Posts Tagged: "infringement"

ITC institutes 337 investigation into allegations of patent infringement by Schick Hydro

The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) announced that it had decided to open a Section 337 investigation over allegations of potential patent infringement in the consumer hygiene product sector. The products at issue in the investigation are certain shaving cartridges used together with a shaving handle, including shaving cartridges marketed under the Schick Hydro Connect 5 brand. The investigation was petitioned by Gillette, a subsidiary of American consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG), and it named Schick and its parent company Edgewell Personal Care (NYSE:EPC) as respondents in the case.

All patent infringement is willful patent infringement

The reality created by eBay in light of the AIPA is simple: If you scrape an invention off the USPTO website and massively commercialize it, you get to keep it. Ubiquity has become a defense. How odd that ubiquity caused by your own initial theft becomes an impenetrable shield in patent infringement litigation… Of course, not all infringers should be liable for willful patent infringement. Some infringers are not the experts in the field. Some are users of technology produced by the experts. If you are a small coffee shop and you purchase a router, you are not an expert and you are not willfully infringing. You just bought a product that some infringer sold you and you reasonably believed could be lawfully purchased and used. But if you are the company producing that router, it must be assumed that you are willfully infringing.

Facebook drops efficient infringement clause from its React software license

In late September, an official blog post published by Menlo Park, CA-based social media giant Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and penned by Adam Wolff, the company’s engineering director, announced that the company would be adopting a software license agreement known as the MIT License for many of the company’s open source projects. This includes Facebook’s React platform, a Javascript library for building front-end user interfaces on hardware products. The use of the MIT License moves Facebook away from a prior software license known as the BSD + Patents License that included language which put patent owners using the React platform at a serious disadvantage.

Characters for Hire cite to Naked Cowboy in fighting Disney’s claims of copyright, trademark infringement

Characters for Hire also argued that the trademark infringement claims lacked the essential element of confusion. Citing to Naked Cowboy v. CBS, a case decided in Southern New York in 2012 involving trademark infringement claims asserted by a Times Square street performer against the use of his likeness in the soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful, Characters for Hire argue that the use of the names of fictional persons are merely descriptive of the entertainment services provided by the defendants. “Indeed, Plaintiff Disney is well aware of the limits of trademark enforceability having successfully defended a claim brought against them for using the famous ‘Caterpillar’ trademark for construction trucks in one of their films,” Characters for Hire argued. This statement references Caterpillar Inc. v. Walt Disney Co., a 2003 case decided in the Central District of Illinois wherein the court ruled that Disney’s use of construction vehicles with Caterpillar logos in the movie George of the Jungle 2 created no likelihood of confusion that Caterpillar either endorsed or sponsored the movie.

3M files patent and trademark suit against Chinese manufacturer of spray gun paint preparation system

On September 21st, Saint Paul, MN-based technology and materials company 3M (NYSE:MMM) filed a lawsuit alleging patent and trademark infringement committed by Shanghai, China-based Thunder Finish. The lawsuit targets Thunder Finish’s marketing of paint preparation products developed by 3M which are meant to simplify the use and cleanup of liquid paint spray guns. The suit is filed in the Western District of Wisconsin.

VirnetX wins nearly $440 million verdict against Apple, including willful infringement damages

On Monday, October 16th, the Internet security company VirnetX (AMEX:VHC) of Zephyr Cove, NV, announced the results of a patent litigation campaign it had pursued against Cupertino, CA-based consumer tech giant Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). According to a press release issued by VirnetX, the Eastern District of Texas increased the damages to be paid by Apple from $302.4 million in a prior jury verdict up to nearly $440 million for Apple’s infringement of patents covering secure communications in applications like FaceTime.

As many in U.S. remain skeptical of patents, China picks up the slack

“Increasing numbers of US operating companies dislike patent protection,” Ding explained to IAM. “[T]he production and manufacture of products are increasingly located in Asia and Asian companies have more and more patents… opportunities are being transferred to the East just like manufacturing was.” * * * Although strong patent licensing activities are surely welcome news to Huawei and the many people employed by that firm, stakeholders in the U.S. patent system likely can’t help but see this as a further harbinger that China’s innovation economy will overtake ours in the coming years.

Ironworks files new complaint against Apple asserting patents covering tactile feedback, ringtone silencing tech

On Friday, October 6th, Chicago, IL-based intellectual property owner Ironworks Patents LLC filed a patent infringement case against Cupertino, CA-based consumer tech giant Apple Inc. in the District of Delaware. Ironworks’ complaint alleges that Apple’s sale of various iPhone models infringe upon patents that Ironworks owns which cover programmable alert sounds and related technologies incorporated into Apple’s smartphones.

Facebook announces three firms will integrate with Rights Manager for automated protection of copyrighted content

Early this October, Facebook announced a partnership with three entities that will be integrated with the Rights Manager suite to offer rights management as a service on the Facebook platform: Friend MTS; MarkMonitor; and ZEFR. These entities will reportedly enable more automation of Rights Manager services for content creators who are already enrolled in Facebook’s content protection program. The integration of Rights Manager with these new services is expected to take place over the coming months.

Trademark Food Fight: Did In-N-Out Burger Abandon the Triple Triple?

Smashburger asserts that In-N-Out stopped using the Triple Triple mark and thus, abandoned its rights, when the triple meat, triple cheese hamburger was rebranded as the 3X3 hamburger over three years ago, the generally understood benchmark for abandonment of rights. And, in my research of In-N-Out’s archived web pages, as far back as 2012, In-N-Out appears to have done exactly what Smashburger asserts – it replaced the Triple Triple hamburger from its Not-So-Secret Menu with the 3X3 hamburger. Magically, references to the Triple Triple mark reappear on its Not-So-Secret Menu in early September of 2017, right after Smashburger sought to cancel In-N-Out’s Triple Triple registration. This leapfrogging of rights may be the saving grace to Smashburger’s rights in its Triple Double mark.

Patent settlement between AbbVie and Amgen delays Humira generic until 2023

On Thursday, September 28th, a judge in the District of Delaware entered an order stipulating dismissal in a patent infringement case brought by North Chicago-based pharmaceutical firm AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV) against Thousand Oaks, CA-based drugmaker Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN). According to reports, the settlement follows an agreement between the two companies to delay a generic version of the anti-inflammatory drug Humira from the U.S. market until 2023… Of AbbVie’s total $6.94 billion in net revenues from U.S. and international sales during the quarter, Humira contributed $4.71 billion in revenues.

2nd Circuit upholds most of district court judgment in trademark case brought by Swiss army knife maker Victorinox

On Tuesday, September 19th, Victorinox AG, the manufacturer of the well-known Swiss army knife, saw a successful outcome of an appeal decided by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, which affirmed in part a judgment in a trademark case filed in the Southern District of New York. The 2nd Circuit’s decision upholds a $1.75 million judgment entered in district court against Dallas, TX-based e-commerce company B&F System over the sale of red-handled, multi-functional pocket knives that infringed upon Victorinox’s registered trademark.

Federal Circuit Clarifies Standard for Pleading Infringement in Lifetime v. Trim-Lok

Lifetime Industries, Inc. v. Trim-Lok, Inc., 2017-1096, (Fed. Cir. Sept 7, 2017) is an appeal involving a dispute over the correct pleading standard in the context of allegation of infringement of a patented product.  The appeal resulted in the reversal of a district court’s final judgment granting Trim-Lok, Inc.’s motion to dismiss Lifetime’s complaint for failing to adequately allege that Trim-Lok either directly or indirectly infringed claims of its U.S. Patent 6,966,590 (’590 patent)… In sum, the Federal Circuit opinion in Lifetime is a good refresher on sufficiency of facts needed for filing a complaint alleging patent infringement. It is a refresher also on proving infringement resulting from assembly of components to make the claimed product when not all of the components are made by the same party.

CAFC upholds validity of Intellectual Ventures patents, reverses infringement findings

The Federal Circuit affirmed a district court decision upholding the validity of two patents belonging to Intellectual Ventures (“IV”), but reversed all findings of infringement regarding one patent and remanded for further proceedings regarding the other. IV sued Motorola for infringement of two patents. The ‘144 patent relates to a file transfer system between computer devices. The ‘462 patent relates to a portable computer formed by docking a smartphone into a “shell” with a larger display and keyboard. Motorola defended the suit by arguing non-infringement and the invalidity of the patents. At separate trials, a jury found Motorola infringed both patents and failed to prove them invalid. Motorola moved for judgment as a matter of law and the district court denied both motions.

A patent without enforcement value has no licensing value

Enforcement of patents through litigation occurs when licensing has failed to result in an arms length negotiated resolution. In other words, patent owners resort to litigation when there is a market failure… When Keller says that the value of a patent is inextricably tied to the value obtainable through litigation that is just an economic truism. If the patent has no value when enforced in litigation, whether because the subject matter of the innovation has become patent ineligible, or because of a bias that tends toward finding practically everything obvious, the patent has no enforcement value. These litigation realities spill over into the business dealings because a patent that has no enforcement value will have necessarily have no licensing value.