WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Labor Relations Board on Aug. 18 enforced, with some modifications, a decision by an administrative law judge (ALJ) finding that the social media code of Chipotle Services LLC (doing business as Chipotle Mexican Grill) violates the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and that the fast food chain committed further violations by directing an employee to delete certain tweets, prohibiting the employee from circulating a petition challenging the chain's break policy and terminating the employee for his actions (Chipotle Services LLC d/b/a Chipotle Mexican Grill and Pennsylvania Workers Organizing Committee, a project of the Fast Food Workers Committee, Nos. 04-CA-147314 and 04-CA-149551, NLRB).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - In an Aug. 19 brief opposing class certification in a suit over purported spyware that was preinstalled on computers, Lenovo (United States) Inc. told a California federal court that the case is "about a theoretical software security vulnerability that never materialized," arguing that certifications is inappropriate because the plaintiffs have not demonstrated any injury from the disputed software (In Re: Lenovo Adware Litigation, No. 5:15-cv-02624, N.D. Calif.).
CHICAGO - An online retailer that sold earrings bearing a fake Tory Burch trademark was ordered Aug. 22 by an Illinois federal judge to pay two plaintiffs $100,000 in statutory damages, as a result of the retailer's failure to ensure that its product offerings were not counterfeit (River Light V L.P., et al. v. I Love You To The Moom And Back, No. 15-5918, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 111301).
CHICAGO - A trade dress infringement defendant's request for declarations of trade dress noninfringement, invalidity and unenforceability was turned away Aug. 22 by an Illinois federal judge, who concluded that the defendant "is essentially seeking an inappropriate advisory opinion" that would do nothing to resolve the parties' dispute (Bodum USA Inc. v. A Top New Casting Inc., No. 16-2916, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 111153).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Delaware federal judge's decision to invalidate a semiconductor wafer patent as anticipated was vacated and remanded Aug. 19 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, which cited the existence of genuine issues of material fact that should have precluded summary judgment (Semcon Tech LLC v. Micron Technology Inc., No. 15-1936, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15233).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - A patented method of communicating online with pre-stored sequences of actions or scripts is directed to nonstatutory subject matter under 35 U.S. Code Section 101, Sony Mobile Communications (USA) Inc. alleges in an Aug. 19 petition for covered business method (CBM) review with the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Sony Mobile Communications [USA] Inc. v. Content Aggregation Solutions LLC, No. CBM2016-00098, PTAB).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A New Jersey federal judge's decision to grant a summary judgment of patent invalidity and noninfringement was affirmed Aug. 19 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, which found that patent owner E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. failed to establish that an accused substrate is controlled by an accused adhesive drying process (E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. v. MacDermid Printing Solutions LLC, No. 15-1777, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15231).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge erred in granting Live Nation Merchandise Inc. summary judgment on allegations of willful infringement because a reasonable jury could have concluded that Live Nation distributed a plaintiff's photographs with knowledge that copyright management information (CMI) had been removed, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 18 (Glen E. Friedman v. Live Nation Merchandise Inc., No. 14-55302, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15178).
CHICAGO - The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) did not violate the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in issuing subpoenas on a man's email provider and Internet service provider (ISP) because he had no expectation of privacy in his computer's Internet protocol (IP) address, a Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel found Aug. 17, affirming a district court's denial of the defendant's motion to suppress in a drug possession case (United States of America v. Frank Caira, No. 14-1003, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15098).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Efforts by an infringement defendant to invalidate a patented method of gathering and presenting summary information as HyperText Markup Language (HTML) were unsuccessful on Aug. 16, when the Patent Trial and Appeal Board denied a petition for covered business method (CBM) review (Plaid Technologies Inc. v. Yodlee Inc. and Yodlee.com Inc., No. CBM2016-00037, PTAB).
TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 17 turned away a request for dismissal of a patent infringement lawsuit based upon a claim of joint ownership by three defendants, finding instead that the plaintiff - as an exclusive licensee - can sue a patentee or an infringer (The Medicines Company v. Eagle Pharmaceuticals, et al., No. 16-569, D. N.J.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 108855).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Findings by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that 23 claims of a patented composition for tigecycline and an acid or buffer are not obvious were not erroneous, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals concluded Aug. 16 (Apotex Inc. v. Wyeth LLC, No. 15-1871, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14991).
SAN FRANCISCO - In a patent infringement lawsuit concerning computer security technology, a damages expert's apportionment methodology is unreliable as it improperly inflates the apportionment base, a California federal judge ruled Aug. 15, partially excluding the testimony (Finjan Inc. v. Sophos Inc., No. 14-01197, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 107831).
NEW YORK - Less than two months after denying a temporary restraining order in a dispute over the acronym "NYFW" - short for "New York Fashion Week" - and other trademarks, a New York federal judge on Aug. 12 again concluded that an infringement plaintiff is unlikely to succeed on the merits of its claim (Fashion Week Inc. v. Council of Fashion Designers of America Inc., et al., No. 16-5079, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 107358).
HOUSTON - A Texas federal judge on Aug. 15 granted Choice Hotels International Inc.'s (CHI) motion for summary judgment in a suit alleging that former CHI franchisees continued to use CHI trademarks after termination of their franchise agreement for nonpayment of certain fees (Choice Hotels International Inc. v. Frontier Hotels Inc., et al., No. 4:15-2355, S.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 107460).
NEW ORLEANS - Allegations by myriad plaintiffs that a trademark and patent infringement defendant committed violations of the civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act were "creative" but not "ridiculous," the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 15 (Southern Snow Manufacturing Company, et al. v. SnoWizard Inc., No. 15-30393, 5th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14977).
CINCINNATI - A plaintiff sufficiently alleged that the developer of software that was used to intercept and record his communications was an active participant in these actions, a Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel majority found Aug. 16, reversing a trial court's ruling that dismissed the plaintiff's claims under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) for failure to state a claim (Javier Luis v. Awareness Technologies, et al., No. 14-3601, 6th Cir.).
ST. LOUIS - Although it found that a plaintiff had standing to bring putative class claims against a gaming website operator for purported disclosure of users' personally identifiable information (PII), an Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel majority on Aug. 16 concluded that the plaintiff failed to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, affirming a trial court's dismissal of his complaint (Matthew Carlsen v. GameStop Inc., et al., No. 15-2453, 8th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14999).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Kansas federal judge erred in deeming a patent covering a collating unit used during prescription dispensing invalid for lack of written description, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals concluded Aug. 15 (ScriptProLLC and ScriptPro USA Inc. v. Innovation Associates Inc., No. 15-1565, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14919).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The chief executive officer of online classifieds website operator Backpage.com LLC was granted temporary relief from a U.S. Senate subcommittee's discovery subpoena on Aug. 12 when a District of Columbia U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel granted his emergency motion to stay, which was filed the same day (Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations v. Carl Ferrer, No. 16-5232, D.C. Cir.).
RICHMOND, Va. - A Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel majority on Aug. 12 upheld a trial court ruling ordering the forfeiture to the U.S. government of New Zealand and Hong Kong-held assets of now defunct Internet file storage service Megaupload and others involved in a criminal copyright infringement conspiracy, finding the forfeiture to be supported by the Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act (CAFRA) (United States of America v. Finn Batato, et al., No. 15-1360, 4th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14861).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - A system and method of filling containers with fluid should not have received a patent because what the patent claims is indefinite under 35 U.S. Code Section 112(b) as well as a violation of the written description requirement of Section 112(a), according to an Aug. 12 petition for post-grant review (PGR) filed with the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Telebrands Corp. v. Tinnus Inc., No. PGR2016-00031, PTAB).
NEW YORK - In a memorandum filed Aug. 10 in New York state court, Reddit Inc. opposed an effort by Atlantic Recording Corp. to obtain via subpoena identifying information of a Reddit user who purportedly leaked a high profile song before its release date, with Reddit arguing that the record label failed to demonstrate that it had meritorious claims that justified such pre-action disclosure (Atlantic Recording Corp. v. Reddit Inc., No. 156210/2016, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).
ST. LOUIS - Although clarifying that their conclusions "should not be read as condoning . . . knowing misrepresentations" made by a trademark owner to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO), the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 11 nonetheless vacated an Iowa federal judge's cancellation of the "Pakster" trademark after finding that the judge lacked jurisdiction (East Iowa Plastics Inc. v. PI Inc., No. 15-2757, 8th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14762).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A request by a patent infringement defendant to transfer its dispute with a competitor to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas should be denied, a Delaware federal magistrate judge recommended Aug. 11 (Smith International Inc. v. Baker Hughes Inc., No. 16-56, D. Del.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 105481).