OKLAHOMA CITY - A former student of the late, famed golfer Moe Norman was preliminarily enjoined, in part, by an Oklahoma federal judge on May 20 from using the "Moe Norman" trademark in connection with golf services (Estate of Moe Norman et al. v. Greg Lavern, No. 14-1435, W.D. Okla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65611).
NEW ORLEANS - Finding no abuse of discretion in a Texas federal judge's decision to deny a prevailing copyright infringement defendant its attorney fees, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 20 affirmed (Macro Niche Software Inc., et al. v. Imaging Solutions of Australia, No. 14-20371, 5th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 8348).
GREENSBORO, N.C. - A North Carolina federal magistrate judge on May 19 granted Allergan Inc. and Duke University leave to amend to remove all allegations of infringement of one patent while narrowing their infringement allegations as they relate to another (Allergan Inc. and Duke University v. Apotex Inc., et al., No. 14-1028, M.D. N.C.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64973).
SAN FRANCISCO - Although a California federal magistrate judge abused his discretion by "categorically" denying a prevailing copyright infringement plaintiff her full request for attorney fees, he properly denied a motion for sanctions by the plaintiff in connection with alleged evidence spoliation, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 19 (Victoria Ryan v. Editions Limited West, et al., Nos. 12-17810, 13-15061, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 8199).
RICHMOND, Va. - A Virginia federal judge's injunction barring two trademark infringement counterclaim defendants from using the "NAACP" trademark was vacated May 19 by the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, which remanded with instructions to dismiss the counterclaim (The Radiance Foundation, et al. v. National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, et al., No. 14-1568, 4th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 8203).
INDIANAPOLIS - Although noting that entry of a default judgment in response to discovery abuses is an "extreme" and "draconian" measure, an Indiana federal magistrate judge on May 18 nonetheless found that conduct by two copyright infringement defendants "warrants the harshest of sanctions" (Malibu Media LLC v. Kelley Tashiro and N. Charles Tashiro, No. 13-205, S.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64281).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Although leaving intact a California federal jury's determination that Apple Inc.'s design and utility patents were infringed by Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., Samsung Electronics America Inc. and Samsung Telecommunications America LLC (Samsung, collectively), the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 18 vacated a finding by jurors that Apple's asserted registered and unregistered iPhone trade dress is entitled to protection (Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., et al., Nos. 14-1335, 15-1029, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 8096).
PASADENA, Calif. - Reversing a previous panel decision ordering YouTube LLC and Google Inc. to take down a controversial anti-Muslim film based on an actress' "heartfelt plea for personal protection," an en banc Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals majority on May 18 held that "a weak copyright claim cannot justify censorship in the guise of authorship" (Cindy Lee Garcia v. Google Inc., et al., No. 12-57302, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 8105).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A final decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board to cancel a registration for "Pretzel Crisps" in connection with pretzel crackers on grounds that the term is generic was vacated and remanded by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 15 (Princeton Vanguard LLC v. Frito-Lay North America Inc., No. 14-1517, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a letter filed May 15, the U.S. government defendants in a lawsuit regarding the surveillance activities of the National Security Agency (NSA) advised the District of Columbia U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals of a recent ruling in which the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals found "no reasonable expectation of privacy in telephone metadata" (Larry Elliott Klayman, et al. v. Barack Hussein Obama, et al., No. 14-5004, 14-5005, 14-5016, 14-5017, D.C. Cir.).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 15 vacated a $7,120 sanction entered against a former physician accused of trademark infringement (American Board of Surgery Inc. v. Keith A. Lasko, et al., No. 14-1785, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 8031).
PITTSBURGH - Although a Pennsylvania federal magistrate judge found that no jurisdiction existed over a Chicago-based chocolatier that is the defendant in a cybersquatting lawsuit, in a May 12 ruling she opted to transfer the matter to Illinois rather than grant the defendant's dismissal motion (Mon Aimee Chocolat Inc. v. Tushiya LLC, et al., No. 2:14-cv-01568, W.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62048).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Although a Maryland federal judge properly granted a pharmaceutical company summary judgment of noninfringement under 35 U.S. Code Section 271(e)(1) with regard to certain activities, the summary judgment must be vacated with regard to others, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 13 (Classen Immunotherapies Inc. et al. v. Elan Pharmaceuticals Inc., No. 14-1671, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7854).
PHILADELPHIA - A New Jersey man claiming fraud over his purchase of a classic car from a California dealer did not establish that state's jurisdiction over the defendants, a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled May 11, finding that the dealer's interactive website and two emails did not constitute purposeful availment of its activities toward New Jersey (John Corigliano v. Classic Motor Inc., et al., No. 14-3586, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7722).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Rejecting the "sweeping notions of common-law tort liability" advanced by a patent owner and a dissenting judge, a divided panel of the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 13 again found that a defendant is not responsible for the actions of its customers who carried out "other steps" that led to infringement (Akamai Technologies Inc. et al. v. Limelight Networks Inc., Nos. 09-1372, -1380, -1416, -1417, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7856).
NEW YORK - A New York federal judge's determination that the United States Polo Association Inc. and USPA Properties Inc. (USPA, collectively) were in contempt for violating a permanent injunction barring the use of a polo player logo was reversed and remanded May 13 by the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (United States Polo Association Inc., et al. v. PRL USA Holdings Inc., et al., Nos. 13-1038, -1130, 2nd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7862).
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Several affirmative defenses raised in response to allegations of copyright infringement were stricken May 12 by an Ohio federal judge (Malibu Media LLC v. Niraj Patel, No. 14-559, S.D. Ohio; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62139).
BOSTON - A Massachusetts appeals panel on May 12 affirmed a lower court's ruling that an insurer has no duty to defend its egg producer insured against an underlying suit alleging that it conspired to fix the price of eggs, rejecting the insured's argument that some of the claims are covered by the policy's "personal and advertising injury endorsement" (Rose Acre Farms Inc. v. Liberty Insurance Corp., No. 14-P-915, Mass. App.; 2015 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 409).
BOSTON - A copyright infringement dispute between an aspiring recording artist and a husband-and-wife producer and marketing duo was resolved, in part, on May 8 with a partial grant of summary judgment by a Massachusetts federal judge (Liana Conway, et al. v. Sam Licata, et al., No. 13-12193, D. Mass.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61276).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Delaware federal judge's determination of patent invalidity was reversed May 12 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals with regard to two newly added claims not broadened during reissue (ArcelorMittal France et al. v. AK Steel Corporation et al., No. 14-1189, Fed. Cir.).
ATLANTA - A motion to compel the underlying material in 27 "general" studies produced by the Federal Trade Commission relating to settlements of patent disputes between brand-name and generic drug manufacturers was denied May 11 by a Georgia federal judge (In re: Androgel Antitrust Litigation [No. II], MDL No. 2084 [All Cases], No. 1:09-md-2084, N.D. Ga.; Federal Trade Commission v. Actavis, Inc., et al., No. 1:09-cv-955, N.D. Ga.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61076).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A determination by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), made in the context of assessing underlying patent infringement allegations, that the domestic industry requirements of 19 U.S. Code Section 337 can be satisfied by qualitative factors alone was reversed May 11 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Lelo Inc., et al. v. International Trade Commission, et al., No. 13-1582, Fed. Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7708).
SANTA ANA, Calif. - A California federal judge on May 8 found that the plaintiff in a trademark dispute failed to fully comply with two previous discovery orders, recommending that the plaintiff be found in violation and that sanctions be issued, albeit not as severe as those sought by the defendant (Oculu LLC v. Oculus VR Inc., No. 8:14-cv-00196, C.D. Calif.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A confirmation by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's Patent Trial and Appeal Board of an examiners rejection of various claims of a patent relating to a method and system for reducing a body's absorption of power while operating a wireless communication device was proper, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 11 (Saied Tadayon, et al. v. Saucon Technologies Inc., No. 14-1804, Fed. Cir.).