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Posts Tagged: "Securities and Exchange Commission"

It’s 10:00 PM: Do You Know Where Your Secrets Are?

In the wake of urban unrest in the early 1960s, local governments imposed nightly youth curfews, and a Massachusetts legislator suggested that all radio and television stations begin their 10:00 evening programming with an announcement: “It’s 10:00 PM. Do you know where your children are?” The phrase was quickly picked up across the country and became a common (and sometimes mocked) cultural artifact of the era…. For modern business, if you can indulge the metaphor, we may think of data assets as the children of the enterprise, at least in the sense that valuable information is vulnerable to loss or compromise. Reminding companies of the need to be vigilant makes a lot of sense.

Apple to pay VirnetX $93.4 million in costs and interest for patent infringement

On Monday, September 25th, Zephyr Cove, NV-based patent owner VirnetX Holding Corporation filed a Form 8-K with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regarding an agreement between that firm and Cupertino, CA-based consumer electronics giant Apple on costs and prejudgment interest related to the ongoing patent infringement proceedings between the two companies. A press release attached to the Form 8-K indicates that VirnetX and Apple agree to add costs and prejudgment interest of $93.4 million to the $502.6 million patent infringement verdict awarded to VirnetX in district court.

Arista Pays Cisco $400M to end Patent Litigation at District Court and ITC

On Monday, August 6th, Santa Clara, CA-based computer networking Arista Networks filed a Form 8-K with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announcing the firm had entered into an agreement with San Jose, CA-based networking rival Cisco Systems that dismisses all pending litigation between the two firms in both U.S. district courts and at the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). Under the terms of the agreement, Arista will pay Cisco $400 million this month in return for Cisco dropping all patent infringement claims which it has filed against Arista. In addition to Cisco dropping its patent infringement claims, Arista also agreed to drop all antitrust claims which it has filed against its rival.

When Will Wall Street Wake Up to Elon Musk’s Broken Promises?

Reports about Musk’s talks with Cortica comes one day after Goldman Sachs analyst David Tamberrino affirmed his sell rating for Tesla stock on his expectation that Tesla stock would drop by 30 percent over the next six months because of production issues… On the same day that Goldman Sachs reaffirmed its sell rating on Tesla stock, Musk posted a video to Instagram, which is emblematic of the CEO’s Alfred E. Neuman-esque style of response to any perceived corporate turbulence. The video shows Musk in a bar in Jerusalem pouring flaming absinthe. Musk’s Instagram declaration that “Everything’s better with fire …” smacks of the same “What, me worry?” attitude that has allowed him to navigate uncertainty in meeting production goals without eroding shareholder confidence.

Cisco’s IoT Blockchain Merely Scratches the Surface of Distributed Ledger Technologies

The invention improves authentication of devices operating on the Internet of Things, while also detecting anomalies in device sensors. This IoT blockchain innovation merely scratches the surface of distributed ledger technologies… However, cryptocurrencies are but one application for blockchain as is highlighted by the recent Cisco activities in IoT blockchain development. Although the distributed nature of blockchain makes it a great fit with IoT platforms, where many devices have to interact with each other in secure ways, it’s just one of many sectors which could be greatly impacted by further blockchain development according to Raina Haque, founder of Erdos Intellectual Property Law + Startup Legal.

How blockchain is critical to the securitization of IP

Liquidity in markets for cryptocurrencies like bitcoin is opening a new door for musicians and athletes to issue digital tokens in exchange for money. The tokens are validated by blockchain, a public ledger used for the authentication of digital currency transactions, and backed by copyright, trademark or other IP assets… According to Naraghi, blockchain specifically is critical to the securitization of IP because it guarantees the validity of a transaction by recording the transaction on a main centralized register as well as a connected publicly distributed system of registers. The fact that data is embedded within a public network and updated with each transaction promotes transparency and prevents modification or corruption.

The SEC Defines Blockchain, But Did They Get it Right?

The SEC has landed on a definition which includes both permissioned distributed ledgers and permissionless distributed ledgers in the term “blockchain.” This is not surprising, nor is it necessarily the result of a misinformed view. There are lots of market opportunities and reasons for enterprise permissioned distributed ledgers, as there was always market appetite for permissioned systems in general. These ventures use the term “permissioned blockchain” intentionally and purposefully. After all, the transactions are batched in blocks that are linked to each other. So, there is a chain of blocks, and some kind of consensus protocol. But is that sufficient for a blockchain, really? And what ‘blockchain’ is the SEC referring to when it references “the blockchain”?

Employment Agreements: Employers Need To Pay Attention to Growing Government Activism

In the past, employers typically only needed to be concerned that confidentiality and non-compete clauses in their employment agreements may be challenged either by departing employees who want to work for a competitor or by a competing company attempting to hire an employee or former employee. That tide is changing as an increasing level of government scrutiny has been directed at these employee restrictive covenants. Recently, federal and state agencies have been challenging the enforceability of confidentiality provisions and non-competes that the agencies claim are not supported by legitimate business interests. Given this change-in-tide and the New Year, now is the perfect time for employers to engage counsel to review their confidentiality and non-compete provisions.

Infringe at Will Culture Takes Hold as America’s Patent System Erodes

Perhaps when the Senate Banking Committee convenes to consider the nomination of Wall Street attorney Jay Clayton as the new head of the Securities and Exchange Commission they should ask about efficient infringement and the infringe at will culture. What is your position, Mr. Clayton, on the legal obligation of a public company to shareholders? Should publicly traded companies inform shareholders that patent assets are worthless, or at least worth less, given the legal and regulatory climate in America? Should publicly traded companies systematically infringe and ignore all patent rights? Should publicly traded companies be using billions in shareholder monies to aggressively collect patent assets while they are simultaneously using millions to lobby against the viability of patents? What exactly do shareholders have a right to know?

Financial CHOICE Act could presage Congressional action on administrative abuses at PTAB

One of the effects of this bill, were it enacted by Congress as currently written, would be to modify the enforcement activities of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Recent coverage of the bill by Bloomberg BNA notes that the proposed legislation would allow parties involved in a legal action to move the action out of SEC tribunal and into U.S. district court… As Bloomberg BNA’s coverage notes, SEC’s in-house tribunals have been criticized in recent months… While the Financial CHOICE Act itself doesn’t pose any direct impact to the U.S. patent system, it does highlight a similar issue playing out at the USPTO in recent years.

Loan fraud charges filed by SEC target notable patent troll Jay Mac Rust

The patent trolling by MPHJ and owner, Texas lawyer Jay Mac Rust, are well known. But now the SEC is going after Jay Mac Rust in federal court for fraud. The SEC’s complaint maintains that Atlantic had “no ability or intention to obtain these loans.” Rather, of the money the two collected, the SEC alleges that Rust took $662,000 from client funds for personal pay and risky securities investments; Brenner himself took $595,000, and both made investments claiming that the money was personally theirs and not from the client funds. Investigations at a brokerage firm where these trades were taking place led the SEC to discover the fraudulent activities.

GoDaddy IPO could bring a nearly $3 billion valuation thanks to IP holdings

Publicly traded shares of stock in the company will initially be priced in a range from $17 to $19 each. If each of the 22 million shares which the company plans on offering are sold at the high end of that range, it could net the company $418 million. This will be aided by a small but meaningful patent portfolio made up of nearly 150 U.S. patents, which cover core innovations relating to domain name valuation, domain name hijacking prevention and methods for creating an Internet business.

Patents are Important: Bursting the Twitter Patent Mythology

Twitter is a perfect case study to demonstrate just how important patents, particularly software patents, are to a start-up company that has aspirations of going public… In repeated filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission since October 2013, Twitter has explained over and over again just how important their patented technology is to the company. They have also repeatedly explained that unlike other companies and competitors, even with nearly 1,000 patents, their own patent portfolio is extremely small by comparison. This poses real concerns for Twitter, which is why they warn the SEC and investors of the ramifications of such a small patent portfolio with every new filing.

Does the First Amendment Protect False and Misleading Speech?

Yes, I had the audacity to say what is objectively correct. There is no absolute right under the First Amendment to engage in false or misleading speech. Despite the fact that this statement is legally 100% correct you would have thought I was engaging in treasonous behavior. What made it all the more comical was that it was the anarchists who seemed most upset, both in comments on IPWatchdog and in a variety of Twitter and blog articles that sought to paint me as some kind of crazy. You see the anarchists got so upset because the only play in their playbook is to lie and misrepresent in order to pull the wool over the eyes of enough people that they can get their way. That is where America is currently and if you ask me that is wholly unacceptable.

Kodak Prepares to Sell 10% of Patent Portfolio to Stay Viable

Eastman Kodak Company reported that it was continuing its march forward toward becoming a profitable and sustainable digital company. A sustainable digital company? In order to achieve this goal Kodak will need to better leverage its intellectual property portfolio. How will Kodak seek to generate cash from its intellectual property portfolio? The company is shifting gears and is pursuing a plan to sell 10% of it is patent portfolio to attempt to raise cash to remain in business.