October 23, 2011
Federal judges travel around the world on all-expense paid trips by sponsors. CAFC Chief Judge Randall Rader: "This is not pleasure-tripping. I work very hard on these trips." Sponsors are often law firms, law schools, legal service providers, and universities.
October 20, 2011
In 2006, Streck sued Research & Diagnostic Systems for infringing 6,200,500, 6,221,668, and 6,399,388. R&D retorted with invalidity - that under 35 U.S.C §146, which is a civil action to resolve inventorship under the now-obsolete first-to-invent system, R&D earlier invented the claimed invention. The jury wasn't clearly convinced by R&D's interference defense. But the USPTO was, awarding inventorship to R&D in 2009. Streck then filed a §146 action in the same district court where it had won before. Assigned to the same judge, Streck won again. Affirmed on appeal (CAFC 2011-1045).
October 18, 2011
Stone Strong sued Del Zotto for infringing its patents for pre-cast concrete blocks used in retaining walls - 7,073,304 & 6,796,098. The district court found the patents infringed and not invalid, though "with little elaboration of its reasoning." On appeal, it took but a little realignment for Obzilla to break on through to putting the patents in the public domain.
October 14, 2011
Competitors Absolute Software and Stealth Signal couldn't come to a cross-licensing agreement over their patents, so they battled each other to summary judgment stalemate in court. At least the lawyers got a payday. A well-reasoned appeal tossed some bits back for factual determination. (CAFC 2010-1503, -1504). This precedential ruling, traipsing through claim construction and infringement analysis, has nothing new, but is a rarity for its adjudicative quality. If courts were consistently as even-handed as this, the illusion of justice in this country would be hard to dispel. Here's an exception that helps prove the rule of judicial corruption.
October 13, 2011
Bosch is a large company selling patented car windshield wiper blades. Pylon is a small company selling patented car windshield wiper blades. Unfortunately for Pylon, Bosch owns the patents. Bosch successfully sued Pylon for infringement, but the district court refused to issue a permanent injunction based on equitability considerations. The plutocratic CAFC put paid to that.
October 12, 2011
"Amsted Industries Inc. is a domestic manufacturer of cast steel railway wheels. It owns two secret processes for manufacturing such wheels... Amsted has licensed [one of the secret processes,] the ABC process, to several firms with foundries in China... TianRui sought to license Amsted's wheel manufacturing technologyy, but the parties could not agree on the terms of a license. After the failed negotiations, TianRui hired nine employees away from one of Amsted's Chinese licensees." TianRui got rolling on new wheels. Whereupon, "Amsted filed a complaint with the Commission alleging a violation of section 337 based on TianRui's misappropriation of trade secrets. Section 337(a)(1)(A) prohibits '[u]nfair methods of competition and unfair acts in the importation of articles... into the United States, ... the threat or effect of which is... to destroy or substantially injure an industry in the United States.'"
October 10, 2011
Striving But Jiving
The book "Great Patents" by David Orange is far from great, and it was not written by Orange, who only penned the introduction, and otherwise claims editorship. The subtitle to this slender volume is "advanced strategies for innovative growth companies," but there's nothing in the book that is advanced, or particularly strategic, other than the implicit message of "get a lawyer," as the book breezes through topics that are either mind-numbing or an academic point of view that has only passing semblance to reality. The book wanders between blurb dross and boring detail, in disconnected chapters on diverse subject matter. The highest compliment that may be paid to this hodgepodge is that the Times Roman font used is at a point size that makes the text easy to read. At $75 in paperback, $90 hardcover, this book is nothing less than a shameless attempt at theft.
In a recent speech, CAFC Chief Judge Randall R. Rader shows himself as rather brainless in his duplicity. He speaks of equal justice while assailing parties that he would readily show bias to. He claims to be inspired by juries, but would like to cut them out of the process. He worries about the cost of patent litigation, but his reform proposals would do little about it. He values "the individuality and independence of the judges" while making no mention of the travesty that his court has produced by rending rule of law into abject corruption by self-contradiction. The undercurrent to Rader's remarks are that he is all in favor of illicit bias.
October 6, 2011
About the only time the CAFC is on the square is when two competitors duke it out. So it was with IGT v. Bally (CAFC 2010-1364, -1365). Then again, with Judges Newman and Moore on a panel, one might expect a bit of justice. The claimed invention were slot machines with a patented bonus payout. Lord knows that sort of thing deserves 20 years' protection for genius invention. Ironic comedy in that the major event was figuring out how to construe "one" for a one-armed bandit. The conclusion: "one" can be more than one, but not if the claim reads "only one." Judges tend to be mathematically as well as logically challenged. At least they figured out that "predetermined" and "predefined" were pretty much the same thing. The payout from the courts: some claims were infringed, some not. CAFC affirmed.
Old Mule on Old Ground
Rule of law and adherence to procedure are a shell game at the USPTO, just as competent examination on the merits is a chimera. Less than three weeks ago the CAFC kicked the BPAI for making up a new rejection when the examiner's wasn't up to snuff, then not allowing the applicant to address it. Another of the same ilk came to the CAFC: In re Steppan (CAFC 2010-1261), and the CAFC kicked it back for a makeover. The patent office, led by former IBMer David Kappos, plays dirty with pipsqueak inventors. This sort of problem never crops up with an application assigned to a major corporation.
October 5, 2011
That the USA is rife with corruption at every level is finally catching public attention. The so-called "Wall Street" protests are a widespread movement against the plutocracy. With an irony of namesake, the Wall Street Journal reports the realized knowledge of Emily Graham: "I'm basically sick of corporate greed. I'm frustrated that companies can pollute on a catastrophic level. They get all the tax breaks." They also get all the patent protection they need, at the expense of inventors. The Federal courts, from district court judges to the CAFC and Supreme Court, are thoroughly packed with incredibly corrupt judges who pervert the law, and decency, to serve corporate interests. The continuing conflicted contortions of CAFC case law bear stark witness to the depravity. New patent legislation just became law over the unanimous objections of universities, small businesses and individual inventors, at the behest of the largest corporations. As the rich get richer and the rest fall by the wayside, this country's prospects for the future also fall.
October 4, 2011
The codgers on the bench are far too comfortable indulging their biases and ignoring the blind lady of justice. In Mondis Technology. v. Chimei InnoLux, TXED Judge Ward found that a foreign company defendant's "corporate attitude... shows lack of respect," and thereby "warrants a strong enhancement" of royalty rate - doubling what it was. Judge Ward is simply typical, if less than circumspect in not feigning a disguise for his illicit disregard of basic legal principles.
October 3, 2011
Bettcher sued Bunzl for infringing its electric meat-cutting knife patent - 7,000,325. The patent was invalid by Bettcher's own products. The district court judge was biased against Bunzl - inadequate claim construction and bum jury instructions were the result. That bias carried over to the CAFC. The result - more inconstancy in case law - another slab of double-talk that allows let courts justify their whims. The joke of patent jurisprudence continues.