Monthly Archives: April 2012

“The Weakest Infringement Claims of All Time”??? Patent Prosecution and the Physics of Fair Use

When patent prosecutors file applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (PTO), they are required by law to include “all information material to patentability,” which typically includes copies of scientific articles that may disclose relevant prior art. But are they required to get the copyright holder’s permission before submitting these articles? If they don’t, is it copyright infringement?

The American Institute of Physics (AIP) thinks so. Alongside publisher and co-plaintiff John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., the AIP has just completed filing a series of… More

New gTLD Update: All Systems Are…Suspended?

As part our continuing coverage of ICANN’s New gTLD Program, we had planned a post regarding the close of the gTLD application window and the imminent unveiling of the new top-level domain applicants and their respective applications on April 30 — colloquially known as “Reveal Day.” However, due to an unfortunate glitch in ICANN’s TLD Application System that reared its ugly head on April 12 — the date the application window was scheduled to close — that process has been temporarily interrupted. According to ICANN’s TAS… More

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Proposes Greater Cooperation with IP Owners to Crack Down on Counterfeits

Earlier today, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that it would disclose information to intellectual property owners regarding suspected counterfeit goods stopped at the border, in situations where CBP desires assistance from the IP owners to determine if the goods are genuine or counterfeit. According to the announcement, counterfeiting techniques have become so sophisticated that it is not always possible to tell the real from the fake. Without question, counterfeits can pose a grave danger to the health and safety of American consumers, as well as cause economic harm to legitimate… More

Second Circuit Reverses Convictions in Data-Theft Prosecution and Narrowly Interprets Federal Criminal Statutes with Important Intellectual Property Implications

On our sister blog, Security, Privacy and the Law, our colleague Daniel Marx reports on a recent Second Circuit case addressing the limits of criminal liability for the theft of intellectual property. It turns out that criminal liability can turn on some rather technical details – such as whether the allegedly stolen source code was copied to a flash drive or disk actually owned by the employer. Marx notes:

If Aleynikov had copied data onto a Goldman disc, he would have violated the NSPA, but instead he uploaded it to a… More

Google AdWords Appellate Decision Injects Some Uncertainty Back Into the Keyword Game

Just when you thought it was safe to bid on competitors’ trademarks as keywords — provided you played it smart, and didn’t put trademarks in the actual text of your sponsored ad except under certain limited circumstances — comes the Fourth Circuit’s decision in Rosetta Stone v. Google. In its opinion, the Fourth Circuit reverses, in significant part, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia for its apparently hasty summary judgment order in favor of Google, remanding the case for further analysis.

The AdWords Dispute

As the result of… More

Viacom’s Copyright Suit Against YouTube Gets a Second Chance from the Second Circuit

viatube

The Second Circuit has ruled that the summary judgment granted last year in favor of YouTube in a copyright suit brought by Viacom and other content owners was premature. The District Court had found that YouTube was protected by one of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s (“DMCA”) safe harbor provisions, namely, 17 U.S.C. § 512(c), which shields online service providers from liability for infringing content posted by users. Although it agreed with some of the District Court’s central reasoning, the appellate court has sent the case… More

Not So Clever After All: Humorous Commercial on “Luxury” Lands Hyundai in Hot Water

In an ad run initially during the post-game show of the 2010 Super Bowl, Hyundai encouraged viewers to re-think “luxury” and as a result consider buying a Sonata. The ad, which can be viewed on YouTube here, juxtaposed images of “luxury” with everyday settings: policemen eating caviar, middle class houses with giant yachts parked next door, and — in what turned out to be a step too far — men playing basketball on an inner-city court, with a ball that bore designs very closely resembling Louis Vuitton’s “toile monogram.” This long-registered… More