SAN JOSE, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Feb. 20 denied a motion to dismiss a franchise dispute involving two restaurants because the plaintiffs' amended complaint "adequately alleges" a threat of imminent use of a trademark that would constitute infringement (Jgx Inc. v. Jon Handlery, et al., No. 17-cv-00287-BLF, N.D. Calif.; 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27079).
NEW YORK - A voluntary dismissal by a copyright infringement plaintiff two months after filing suit did not render a defendant in the action a prevailing party, a New York federal judge ruled Feb. 22 (Matthew McDermott v. Monday Monday LLC, No. 17-9230, S.D. N.Y., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 28664).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Efforts by Google Inc. to cancel myriad claims of two data-monitoring patents continue to be unsuccessful, with the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 22 rejecting the software giant's appeal of a finding by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that the claims are patentable (Google LLC v. At Home Bondholders' Liquidating Trust, Nos. 16-2727, -2729, Fed. Cir.).
SAN DIEGO - A supplement maker's claim that clinical study results on Lipozene were derived from a "major university study" were false, according to a Feb. 21 ruling by a California federal judge, because the study was not affiliated with a university (Obesity Research Institute LLC v. Fiber Research International LLC, No. 15-595, S.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 28025).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A small business owner who sued Google LLC over alleged misrepresentations about click fraud in its AdWords program, saw his claims of false advertising and unfair competition dismissed a second time Feb. 20, with a California federal judge finding that the plaintiff failed to plead the necessary economic injury to support his claims (Gurminder Singh v. Google LLC, No. 5:16-cv-03734, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27111).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A final written decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) that canceled all 79 patent claims as obvious was affirmed Feb. 20 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, marking a win for Google LLC and Motorola Mobility LLC (Arendi S.A.R.L. v. Google LLC, et al., No. 16-1249, Fed. Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 4016).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Feb. 15 denied a maternity wear company's motion for judgment on the pleadings, finding that it would be premature to dismiss another company's claims for trademark infringement and that its claim for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) was not preempted (Blanqi LLC v. Bao Bei Maternity, et al., No. 3:17-cv-05759, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26069).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In two petitions for inter partes review (IPR) filed Feb. 15, Apple Inc. asserts that various claims of a voiceover internet protocol (VoIP) patent are obvious under Section 103(a) of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 103(a), one year after the Patent Trial and Appeal Board denied without prejudice the software giant's bid to cancel claims of the same patent (Apple Inc. v. Uniloc USA Inc., Nos. IPR2018-00580 and IPR2018-00579, PTAB).
NEW YORK - Allegations that John Wiley & Sons Inc. exceeded the terms of its license to use certain photographs in textbooks and other educational materials were properly rejected on summary judgment because the plaintiff in the action - a purported assignee of the photographers' rights to sue - lacks standing to maintain an infringement action, a divided Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Feb. 16 (John Wiley & Sons Inc. v. DRK Photo, No. 15-1134, 2nd Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 3758).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a Feb. 16 ruling, four patents directed to a specialized radio frequency identification (RFID) were confirmed by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals as unpatentable pursuant to Section 101 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 101 (Automated Tracking Solutions LLC v. The Coca-Cola Company, No. 17-1494, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a Feb. 16 holding, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals found that although the Patent Trial and Appeal Board erred in omitting the word "average" from its claim construction of a disputed limitation, the board nonetheless correctly deemed three patents nonobvious over prior art combinations asserted by an appellant (Snap-On Inc. v. Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation, Nos. 2017-1305, -1306, -1307, -1330, -1331, -1332, Fed. Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 3778).
NEW YORK - Arguing about differences in Italian and U.S. copyright law, a composer's copyright assignee tells the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a Feb. 14 brief that a trial court incorrectly concluded that film scores written on commission in Italy are equivalent to works for hire in the United States (Ennio Morricone Music Inc. v. Bixio Music Group Ltd., No. 17-3595, 2nd Cir.).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In a final written decision issued Feb. 13, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board deemed 17 claims of a patented method for making wireless payments unpatentable as obvious and anticipated pursuant to Sections 102 and 103 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 102, 103(a) (Askeladden LLC v. Purple Leaf LLC, No. IPR2016-01722, PTAB).
SEATTLE - In a Feb. 14 ruling, a Washington federal magistrate judge largely rejected efforts by a defendant to undo a December jury verdict of trade dress infringement, denying a request for a new trial but conditioning that denial upon a plaintiff's acceptance of a remittitur that would reduce damages in the case from $193,598 to $167,239 (National Products Inc. v. Arkon Resources Inc., No. 15-1553, W.D. Wash., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24436).
NEW YORK - Breitbart News Network, Time Inc. and other online publishers were dealt a blow Feb. 15 when a New York federal judge ruled that tweets embedded in news stories can form the basis of a copyright infringement claim (Justin Goldman v. Breitbart News Network Inc., et al., No. 17-3144, S.D. N.Y., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25215).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - An inventor squared off with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Feb. 12 during oral arguments before the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a dispute over the Patent Trial and Appeal Board's determination of obviousness (Richard Gramm v. Deere & Company, Nos. 17-1252, -1253, Fed. Cir.).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In a Feb. 12 petition for inter partes review, Medtronic Inc. asserts that 12 claims of a patented "double catheter" and related method for placing an electrical lead in a lateral branch vein of a coronary sinus would have been obvious to a person of skill in the art (Medtronic Inc. v. Niazi Licensing Corporation, No. IPR2018-00609, PTAB).
SAN FRANCISCO - In its third appeal to the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a copyright dispute with several movie studios, video-filtering service provider VidAngel Inc. argues that a trial court improperly dismissed its counterclaims under the Sherman Act and California's unfair competition law (UCL), despite its ample pleadings of the studios' collusive actions (Disney Enterprises Inc., et al. v. VidAngel Inc., No. 17-56665, 9th Cir.).
DENVER - A trial court incorrectly found the pink trade dress of its hip joint components to be functional, a trademark holder argues in a Feb. 9 brief to the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, seeking reversal of a judgment deeming its color pink trademark registrations unprotectable and not infringed (C5 Medical Werks LLC, et al. v. CeramTec GmbH, No. 17-1173, 10th Cir.).
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Assertions by Universal Music Group Inc. that personal jurisdiction over it is lacking in Kentucky were rejected Feb. 13 by a Kentucky federal judge, who instead ruled that the copyright case against the music publisher can proceed for now (Leroy Mitchell v. Capitol Records LLC, et al., No. 15-174, W.D. Ky., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23351).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A $12 million verdict on allegations of patent infringement was "fundamentally unfair," according to a defendant who presented its case to the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in oral arguments held Feb. 12 (Cave Consulting Group v. OptumInsight Inc., No. 17-1060, Fed. Cir.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A blind man who sued Domino's Pizza LLC for purportedly violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) with a website that is inaccessible to the visually impaired tells the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a Feb. 9 reply brief that his complaint was improperly dismissed amid due process concerns despite the pizza chain's ample notice of its website accessibility obligations (Guillermo Robles v. Domino's Pizza LLC, No. 17-55504, 9th Cir.).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - The city of Providence, R.I., on Feb. 12 filed a consumer protection class action complaint against Intel Corp. in California federal court, charging the microprocessor chip manufacturer with unfair competition and warranty violations related to the recently discovered "Meltdown" and "Spectre" security vulnerabilities that can reportedly affect millions of computers and devices worldwide, resulting in the exposure of users' sensitive information (Providence v. Intel Corp., No. 5:18-cv-00894, N.D. Calif.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A patent owner whose invention was declared ineligible for patent protection under Section 101 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 101, challenges the findings in a case that was submitted to the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on the briefs on Feb. 8 (Patrick Zuili v. Google Inc., Nos. 17-2161, -2258, -2267, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Delaware federal judge did not err in denying Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp. a new trial on allegations that a proposed generic mometasone furoate nasal spray would infringe Merck's patent covering the nasal spray Nasonex, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Feb. 9 (Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp. v. Amneal Pharmaceuticals LLC, No. 17-1560, Fed. Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 3169).