Archive | Software Patents

Method of Monetizing Copyrighted Content on the Internet Again Found Patent-eligible

Ultramercial v. Hulu and Wildtangent, Dkt No. 2010-1544 (Fed Cir. June 21, 2013)Fig1_USPAT7346545.

Ultramercial sued Hulu, YouTube, and Wildtangent Inc. alleging each infringed U.S. Patent 7,346,545. Hulu and YouTube were dismissed from the case. The trial court granted WildTangent’s motion to dismiss WildTangent from the case on the basis that the ’545 patent did not claim patent-eligible subject matter.

In the first round at the Federal Circuit, the court reversed finding the claimed method of monetizing copyrighted content on the Internet was a patent-eligible process. Then WildTangent appealed to U.S. Supreme Court and the Court vacated the Federal Circuit’s decision discussed below and remanded the case to the Federal Circuit to consider in light of Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc., 566 U. S. ___ (2012). …

Continue Reading

CLS Bank v. Alice on Software Patentability: Can System Claims With Integral Tangible Components be Abstract?

CLS Bank v. Alice Corp., Dkt. No. 2011-1301 (Fed. Cir. May 10, 2013) (en banc).

Previously I noted that the USPTO told its Patent Examining Corps that the Federal Circuit’s decision in CLS Bank v. Alice, Dkt. No. 2011-1301 (Fed. Cir. May 10, 2013) resulted in “no change in examination procedure for evaluating subject matter eligibility.” In this post I will summarize the various opinions in CLS Bank.

The district court held that certain claims of Alice’s U.S. Patents 5,970,479 (the “’479 patent”), 6,912,510 (the “’510 patent”), 7,149,720 (the “’720 patent”), and 7,725,375 (the “’375 patent”) are invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 101 as being directed to patent in-eligible subject matter.

Result without Agreement on Reasons. On May 10, 2013 the Federal Circuit issued its en banc opinion in…

Continue Reading

USPTO: No Change to Software Patent Eligibility Examination After CLS Bank

In a memo dated May 13, 2013, the USPTO told its Patent Examining Corps that the Federal Circuit’s decision in CLS Bank v. Alice, Dkt. No. 2011-1301 (Fed. Cir. May 10, 2013) resulted in “no change in examination procedure for evaluating subject matter eligibility.”

On May 10, 2013 the Federal Circuit issued its en banc opinion in CLS Bank v. Alice, Dkt. No. 201. The court’s main per curiam opinion provided, in total:

Upon consideration en banc, a majority of the court affirms the district court’s holding that the asserted method and computer-readable media claims are not directed to eligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. § 101. An equally divided court affirms the district court’s holding that the asserted system claims are not directed to eligible subject matter under
Continue Reading

Real Estate Software Patent: User Action Steps Prevent Direct Infringement

US5032989Fig3Move, Inc. v. Real Estate Alliance Ltd., Dkt. No. 2012-1342 (Fed. Cir. March 4, 2013)

Move sought declaratory judgement of non-infringement of two of Real’s patents, U.S. 5,032,989 and U.S. 4,870,576. Real counterclaimed  that Move’s “Search by Map” and “Search by Zip Code” website functions infringed the patents. The district court issued summary judgement of non-infringement.

Claim 1 of the ‘989 patent was at issue on appeal and was directed to a method for locating real estate properties using a zoom enabled map on a computer. Claim 1 provided:

1. A method using a computer for locating available real estate properties comprising the steps of:

(a) creating a database of the available real estate properties;
(b) displaying a map of a desired geographic area;
(c) selecting a first area having

Continue Reading

Gambling Machine Patents: Claims Requiring Player Action Raise Indirect Infringement Issues

USPatent7056215Aristocrat Tech. Australia v. Int’l Game Tech., Dtk No. 2010-1426 (Fed. Cir. 2013).

Aristocrat sued IGT alleging that IGT’s gambling game devices infringed U.S. Patent No. 7,056,215 (“the ’215 patent”) and U.S. Patent No. 7,108,603 (“the ’603 patent”). The district court granted summary judgment of non-infringement. This case presented an issue of direct vs. indirect infringement because certain claim language was interpreted to require a user/player to perform a step. In order for a party to be liable for direct infringement, “that party must commit all the acts necessary to infringe the patent, either personally or vicariously.” Therefore, in this case, if a player/user was required to perform a step, then IGT would not be liable for direct infringement.

Claim construction. Claim 1 of the ‘215 patent provided system …

Continue Reading

Federal Circuit to Consider When A Computer-Implemented Invention Is Patentable

CLS Bank International v. Alice Corporation, No. 2011-1301 (Fed. Cir. 2012) (Order granting en banc rehearing).

The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals has granted an en banc rehearing in the CLS Bank case. As I previously discussed, the majority of a panel found CLS patents directed to using an intermediary in a financial transaction were valid and enforceable. The majority asserted that “when-after taking all the claim recitations into consideration-it is not manifestly evident that the claim is directed to a patent ineligible abstract idea, that claim must not be deemed for that reason to be inadequate under  § 101.” The dissent criticized the majority’s manifestly evident test.

The result in CLS Bank appeared to be in conflict with a prior panel’s decision in Bankcorp v.

Continue Reading

New Manifestly Evident Test Maintains Broad View of Patent Eligible Subject Matter

CLS Bank International v. Alice Corporation, Dkt No. 2011-1301 (Fed Cir. July 9, 2012) [11-1301 Opinion]. 

CLS sued Alice for declaratory judgement that  U.S. Patent No. 5,970,479, 6,912,510, 7,149,720, and 7,725,375 owned by Alice were invalid, unenforceable, or otherwise not infringed. The district court held that each of Alice’ s patents were invalid under section 101 for failure to claim patent eligible subject matter. The Federal Circuit reversed maintaining a broad view of patentable subject matter.

Representative Claim 33 of the ‘497 patent provides: A method of exchanging obligations as between parties, each party holding a credit record and a debit record with an exchange institution, the credit records and debit records for exchange of predetermined obligations, the method comprising the steps of:

(a) creating a shadow

Continue Reading

Yahoo Sues Facebook Alleging Infringement of 10 Patents

Yahoo! Inc. v. Facebook Inc., Dkt. 12-cv-01212 (N.D. Cal. March 12, 2012). [Complaint]

Yahoo filed suit against Facebook on March 12, 2012 alleging infringement of 10 patents. The patents fall into five categories (1)  online advertising, (2) user privacy, (3) customized content for users, (4) social networking, and (5) user to user communications through messaging.

The patents corresponding to each category include (1) U.S. Patent No. 6,907,556; 7,100,111; 7,373,599; 7,668,861 (2) 7,3736,590; 7,599,935 (3) 7,373,509;  5,983,227 (4) 7,747,648 and (5) 7,406,501.

The complaint alleges that Facebook copied technology developed by Yahoo. The complaint quotes Mark Zuckerberg as saying “The thing that’s been really surprising about the evolution of Facebook is–I think then and I think now–that if we didn’t do this someone else would have done it . . . Getting …

Continue Reading

MySpace and Craigslist Invalidate Patents on Database with User Creatable and Categorizable Entries

MySpace, Inc. v. Graphon Corp., Dkt. No. 2011-1149 (Fed. Cir. March 2, 2012).

MySpace and Craigslist sued Graphon for declaratory judgement of non-infringement of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,324,538, 6,850,940, 7,028,034, and 7,269,591 (patents in suit). Graphon counterclaimed for patent infringement. The district court found the claims at issue in the patents in suit were invalid as either anticipated or obvious based upon a system called the Mother of all Bulletin Boards (MBB) and the Federal Circuit agreed.

User Manipulable Database Entries. The patents in suit were directed to a method and apparatus that allowed a user to create, modify, and search for a database record over a computer network. The inventors of the patents in suit claimed the prior systems, like Yahoo! directory, provided that the search engine operator …

Continue Reading

“For” Interpreted as Must Perform v. Capable of Performing

Typhoon Touch v. Dell Inc., et al., Dkt. No. 2009-1589 (Fed. Cir. Nov. 4, 2011).

Typhoon sued Dell, Lenovo, San Due Ventures, Toshiba, Fujitsu, Panasonic, Apple, and HTC alleging infringement of US Pat. Nos. 5,379,057 and 5,675,362, each patent directed to a portable computer with touch screen. The appeals court reviewed the district courts finding of non-infringement and invalidity.

Claim 12 of the ‘057 patent is a representative claim, with terms in dispute emphasized:

A portable, keyboardless, computer comprising:

an input/output device for displaying inquiries on a touch-sensitive screen, said screen configured for entry of responses to said inquiries;

a memory for storing at least one data collection application configured to determine contents and formats of said inquiries displayed on said screen;

a processor coupled to said memory and said in-put/output

Continue Reading

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes