SAN FRANCISCO - An Illinois man's motion to compel identifying information about an anonymous commenter from the operator of an employee gripe website was denied on April 1, with a California judge citing protections of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and failure of the movant to establish a sufficient need for the information to defend against an underlying defamation claim (Mason Awtry v. Glassdoor Inc., No. 3:16-cv-80028, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 44804).
NEW YORK - A prevailing copyright infringement plaintiff was $67,729 in attorney fees March 31 by a New York federal judge and $11,250 in statutory damages, representing three times the licensing fee the plaintiff would have charged had a defendant lawfully obtained permission to use three photographs (Erickson Productions Inc., et al. v. Only Websites Inc., et al., No. 12-1693, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 44790).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In an April 1 amicus curiae brief in the U.S. Supreme Court, technology giant Intel Corp. urges the high court to grant a petition for certiorari by Google Inc. in a class complaint over Google's AdWords program brought under California's unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law (FAL), arguing that the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals erred in permitting certification of a class where "individualized differences in damages" were improperly ignored in favor of "the application of a statistical formula approximating the injury suffered by an average" class member (Google Inc. v. Pulaski & Middleman LLC, et al., No. 15-1101, U.S. Sup.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge erred in finding no triable issues regarding the functionality of a Lanham Act plaintiff's display of urine test results, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals concluded April 4 (Millennium Laboratories Inc. v. Ameritox Ltd., No. 13-56577, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 6126).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A complaint by Google Inc. seeking a declaration of patent invalidity and noninfringement can proceed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled April 1 (GeoTag Inc. v. Google Inc., No. 15-1140, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 5966).
DULUTH, Minn. - A Minnesota federal judge on March 29 entered judgment in favor of a commercial general liability insurer one day after ruling that the insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify its insured against underlying counterclaims filed in a lawsuit over the ownership and use of the "got milk?" service marks and trademarks (Food Market Merchandising, Inc., Plaintiff, v. West Bend Mutual Insurance Co., No. 15-3347, D. Minn.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40770).
SAN FRANCISCO - In a March 25 order leading up to a copyright retrial, a California judge championed the benefits of instituting a ban preventing the counsel of Oracle America Inc. and Google Inc. from running Internet and social media searches on potential jurors, stressing a need to protect jurors' privacy (Oracle America, Inc. v. Google, Inc., No. 3:10-cv-03561, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39675).
SHERMAN, Texas - Allegations that Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. infringed various patents relating to image sensor technology will be amended to include Samsung's Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge products, but not the Galaxy Note 1, a Texas federal judge ruled March 30 (Imperium IP Holdings v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., et al., No. 14-371, E.D. Texas.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41762).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on March 25 dismissed with prejudice a woman's class suit seeking to stop an online gambling game manufacturer from operating allegedly unlawful gambling devices and recovery of all monies paid by players (Margo Phillips v. Double Down Interactive LLC, No. 15-4301, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39189).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Plaintiffs cannot point to sufficiently specific advertisements or claims made by Apple Inc. regarding the iPhone's Bluetooth or Wi-Fi capabilities, a federal judge in California held March 25 in dismissing unfair competition law (UCL), Business and Professions Code Section 17200, et seq., claims with prejudice (David Yastrab, et al. v. Apple Inc., No. 14-1974, N.D. Calif.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A trademark counterfeiting plaintiff was awarded $32,850 in attorney fees March 29 by a District of Columbia federal judge, one year after she denied such an award (Mark Greene v. William 'Billy' Brown, No. 11-2242, D. D.C.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40803).
NEW YORK - Although trademark plaintiffs were granted permission by a New York federal judge on March 29 to voluntarily dismiss their Lanham Act-related claims, the judge found that the case should remain in federal court in light of counterclaims that seek a declaration of noninfringement under the Lanham Act (Dov Seidman, et al. v. Chobani LLC, et al., No. 14-4050, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40810).
SAN FRANCISCO - Google Inc. moved March 24 to exclude portions of a damages report prepared for Oracle America Inc., in which expert witness James Malackowski asserts that Oracle is entitled to $475 million in actual damages and as much as $8.8 billion in disgorged profits for Google's alleged infringement of Java-related copyrights (Oracle America Inc. v. Google Inc., No. 10-3561, N.D. Calif.).
AUSTIN, Texas - A patent licensing company won transfer March 28 of a declaratory judgment action to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, when a federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas agreed that venue there was improper (Broadway National Bank v. Plano Encryption Technologies LLC, No. 15-1056, W.D. Texas.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40051.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A July 2015 ruling by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that affirmed a judgment of noninfringement based upon internally inconsistent testimony from a patent plaintiff's expert witness remains intact, thanks to a denial of certiorari March 28 by the U.S. Supreme Court (ParkerVision Inc. v. Qualcomm Inc., No. 15-1092, U.S. Sup.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Allegations that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) erroneously calculated the patent-term adjustments for three pharmaceutical patents will not be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court, which on March 28 denied a petition for certiorari by Daiichi Sankyo Co. Ltd. (Daiichi Sankyo Company, Ltd. v. Michelle K. Lee, Director, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, No. 15-652, U.S. Sup.).
HONOLULU - A Hawaii federal judge held on March 24 that insurers have a duty to defend their fish seller insured against an underlying lawsuit alleging false advertising, further finding that there are genuine issues of material fact that preclude granting the insured's motion for summary judgment regarding its breach of contract counterclaim (The Hanover Insurance Co., et al. v. Anova Food LLC, et al., No. 14-00281, D. Hawaii; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38947).
SAN FRANCISCO - A motion for default judgment by a patent infringement plaintiff was denied March 22 by a California federal judge, who instead issued a partial stay with regard to litigation of various claims of mobile communication patents (E. Digital Corporation v. Ivideon LLC, No. 15-691, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38026).
ATLANTA - Allegations that Tyler Perry committed copyright infringement with his movie "Good Deeds" were turned away on a motion for judgment on the pleadings March 24 by a Georgia federal judge (Terri V. Strickland v. Tyler Perry, No. 15-3400, N.D. Ga.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38328).
JACKSON, Miss. - In a March 22 brief in Mississippi federal court, Google Inc. argues that its subpoena to depose the general counsel of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) should not be quashed, asserting that neither the attorney-client privilege nor the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects lobbying, which goes to the heart of Google's lawsuit against Mississippi's attorney general (AG) (Google Inc. v. Jim Hood, No. 3:14-cv-00981, S.D. Miss.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A patent dispute over vacuum toilets commonly used on commercial aircraft was properly rejected on summary judgment, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals concluded March 23 (MAG Aerospace Industries Inc. v. B/E Aerospace Inc., Nos. 15-1370, -1426, Fed. Cir.).
RICHMOND, Va. - A Virginia federal judge's reversal of a trademark cancellation ordered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO)'s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) was vacated and remanded March 23 by the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, which found that under the framework of Lexmark International Inc. v. Static Control Components Inc. (134 S. Ct. 1377 ), a drug maker and foreign trademark owner is authorized under Section 43(a) of the Lanham Act to bring an action against the owner of the same mark in the United States (Belmora LLC v. Bayer Consumer Care AG and Bayer Healthcare LLC, No. 15-1335, 4th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 5380).
PITTSBURGH - A request for a declaratory judgment that the literary character Buck Rogers has entered into the public domain was turned away March 21 by a Pennsylvania federal judge, who instead found that a plaintiff film company failed to allege facts to sufficient a justiciable controversy under the Declaratory Judgment Act and Article III of the U.S. Constitution (Team Angry Filmworks Inc. v. Louise A. Geer, Trustee of the Dille Family Trust, No. 15-1381, W.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 36286).
SAN FRANCISCO - Allegations that Google Inc. committed contributory trademark infringement by continuing to allow allegedly infringing apps to be downloaded via Google Play were dismissed March 21 by a California federal judge (Spy Phone Labs LLC v. Google Inc., et al., No. 15-3756, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 36444).
SAN FRANCISCO - Oracle America Inc. and Oracle International Corp. (Oracle, collectively) on March 22 took aim at Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. (HP) in a new copyright infringement complaint filed in California federal court (Oracle America Inc. v. Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, No. 16-1393, N.D. Calif.).