LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's IP/Tech - California Federal Judge: Search Engine Optimization Patents Are Invalid

SAN FRANCISCO - In a Jan. 19 holding, a California federal judge rejected, pursuant to Section 101 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 101, five patents covering the process of search engine optimization (SEO) (BrightEdge Technologies Inc. v. Searchmetrics GmbH, et al., No. 14-1009, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9007).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Grants Panel Rehearing, Citing Wi-Fi One Patent Ruling

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In light of its Jan. 8 en banc holding in Wi-Fi One LLC v. Broadcom Corp. that the bar on judicial review of decisions to institute inter partes review (IPR) does not extend to determinations that a petition for IPR is time-barred, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 19 agreed to revisit a 2015 ruling that rejected allegations by a patent owner that a petition for IPR was untimely (Click-to-Call Technologies LP v. Oracle Corp., et al., No. 15-1242, Fed Cir.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Microsoft To Supreme Court: SCA Does Not Permit Seizure Of Foreign-Stored Emails

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a Jan. 11 respondent brief, Microsoft Corp. asks the U.S. Supreme Court to affirm the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals' finding that the Stored Communications Act (SCA) does not permit the government to seize, via warrant, emails that are stored abroad, arguing that altering of the 30-year old statute's reach to address such modern technological matters should be handled via legislation, not litigation (United States v. Microsoft Corp., No. 17-2, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - FDA Warns Of Adverse Events, Deaths From High-Tech Nasogastric Feeding Tubes

SILVER SPRING, Md. - The Food and Drug Administration on Jan. 11 warned that improper placement of technology enabled nasogastric feeding has led to pneumothorax adverse events that include cardiac arrest and at least 16 patient deaths.

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Upholds Patent Board Anticipation, Obviousness Rulings

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A final decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) that upheld an examiner's rejection of various claims of a patented process for crossing, or mating, two parent soybean lines was affirmed Jan. 8 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Monsanto Technology LLC v. E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co., No. 17-1032, Fed. Cir.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Partly Reverses Prior Art Holding By Patent Board

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Although agreeing with the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that a grandparent patent application provides sufficient disclosure to satisfy the written disclosure requirement, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 27 reversed and remanded findings that a working prototype reduced the claims to practice before the publication date of relevant prior art (Nintendo of America Inc. v. iLife Technologies Inc., No. 16-2266, Fed. Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 26614).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Pokemon GO Maker Prevails In California Patent Litigation

SAN FRANCISCO - Allegations by the owner of four mapping patents that Niantic Inc., developer of the popular Pokemon GO app, committed infringement were rejected Dec. 19 by a California federal magistrate judge, who deemed the underlying technology patent-ineligible under Section 101 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 101 (Location Based Services LLC v. Niantic Inc., No. 17-4413, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 208677).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Magistrate Judge Lifts Stay, Recommends Dismissal Of Patent Case

MARSHALL, Texas - In a Dec. 19 ruling, a Texas federal magistrate judge lifted the stay of patent infringement litigation pending since 2014 and recommended that the case be dismissed with prejudice, following findings by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that the patent in suit is invalid (C-Cation Technologies LLC v. Time Warner Cable Inc., et al., No. 14-59, E.D. Texas, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 208498).

Mealey's Insurance - Default Judgment Entered Against Insureds In Mold Damages Coverage Suit

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - A Virginia federal judge on Dec. 15 entered a default judgment against insureds who failed to answer an insurer's complaint after agreeing with a magistrate judge's determination that no coverage is owed for underlying suits alleging that the insureds' decking product developed mold, rot and decay because the policies' exclusions for fungi and bacteria and for damages to "your product" bar coverage (Indiana Lumbermens Mutual Insurance Co. v. Timber Treatment Technologies LLC, et al., No. 16-692, E.D. Va., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 206868).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Parties In Uber Trade Secrets Suit Won't Stipulate To Special Master Findings

SAN FRANCISCO - Parties in a trade secrets lawsuit alleging that a former employee of autonomous car development company Waymo LLC stole the company's trade secret information and provided it to his new employer, Uber Technologies Inc., on Dec. 7 refused to agree to stipulate to the findings of a special master tasked with determining whether a letter from a former Uber employee shows that Uber hid evidence so that it could not be used at trial (Waymo LLC v. Uber Technologies Inc., et al., No. 17-0939, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit To Hear Oral Arguments In Dispute Over Patent Priority Date

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In oral arguments scheduled for Dec. 13, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) will defend findings by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that an appellant was not entitled to an earlier priority date through either actual reduction to practice or the exercise of reasonable diligence from conception to constructive reduction to practice (ATI Technologies ULC v. Joseph A. Matal, Performing the Functions and Duties of Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Nos. 2016-2222, -2406, -2608, Fed. Cir.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Parties In Uber Trade Secrets Suit Won't Stipulate To Special Master Findings

SAN FRANCISCO - Parties in a trade secrets lawsuit alleging that a former employee of autonomous car development company Waymo LLC stole the company's trade secret information and provided it to his new employer, Uber Technologies Inc., on Dec. 7 refused to agree to stipulate to the findings of a special master tasked with determining whether a letter from a former Uber employee shows that Uber hid evidence so that it could not be used at trial (Waymo LLC v. Uber Technologies Inc., et al., No. 17-0939, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Board Sides Partly With Petitioner In Covered Business Method Patent Review

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - The Patent Trial and Appeal Board in a Dec. 7 ruling deemed 32 claims of a method patent for "Click Based Trading with Intuitive Grid Display of Market Depth" unpatentable pursuant to Section 101 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 101 (IBG LLC, et al. v. Trading Technologies International Inc., No. CBM2016-00090, PTAB).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Defendants In Stock-Drop Suit Seek Dismissal Of Federal Securities Law Claims

HOUSTON - Defendants in a securities class action lawsuit against a worldwide provider of professional services and technologies within the government services and hydrocarbons industries on Dec. 4 asked a federal judge in Texas to dismiss federal securities law claims because shareholders failed to plead a material misrepresentation, scienter of loss causation (In re KBR Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 17-1375, S.D. Texas).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Pedometer Patent Singled Out For Inter Partes Review In New Petition

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - A fitness technology company took aim Dec. 5 at a patented pedometer in a petition for inter partes review (IPR) by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, asserting that the straps, step-counters, heart-rate monitors, data processors, transmitters and receivers included in the invention were "basic" and "well-known" to a person of skill in the art (POSITA) (Wahoo Fitness LLC v. Blackbird Tech LLC, No. IPR2018-00275, PTAB).

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Defendants In Stock-Drop Suit Seek Dismissal Of Federal Securities Law Claims

HOUSTON - Defendants in a securities class action lawsuit against a worldwide provider of professional services and technologies within the government services and hydrocarbons industries on Dec. 4 asked a federal judge in Texas to dismiss federal securities law claims because shareholders failed to plead a material misrepresentation, scienter of loss causation (In re KBR Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 17-1375, S.D. Texas).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Largely Sides With Patent Board In Consolidated Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a Dec. 5 ruling, the Federal Circuit upheld findings of patent invalidity by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board in two cases but ruled against the board - and in favor of three inter partes review (IPR) petitioners - in a third case, in which the board deemed the disputed technology patentable (CRFD Research Inc. v. Joseph Matal, No. 16-2198; CRFD Research Inc. v. DISH Network Corp., No. 16-2298; Hulu LLC v. CRFD Research Inc., No. 16-2437, Fed. Cir.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Cattle Insemination Method Patent Is Obvious, Challenger Tells Board

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In a Dec. 4 petition for inter partes review (IPR), a bovine reproductive technology company argues to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that using sex-sorted sperm to produce two or more embryos of a desired sex is unpatentable pursuant to Sections 102 and 103 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 102, 103 (Trans Ova Genetics LC v. XY LLC, No. IPR2018-00249, PTAB).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Uber Announces Massive Data Breach, Hit With Class Complaint

LOS ANGELES - The same day Uber Technologies Inc. revealed in a Nov. 21 statement that it had experienced a data breach in late 2016, a class action complaint was filed against the ride-hailing firm in California federal court, alleging negligence, invasion of privacy and unfair competition (Alejandro Flores v. Rasier LLC, et al., No. 2:17-cv-08503, C.D. Calif.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Company's Claims In Trade Secrets, Copyright Suit Survive Motion To Dismiss

SHERMAN, Texas - A company has properly stated a claim for relief in seeking declaratory relief against several former employees and its direct competitor for alleged trade secret misappropriation and patent and copyright infringement, among other things, and its claims under the Copyright Act provide a federal district court with federal question jurisdiction, a federal judge in Texas ruled Nov. 20 in denying the defendants' motion to dismiss (Performance Pulsation Control Inc. v. Sigma Drilling Technologies LLC, et al., No. 17-0450, E.D. Texas, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 191530).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Uber Announces Massive Data Breach, Hit With Class Complaint

LOS ANGELES - The same day Uber Technologies Inc. revealed in a Nov. 21 statement that it had experienced a data breach in late 2016, a class action complaint was filed against the ride-hailing firm in California federal court, alleging negligence, invasion of privacy and unfair competition (Alejandro Flores v. Rasier LLC, et al., No. 2:17-cv-08503, C.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Class Certification Not 'Ripe' For Decision In Drinking Water Case, Judge Says

FORT WAYNE, Ind. - A federal judge in Indiana on Nov. 16 ruled that a group of plaintiffs asserting claims of personal injury from exposure to trichloroethylene (TCE), vinyl chloride, benzene and other chemicals is not entitled to class certification (Opal Millman v. United Technologies Corporation, et al., No. 16-312, N.D. Ind.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 189638).

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - IT Specialist Can Opine On Falsity Of Investor Statements, Judge Says

SHERMAN, Texas - An information technology specialist can testify about whether statements made to investors by the CEO of a computer server development company were false, but cannot opine on whether the statements were misleading, a Texas federal judge ruled Nov. 14 (Securities and Exchange Commission v. William E. Mapp, III, No. 4:16-cv-00246, E.D. Texas, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188083).

Mealey's IP/Tech - IT Specialist Can Opine On Falsity Of Investor Statements, Judge Says

SHERMAN, Texas - An information technology specialist can testify about whether statements made to investors by the CEO of a computer server development company were false, but cannot opine on whether the statements were misleading, a Texas federal judge ruled Nov. 14 (Securities and Exchange Commission v. William E. Mapp, III, No. 4:16-cv-00246, E.D. Texas, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188083).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Uber Hit With Class Suit For Alleged Harassment, Assaults By Drivers

SAN FRANCISCO - Uber Technologies Inc. has failed to perform adequate background checks on its drivers prior to hiring and has failed to monitor them after hiring, resulting in passengers - primarily females - suffering sexual harassment and assaults, two unnamed Jane Does allege in a Nov. 14 class complaint filed in a California federal court alleging violations of the Unfair Fraudulent and Unfair Business Practices Act and the Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA) (Jane Doe 1, et al. v. Uber Technologies, Inc., No. 17-6571, N.D. Calif.).