Venable LLP makes a key addition to its expanding Intellectual
Property practice group with the arrival of IP litigator and
counselor Adam R. Hess. Mr. Hess joins the firm as a partner in
Christopher B. Tokarczyk, former patent examiner with a
particular emphasis in the computer, electrical, communication, and
business method areas, recently joined the firm from the USPTO as
an associate in the
Patent Prosecution and Counseling Group.
In May, in a decision affecting trademark protection of color,
high-end French footwear designer Christian Louboutin suffered yet
another loss in its ongoing legal battle over its iconic red-soled
shoes. On May 30, 2012, the Cour de Cassation—the highest
French court of appeals—determined there was no risk of
consumer confusion between a red peep-toe platform heel with red
soles sold by Spanish fashion retailer Zara and Louboutin's own
"Yo Yo" design, a nude peep-toe platform heel with his
signature red soles.
Can the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO)
invalidate a patent during reexamination that had been upheld
during litigation? Yes, according to the Court of Appeals for the
Federal Circuit in In re Baxter International, where the
Federal Circuit addressed the potential conflict predicted since
Congress established ex parte reexamination procedures at the
USPTO. At least in some circumstances, the USPTO can find a patent
invalid, even after a court has upheld its validity.
Michael Gollin was quoted in the ABA Journal on July 1, 2012 on
the Supreme Court's ruling in Mayo Collaborative Services
v. Prometheus Laboratories and the patentability of laws of
nature. At issue in the case is Section 101 of the Patent Act which
describes the type of invention that is patentable. The Supreme
Court has held that laws of nature, natural phenomena and abstract
ideas are not patentable.
As is well known, patent trolls often threaten dozens of alleged infringers in the hope of scoring quick license fees from those who understandably prefer to provide a modest payoff, thereby avoiding expensive and protracted litigation.
In order to best protect the IP rights of a U.S. company seeking to produce goods through a Chinese manufacturer by providing a protected design, the U.S. company needs to take actions even before the contracting stages.
On November 12, 2012, the State Intellectual Property Office of the People’s Republic of issued the Draft Rules on Inventor-Employee Inventions for public comment, and this article seeks to reconcile the different provisions between the Implementing Rules and the Draft Rules.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed a summary judgment ruling in favor of seven film studios finding that the defendant induced third parties to download infringing copies of the plaintiffs’ copyrighted works.