Wishing all a Happy New Year, Smith Keane is proud to announce the addition of a new team member. Registered patent attorney James (“Jim”) Earl Lowe Jr. has joined the Smith Keane team.  In his Of Counsel role, Jim plans to focus his practice on patent prosecution and counseling, while continuing to advise clients across…

Yesterday, Judge Otero (C.D. Cal.) dismissed Stormy Daniels’ (Stephanie Clifford’s) defamation suit she filed against President Trump in April (originally filed in SDNY, but transferred by agreement of the parties), applying the Texas Citizens Participation Act (TCPA or Texas Anti-SLAPP statute).  PDF Order The dispute regarded an April 18, 2018 tweet by the leader of…

On October 11, 2018, the Hatch-Goodlatte Music Modernization Act (MMA), AKA the Musical Works Modernization Act, became law.   A person may by complying with the provisions of this section obtain a compulsory license to make and distribute phonorecords of a nondramatic musical work, including by means of digital phonorecord delivery.

PTAB to Change Patent Claim Construction Standard To be published in the Federal Register tomorrow [get complete draft here], to be effective 30 days after publication (but actually 33 days due to weekend and Veterans’ Day) on 11/13/2018: DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE United States Patent and Trademark Office 37 CFR Part 42 [Docket No. PTO-P-2018-0036] RIN…

On March 21, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that retransmission of copyrighted works over the Internet are not eligible for compulsory licenses under 17 U.S.C. Section 111, which are available to “cable systems.”  Compulsory licenses generally equate to less economic return for copyright owners, so organizations such as Fox,…

Previously, Apple had won $399 million as damages related to Samsung’s infringement of Apple’s design patents.  Samsung appealed.  Additional damages in a design patent infringement case are governed by 35 U.S.C. Sec. 289, which allows a patent holder to recover the total profit an infringer makes from the infringement.  However, key to this determination is…

In light of In re Tam (the “Slants” case), the USPTO has published examination guidelines for use while the constitutionality of 15 USC Section 1052(a)’s scandalousness provision remains in question.

In reviewing a district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of a defendant on the basis of patent ineligible subject matter, the Federal Circuit has affirmed. The method at issue involved steps of a borrower applying for a loan, a third party calculating a credit grading, lenders providing loan pricing, and then the borrower…

Tyrone Simmons (aka Young Caliber) sued, inter alia, producer William C. Stanberry Jr. (aka Apex) and rapper Curtis Jackson (aka 50 Cent) for using a beat that Simmons claims to have exclusively licensed from Apex in February 2006.  The beat was allegedly used in the production of Fitty’s “I Get Money” in 2007. Simmons filed…

FTE sued SPI (among others), asserting claims under Lanham Act Section 32(1) and other claims, for misappropriating and commercially exploiting the Stolichnaya trademarks related to the sale of vodka and other spirits in the U.S. Stolichnaya was registered in 1969 by a Soviet enterprise, V/O-SPI.  In the 1990s, SPI was privatized, but in 2000 a…

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