WASHINGTON, D.C. - Over the objections of a plaintiff, the Federal Circuit on Sept. 22 granted several amici curiae the right to participate in upcoming oral arguments in a closely watched dispute over the doctrine of patent exhaustion (Lexmark International Inc. v. Impression Products Inc., Nos. 14-1617, -1619, Fed. Cir.).
SAN FRANCISCO - Concluding that a trial court "erred by conflating restitution calculation with the liability inquiry" for claims brought under California's unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law (FAL), a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Sept. 21 reversed a ruling that denied a putative class's motion for certification in its claims that Google Inc. misled them under its AdWords advertising program (Pulaski & Middleman LLC, et al. v. Google Inc., No. 12-16752, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16723).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Texas federal judge's final judgment confirming a jury award of $15 million on allegations of patent infringement was affirmed Sept. 21 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Summit 6 LLC v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., Nos. 13-1648, -1651, N.D. Texas).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - In a Sept. 19 summary judgment motion in California federal court, Yahoo Inc. asserts that its email scanning functions, which are at the heart of a privacy class action, comprise beneficial antivirus functions and benign targeted advertising but do not violate asserted federal and state privacy laws (In Re Yahoo Mail Litigation, No. 5:13-cv-04980, N.D. Calif.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In an en banc ruling, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 18 ruled that laches remains an available defense to allegations of patent infringement (SCA Hygiene Products Aktiebolag, et al. v. First Quality Baby Products LLC, et al., No. 13-1564, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16621).
NEW ORLEANS - School officials who disciplined a high school student for threatening private social network messages she sent to another student in 2007 are entitled to qualified immunity on claims brought against them, a Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Sept. 15, finding that it was not clearly established at the time that the officials were potentially violating the student's rights under the First or Fourth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution by accessing her Facebook account and subsequently disciplining her for the comments (Donald Jackson, et al. v. John Ladner, et al., No. 13-60631, 5th Cir.).
SAN FRANCISCO - An intellectual property holding and licensing firm filed a motion in California federal court Sept. 14, seeking an award of sanctions against Apple Inc. for what it calls unjustified misrepresentation of the technology giant's knowledge of the flash memory patents in suit prior to the filing of the present lawsuit, which it says resulted in prejudice and the dismissal of willful infringement claims (Longitude Licensing Ltd., et al. v. Apple Inc., No. 3:14-cv-4275, N.D. Calif.).
ATLANTA - A global bitcoin processor filed a complaint against its insurer on Sept. 15 in Georgia federal court, asserting breach of contract and bad faith for denial of a claim regarding a loss from the fraudulent transfer of bitcoin that resulted from a December 2014 phishing and hacking incident (Bitpay Inc. v. Massachusetts Bay Insurance Co., No. 1:15-cv-03238, N.D. Ga.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A New York federal judge's determination on summary judgment that two categories of accused products did not infringe three patents was reversed, in part, by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 16 (TNS Media Research LLC d/b/a Kantar Media Audiences, et al. v. TiVO Research and Analytics Inc., d/b/a TRA Inc., No. 14-1668, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The same day it vacated findings that three patents were not infringed, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 16 in a contemporaneous ruling vacated as "premature" a New York federal judge's award of attorney fees in the case (TNS Media Research LLC d/b/a Kantar Media Audiences, et al. v. TiVO Research and Analytics Inc., d/b/a TRA Inc., No. 15-1252, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A California federal judge's decision to deny Apple Inc. a permanent injunction in high-stakes smart phone patent litigation was vacated and remanded Sept. 17 by a divided Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Company Ltd., et al., No. 14-1802, Fed. Cir.).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 15 affirmed a lower federal court's ruling that insurers have no duty to defend against three underlying putative class actions alleging that its retailer insured violated state statutes and common-law privacy rights when gathering customers' personal ZIP code information while processing credit card transactions (OneBeacon America Insurance Co. v. Urban Outfitters Inc. and Anthropologie Inc. v. The Hanover Insurance Group, No. 14-2976, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16399).
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Deeming a federal unfair competition and common-law trademark infringement plaintiff likely to succeed on the merits of its claims, a North Carolina federal judge on Sept. 15 awarded a preliminary injunction; in a separate ruling issued the same day, however, he dismissed allegations that a defendant violated the North Carolina Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act (Charlotte Chiropractic Clinic P.A. d/b/a ChiroCarolina v. Richard Williams and Chiro-Carolina Family and Sports Care, No. 14-585, W.D. N.C.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 122684).
DETROIT - A dispute involving three fuel injector and engine control unit (ECU) patents was stayed conditionally on Sept. 15 by a Michigan federal judge, pending the outcome of an inter partes re-examination proceeding by the Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB) (Australia Pty Ltd., et al. v. Daimler AG, et al., No. 15-12398, E.D. Mich.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 122348).
BOSTON - Citing a recent decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) to suspend cancellation proceedings surrounding the "Fire Cider" trademark, a Massachusetts federal magistrate judge on Sept. 15 denied a declaratory judgment defendant's request for a stay (Shire City Herbals Inc. v. Mary Blue, d/b/a Farmacy Herbs et al., No. 15-30069, D. Mass.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 122678).
DENVER - Finding that a trial court did not err in admitting expert testimony on cell phone forensics and computer forensics, the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 14 affirmed a conviction and sentence against a man for charges of producing child pornography (United States of America v. Antonio Gutierrez, No. 14-2129, 10th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16302).
HOUSTON - A method and system patent for "determining the state of well operations" is invalid under 35 U.S. Code Section 101, a Texas federal judge ruled Sept. 11 (TDE Petroleum Data Solutions Inc. v. AKM Enterprise Inc. d/b/a Moblize Inc., No. 15-1821, S.D. Texas; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 121123).
SAN FRANCISCO - Allegations that director James Cameron and co-defendant Gale Ann Hurd committed copyright infringement by borrowing certain literary and musical materials to develop the "Terminator" film franchise were rejected Sept. 11 by a California federal judge (Neil Goldberg v. James Cameron and Gale Ann Hurd, No. 15-2556, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 121501).
RIVERSIDE, Calif. - A California federal judge on Sept. 8 partially granted an energy drink company's motion for a default ruling on its claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and trademark infringement against an individual, awarding it $15,000 in statutory damages (Monster Energy Co. v. Mike McNamee, No. 15-0084, C.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 120295).
SAN FRANCISCO - Discovery subpoenas served on Facebook Inc., Instagram LLC and Twitter Inc. by two murder suspects are not permitted under the Stored Communications Act (SCA), a California appeals panel rule Sept. 8, reversing a trial court's denial of the social networks' motion to quash (Facebook Inc., et al. v. The Superior Court of San Francisco City and County, et al., No. A144315, Calif. App., 1st Dist.; 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 786).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Five amicus curiae briefs were filed in the U.S. Supreme Court on Sept. 8 in support of a Virginia man who claims that a data aggregation service violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) by publishing inaccurate information about him online (Spokeo, Inc. v. Thomas Robins, et al., No. 13-1339, U.S. Sup.).
PHILADELPHIA - A jury verdict in favor of a defendant on its counterclaim of negligent misrepresentation is not inconsistent with a verdict of trademark infringement by the same defendant, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Sept. 10 (Brand Marketing Group LLC v. Intertek Testing Services N.A. Inc., No. 14-3010, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16077).
MARSHALL, Texas - A request by defendants Samsung Electronics Co. (SEC) Ltd. and Apple Inc. to transfer patent infringement allegations to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California was rejected Sept. 9 by a Texas federal judge (ZiiLabs Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., et al., No. 14-203, E.D. Texas.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 119478).
COLUMBUS, Ohio - A defaulting defendant should be permanently enjoined from any further infringement of the copyrighted film "Jug Face," an Ohio federal magistrate judge ruled Sept. 9 (Modern Jug Face LLC v. Phillip Wright, No. 13-847, S.D. Ohio; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 119884).
SEATTLE - In a Sept. 3 motion filed in its unfair billing case against Amazon.com Inc. in Washington federal court, the Federal Trade Commission seeks a protective order to prevent Amazon from using the discovery process to obtain documents about competitor Apple Inc. related to a similar, but separate FTC proceeding against Apple (Federal Trade Commission v. Amazon.com Inc., No. 2:14-cv-01038, W.D. Wash.).