SAN FRANCISCO - In a May 16 reply brief in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, a group of television networks seek reversal of a lower court ruling that deemed an Internet rebroadcaster of their programs to potentially be a "cable system" that is eligible for compulsory copyright licenses under Section 111 of the Copyright Act (Fox Television Stations Inc., et al. v. Aereokiller LLC, et al., No. 15-56420, 9th Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a May 16 reply brief supporting its petition for certiorari, Google Inc. argues that the U.S. Supreme Court needs to review an underlying grant of class certification in a suit over Google's AdWords program brought under California's unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law (FAL), to resolve a circuit split over whether individual damage calculations in class actions can be calculated using generalized proof (Google Inc. v. Pulaski & Middleman LLC, et al., No. 15-1101, U.S. Sup.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge "jumped the gun" in dismissing a trademark infringement dispute between two food distribution companies at the pleading stage, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 16 (Hyson USA Inc. v. Hyson 2U Ltd., No. 14-3261, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8898).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A final written decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB, or board) was only partly correct, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 18, reversing a determination by the PTAB that two claims of a motor mounting patent would have been obvious (Black & Decker Inc. v. Positec USA Inc., et al., Nos. 15-1646, -1647, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A California federal judge did not err in dismissing a patent infringement action on jurisdiction grounds because he properly concluded that the plaintiff in the action never received patentee status from an assignee, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 17 (Diamond Coating Technologies LLC v. Hyundai Motor America et al., Nos. 15-1844, -1861, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8971).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Although Microsoft Corp. was properly determined to have not infringed one claim of a software patent, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 12 nonetheless reversed a California federal judge's findings that the patent and another that shares the same written description are directed to an abstract idea and therefore invalid under 35 U.S. Code Section 101 (Enfish LLC v. Microsoft Corp., et al., No. 15-2444, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8699).
NEW YORK - A false advertising and antitrust dispute between two drug makers over the efficacy of tablets and capsules in controlling somnolence - a common side effect for users of the anti-spasticity drug tizanidine - was properly resolved by two New York federal judges, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals concluded May 16 (Apotex Inc. v. Acorda Therapeutics Inc., No. 14-4353, 2nd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8915).
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The trademarks for Navajo products are not famous enough to be diluted by tarnishment or blurring by the sale of nontribal goods with the same name, a New Mexico federal judge ruled May 13 in granting partial summary judgment to trademark infringement defendant companies (The Navajo Nation, et al. v. Urban Outfitters, Inc., et al., No. 12-195, D. N.M.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 63599).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge erroneously deemed an allegation of trade dress infringement preempted by the Copyright Act, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals concluded May 13 (Mercado Latino Inc. v. Indio Products Inc., No. 13-57009, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8846).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Finding "no harmful legal error" in a decision by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) that upheld a refusal to register a stylized form of the "Churrascos" trademark, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 13 affirmed, deeming the mark generic (In re: Cordua Restaurants Inc., No. 15-1432, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8783).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A U.S. Supreme Court majority on May 16 reversed a ruling by the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals related to class claims against an online data aggregator under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), finding that although the appeals court considered whether a lead plaintiff alleged an injury in fact that was sufficiently particularized to establish standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution, the court did not properly weight the claims' concreteness under the act (Spokeo, Inc. v. Thomas Robins, et al., No. 13-1339, U.S. Sup.; 2016 U.S. LEXIS 3046).
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A Connecticut investment expert has sufficiently stated his libel and defamation claims against two defendants that were purportedly involved in an online smear campaign against him, a Connecticut federal judge ruled May 10, denying a motion to dismiss (Gregory Imbruce v. Teri Buhl, et al., No. 3:15-cv-00554, D. Conn.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61533).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In a petition for inter partes review filed May 11 with the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, Alcatel-Lucent USA Inc. takes aim at a patent directed to the allocation of frequency channels, called "subcarriers," to subscribers (Alcatel-Lucent USA Inc. v. Adaptix Inc., No. IPR2016-01030, PTAB).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Arguments by two patent plaintiffs that a New Jersey federal judge erroneously construed various disputed terms in a hip implant socket assembly patent were rejected May 12 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Howmedica Osteonics Corp., et al. v. Zimmer Inc., et al., Nos. 15-1232, -1234, -1239, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8701).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A federal jury in Delaware on May 12 found that Cisco Systems Inc. willfully infringed two patents related to network security and surveillance, awarding the plaintiff $23.7 million in "reasonable royalty" damages, while also deeming the patents in suit to be valid (SRI International Inc. v. Cisco Systems Inc., No. 1:13-cv-01534, D. Del.).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Seven claims of a patent that discloses a system that provides a personalized messaging advertisement service by using information stored in a smart card were erroneously rejected as anticipated, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board ruled May 11 (Ex parte Seung Hwan Kim, Appeal No. 2013-009202, PTAB).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In a final written decision issued May 11, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) deemed 14 claims of a patent directed to a virtual database invalid under 35 U.S. Code Section 103 (Actifio Inc. v. Delphix Corp., No. IPR2015-00100, PTAB).
MINNEAPOLIS - Three nonparties in a patent infringement action won relief from a contempt order on May 10, when a Minnesota federal judge found that the trio did not have actual notice of an earlier order granting injunctive relief and subsequent $5,000-per-day sanction for violations of the injunction (Core Distribution Inc. v. Xtreme Power USA Inc., No. 15-1547, D. Minn.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62128).
RALEIGH, N.C. - The owner and operator of a Shanghai, China-based manufacturing plant where allegedly infringing pipe-coupling devices are produced won dismissal from the lawsuit on May 9, when a North Carolina federal judge found jurisdiction lacking (Krausz Industries Ltd. v. Smith-Blair Inc., et al., No. 12-570, E.D. N.C.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61079).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - A petition for covered business method (CBM) review of a patent directed to the aggregation of content from multiple providers, which is then repackaged and redistributed, was granted by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) on May 9 (iHeartMedia Inc. v. Impulse Radio LLC, No. CBM2016-00010, PTAB).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - In a May 9 motion in California federal court, Facebook Inc. seeks to dismiss trade secrets and unfair competition claims against it related to its development of data centers, asserting that the defendants did not make reasonable efforts to protect their purported trade secrets and that they did not sufficiently allege damages or consumer-based unfair actions (BladeRoom Group Limited, et al. v. Facebook Inc., et al., No. 5:15-cv-01370, N.D. Calif.).
NEW YORK - A defendant's "highly interactive" website, coupled with the fact that she conducted seminars and engaged in marketing activities in New York, are sufficient to establish jurisdiction in the state, a New York federal judge ruled May 10, denying a motion to dismiss a lawsuit over alleged infringement of the "Brainspotting" trademark (David Grand v. Lisa Schwarz, No. 1:15-cv-08779, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61606).
PHILADELPHIA - A defense motion for summary judgment was granted May 10 by a Pennsylvania federal judge, who found that "no reasonable factfinder could find" in favor of a plaintiff on its allegations that "Park's Finest" frankfurters infringe the "Parks" trademark as applied to breakfast and dinner sausages (Parks LLC v. Tyson Foods Inc., et al., No. 15-946, E.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61510).
TACOMA, Wash. - A copyright infringement dispute between a website development company and a chiropractic firm that retained the developer's services was dismissed May 6 by a Washington federal judge, who found that the developer "has failed to show any substantial contacts" by the company in Washington "beyond the existence of the contract" (Williams Business Services Inc. v. Waterside Chiropractic Inc., No. 14-5873, W.D. Wash.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 60529).
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - In a May 9 brief in Florida federal court, two former legal assistants, who are defendants in a computer fraud lawsuit, argue that sanctions are not merited for their failure to keep smartphones they owned at the time they purportedly hacked into their former employer's email system, contending that they did not act willfully or in bad faith (Goldstein Law Group P.A. v. Leviette Machado, et al., No. 0:15-cv-61145, S.D. Fla.).