WASHINGTON, D.C. - A determination by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Patent Trial and Appeal Board that five claims of a system for increasing the speed of data access are unpatentable was vacated and remanded June 16 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Microsoft Corp. v. Proxyconn Inc., Nos. 14-1542, -1543, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 10081).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Texas federal judge erroneously denied The Gap Inc. and Direct Consumer Services LLC judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) that two patents are invalid as anticipated, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 16 (Alexsam Inc. v. The Gap, Inc. et al., No. 14-1564, -1705, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 10079).
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on June 15 denied in part a motion by Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. to dismiss a putative class action by former employees related to a 2014 data breach, finding that the plaintiffs had standing to sue and that they sufficiently alleged negligence and unfair competition claims (Michael Corona, et al. v. Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc., No. 2:14-cv-09600, C.D. Calif.).
PASADENA, Calif. - Although a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel affirmed dismissal of a political activist's federal claim related to a district attorney's online postings about her, the panel on June 15 held that the federal amount in jurisdiction threshold had been sufficiently alleged, reversing dismissal of her related state law defamation and invasion of privacy claims (Nadia Naffe v. John Patrick Frey, et al., No. 13-55666, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 10027).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Finding that certain user contact information and ad-click data is necessary to decide certification of a privacy class action against Facebook Inc., a California federal judge on June 11 ordered the social network to submit a sampling of such information from 5,000 users, granting in part a named plaintiff's motion to compel (In Re: Facebook Privacy Litigation, No. 5:10-cv-02389, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75962).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board to terminate an earlier grant of review under the covered business method (CBM) patent review procedure is not appealable, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said June 16 (GTNX Inc. v. INTTRA Inc., Nos. 15-1349, -1350, -1352, -1353, Fed. Cir.).
INDIANAPOLIS - Adopting a magistrate's report and recommendation, an Indiana federal judge on June 11 entered default against two defendants in a file-sharing case, finding that their spoliation of evidence prevented the copyright holder from pursuing its infringement claims against them (Malibu Media LLC v. Kelley Tashiro, et al., No. 1:13-cv-00205, S.D. Ind.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75588).
NEW ORLEANS - Finding no abuse of discretion in a Texas federal judge's decision to award two copyright infringement defendants their attorney fees, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 15 affirmed (Marshall Hunn v. Dan Wilson Homes Inc. et al., Nos. 13-11297, 14-10365, 5th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 10061).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A deeply divided en banc Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 16 revisited its November 2014 holding in a patent case to insert a new subsection that does away with the court's previous "heightened bar" for overcoming the presumption that a limitation expressed in functional language without using the word "means" is not subject to designation as a "means-plus-function" limitation under 35 U.S. Code Section 112, paragraph 6 (Richard A. Williamson, trustee for At Home Bondholders Liquidating Trust v. Citrix Online LLC et al., No. 13-1130, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Finding no error in a California federal judge's determination that a medical method patent is directed to ineligible subject matter, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 12 affirmed (Ariosa Diagnostics Inc., et al. v. Sequenom Inc., Nos. 14-1139, -1144, Fed. Cir.).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - In a motion seeking preliminary approval of a settlement, the representatives of a putative class LinkedIn Corp. users told a California federal judge on June 11 that the professionally oriented social network operator had agreed to pay $13 million to settle their unfair competition and publicity rights claims against it (Paul Perkins, et al. v. LinkedIn Corp., No. 5:13-cv-04303, N.D. Calif.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge properly granted WD-40 Co. a summary judgment of trademark noninfringement because use of the word "inhibitor" on the label of its product was fair, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed June 11 (Jeffrey Sorensen v. WD-40 Company, No, 14-3067, 7th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 9818).
SAN FRANCISCO - Although a California federal judge found that YouTube Inc. was not immune under the Communications Decency Act (CDA) from claims related to its takedown of a band's music video for allegedly artificially inflating the video's view count, the judge held that the plaintiffs failed to sufficiently allege their libel and contractual claims against the video-sharing website, granting its motion to dismiss (Song fi Inc., et al. v. Google Inc., et al., No. 3:14-cv-05080, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75272).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on June 11 denied the consolidated motion of a group of telecommunications providers (telecoms) to stay the Federal Communications Commission's recently released report and order on "Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet" pending the telecoms' respective petitions seeking review of the order (United States Telecom Association v. Federal Communications Commission, et al., No. 15-1063, D.C. Cir.).
INDIANAPOLIS - Finding that a genuine issue of material fact exists as to whether an accused file-sharer illegally copied six movies, an Indiana federal judge on June 8 denied the copyright holder's motion for summary judgment (Malibu Media LLC v. Michael Harrison, No. 1:12-cv-01117, S.D. Ind.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73447).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Amazon.com Inc. again prevailed on allegations that it infringed a method patent when the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 11 agreed with a California federal judge that the patent in suit claims "no more than an abstract idea coupled with routine data-gathering steps and conventional computer activity" (OIP Technologies Inc. v. Amazon.com Inc., No. 12-1696, Fed. Cir.).
ROCHESTER, N.Y. - Efforts by a copyright infringement plaintiff to hold a former licensee responsible for copying designs that were pitched and rejected failed June 10, when a New York federal judge instead granted the defendant summary judgment (Barbara McDonald v. K-2 Industries Inc. d/b/a Pavilion Gift Company, No. 10-6678, W.D. N.Y.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75205).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A California federal judge's determination that a coenzyme-producing patent was not infringed by three defendants was vacated, in part, by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 10 (Kaneka Corporation v. Xiamen Kingdomway Group Company, et al., Nos. 14-1373, -1399, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A news and entertainment media operator failed to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, the U.S. Department of State said June 8 in its answer to a complaint by Gawker Media LLC in District of Columbia federal court seeking to compel communications related to Hillary Clinton's use of a personal email account during her tenure as secretary of State under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (Gawker Media LLC, et al. v. Department of State, No. 1:15-cv-00363, D. D.C.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that deemed various patent claims invalid as obvious and anticipated under 35 U.S. Code Sections 102(b) and 103(a) was reversed and remanded June 10 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Acme Scale Company Inc. v. LTS Scale Company LLC, No. 14-1721, Fed. Cir.).
LOS ANGELES - Although agreeing with a defendant that a plaintiff's theories of forward and reverse confusion with regard to trademark infringement liability must fail, a California federal judge on June 8 stopped short of canceling the "Oculu" mark (Oculu LLC v. Oculus VR Inc., No. 14-196, C.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74666).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A stipulated final judgment of noninfringement and invalidity with regard to a video conversion patent was vacated and remanded by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 9 because the stipulation was based on an erroneous claim construction (Virginia Information Sciences Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. et al., No. 14-1477, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 9568).
INDIANAPOLIS - A plaintiff who voluntarily dismissed his copyright infringement claims must pay a defendant $33,974.65 in attorney fees, an Indiana federal judge ruled June 8 (Richard N. Bell v. Charles Lantz, No. 13-35, S.D. Ind.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73616).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - An inventor's attempt to patent a combination of coffee grounds and honey for the treatment of certain viral illnesses was properly rejected by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO), the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals found June 8 (In re: Gilbert Gee, No. 15-1145, Fed. Cir.).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A federal judge in California on June 5 dismissed a state unfair competition law (UCL) claim from a dispute over whether an enterprise mobility management (EMM) solutions provider disseminated marketing materials disparaging the quality of the plaintiff's mobile data and device management technologies but allowed claims brought under the Lanham Act to continue (Good Technology Corp., et al. v. MobileIron Inc., No. 12-5826, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73271).