January 31, 2010 - Taking a brief break from patent infringement news, we turn to a trademark matter. Now that Apple's tablet PC has finally been introduced to the public, a host of other products named "iPad" - including tablet computers from ST Microelectronics and Fujitsu, motors and engines produced by Siemens and even a padded bra from a Canadian lingerie company.
If a patentee delays filing suit for an unreasonable and inexcusable length of time from the time he knew or reasonably should have known of his claim against an infringer, and the delay operates to the prejudice or injury of the infringer, the patentee may be barred from recovering any damages which accrued prior to the filing of suit.
Strange as it may seem, many (misguided) people dislike lawyers, deriding their character, disparaging their reputation for honesty and questioning their parentage. Such people are wont to collect and endlessly repeat stories about lawyers’ indiscretions – as if that really proved anything. They point, for example, to Scott W. Rothstein, accused of running a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme. Picky, picky. Bernie Madoff ran a $50 billion Ponzi scheme and he wasn’t a lawyer.
January 27, 2010 - It's been a good month for Rambus. Following the company's settlement with Samsung, A U.S. International Trade Commission judge has now ruled in Rambus' favor against Nvidia.
Some cases simply cry out to be the subject of a blog, but none more so than Pfizer Inc. v. Arye Sachs and JetAngel.com.
January 21, 2010 - Samsung Electronics Co. and Rambus, Inc. have settled all patent litigation between the two companies.
The patents under which Samsung will be taking a license cover all of Samsung's semiconductor products.
January 21, 2010 - Multimedia Patent Trust, of which Alcatel-Lucent SA is a 99 percent beneficiary, has sued Walt Disney Co., Fox and NBC Universal Inc. for infringing its patents on video compression technology in DVD and Blu-Ray discs sold by the media companies.
The suit was filed in federal court in San Diego, Calif.
Some patentees never give up; they persist in their efforts to enforce their patents against infringers, even to the point of petitioning the Supreme Court to change the existing patent law relating to the determination of patent invalidity due to obviousness. (Acushnet Company v. Callaway Golf Company)
January 18, 2010 - Previously in the smartphone war between Nokia and Apple, Nokia had filed a complaint in December with the International Trade Commission (ITC) which sought to ban the importation of Apple's iPhone, iPod and MacBook products.
Now Apple has followed suit by filing its own complaint with the ITC, seeking to block imports of Nokia's mobile phones.
January 18, 2010 - Motorola Inc. and VTech Communications, Inc. announced that they have settled a patent lawsuit that Motorola filed against VTech in the Eastern District of Texas.
Large businesses, especially those found guilty of patent infringement, malign N.P.E.s – which they call “trolls,” by claiming that the N.P.E.s are asserting invalid or trivial patents and are, thereby, perverting the patent system. Well, we now have a scholarly study, conducted by independent researchers, which refutes this rant. (Patent Trolls on Markets for Technology – An Empirical Analysis of Trolls’ Patent Acquisitions by Timo Fischer and Joachim Henkel of the Technical University of Munich.)
Another chapter of “What Were They Thinking?” was recently written by Acacia Research Corp. (DNT LLC vs. Sprint Nextel Corp. et al.)
Some weeks ago, we wrote about a suit seeking a declaration that patents on genes are unconstitutional and, in particular, violate the plaintiffs’ right of free speech - The ACLU – Fighting The Right To Life – And The Right To Patent It. At that time, the defendants – the USPTO and Myriad Genetics Inc. – had moved to dismiss the case because, inter alia, it allegedly failed to state a legally recognizable claim of any constitutional violation.
January 12, 2010 - Eastman Kodak Co. announced yesterday that they have signed a patent licensing agreement with Samsung Electronics Co. of South Korea.
The settlement ends 14 months of patent infringement lawsuits that the companies had filed against each other, as well as patent infringement proceedings before the International Trade Commission.
It is not often that a defendant in a patent infringement suit is able to win a summary judgment of non-infringement. Usually, the plaintiff is able to defeat a motion for summary judgment by producing a “declaration” (lawyerspeak for “a document ghost-written by lawyers”) of its “technical expert” (lawyerspeak for “degree-holding mouthpiece for the lawyers”) to raise a “substantial question of material fact.” Usually, but not always. (Intellectual Science And Technology, Inc. v. Sony Electronics, Inc. et al.)
January 7, 2010 - Skyline Software Systems Inc., a Virginia company, has sued Microsoft for patent infringement, claiming that Microsoft's Bing mapping program is infringing its patented technology.
Skyline's patent, which issued in June 2009, relates to a way of sending 3D images over the Internet.
January 5, 2010 - In October, Nokia filed a patent infringement lawsuit in federal court in Delaware, charging that Apple's iPhone infringes 10 Nokia patents. In December, Nokia filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission (ITC), requesting a ban on certain Apple devices.
Now Nokia has asked a federal court to ban the importation of almost all Apple hardware into the United States: iPhone, iPod and Mac products.