Pour Me Another: The Supreme Court Revisits the ‘Bad Wine’ of the Copyright Discovery Rule
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
3d ago
by Dennis Crouch and Timothy Knight On February 21, 2024, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case of Warner Chappell Music v. Nealy, which deals with a circuit split over the availability of back-damages in copyright infringement cases. Specifically, the Court is examining whether copyright plaintiffs are barred from recovering damages for acts of infringement that occurred more than three years before filing suit, even if the claims are timely under the “discovery rule.” During the arguments, the parties and justices used metaphors of “bad wine vintages” in questioning the pedigree ..read more
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The Sky’s the Limit: How Chestek Frees the USPTO
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
3d ago
by Dennis Crouch Earlier this month, the Federal Circuit issued a decision in the case of In re Chestek that, on its face, simply upheld the USPTO’s requirement that trademark applicants provide their domicile address. But contained within the court’s ruling is language that could have some major implications — essentially giving the USPTO carte blanche ability to sidestep administrative rulemaking procedures for any new requirements it imposes, as long as they are deemed “procedural” in nature.  And on this point the Federal Circuit appears to establish a wide permissive definition that ..read more
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Beyond the Limit: The Battle Over Copyright Back-Damages in Warner Chappell Music v. Nealy
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
5d ago
By Dennis Crouch and Timothy Knight* The Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments on February 21 in an important copyright case – Warner Chappell Music v. Nealy. The central issue is whether copyright plaintiffs can recover damages for infringing acts that occurred more than three years before filing suit, under the “discovery accrual rule.”  Copyright’s statute of limitations bars claims not “commenced within three years after the claim accrued.” 17 U.S.C. § 507(b). But the Eleventh Circuit permitted Nealy to seek damages beyond three years — going back to three years from when he kn ..read more
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Obviousness: Is a Reasonable Expectation of Success Sufficient
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
6d ago
by Dennis Crouch In Vanda v. Teva, the Federal Circuit confirmed the obviousness of Vanda’s claims covering use of tasimelteon (Hetlioz) to treat circadian rhythm disorders (Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder).  Teva and Apotex, filed Abbreviated New Drug Applications (ANDAs) with the FDA seeking to market generic versions of the $100m+ drug.  Vanda sued, but lost on obviousness grounds — with the court holding that the claimed combination was obvious because it was directed to a set of known elements and a person of ordinary skill would have a “reasonable expectation of success” in rea ..read more
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Federal Circuit Decisions – 2023 Stats and Datapack
Patently-O
by Jason Rantanen
1w ago
By Jason Rantanen It’s time for the annual Federal Circuit statistics update! As I’ve done for the last few years, below I provide some statistics on what the Federal Circuit has been doing over the past year. These charts draw on the Federal Circuit Dataset Project, an open-access dataset that I maintain that contains information on all Federal Circuit decisions and docketed appeals. The docket data is collected directly from PACER, and the court’s decisions are collected from via its RSS feed. My research team then uses a combination of algorithmic processing via Python code and manual revi ..read more
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Incorporation by Reference Rules at the Federal Circuit
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
1w ago
by Dennis Crouch Promptu Systems v. Comcast (Fed. Cir. 2024) The Federal Circuit released two opinions today involving these two parties.  The first sides with Promptu on claim construction – remanding the case back to the Pennsylvania district court for further development.  The second concludes that reprimands Comcast’s attorney for trying to sneak-in extra words into its appellate brief.  This post will focus on the second case. Mark Perry is a leading appellate expert from Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP representing Comcast in the litigation and various IPRs between the part ..read more
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Redefining Patent Continuation Strategy: Sonos v. Google Appeal
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
1w ago
by Dennis Crouch One of the more shocking patent decisions of 2023 was Judge Alsup’s holding in Sonos, Inc. v. Google LLC, No. C 20-06754 WHA, 2023 WL 6542320 (N.D. Cal. Oct. 6, 2023).  The scathing opinion left two Sonos multi-zone smart-speaker patents unenforceable due to prosecution laches and a rejection of the $32 million jury verdict.  Sonos had amended its claims after after learning of Google’s particular product, and Judge Alsup found that approach inequitable, concluding that the patentee was “wringing fresh claims to read on a competitor’s products from an ancient applica ..read more
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Joint Inventorship: AI-Human Style
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
1w ago
by Dennis Crouch The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently published examination guidance and a request for comments on the treatment of inventorship for inventions created with the assistance of artificial intelligence (AI) systems.  Inventorship Guidance for AI-Assisted Inventions. The key takeaway here is that the USPTO believes that an AI-developed invention is patentable so long as a human satisfies the joint-inventorship standard of “significantly contributing to the invention.” A human who provides a significant contribution may be the sole inventor and original owner ..read more
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Judge Newman’s D.C. Lawsuit Against Fellow Judges Largely Dismissed on Jurisdictional Grounds
Patently-O
by Dennis Crouch
1w ago
by Dennis Crouch Federal Circuit Judge Pauline Newman has been fighting for her right to judge after charges implicating her fitness for office.  Earlier this month, a committee of federal judges upheld Newman’s one-year suspension from new case assignments for refusing to cooperate with a misconduct investigation.  Newman had separately sued her colleagues in DC District Court, but Judge Cooper has now dismissed most of that lawsuit on jurisdictional grounds. While a few counts remain, the court’s ruling deals a serious blow to Judge Newman’s attempt to challenge the judiciary’s sel ..read more
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Playing From The Rough: Kirkland Signature™ Irons and The Doctrine of Equivalents
Patently-O
by Jordan Duenckel
1w ago
Guest Post by Jordan Duenckel.  Jordan is a third-year law student at the University of Missouri and a registered patent agent.  He has an extensive background in chemistry and food science. Before law school, he was a greenskeeper at a local golf course.  TaylorMade Golf Company teed off a dispute over golf club design and filed a patent infringement lawsuit on January 31st, 2024, in the Southern District of California against Costco and Southern California Design Company alleging infringement and false advertising relating to five of TaylorMade’s patents related to golf irons ..read more
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