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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.

  • The Supreme Court Finally Resolves An Old, Vexing Question: Does “Registration Mean “Registration ? Answer: “Yes.
    on April 1, 2019 at 5:09 am

    In Fourth Estate Pub. Benefit Corp. v. Wall-Street.com, LLC, the Supreme Court resolved a circuit split decades in the making by holding that a copyright is not “registered within the meaning of the Copyright Act unless and until a registration certificate actually has issued.      &nbs […]

  • SCOTUS Agrees to Hear Case Determining Federal Registrability of Immoral and Scandalous Trademarks
    on April 1, 2019 at 5:07 am

    This case should determine the availability of federal trademark registration for “immoral and “scandalous marks in this case, the acronym “FUCT for a clothing line.      &nbs […]

  • Monopolizing the Disruptive
    on April 1, 2019 at 5:05 am

    The Federal Circuit's Threat to Software Innovation in the Oracle v. GoogleDecisions<The Federal Circuit decisions in the Oracle v. Google copyright case rattled Silicon Valley not simply because the decisions upended software developers' understandings of copyright law, but also because the decisions do not comport with the disruptive ethos of the technology industry.      &nbs […]

  • IP News
    on April 1, 2019 at 5:03 am

    In celebration of International Women's Day two years ago, State Street Global Advisors unveiled Fearless Girl at Bowling Green in the Financial District in Manhattan. Commissioned by State Street from the artist Kristen Visbal, the work has since become a part of the zeitgeist amidst global conversations about gender parity, diversity, and inclusion on a broader scale. Now, some two years later, Fearless Girl is raising additional intellectual property questions.      &nbs […]

  • UMG v. Grande Communications: Another Victory for the Music Industry in Its Battle to Hold ISPs Liable for Peer-to-Peer File Sharing
    on March 1, 2019 at 5:09 am

    Since the advent of the Internet, the music industry has been in a pitched battle to combat online piracy. Initially, the industry focused on shutting down services that offered peer-to-peer or other similar platforms, such as Napster, Aimster and Grokster. For a time, the industry also focused on filing claims against individual infringers to dissuade others from engaging similar conduct. In recent years, the industry seems to have shifted focus toward Internet Service Providers.      &nbs […]

Planet Depos We Make It Happen

  • Trevor’s Adventures: Travel and Depositions in Jordan
    by Trevor Price on April 10, 2019 at 5:00 pm

    It’s been a while since I have been somewhere that was really new to me when it comes to traveling.  Recently, however, I had the chance to do a deposition in Amman, Jordan, and I leapt at the chance to finally experience the Middle East first hand. I spent a little bit of time researching […] The post Trevor’s Adventures: Travel and Depositions in Jordan appeared first on Planet Depos. […]

  • Top Hotels in Seoul, South Korea (Updated)
    by Suzanne Quinson on March 27, 2019 at 5:45 pm

    Seoul, South Korea, is a big city with a lot of traffic, so choosing the right hotel is vital. We've put together a list of hotels with great locations. The post Top Hotels in Seoul, South Korea (Updated) appeared first on Planet Depos. […]

  • How To Take A Deposition In Jordan
    by Alicia Hall on March 13, 2019 at 5:00 pm

    Taking a deposition in the scorching deserts of Jordan? No sweat! We’ll walk you through the potential obstacles you might face and let you know what to expect once you’re on the ground. Traveling to Jordan to take a voluntary deposition of a willing witness sounds like a cumbersome planning process lies ahead, but rest […] The post How To Take A Deposition In Jordan appeared first on Planet Depos. […]

  • Attending your International Deposition by Videoconference
    by Suzanne Quinson on February 27, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    No one should ever miss the opportunity to experience Europe, in my opinion.  If you have a week of depositions say in Brussels or Prague, with interpretation required, then check your passport, the weather, and pack your bags!  Plan your trip wisely so you can spend ample time soaking up the culture, drinking in the […] The post Attending your International Deposition by Videoconference appeared first on Planet Depos. […]

  • An Interview with Kaylee Lachmann, RPR
    by Planet Depos on February 12, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    A Planet Depos interview with brand-new court reporter, Kaylee Lachmann, RPR. Kaylee, can you tell us about your journey through court reporting school? After I graduated from college with a foreign language degree and realized it wasn’t doing much for me, I started working as a legal assistant. I was considering going to law school, […] The post An Interview with Kaylee Lachmann, RPR appeared first on Planet Depos. […]

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

  • USPTO employees give back through the Combined Federal Campaign
    by USPTO on April 16, 2019 at 2:58 pm

    By Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Andrei Iancu From left: Deputy Director of the USPTO Laura Peter, USPTO CFC Campaign Manager LaShawn Fortune, and Director of the USPTO Andrei Iancu. Photo courtesy of Amando Carigo/USPTO. Every year, federal government workers nationwide join in the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) to donate funds and volunteer time to thousands of local, national, and global charities. The recently concluded 2018 campaign, which ran from September 10, 2018 to February 22, 2019, was no exception, and I want to publically commend the employees of the USPTO for continuing their proud tradition of giving. The CFC is a 57-year federal tradition that has raised more than $8 billion for charitable organizations. It is one of the world's largest and most successful annual workplace charity campaigns, with 36 CFC zones throughout the country and overseas raising millions of dollars each year. In the 2018 campaign, the total amount raised was over $35 million and participants pledged more than 56,000 volunteer hours. The USPTO was honored to be the lead agency for the entire Department of Commerce (DOC) during the campaign. Under the guidance of the USPTO CFC Campaign Manager LaShawn Fortune, Deputy Campaign Manager Alexa Neckel, and the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s Troy Tyler, who served as campaign manager for the Department of Commerce, we raised more than $1.1 million, or roughly 45 percent of department’s total contribution. This is incredibly impressive! I was proud to see that our agency, which is charged with protecting and promoting innovation, itself put innovation into practice for this campaign. The USPTO’s campaign combined special events, videos, custom graphics, employee testimonials, and regular agency-wide promotions on behalf of those in need. Via the USPTO Weekly, employees shared their personal CFC cause, from local food banks and after school programs to raising awareness of, and finding cures for cancer and HIV/AIDS. This creative determination earned Campaign Manager Fortune as an individual and the USPTO as a whole CFC Innovation Awards, which go to “the department, agency or campaign manager that implemented new and creative practices that resulted in increased contributions, participation, or education about the CFC.”During the CFC charity fair we held in December, employees had the chance to learn firsthand about the great charities involved in the campaign. In addition, we found that charities benefited from meeting each other. For example, at the fair, a charity that sent regular support shipments to Africa met a charity that made inexpensive but critical light sources for people in Africa that was having issues reducing shipping costs. Through some conversation, they decided to work together so that the light manufacturer could add his product to the other’s support shipments for little to no cost. From the beginning, the USPTO’s campaign emphasized how there are people all across the nation and the world, who need just a little help. A small donation can fund tutoring and job training sessions, provide food and shelter, help wounded veterans, bring adoptive families together, and so much more. The CFC gives us a chance to pull together and help each other to reach new heights, and we look forward to doing so again in the 2019 campaign. Thank you for your contributions and hard work. […]

  • Spotlight on Commerce: Laura Peter, Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the USPTO
    by USPTO on March 25, 2019 at 8:07 pm

    Blog about the USPTO from the Department of Commerce. Ed. note: This post is part of the Spotlight on Commerce series highlighting the contributions of Department of Commerce employees during Women’s History Month. Guest blog post by Laura Peter, Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (Photo by Jay Premack/USPTO) This past November, I was appointed Deputy Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), and since then I have been actively supporting our agency priorities and working with our high-caliber employees. Deputy Director Laura Peter (right) is sworn in by Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO Andrei Iancu on November 14, 2018. (Photo by Jay Premack/USPTO)  I grew up in California and pursued math and science from a young age. My father was a vice president at Hughes Aircraft Company, and when I was a young girl they were launching the first geosynchronous satellites into orbit. So when I was about three years old, I decided I wanted to be an astronaut! I have since learned that I don't like heights very much, and so, being an astronaut was not in my future. I was also interested in puzzles and mathematics, and that naturally led into engineering. I always had a very strong interest in technology and policy, so when I finished my engineering degree at Cornell University, I went on to the University of Chicago and received my master's in public policy studies. I was interested in how legislation and policies should be developed in light of changing technology, and eventually I became a full-time lawyer. After practicing in the private sector for many years, I came to the USPTO – returning full circle to actualize the dream that I dreamt so many years ago. The level of diversity at the USPTO is amazing, and this agency has done a phenomenal job of encouraging people from all walks of life to join the USPTO community to pursue their careers. Coming from the world of intellectual property in Silicon Valley where I was often the only woman in the room, this is especially refreshing and something the private sector could learn from.  Deputy Director Laura Peter meets with members of the Supervisory Patent Examiner and Classifiers Organization in her office. (Photo by Jay Premack/USPTO) One issue that is tremendously important to the USPTO is increasing the number of women inventors and expanding the innovation ecosphere. According to a study published last month by our Office of the Chief Economist, women inventors comprised only twelve percent of all inventors on patents in 2016. This needs to change! In addition, there have been so many women inventors throughout history that we don’t talk about enough. For example, take National Inventors Hall of Fame inductee Harriet Strong, whose inventions in water storage in 1887 enabled the construction of the Hoover Dam, or Hedy Lamarr, who patented a frequency-hopping technique that paved the way for developments in modern wireless communications. Especially during Women’s History Month, but really all throughout the year, one of the most important things we can do is share stories of women inventors, past and present, who can serve as role models for all women and help inspire them to create and innovate. Many people have pushed me to excel and take chances throughout my life -- from my math teacher in elementary school encouraging me to take an advanced math class, to my choir teacher insisting that I sing the solo. My mother always told me “When something doesn’t work out, try something else, and then try something else, and never give up.” And I truly believe in this. The most important advice I would give to other women is: 1) be in the room and participate, and 2) do not give anyone an excuse to take you out of the running -- build your resume, get that advanced degree, and make yourself the strongest candidate you can be. […]

  • International Women’s Day: Celebrating women in innovation
    by USPTO on March 8, 2019 at 11:02 pm

    By Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Andrei Iancu The United States has a rich history of women whose ingenuity, creativity, and inventions have inspired us, motivated us, and dramatically improved our lives. The stories of these remarkable women speak to the world about the vital role they play when it comes to innovation, and how we must continue our work to unleash the untapped potential of women. At the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), we regularly showcase the stories of inventors and entrepreneurs whose groundbreaking creations have made a positive difference in the world. Many of these stories have shared the amazing impact women have made across diverse fields. For example, in December 2018, Frances Arnold became the first American woman to win the Nobel Prize in chemistry for her work in harnessing the power of evolution. Motivated by the desire to do chemistry in a clean and efficient way, her efforts led to the creation of a new field called “directed evolution.” In the 30 years since she first developed this technology, she has also mentored more than 200 students and been involved in multiple start-ups based on her work. Frances Arnold receives her Nobel Prize from H.M. King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden at the Stockholm Concert Hall. Photo courtesy of ©Nobel Media AB/Alexander Mahmoud. Other extraordinary female inventors include Cherry Murray, who developed lab-on-a-chip and telecommunications devices, and Irina Buhimschi, who developed a life-saving diagnostic test for preeclampsia. The contributions by women such as Sarah Breedlove also stand out. Born in 1867, Breedlove invented a line of hair-care products specifically designed to meet the needs of African American women at the age of 20. She went on to become the first self-made female millionaire in the history of our country. Inventor Sarah Breedlove. Photo courtesy of National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution. This May, the National Inventors Hall of Fame will induct another two women in partnership with the USPTO. Chieko Asakawa invented the first practical voice browser, providing internet access for visually impaired users, while Rebecca Richards-Kortum developed low-cost, high-performance medical technologies for low-income communities. Throughout the history of our country, women have helped spearhead astounding leaps in science and technology. The USPTO will continue to recognize and celebrate these women whose stories have inspired the next generation of inventors and entrepreneurs. […]

  • Talking IP in the Windy City: The push for innovation and effective IP protection
    by USPTO on February 6, 2019 at 7:58 pm

    Guest blog by Damian Porcari, Director of the Elijah J. McCoy Midwest Regional United States Patent and Trademark Office Innovation and the effective protection of intellectual property (IP) rights are vital to the economic health of communities across our country. This is especially so in the Midwest where, as regional director of the USPTO’s Elijah J. McCoy Midwest Regional Office in Detroit, I see the output of American entrepreneurs and inventors, and work with them to protect their valuable IP. As the USPTO’s newest regional director, I am making my way across the Midwest to engage with our key stakeholders, who include small business owners, independent inventors, entrepreneurs, and local officials, among others. In December, I met with various business groups and IP stakeholders when I joined several of the USPTO’s IP attachés as they conducted a series of outreach activities in the Chicago area. The IP attachés — who are diplomats currently posted to 10 U.S. embassies and consulates throughout the world — work to improve IP systems internationally to benefit U.S. stakeholders. They do this by working with foreign officials to address a wide variety of IP-related issues that arise in their respective regions, and by offering assistance to U.S. companies who encounter problems protecting their IP rights.Each year, the IP attachés travel home to the United States, as part of their ongoing effort both to learn about the concerns of inventors and businesses and to make them more aware of the international aspects of IP protection and the role of the IP attachés. In December, Chicago was one of their destinations, and I joined the attachés when they visited business incubator mHUB. The USPTO’s IP attachés during their visit to the United States in December 2018. Photo by Jay Premack/USPTO. Located at a former Motorola Mobility prototyping center, mHUB opened its doors in 2017 with help from private industry and the city of Chicago. It brings together a unique co-working community of product designers, developers, entrepreneurs, engineers, and manufacturers. According to mHUB’s lead for programming, Cynthia Macias, the facility works to foster connections: “At mHUB, we are focused on creating the conditions for product innovation to thrive. This includes reducing cost and barriers associated with entrepreneurship that prevent so many talented innovators from taking the leap. We foster connections between local manufacturers, university researchers, and the blooming entrepreneurial community of makers and innovators in the Midwest. This ecosystem ensures the Midwest region’s manufacturing industry continues to grow, lead, and reduce the cost and barriers to entry for physical product innovation.” One of the highlights of our visit was a presentation the IP attachés gave on the basics of protecting and enforcing one’s creations and inventions abroad, and a follow-up discussion which I joined regarding various aspects of innovation. Damian Porcari, Director of the USPTO’s Elijah J. McCoy Midwest Regional Office in Detroit, speaks at the Chicago incubator, mHUB, during a visit he and several of the USPTO’s IP attachés made to the facility on December 4, 2018. “The information our member companies gained from the IP attachés was extremely valuable and will help them understand the procedures to submit and process patents and trademarks in various regions around the world,” said Jenna Feldman, programs coordinator at mHUB. “Every participant has or will have a product that’ll be sold in at least one of the attachés’ markets, so they were able to seek answers most relevant to their business. In addition, the participants learned that the USPTO is more than just an entity, but a resource with a wide range of services to help entrepreneurs.” It was gratifying to hear that during its relatively short time in existence mHUB has already helped a number of companies achieve success. These include such innovators as Cast21, a developer of unique bone-mending aids that can replace casts; OrbitMuse, a platform for space entrepreneurship; and Guardhat, a smart hard-hat designed to protect workers in factories, plants, construction sites, oil rigs, and mines. The importance of IP to small innovative firms such as these cannot be understated: There is a large body of research showing that startup firms with patents, for example, are likelier to continue receiving venture capital funding, experience greater growth in employment and investor returns, and have a higher rate of firm survival. Our visit to mHUB underlined the critical role that the USPTO plays in supporting the efforts of these innovative startups, by helping them protect their valuable IP both here and abroad. Learn more about the USPTO’s IP Attaché Program. […]

  • USPTO releases 2018 Performance and Accountability Report
    by USPTO on January 31, 2019 at 4:50 pm

    Guest Blog by Chief Financial Officer Tony Scardino I’m pleased to announce that the USPTO has published its Performance and Accountability Report (PAR) for fiscal year (FY) 2018. The PAR serves as the USPTO’s annual report, similar to what private sector companies prepare for their shareholders. Each year the USPTO publishes this report to update the public on our performance and financial health. Our FY 2018 PAR charts the agency’s progress toward meeting goals outlined in our 2014-2018 Strategic Plan: optimizing patent quality and timeliness; optimizing trademark quality and timeliness; and providing domestic and global leadership to improve intellectual property policy, protection, and enforcement worldwide. In addition, the PAR provides information on the USPTO’s progress towards a broader management goal:  achieving organizational excellence.  These goals drive the quality and quantity of our service to intellectual property stakeholders over the last five years. Quote by President Abraham Lincoln on the patent system, as displayed on the Herbert C. Hoover federal building in Washington D.C., headquarters of the U.S. Department of Commerce While the PAR is a record of our achievements, it is also an honest discussion of the challenges we face as an agency moving forward under our new 2018-2022 Strategic Plan, which was published in November. We will continue efforts to issue predictable and reliable patents; continue implementation of the patent dispute resolution portions of the America Invents Act (AIA), including ensuring that procedures and standards are balanced and predictable; monitor and help address dynamic IP issues in Congress and the Courts; maintain the high and sustained trademark performance level in the face of significant trademark application growth rates; improve the customer experience and develop outreach at both headquarters and regional offices; expand on dissemination of data; maintain sustainable funding; and ensure our IT systems enable our nationwide workforce to serve our customers with a “24/7/365” operational capability. Here at the USPTO, we take pride in producing a PAR that meets the highest standards of transparency, quality, and accountability. The PAR contains a wealth of data and historical information of interest to our stakeholders, including data on patent and trademark examining activities, application filings, and agency staffing levels. This information is conveniently presented in the workload tables section at the end of the PAR. On the issue of financial performance, FY 2018 marks the 26th consecutive year that the USPTO’s financial statements have received an unmodified audit opinion. Our clean audit opinion gives the public independent assurance that the information presented in the agency’s financial statements is fairly presented and follows generally accepted accounting principles. The auditors did note a deficiency in our internal controls related to managing and configuring IT system access. We have already begun developing plans to address the auditor’s concerns. Despite this deficiency, the auditor found no material weaknesses in the USPTO’s internal controls, and no instances of non-compliance with laws and regulations affecting the financial statements. The PAR is a faithful snapshot of the USPTO’s FY 2018 performance. I hope you find value in this document, and that it allows you to glean greater insights into the agency’s activities and achievements. […]

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.

  • Online Extra: Europe Passes Controversial New Copyright Law
    on April 1, 2019 at 5:04 am

    Technology Platforms Such As Google, YouTube and Facebook Had Opposed the Changes, Which Will Require Them to Compensate Publishers, Artists and MusiciansEU lawmakers have approved controversial new copyright rules that aim to make it easier for content rights-holders to make money when their content is used on digital platforms but could force large platforms such as Google, Facebook and YouTube to make changes to their operations.      &nbs […]

  • BREAKING NEWS: Europe Passes Controversial New Copyright Law
    on March 26, 2019 at 8:12 pm

    EU lawmakers have approved controversial new copyright rules that aim to make it easier for content rights-holders to make money when their content is used on digital platforms but could force large platforms such as Google, Facebook and YouTube to make changes to their operations.      &nbs […]

  • 25 Years After: Campbell v. Acuff-Rose and the State of Copyright Fair-Use Controversies
    on March 1, 2019 at 5:15 am

    On March 7, 1994, the U.S. Supreme Court decided for the first time that a parody may be a copyright fair use. In the 25 years that followed, the High Court's unanimous 9-0 ruling in Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Inc., has been cited in more than 500 court decisions. But the Supreme Court's pronouncement left questions and controversies in its wake.      &nbs […]

  • UMG v. Grande Communications: Another Victory for the Music Industry in Its Battle to Hold ISPs Liable for Peer-to-Peer File Sharing
    on March 1, 2019 at 5:09 am

    Since the advent of the Internet, the music industry has been in a pitched battle to combat online piracy. Initially, the industry focused on shutting down services that offered peer-to-peer or other similar platforms, such as Napster, Aimster and Grokster. For a time, the industry also focused on filing claims against individual infringers to dissuade others from engaging similar conduct. In recent years, the industry seems to have shifted focus toward Internet Service Providers.      &nbs […]

  • Sticking a Hand in the Internet Cookie Jar
    on February 1, 2019 at 5:17 am

    As convenient, useful and cool mobile technology and interconnected devices are, they come with risks that remain largely unseen or, worse, ignored. Some      &nbs […]