August 2011

A Good Deal

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 08/30/2011 - 21:40

In the ongoing trademark war between Facebook on one side and roughly the rest of the world on the other, one small combatant has achieved, if not victory, then at least an honorable peace. (Lamebook LLC v. Facebook Inc.)

It Ain't Over Yet

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 08/30/2011 - 16:34

Just when we thought that the long-running daytime legal soap opera, THE BRATZ, had come to an end, along comes one Bernard Belair to, as they say in Hollywood, “rescue the franchise.” Belair v. MGA Entertainment Inc. et al.

Mr. Belair has alleged that the Bratz dolls were improperly based on a series of drawings he had created for a third party. Apparently uncertain as to which of the two toy manufacturers would ultimately prevail in their litigation marathon, he sued both of them. (Mattel is the “et al.” in MGA Entertainment Inc. et al.)

Senate to Vote on House Version of America Invents Act Sept. 6

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 08/29/2011 - 13:24

August 29, 2011 - Once it has returned from its month-long recess, the Senate is expected to hold a vote September 6 on whether to pass the House's version of the America Invents Act, which passed in June.

But some tech industry groups fear that the legislation will "do little to divert money away from patent litigation and toward innovation," according to a Reuters article published on Insurance Journal.

Wrong Approach

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 08/23/2011 - 13:08

Apparently hewing to the old adage that the best defense is a good offense, Righthaven is vigorously arguing in support of a motion it has filed seeking leave to amend the complaint in one of the many copyright infringement suits it has pending before the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada.  Righthaven LLC v. Pahrump Life et al.

Stick To The Real World

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 08/23/2011 - 13:04

Well folks, it seems that another plaintiff-preferred damages model has bit the dust.  First it was the time-honored 25% Rule (see our previous blog The Latest Thing in Damages Models).  Now it’s the even more elderly, albeit less well known, Nash Bargaining Solution.  Oracle America, Inc. v. Google Inc.

Google, of course, needs no introduction.  Oracle America is the renamed Sun Microsystems, Inc. which was acquired by Oracle Corporation in January 2010.

New York Times DealBook - "Quest for Patents Brings New Focus in Tech Deals"

Now that it's a well-known fact that Motorola Mobility's extensive patent portfolio was a big part of the reason for Google's $12.5 billion offer, intellectual property is much more in the spotlight. GPC's Alex Poltorak spoke with the New York Times about how patents are "emerging as a new currency."

("Quest for Patents Brings New Focus in Tech Deals", the New York Times DealBook, August 16, 2011)

The Washington Post - "Google to buy Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion"

Google may have been outbid for the Nortel Networks patent portfolio, but it has acquired a much larger treasure trove by purchasing Motorola Mobility. GPC's Alexander Poltorak was one of the experts quoted in a recent article about the ramifications of this transaction.

(Google to buy Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion, The Washington Post, August 15, 2011)

Strange Bedfellows

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 08/15/2011 - 15:46

We have written many times about Righthaven, the über troll of the copyright world. In our last blog we noted that the tide had seemingly turned. Rather than merely settling with Righthaven, defendants were arguing that Righthaven lacked standing to sue and were seeking to recover their attorney’s fees and costs.

A Self-Inflicted Injury

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 08/15/2011 - 15:24

As any regular reader of our blogs has probably discerned, in patent cases our sympathies, in general, lie with the patentee. Occasionally, however, we encounter a case where the patentee deserves no sympathy, having seemingly done everything possible to bring disaster upon itself. Precision Links Incorporated v. USA Products Group, Inc. and Home Depot U.S.A., Inc.

Google Goes to Patent Office to Protect App Developers from Lodsys

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 08/15/2011 - 09:33

August 15, 2011 - Google has filed a reexamination request with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in an effort to stop Lodsys' lawsuits against app developers for the Android OS.

"We believe [the patents] should never have been issued," Google senior vice president and general counsel Kent Walker said in an article on "Developers play a critical part in the Android ecosystem and Google will continue to support them."

The End of the Good Old Days

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 08/01/2011 - 21:16

As any student of military history can attest, the element of surprise is, to a greater or lesser extent, the key to success in battle. So too with respect to litigation. Therefore, one can only wonder at the motivation of an attorney who chooses to publish his trial strategy for all to see. That being said, it clearly behooves all who may, in the future, cross swords with this attorney to study his writing and pay due heed.

A Determined Judge

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 08/01/2011 - 21:11

When we consider the likely outcome of a trial, we generally focus on the decision of a jury or an appellate court. Well, sometimes the opinion of the trial judge is all that really matters. Transocean Offshore Deepwater Drilling Inc. v. Maersk Contractors USA, Inc.