09.05.19

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Jo Johnson Quitting Twice in Two Years is a Terrible Sign for the Unitary Patent (UPC)

Posted in Europe, Patents at 1:32 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Jo Johnson

Summary: The UK IP minister has once again quit; this is the fourth time since the Brexit referendum and it has become almost comical; it also says a lot about the state of the Unified Patent Court (UPC)

TEAM UPC has long relied on Lucy to deliver its agenda, but she left and so did her successor in 2018. In about 3 years we saw the so-called ‘IP’ minister resigning four times. Yes, 4 times in 3 years! Not kidding. In 2018 we published Jo Johnson's Departure is Another Major Blow for Team UPC (Unified Patent Court) and that wasn’t long after he had done photo ops with a criminal, Battistelli, who put his friend António Campinos in charge of the European Patent Office (EPO) like his brother, Boris Johnson, put him in charge of a key position. It’s nepotism everywhere, so UPC couldn’t look any more like a joke at this stage! It’s all corrupt — like nothing we ever saw at any point in time at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), JPO, KIPO and SIPO/CNIPA (IP5).

Jo Johnson has once again resigned, as Edward Nodder noted this afternoon, as did IAM when it wrote: “Jo Johnson – UK IP minister and brother of PM Boris Johnson – has resigned just weeks after being appointed. There is, he said, “an unresolvable tension” in his role and he is “torn between my family loyalty and the national interest”. Unlike his brother, Jo opposed Brexit.”

“It’s nepotism everywhere, so UPC couldn’t look any more like a joke at this stage!”Let us just state again that this is the fourth time in about 3 years that it happens. Nobody can hold this job. It’s a total mess. It’s like the EPO, which actively undermines European businesses with software patents (against the law in Europe, just like it’s in defiance of caselaw and 35 U.S.C. § 101 in the US). “The final stop in 2019 for our #IPforbusiness training roadshow is Ljubljana,” the EPO wrote today, adding in another tweet:

What are we doing to ensure that we deliver the highest-quality products and services, and how do we engage with our users and take their feedback on board? We’ll be answering those questions and more at this event: https://bit.ly/2MPOAyN pic.twitter.com/rW6P5tIy3Q

Nonsense. The EPO actively destroys, perhaps intentionally, its own quality; its staff union says so in its publications. The coverup won’t work.

“The EPO actively destroys, perhaps intentionally, its own quality; its staff union says so in its publications.”In Lexology we’ve meanwhile noticed this update from Mitscherlich PartmbB’s Sebastian Roth and Lexology promoted an ad from Cohausz & Florack’s Caroline Kersjes. They speak of the Boards of Appeal, which are in limbo and enjoy no independence. To quote: “On 26 June 2019, the new Rules of Proce-dure of the Boards of Appeal (RPBA) of the European Patent Office were adopted. They will enter into force on 1 January 2020 and will apply to all pending and newly-filed appeals. [...] In addition, important elements of case ma-nagement have been introduced in the new RPBA. This is intended to give the Boards of Appeal more flexibility in the allocation of cases and scheduling to counteract the backlog of appeal proceedings and to reduce the duration of proceedings.”

“Unless or until these issues at the EPO are being properly tackled expect no UPC, no increase in patent applications (their number is reportedly decreasing and quality declining), no patent justice and more patent trolls in Europe.”These new rules accomplish nothing. No progress or any step/s towards restoring the judges’ independence (which was lost ages ago). This remains one of the biggest barriers to the UPC, never mind other aspects such as Brexit. There’s not even an impression of justice at the EPO and the whole system is at risk of reputational collapse. Unless or until these issues at the EPO are being properly tackled expect no UPC, no increase in patent applications (their number is reportedly decreasing and quality declining), no patent justice and more patent trolls in Europe.

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