Directional claim limitations deprive Topps of sweet sweet victory

Topps-Co.-v.-Koko_s-Confectionery-Nov…d-10990-S.D.N.Y, August 27, 2020 Background The Topps Company (“Topps”) is the owner of US Patent No. US6660316, directed to a candy product having the commercialized embodiment “Juicy Drop Pop” (“JDP”): Claim 1 of the ‘316 patent recites, in pertinent part:  A packaged candy product, comprising: a housing including a front face and a back face, […]

Owner of AI system DABUS sues the USPTO for denying applications listing DABUS as an inventor

Thaler v Iancu, filed 8/6/2020 In his complaint, Stephen Thaler states that the rejection of two patent applications naming DABUS as inventor and Thaler as Applicant “create a novel substantive requirement for patentability that is contrary to existing law and at odds with the policy underlying the patent system.”

Catalog descriptions can afford enforceable copyright protection

But only if you register them first.  So says Fischer-v-Forrest (Nos. 18-2955-cv, 18-2959-cv, August 4, 2020, 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals) Background Fischer, the plaintiff-appellant, had invented a honey harvesting product called, and registered a copyright for his website, including a brochure, on February 7, 2011.  Defendants-appellees, Sandra and Stephen Forrest and their mail […]

Amazon once again held strictly liable in products liability case

Bolger v. Amazon, Superior Court No. 37-2017-00003009-CU-PL-CTL, August 13, 2020 This time, in connection with its fulfillment of an order for a laptop battery, that subsequently exploded, severely injuring the Plaintiff Bolger.  Recall in Oberdorf v. Amazon, strict liability was found for an eye injury at the hands of a retractable leash, ordered on Amazon. […]

The Commodores have come to the end of their rainbow with former bandmate, Thomas McClary

But at least there’s a pot of gold there.   Commodores v McClary Appeal Nos. 19-10791, 19-12819, July 23, 2020, 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. Thomas McClary and his company (collectively “McClary”) appealed the summary judgment and damages ruling of the district court, as well as denial of his motions to modify the scope of a […]

Shiver me timbers! The Ninth Circuit revives copyright infringement lawsuit against Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean:Curse of the Black Pearl

Alfred v Disney , Appeal 19-55669, July 22, 2020 Plaintiffs Alfred et al. (“Alfred”) appealed the dismissal of their copyright infringement action against Defendants The Walt Disney Company et al. (“Disney”).  Alfred argued the dismissal was in error given the substantial similarities between their screenplay and the allegedly infringing film.  The 9th Circuit agreed, holding that […]

Inequitable conduct defense fails after PTAB denies IPR institution based upon allegedly “but-for” material reference

Jaguar-v.-Bentley-EDVA-Apr-30-2020 Concurrent with the litigation it filed in the Eastern District of Virginia, Bentley Motors (“Bentley”) filed a petition for IPR with the PTAB based on certain prior art referred to by the Court as “the Porsche 959 prior art.”  The day before its reply brief was due in the litigation, PTAB denied institution of […]

BASF patent gets a second chance at the Federal Circuit

basf-corp-v-snf-holding-company, Appeal No. 2019-1243, Fed. Cir. April 8, 2020. BASF owns US patent 5,633,329 (the “‘329 patent”), directed to an process of preparing super absorbing polymers, which have a tendancy to stick to the walls of the reactor in which they are manufactured.  The ‘329 patent claims a method of making the polymers, using a […]

“No risk trial” is an offer for sale, and triggers the on-sale bar

And relying on the exemplary data provided with the offer as proof of reduction to practice, without disclosing the offer, is not a good idea.  GS Cleantech v Adkins Energy, No. 2016-2231 (Fed. Cir. March 2, 2020). The US District Court for the Southern District of Indiana (“District Court”) found four of Appellants patents (US […]

A cautionary tale for use of “the present invention” – Techtronic Industries, LTD v. ITC

My first thought when reading this case was doesn’t anyone else have a garage door that will not close even when there is nothing in the way?  Or that goes on psychotic ‘opening and closing’ benders for no apparent reason?  I can’t be the only one – clearly improved garage door openers are needed in […]