Welcome to the latest edition of News & Notes.
As I accumulate enough to warrant a full post we publish items of potential interest that might not otherwise support an entire article on their own.
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- Two New Shareholders at Niro, Haller & Niro
- Spherix Innovate 21: Patent License in Exchange for Startup Equity
- UC Hastings Startup Legal Garage Gets $100K Grant
- Sterne, Kessler Welcomes 4 New Directors
- Entertainment “Power Lawyer” John Gatti Moves to Manatt
- HTC And Nokia Signed a Patent and Technology Collaboration Agreement
- NASA Technology to Help Develop Noninvasive Medical Treatments
- Music Publishers Settle Copyright Litigation Over YouTube Channel
Two New Shareholders at Niro, Haller & Niro
The Chicago law firm of Niro, Haller & Niro recently announced that Olivia T. Luk and Brian E. Haan have been made Shareholders. According to Raymond P. Niro, the senior partner of the firm, “We are proud to announce the elevation of “Olivia Luk and Brian Haan to Shareholder status. They are outstanding attorneys and wonderful people.”
The Niro firm specializes in intellectual property law and has extensive experience in the trial of intellectual property cases, including patent, trademark and copyright infringement, trade secret misappropriation, unfair competition and related business torts.
Spherix Innovate 21: Patent License in Exchange for Startup Equity
Spherix Incorporated (NASDAQ: SPEX), an intellectual property monetization and development company, recently announced that it is launching Innovate21. Spherix’s Innovate21 division will offer startups throughout the world licenses on selected patents that the company owns in exchange for equity positions in the startups.
CEO, Anthony Hayes stated, “Through our Innovate21 program we are truly bridging the gap between the intellectual property holder and technology startups bringing new and exciting technologies to market. Innovate21 stands for Innovation in the 21st Century and we here at Spherix truly believe this is a win win situation for both our company and the new partners we will help. Our IP which consist of over 300 patent and patent applications is extremely strong and with its past history of innovation from the world famous Nortel Networks we hope to spur the next great product to market.”
In the coming weeks Spherix will fully launch its Innovate21.com website to allow inventors and startups the ability to apply to partner with Spherix.
UC Hastings Startup Legal Garage Gets $100K Grant
The Blackstone Charitable Foundation recently awarded The Institute for Innovation Law at UC Hastings a $100,000 grant to fund the Startup Legal Garage, which has been named one of the most innovative law school programs in the country.
The Startup Legal Garage is a leading-edge program in which UC Hastings students provide free legal services to startup companies in San Francisco and Silicon Valley, with a focus on minority and female entrepreneurs. The student work is supervised pro bono by attorneys at major law firms.
Sterne, Kessler Welcomes 4 New Directors
Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox P.L.L.C., an intellectual property law firm based in Washington, DC, recently announced the election of four new directors – Paul A. Ainsworth, Salvador M. Bezos, Carla Ji-Eun Kim, and Lei Zhou.
- Paul A. Ainsworth is a director in the Litigation Practice Group. He represents clients in litigation in a diverse range of technologies and has extensive experience representing pharmaceutical industry clients in litigation originating under the Hatch-Waxman Act.
- Salvador M. Bezos is a director in the Electronics Practice Group. He prepares and prosecutes patent applications before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and has an extensive technical knowledge of computer graphics, networking, databases, and complex computer architectures. Mr. Bezos also works in the firm’s patent office litigation practice and has extensive experience handling both inter partes review and ex partes reexamination for patent holders and third party requesters.
- Carla Ji-Eun Kim is a director in the Biotechnology/Chemical Practice Group. She focuses on preparing and prosecuting U.S. and foreign patents in the areas of biotechnology, pharmacology and cellular and molecular biology, and also prepares patentability, infringement and validity opinions for the firm.
- Lei Zhou is a director in the firm’s Biotechnology/Chemical Practice Group. She focuses on the chemical and pharmaceutical issues, and has extensive experiencing in offering validity, infringement and freedom-to-operate opinions. She has also performed intellectual property due diligence investigations and has experience with pharmaceutical patent litigation under the Hatch-Waxman act.
Entertainment “Power Lawyer” John Gatti Moves to Manatt
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, recently announced that John M. Gatti has joined the Los Angeles office as a partner in the Litigation Division and will serve as co-chair of the firm’s national Entertainment Litigation practice group. He joins the firm from Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, where he served as the chair of its Entertainment Litigation practice group. For six consecutive years The Hollywood Reporter has named Gatti to its “Power Lawyers: Top 100 Influential Attorneys in Entertainment” list.
Gatti has more than 25 years of commercial litigation experience representing clients in various industries, with an emphasis representing studios, television networks, film financiers, talent, gaming and sports entities, and independent entertainment production companies involved in the media, entertainment, sports, Internet and gaming industries. He has represented clients in a variety of matters, including unfair competition, copyright and trademark infringement, profit participation claims, idea submission claims, media torts including defamation, invasion of privacy, and right to publicity and use of celebrity name and likeness in all media, including the Internet.
HTC And Nokia Signed a Patent and Technology Collaboration Agreement
On February 7, 2014, Nokia and HTC announced that they had settled all pending patent litigation between them, and entered into a patent and technology collaboration agreement. HTC will make payments to Nokia and the collaboration will involve HTC’s LTE patent portfolio, further strengthening Nokia’s licensing offering. The companies will also explore future technology collaboration opportunities. The full terms of the agreement are confidential.
NASA Technology to Help Develop Noninvasive Medical Treatments
NASA has signed two patent license agreements with GRoK Technologies LLC of Houston to help develop novel biotechnology approaches that could have multiple applications in space and on Earth. The agreements are the results of the agency’s Technology Transfer Program, which helps open up NASA’s research and technology to the public for use and development.
The agreements grant rights for four patented technologies invented by NASA and GRoK scientists. NASA is interested in the potential these technologies present for regenerating bone and muscle. During long spaceflights, astronauts are susceptible to developing osteopenia, which is a condition arising from the loss of bone and muscle mass and bone density. The patented technologies could help GRoK develop breakthrough products for the research and medical communities and advance our overall understanding of biomedicine.
“Biotechnology research taking place on the International Space Station and at NASA centers around the country continues to push the leading edge of science,” said Yolanda Marshall, director of the Strategic Opportunities and Partnership Development Office at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. “This partnership will further enhance NASA’s ability to share the unique breakthroughs made in space-based research.”
GRoK will be able to use these patented methods on two platform technologies the company is developing. The first platform, called BioReplicates, will allow users to create 3-D human tissue models that can be used to test cosmetics, drugs and other products for safety, efficacy and toxicity with greater accuracy, reliability and cost-efficiency. Additionally, using such models may reduce the industry’s reliance on animal testing. The second platform, called Scionic, could lead to the development of medical devices designed to target musculoskeletal pain and inflammation in humans and animals noninvasively and without the use of pharmaceuticals.
Music Publishers Settle Copyright Litigation Over YouTube Channel
At the beginning of January 2014, the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA) and Fullscreen, Inc. (Fullscreen) reached an agreement to settle copyright infringement claims related to video creators who are part of Fullscreen’s multi-channel video network. In August 2013, the NMPA sued Fullscreen for its use of unlicensed musical works in videos uploaded by video creators to Fullscreen’s popular YouTube channels. The settlement will enable music publishers that opt in to the agreement to receive compensation for previous use of their works in these videos. Moving forward, Fullscreen will work with music publishers to license musical works. Fullscreen affiliated channels with videos containing music will be licensed under YouTube’s direct licenses with music publishers, and Fullscreen will remove video content containing unlicensed music that appear on Fullscreen managed channels.
Fullscreen’s network receives more than 30 million unique viewers each month through its popular video channels in the comedy, action, gaming, beauty, dance, and music categories.