorithm which does stats/maths is 'AI'



Summary: Low-quality reporting is part of the reason we have low-quality debates about patent law

BASED on the world's trashiest tech tabloid, ZDNet [1], there are patents based on "HEY HI" (AI). The USPTO uses that as an excuse for granting abstract patents, with WIPO (UN) cheering from afar. Then we have TechDirt [2], and Slashdot linking to TechDirt [3], which wrongly described this as an "EU" thing yesterday (to be fair to TechDirt, it did cover some EPO scandals in the Battistelli era, it opposes software patents in Europe, supports 35 U.S.C. ۤ 101 and so on). It spoke of the "EU Patent Office" and more repetition of the falsehood (EPO predates the EU and has different member states). Those three examples from yesterday are good examples of bad and misguided journalism in this domain (truer than ever before so far in 2020).



"Unless we can get more people to accurately assess and fact-check, we'll carry on drowning in a sea of lies and myths."António Campinos has fallen in love with "AI" as a buzzword; but he apparently wasn't happy to allow computer-generated applications (or the likes of that, gaming the system with automation at the applicant's end).

Sadly, debates about these issues are rarely honest. This past week I responded to many misleading or outright false tweets from the EPO. Tweets aren't generally known for high quality, but those ones were just utter lies, sometimes paid-for lies.

A couple of weeks ago Hartwig Thomas (Switzerland) entertained one such EPO tweet when he responded with: "The claims are all false/heavily slanted:

- Disclosing some technique is almost never “unsafe”! - The concept of “owner” is related to the misused concept of “property”. - Open communication of a technique or method or machine does NOT prevent its commercial exploitation (just ask Red Hat!) - Why should use of knowledge ever be “authorized” by anybody? - Read boldrin/levine “against intellectual monopoly” who illustrate that patent law fails to achieve its goals and hurts society."

That's just a response to one EPO tweet among many (there are hundreds of new ones each month). Unless we can get more people to accurately assess and fact-check, we'll carry on drowning in a sea of lies and myths.

Related/contextual items from the news:



  1. Europe rejects patent applications signed with AI inventor


  2. EU Patent Office Rejects Two Patent Applications In Which An AI Was Designated As The Inventor

    We've written a bunch about why AI generated artwork should not (and need not) have any copyright at all. The law says that copyright only applies to human creators. But what about patents? There has been a big debate about this in the patent space over the last year, mainly lead by AI developers who want to be able to secure patents on AI generated ideas. The patent offices in the EU and the US have been exploring the issue, and asking for feedback, while they plot out a strategy, but some AI folks decided to force the matter sooner. Over the summer they announced that they had filed for two patents in the EU for inventions that they claim were "invented" by an AI named DABUS without the assistance of a human inventor.

    [...]

    The problem, yet again, is in people's misguided belief that everything must be owned by someone, and that somehow without a patent it is impossible to successfully commercialize or market a product. There is tremendous evidence to the contrary (including just by looking at products after their patents run out -- which is often a time when more innovation occurs, since there's greater competition driving improvements). But, instead, you hear nonsense like the following from Prof. Ryan Abbott, who helped file the two now rejected patents, arguing that without patents, somehow these inventions might not come to be:



  3. EU Patent Office Rejects Two Patent Applications in Which an AI Was Designated As the Inventor


Recent Techrights' Posts

[Video] Time to Acknowledge Debian Has a Real Problem and This Problem Needs to be Solved
it would make sense to try to resolve conflicts and issues, not exacerbate these
Daniel Pocock elected on ANZAC Day and anniversary of Easter Rising (FSFE Fellowship)
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Ulrike Uhlig & Debian, the $200,000 woman who quit
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Girlfriends, Sex, Prostitution & Debian at DebConf22, Prizren, Kosovo
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
 
[Video] Debian's Newfound Love of Censorship Has Become a Threat to the Entire Internet
SPI/Debian might end up with rotten tomatoes in the face
Joerg (Ganneff) Jaspert, Dalbergschule Fulda & Debian Death threats
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Amber Heard, Junior Female Developers & Debian Embezzlement
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
[Video] IBM's Poor Results Reinforce the Idea of Mass Layoffs on the Way (Just Like at Microsoft)
it seems likely Red Hat layoffs are in the making
IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, April 24, 2024
IRC logs for Wednesday, April 24, 2024
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
Links 24/04/2024: Layoffs and Shutdowns at Microsoft, Apple Sales in China Have Collapsed
Links for the day
Sexism processing travel reimbursement
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Microsoft is Shutting Down Offices and Studios (Microsoft Layoffs Every Month This Year, Media Barely Mentions These)
Microsoft shutting down more offices (there have been layoffs every month this year)
Balkan women & Debian sexism, WeBoob leaks
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Martina Ferrari & Debian, DebConf room list: who sleeps with who?
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 24/04/2024: Advances in TikTok Ban, Microsoft Lacks Security Incentives (It Profits From Breaches)
Links for the day
Gemini Links 24/04/2024: People Returning to Gemlogs, Stateless Workstations
Links for the day
Meike Reichle & Debian Dating
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Europe Won't be Safe From Russia Until the Last Windows PC is Turned Off (or Switched to BSDs and GNU/Linux)
Lives are at stake
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, April 23, 2024
IRC logs for Tuesday, April 23, 2024
[Meme] EPO: Breaking the Law as a Business Model
Total disregard for the EPO to sell more monopolies in Europe (to companies that are seldom European and in need of monopoly)
The EPO's Central Staff Committee (CSC) on New Ways of Working (NWoW) and “Bringing Teams Together” (BTT)
The latest publication from the Central Staff Committee (CSC)
Volunteers wanted: Unknown Suspects team
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Debian trademark: where does the value come from?
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Detecting suspicious transactions in the Wikimedia grants process
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 23/04/2024: US Doubles Down on Patent Obviousness, North Korea Practices Nuclear Conflict
Links for the day
Stardust Nightclub Tragedy, Unlawful killing, Censorship & Debian Scapegoating
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Gunnar Wolf & Debian Modern Slavery punishments
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
On DebConf and Debian 'Bedroom Nepotism' (Connected to Canonical, Red Hat, and Google)
Why the public must know suppressed facts (which women themselves are voicing concerns about; some men muzzle them to save face)
Several Years After Vista 11 Came Out Few People in Africa Use It, Its Relative Share Declines (People Delete It and Move to BSD/GNU/Linux?)
These trends are worth discussing
Canonical, Ubuntu & Debian DebConf19 Diversity Girls email
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Links 23/04/2024: Escalations Around Poland, Microsoft Shares Dumped
Links for the day
Gemini Links 23/04/2024: Offline PSP Media Player and OpenBSD on ThinkPad
Links for the day
Amaya Rodrigo Sastre, Holger Levsen & Debian DebConf6 fight
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
DebConf8: who slept with who? Rooming list leaked
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Bruce Perens & Debian: swiping the Open Source trademark
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Ean Schuessler & Debian SPI OSI trademark disputes
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Windows in Sudan: From 99.15% to 2.12%
With conflict in Sudan, plus the occasional escalation/s, buying a laptop with Vista 11 isn't a high priority
Anatomy of a Cancel Mob Campaign
how they go about
[Meme] The 'Cancel Culture' and Its 'Hit List'
organisers are being contacted by the 'cancel mob'
Richard Stallman's Next Public Talk is on Friday, 17:30 in Córdoba (Spain), FSF Cannot Mention It
Any attempt to marginalise founders isn't unprecedented as a strategy
IRC Proceedings: Monday, April 22, 2024
IRC logs for Monday, April 22, 2024
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
Don't trust me. Trust the voters.
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Chris Lamb & Debian demanded Ubuntu censor my blog
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Ean Schuessler, Branden Robinson & Debian SPI accounting crisis
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
William Lee Irwin III, Michael Schultheiss & Debian, Oracle, Russian kernel scandal
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work