12.19.15

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Jacques Michel (Former EPO VP1), Benoît Battistelli’s EPO, and the Leak of Internal Staff Data to Michel’s Private Venture

Posted in Europe, Patents at 8:55 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Revolving doors, or monetising a public career for private profit later, using publicly-acquired connections and access

Europatis

Summary: A look at a new kind of scandal at the EPO, where data protection is severely compromised for the sake of the management’s dubious goals

Benoît Battistelli’s EPO is a lot worse than people care to realise, even some of the EPO’s existing staff. The other day we alluded to "cooling-off periods" for resigning or retiring staff. Well, we have just received new information, backed by hard evidence, of something rather nasty involving http://www.europatis.eu. This site was created by the globe-trotting former VP1 Jacques Michel, another Frenchman who had his own agenda in mind. To quote patent maximalists (emphasis is ours): “As president of the EPO, Pompidou should have considerable powers over an organization covering 27 countries and a population of some 500 million. He is responsible only to the Administrative Council of the EPO. In practice, however, his strong political backing by the French government and the extensive lobbying by the French former EPO vice-president, Jacques Michel, indicate that he is likely to remain well disposed to Gallic influence. Pompidou has an extensive scientific background and considerable political experience as a member of the European Parliament from 1989 to 1999. However, he is a relative novice to the world of patents and is expected to be heavily reliant on his backers for most of his term of office.”

“Internal staff data has been intentionally leaked to Michel’s site.”This happens to relate to our series “Battistelli’s Furious Love Affair With French Power”, which is still ongoing.

Anyway, focusing on the main point, Michel is trying to headhunt/poach staff leaving the Office (be it by resigning or by retiring) for paid searches. This is fully in contradiction to what Battistelli now wants/wanted to establish. So, does Battistelli work contra Jacques Michel? As our source jokingly put it: “One or both are liars, Mafia, Templers, Scientology. File under conspiracy theory. You cannot trust them both.”

The main revelation, however, is this: Internal staff data has been intentionally leaked to Michel’s site. Our source has evidence for the fact that personal EPO staff data (at least full common name and E-mail address) has been leaked from internal EPO pages to Michel’s site in a case of resignation/retirement before the effective date.

“It’s not about what you do but about who you are and who you know.”How would European privacy (or “data protection”) authorities feel about it? How does existing EPO staff feel about it? It serves to highlight also the hypocrisy of Team Battistelli, which habitually complains about data leaking out of the EPO when it fact it is doing so itself. They try to distinguish between “good” leaks (those serving Team Battistelli by smearing the accused in the media or helping former EPO bigwigs) and “bad” leaks (those that expose abuse or even corruption implicating EPO bigwigs).

This whole affair reminds us of Keith Alexander’s highly fortunate career (he is a big millionaire now) after stepping out of the NSA and using privileged/confidential information to make money at incredible hourly rates. When Snowden gives evidence of NSA abuses to the public (gratis, not for personal gain) it’s naughty treason that merits death by hanging (apparently), whereas Alexander selling this information to private clients is just fine. It must be the Petraeus/Clinton-type of hypocrisy on confidentiality. It’s not about what you do but about who you are and who you know.

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