Software Copyright Infringement Defenses: Ownership of a Copy and Implied License

A defendant accused of infringing a software copyright was, according to facts plead in the plaintiff’s complaint, an owner of a copy of the software under 17 U.S.C. § 117(a)(1). Further, the facts established that the defendant had an implied license. Therefore, the court in Zilyen, Inc. v. Rubber Mfrs. Ass’n, No. 12-0433 (RBW) (D.D.C April 2, […]

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Evidence Not Required to Rebut Presumption That Anticipatory Prior Art Is Enabled

The Federal Circuit has clarified a patent applicant’s burden to rebut the presumption that a prior art reference is enabling of allegedly anticipated claims. In re Morsa, No. 2012-1609 (Fed. Cir. April 5, 2013). The court therefore vacated and remanded a decision from the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences, where the Board had affirmed […]

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Limiting Patent Expert Testimony

A patent expert lacked a basis for opining where the expert had drawn conclusions about activities of the accused infringer’s customers without inspecting any documents or other evidence concerning what the customers actually did. Further, the expert was not qualified to testify concerning a number of secondary considerations of non-obviousness.  Therefore, the court granted in […]

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Image Processing Claims Held Patent-Eligible

Patent claims directed to “technology for modifying video signals” are patent-eligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101, according to a Central District of California court. Oplus Techs. v. Sears Holding Corp., No. 12-cv-5707-MRP (C.D. Cal. March 4, 2013). Accordingly, the court denied the defendant’s motion for summary judgment of invalidity (which had been brought under 35 […]

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Yet Further Clarification on Indirect Divided and Joint Infringement

Under the doctrine of divided infringement, patent claims directed to a slot machine were properly found not to be directly infringed. Aristocrat Tech., Australia v. Int’l. Game Tech., No. 2010-1426 (Fed. Cir. March 13, 2013). However, for the second time in as many weeks, the Federal Circuit remanded a case to a District Court for […]

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Patent Defendant Allowed Discovery of Non-Accused Products

What is the permissible scope of discovery related to a defendants’ non-accused products in a patent case? In Positive Techs., Inc. v. Sony Elecs., Inc., No.: 11-cv-2226 SI (KAW) (N.D. Cal. Feb 26, 2013), the defendants were denied a protective order after the plaintiff sought discovery related to non-accused products; the plaintiff contended that the […]

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Further Clarification on Indirect Divided and Joint Infringement

Holding that a district court improperly applied the doctrine of joint patent infringement with respect to indirect infringement, while agreeing with the lower court’s reasoning concerning direct infringement, the Federal Circuit has vacated a summary judgment of non-infringement. Move, Inc. v. Re-Max Int’l., Inc., No. 2012-1342 (Fed. Cir. Mar. 4, 2013). Claim 1 of U.S. Patent […]

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Patent Plaintiff Sanctioned Under Rule 11

The Northern District of Illinois has sanctioned a patent plaintiff that refused to withdraw a complaint of patent infringement, and did not perform an investigation, even after the defendant gave clear notice that its business method was different than the claimed business method. Smart Options, LLC v. Jump Rope, Inc., No. 12 C 2498 (N.D. […]

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Federal Circuit Reaffirms Software Means-Plus-Function Requirements

In keeping with other cases discussed by this blog addressing whether software “means” recited in patent claims have been adequately disclosed, the Federal Circuit recently affirmed a district court’s invalidation of patent claims for indefiniteness because the patent specification did not disclose an algorithm to support the recited means. Function Media, L.L.C. v. Google Inc., […]

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