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“Substantially” is a Definite Term in Recent PTAB Decisions

Many practitioners view words of approximation, such as “substantially,” as useful tools to broaden claim language. MPEP §2173.05(b) states that words of approximation are acceptable if one of ordinary skill in the art would understand what is claimed, in light of the specification. In fact, MPEP §2173.05(b)III discusses the acceptable use of various words of […]

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Volitional Conduct: an Element of Copyright Infringement

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held in Perfect 10 v. Giganews, No 15-5550 (Jan 23, 2017), that an alleged copyright infringer can only be found directly liable if its “volitional conduct” actually causes the infringing activity to happen. Notably, the Court rejected Appellant’s argument that the Supreme Court’s ruling in American Broadcasting v. […]

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Exciting Technology (and new Intellectual Property?) at the 2016 North American International Auto Show

We saw a lot of interesting technology – and, who knows, maybe some new intellectual property – at this year’s North American International Auto Show, the annual gathering of the automotive industry at Cobo Hall in downtown Detroit, a short distance from our office. As intellectual property attorneys we are always interested in new technology, so […]

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Alice Roundup, Late Summer 2015 – Part 2: Patent-Eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101

Although district courts considering patent-eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101 and Alice Corporation Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank International more often than not find patent claims invalid, some patent claims survive, as evidenced by the cases discussed below.  My last post discussed cases finding patent claims invalid under the two-part Alice “abstract idea” test.  This […]

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Webinar: How to Practice Patent Law After Alice

A recording of this webinar is available online. The PowerPoint presentation for this webinar is posted here: How to Practice Patent Law After Alice John Kong’s paper is posted here:  Surviving Alice Gone Wild 12-09-2014 Presented by the IP Legal Network, this free webinar on December 9, 2014, at 1 pm EST, will provide practical […]

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Inadequate Infringement Contentions Are Struck

Because of insufficiencies in a plaintiff’s infringement contentions, a plaintiff was precluded from asserting the doctrine of equivalents (DOE) concerning any claim, and was also precluded from asserting any infringement with respect to one means-plus-function claim. Dynetix Design Solutions v. Synopsys, Inc., No. C 11-5973 PSG (N.D. Cal. Aug. 22, 2013). Regarding the doctrine of […]

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Functional Language Can Have Patentable Weight

The Federal Circuit has held that functional language in a software claim should be given patentable weight.  In re Jasinski, No. 2012-1482 (Feb. 15, 2013). Accordingly, the Court reversed the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s rejection of claims as allegedly anticipated.  If applied to claims in other software patents and patent applications, this decision, although […]

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Estoppel and Inter Partes Review of Patent Validity

Do the estoppel provisions of the inter partes re-examination statute preclude a third party from relying on prior art in litigation where, after the third party has included the prior art in its request for inter partes re-examination, the USPTO has determined that the prior art does not present a substantial new question of patentability? […]

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