Litigation News

Litigation news from around the web

LJN - Intellectual Property Strategist The newsletter publishing arm of ALM, publishers of The National Law Journal, The American Lawyer and legal newspapers of record throughout the U.S.

  • What's Your Trademark Worth? Determining the Value of Trademarks For Collateral, Sale or Licensing
    on September 1, 2020 at 5:09 am

    This article explores the options available to a client to value its trademarks during a financial crisis, to ensure one of the most valuable assets it owns can continue to work for the company and see it through the lean times.       

  • The Russian Vodka Saga
    on September 1, 2020 at 5:07 am

    Federal Treasury Enterprise Sojuzplodoimport v. Spirits International BV What do the fall of the Soviet Union, a heist of trademark rights, and Stolichnaya vodka have in common? They are all key components of the Russian Federation's efforts to reclaim its trademarks in Stolichnaya vodka.       

  • Which Method Is for You? Not All Surveys Are Made the Same
    on September 1, 2020 at 5:05 am

    As survey evidence has become increasingly common in litigation, it is important to remember that not all surveys are made the same. It's important to be able to identify the right survey methodology for the matter at hand. Third in a series       

  • IP News
    on September 1, 2020 at 5:03 am

    Federal Circuit: ITC Did Not Err in Denying Non-Respondent's Petition to Rescind Exclusion Order Based on Invalidity Grounds Federal Circuit: District Court Did Not Err in Ruling that 'Half-Liquid' Is Indefinite Federal Circuit: District Court Did Not Err In Allowing Jury to Determine Infringement Based on Products' Compliance with Standard       

  • What's in a Name? Booking.com and Consumer Perception Evidence
    on August 1, 2020 at 5:09 am

    In the first case in U.S. Supreme Court history argued by telephone, the Court ruled 8-1 in favor of Booking.com, holding that it could register as a trademark its eponymous domain name BOOKING.COM.       

Planet Depos We Make It Happen

  • Important Reminders For Your Remote Deposition
    by Suzanne Quinson on September 10, 2020 at 4:16 pm

    Remote depositions are happening everywhere, here are the vital points to keep in mind when you're scheduling virtual depositions. The post Important Reminders For Your Remote Deposition appeared first on Planet Depos.

  • The Realtime Feed and the Remote Deposition
    by Suzanne Quinson on August 19, 2020 at 4:30 pm

    Realtime court reporting has been around for a while, and these remote days are an excellent time to experience it for yourself. The post The Realtime Feed and the Remote Deposition appeared first on Planet Depos.

  • The Ultimate Home Office Setup for your Remote Work Life
    by Daniel Malgran and Suzanne Quinson on July 22, 2020 at 5:00 pm

    Just because you're home doesn't mean you can't have a great office setup. Here are our recommendations to help you build the ultimate home office. The post The Ultimate Home Office Setup for your Remote Work Life appeared first on Planet Depos.

  • How To Take A Deposition in Modugno, Italy
    by Michael Anania on July 8, 2020 at 5:00 pm

    Although global travel has essentially been put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you can still plan ahead for your next deposition abroad. The post How To Take A Deposition in Modugno, Italy appeared first on Planet Depos.

  • The Remote Deposition and the Technician
    by Suzanne Quinson on June 24, 2020 at 5:45 pm

    What exactly is the technician’s role in a remote deposition, and why should you schedule one for your proceeding? We explore in this article. The post The Remote Deposition and the Technician appeared first on Planet Depos.

Director's Forum: A Blog from USPTO's Leadership Updates from America’s innovation agency

  • A seamless transition to all-virtual hearings
    by USPTO on September 18, 2020 at 10:43 am

    Blog by Andrei Iancu, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, and Scott Boalick, Chief Judge of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board of the USPTO  Remote PTAB hearing on July 27, 2020. As the coronavirus pandemic began in early March, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) held its first all-virtual hearing, seamlessly adjusting to the new format and showcasing yet another example of our state-of-the-art efforts to support America’s “innovation agency.” In the 60 days after this transition, the PTAB has held 263 virtual hearings. Of note, 95 of these hearings were AIA trials, 100% of which were all virtual. By comparison, in the 60 days prior to the transition, there were 99 AIA trials and only one of those trials had counsel appear remotely. Despite the sudden switch in format, PTAB work has continued unabated.   Past innovations allowed this transition to be possible. For example, PTAB has long permitted counsel to appear remotely in ex parte appeals to save travel-related costs and time for applicants. Likewise, up to two of the three judges assigned to any PTAB proceeding (ex parte appeal or AIA trial) have appeared remotely, supporting the USPTO’s well-known hotel programing where judges and examiners are recruited throughout the United States and permitted to work outside the DC metro area. And just this year, PTAB allowed parties in all proceedings to request to appear from a USPTO regional office. Still, transitioning all PTAB hearings to a complete virtual environment required the PTAB and its support staff to work efficiently and creatively as they addressed everything from court reporting to virtual public access. We continue our work to improve the user experience and welcome any suggestions parties and practitioners might have. Please send us a note at PTABhearings@uspto.gov.  We also realize that for many practitioners, appearing remotely is a new experience that poses some challenges. To that end, we have identified some best practices that we share with counsel in advance. On a related note, the USPTO launched the Legal Experience and Advancement Program (LEAP) during this time of remote hearings, and it has shown tremendous interest so far. LEAP fosters the development of the next generation of patent practitioners by creating opportunities for them to gain skills and experience in oral arguments before the PTAB. Finally, with the expansion of remote hearings, we are also able to offer stakeholders opportunity to listen to hearings remotely. For more information, please visit the PTAB page of the USPTO website for schedules and further instructions. The USPTO’s top priority is to maintain the health and safety of our employees, contractors, and the American public, while continuing to provide valuable services, programs, and resources at the highest level. The option to appear remotely before the PTAB is one of the many ways that we have met, and will continue to meet, the needs and priorities of those who appear before the Board.

  • Successful failover test ensures the stability of patent system applications at the USPTO
    by USPTO on July 28, 2020 at 2:45 pm

    Blog by Andrei Iancu, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, and Jamie Holcombe, Chief Information Officer of the USPTOIlluminating the corridors of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) data center in Alexandria, Virginia, are countless routers, switches, wires, and storage systems neatly organized on rows of server racks.  The blinking LED lights and soft whirring of cooling fans form an essential part of the USPTO’s digital backbone—one that supports ongoing patent and trademark examinations and daily business operations throughout the United States. Through this system, thousands of vital computer processes are executed every second of every day to enable the work done at America’s “Innovation Agency.”Until recently, most of this capability lay within the walls of USPTO headquarters in Alexandria. However, we determined in 2018 that this potential single point of failure was no longer tenable. In August of 2018 we experienced a multi-day outage of the Patent Application Locating and Monitoring (PALM) database. Afterwards, we committed to stabilize and modernize the USPTO’s IT infrastructure, which was long overdue. Significant portions of our infrastructure were antiquated and prone to failure under stress, and we lacked meaningful redundancies to mitigate the consequences of such failures. We began the upgrading process by conducting a top-to-bottom review and mapping of all IT systems. This included engaging outside experts to assess the infrastructure, processes, and organization. We then prioritized the needed improvements, and we set to work. For example, last year we upgraded to a new server platform for the main patent processing system. This new platform is 1,000 times faster, 20 times more efficient, far more stable, and less prone to failure.Critical to our stabilization effort is our team’s addition of redundancies – standby systems that enable “failover.” In a failover setup, redundant systems at offsite locations run simultaneously alongside the primary system. If the primary system fails, the standby system takes over, providing virtually uninterrupted support to system users.  In addition to adding failover servers, we activated at the alternate site a second 10 gigabit-per-second (10G) Ethernet computer networking circuit, deployed additional active and stand-by databases for key processing systems, and automated our deployment process for the primary and backup locations.To test the USPTO’s failover capabilities, on July 2nd and 3rd of this year, our IT team executed a planned outage of the servers housing the Official Correspondence and the Docket and Application Viewer. The files contained in this system are some of the largest, most important, and most accessed IT applications at the USPTO, used for reviewing, filing, and prosecuting patent applications. The outage test went as planned, with no issues. The USPTO’s new standby system at the offsite location remained fully operational during the test, with a rapid and seamless transition of the applications from the primary data center. All data was updated in real time and remained secure. Following this failover test, we then switched back to the primary data center, again with no issues. Our IT team is now moving forward to fully automate the failover system, and we plan to execute similar failover tests several times throughout the year. All along, of course, we continue to upgrade various other hardware and data infrastructure.USPTO has come a long way since the PALM outage, but we know there is still much more work to be done. We also understand that these upgrades will take time and require additional resources, and that we will encounter more hurdles along the way. We will stay the course. Most importantly, we are committed to ensuring these essential IT systems are reliable for the examiners and users working to further the vital role that innovation, entrepreneurship, and intellectual property play in meeting the great challenges of our time.

  • First-rate information technology infrastructure supports USPTO teleworkers nationwide
    by dhong2 on July 16, 2020 at 7:05 pm

    Blog by Andrei Iancu, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO and Jamie Holcombe, Chief Information Officer of the USPTO Remember that old U.S. Post Office creed, “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds?” That’s how we feel about our work at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Granted, we’ve faced much worse in the past three months than just inclement weather. Even so, the USPTO’s 13,000 employees have endured the historic challenges and, through an efficient teleworking system, have kept America’s engine of innovation moving forward. Today, so much of what we do at the USPTO relies on our information technology (IT) systems. And there’s no doubt that the pandemic and the resulting stay-at-home orders have tested the limits of these systems. But, after the intensive IT stabilization and modernization efforts of the past two years, the USPTO was well prepared when our physical offices closed in March. We transitioned to a remote workforce with virtually no disruption, despite having an unprecedented number of employees accessing our IT systems from home. We now have, on average, over 13,000 secure Virtual Private Network (VPN) connections to our campus every day. This is a 75 percent increase over our daily average prior to the pandemic. We also now have over 1,200 virtual meetings each day using our secure video teleconferencing tools, connecting an average of 6,000 participants from among our workforce, our contractors, and the public at large. Our teleconferencing systems allow employees to conduct a variety of meetings and applicant interviews, and even hold virtual hearings before the Patent and Trademark Trial and Appeal Boards. To fully leverage these collaboration tools, we undertook five system upgrades and configuration enhancements to our teleconferencing infrastructure. In addition, we planned, staged, and executed the procurement and shipment of 2,000 monitors and 3,200 printers to teleworking employees in the first few weeks after the stay-at-home order was issued. We also deployed over 400 broadband routers to recently hired examiners to provide better connectivity to the USPTO systems. As we noted last year, fully modernizing the USPTO’s technology systems to industry standards is a large-scale project that will require significant time and effort. Much work remains to be done, and there will undoubtedly be hurdles along the way. Even so, our success in transitioning to almost an entire work-from-home workforce demonstrates that we’ve made remarkable progress in a short period of time. The USPTO remains committed to helping inventors and entrepreneurs weather this crisis and hit the ground running once it passes. And, in doing so, we will continue to enlist modern ways of doing business, including improving the performance and reliability of our IT infrastructure and other systems. Our employees and our IT team continue to make us very proud. They work tirelessly to ensure that nothing stops our service to America’s innovators.

  • Spotlight on Commerce: Thomas Hong, Primary Patent Examiner
    by USPTO on May 20, 2020 at 2:10 pm

    Guest blog by Thomas Hong, Primary Patent Examiner, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Editorial note: This post is part of the Spotlight on Commerce series highlighting the contributions of Department of Commerce employees in honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month. Thomas Hong (right) with officers from the Korean-American Intellectual Property Organization at the USPTO. I am a primary patent examiner at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). I review patent applications within the mechanical engineering technology center, specializing in amusement and education devices. I also serve as president of the Korean-American Intellectual Property Organization (KAIPO), the USPTO’s youngest affinity group, which aims to promote and support the growth and development of Korean-American intellectual property professionals. It took me more than a decade to reach where I am today. Upon graduating with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at Seoul National University in South Korea in 1999, I immigrated to America with my family in pursuit of new opportunities. I continued my studies at Purdue University and obtained a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering in 2004, and my thesis topic related to Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing. This led me to my first career as a software developer with government consulting firms. While it was a good job, I found that it was not the right career path for me. I felt that I rushed into the job and surrendered to the industry’s demands. I felt like I lost sight of my passions and interests and didn’t see myself growing in this field. I decided to change my career path and enrolled at the George Mason School of Law (now known as Antonin Scalia Law School). As a first generation immigrant, law school was an eye-opening experience for me. I was one of only a few among my classmates holding a college degree from a non-English speaking country. I found myself not only having to develop my fluency in English, but also having to start learning a completely new language: law. While these years weren’t easy, I realized how fortunate I was to have a family and community that was incredibly supportive of me as I pursued my goals and ambitions. Many first-generation immigrants sacrifice these kinds of opportunities for their future generations. Law school was a turning point for me. It was a time for self-reflection. It was during law school that my mindset began changing from a singular, self-serving view to a more encompassing community view. I looked not only at how I can better myself, but also at how I can better serve and contribute to my community and beyond. I started volunteering for communities I belonged to. I was a marshal at the PGA Tour Tournament, was on the board of directors in my neighborhood’s community group, and served as an officer for the Korean-American Intellectual Property Bar Association (KAIPBA). I ultimately chose to work for the federal government because, to me, being a career civil servant is a privilege. This unique career gives me an opportunity to serve our biggest community, the public, while simultaneously developing my career and growing as a person. One of my proudest moments of my time here at USPTO has been working with my colleagues to establish an affinity group for Korean-American professionals at the USPTO: KAIPO. The USPTO’s workforce encompasses multi-generation Asian immigrants, including Korean-Americans, who face unique challenges and have extraordinary knowledge and experiences to pass on. My hope for KAIPO is to connect these different generations so that we can share our unique experiences and help each other grow and develop in our professional and personal lives. My advice for those who are interested in a federal government career is to continuously strive to learn and develop your competencies, and find your passions. When you find where these align, you begin to find how you can best contribute and serve the public. Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is a time for celebration and a time to recognize contributions of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community in this country. It was a long journey, spanning two countries, for me to get to this point in my career, and I am proud and honored to be here at the USPTO working in public service alongside so many dedicated and hardworking individuals. Ed. Note: This post is part of the Spotlight on Commerce series highlighting the contributions of Department of Commerce employees in honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month.

  • Spotlight on Commerce: Elizabeth Chu, Social Media Specialist and Acting Website Editor-in-Chief
    by USPTO on May 5, 2020 at 8:42 pm

    Guest blog by Elizabeth Chu, Social Media Specialist and Acting Website Editor-in-Chief, USPTO Editorial Note: This post is part of a series in honor of Public Service Recognition Week (PSRW), showcasing the vast and diverse work of Commerce employees collectively working together to deliver important services that are helping the American economy grow. Elizabeth Chu (pictured first row, center) and USPTO communications staff at the “Apollo 50: The role of intellectual property in space commerce” event on July 23, 2019. As the Social Media Specialist for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), I am responsible for planning, implementing, and monitoring the agency’s social media strategy to increase brand awareness and strengthen our digital presence. Recently, I stepped in as the Acting Website Editor-in-Chief, due to the recent departure of a colleague. Adding website responsibilities and new skills to my current role as Social Media Specialist—all during a pandemic—has been a whirlwind, to say the least. Luckily, I’m surrounded by generous, dedicated, and talented colleagues in the Office of the Chief Communications Officer who help and support me when I need it. It’s a privilege to work side-by-side with professional and expert communicators in a fast-paced work environment. My parents and sisters immigrated to the United States from South Korea in the 1980s. I was born in North Carolina, but my family moved to Maryland when I was very young and raised me there. Growing up, my parents and sisters have always been my main influences. Like most first-generation immigrants, my parents worked hard, long days in blue-collar jobs. Watching them, I learned that diligence, honesty, and a good education were important for a successful career and life. I feel fortunate to have a family that’s supportive of all my passions and career pursuits. I studied art history at the University of Maryland and, after graduation, started my first full-time job in Washington, D.C. Halfway through my three years at the National Gallery of Art, I applied to an arts management program at American University. After receiving a Master of Arts in arts management, I began working for the Washington Ballet in the marketing and communications department where I gained a lot of marketing and communications experience. Nonprofit arts organizations are fast-paced, hardworking entities with limited budgets. Supporting the arts was a fulfilling experience because I could share my passion for the arts every day with others. Although I no longer work for arts organizations, I still seek volunteer opportunities with museums or studio arts classes. Transitioning from a small, nonprofit arts organization to a federal agency with over 13,000 employees was initially nerve-racking, but it’s been one of the most rewarding changes of my life. Not only do I have the pleasure of working with a creative and talented team of communicators at the USPTO, but I have also had the unique opportunity to work on award-winning projects such as 10 Million Patents and the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. The former is a significant milestone that we planned for and executed over a multi-month timeline with a detailed communications plan. The campaign culminated with an official signing ceremony at the White House and a special event at George Washington’s Mount Vernon. The moon landing event was significant to me because I led and coordinated the communications plan for that project. Our focus was on space innovation, technology transfer from the Apollo missions, and an overview of the current Administration policy on space exploration and space commerce. This communications plan culminated in one of the biggest events in recent USPTO history and featured the NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. These projects were successful because of the extremely talented and knowledgeable communicators on my team. Working on major, successful campaigns that help educate the public about the importance of intellectual property is an honor and privilege. It is especially rewarding that I get to do this work with over 13,000 other colleagues dedicated to American innovation and who work hard every day on behalf of inventors, makers, and creators across the United States. I am proud to work in public service at the U.S Patent and Trademark Office because I know that my efforts to educate the public and raise public awareness support innovators of all ages, genders, and backgrounds.

Above the Law A Legal Web Site – News, Insights, and Opinions on Law Firms, Lawyers, Law School, Law Suits, Judges and Courts

LJN - Internet Law & Strategy The newsletter publishing arm of ALM, publishers of The National Law Journal, The American Lawyer and legal newspapers of record throughout the U.S.

  • Ticket Refund Suits Against StubHub to Get MDL Treatment
    on September 1, 2020 at 5:07 am

    Online ticket reseller StubHub faces lawsuits over allegedly unrefunded event tickets in California, after a federal judicial panel ordered that similar cases from jurisdictions in multiple states be coordinated.       

  • Facebook and Instagram Developers Sued for Privacy Violations In U.S. and UK
    on September 1, 2020 at 5:05 am

    Facebook filed two separate lawsuits in the UK and U.S. that the company says is part of an ongoing effort to hold developers that abuse its platform accountable.       

  • What's in a Name? Booking.com and Consumer Perception Evidence
    on August 1, 2020 at 5:09 am

    In the first case in U.S. Supreme Court history argued by telephone, the Court ruled 8-1 in favor of Booking.com, holding that it could register as a trademark its eponymous domain name BOOKING.COM.       

  • What's In a Name? Booking.com and Consumer Perception Evidence
    on August 1, 2020 at 5:09 am

    In the first case in U.S. Supreme Court history argued by telephone, the Court on June 30, 2020 ruled 8-1 in favor of Booking.com holding that it could register as a trademark its eponymous domain name BOOKING.COM.       

  • TRO Bid in Arts Case Results in COVID-19 Rebuke from Judge
    on May 1, 2020 at 5:09 am

    At this moment in COVID-19 time, if your case involved stopping the sale of counterfeit unicorn products on the Internet, sorry, that wouldn't be an emergency. That was the message from U.S. District Judge Steven C. Seeger, in a decision denying a request for a temporary restraining order filed on behalf of Art Ask Agency, the exclusive licensee for the fantasy art of British artist Anne Stokes, who is popular among the Dungeons and Dragons crowd.