Court appears skeptical of Judge William Alsup ruling
The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, DC, appears to be siding with Oracle in the company's lawsuit against Google over Android APIs. A formal ruling has yet to be handed down, however Reuters' Dan Levine and The Recorder's Scott K. Graham, both in attendance at today's hearing, published Twitter posts suggesting that the appeals court is likely to reverse Google's earlier win.
Plaintiffs could not prove any data breach, actual harm
US District Court Judge Lucy Koh -- who just concluded a damages retrial between Apple and Samsung and will preside over the next round in the two companies' ongoing patent battles -- dismissed a consumer protection lawsuit on Wednesday that charged that iOS' "geotracking" data -- discovered in iOS 4 in 2011 to be an unprotected file that could theoretically have been accessed by third parties was deliberately designed to collect personal data without consent.
Previously attempted Samsung tactic tried again as USPTO hearings continue
In a last-ditch effort to stop the jury deliberation of the now concluded Apple versus Samsung damages retrial, Samsung has made an emergency filing based on a comment from the US Patent and Trademark Office, which said that an Apple patent may not be valid. According to the filing, the USPTO questions if Apple's "pinch to zoom" patent, a key patent used in the retrial, is valid. Samsung believes that "this PTO decision calls into question the entire jury verdict in this trial."
Authors Guild arguments rejected by court
A US Circuit Court judge has dismissed a lawsuit against Google Books, rejecting the Authors Guild's allegations of copyright infringement. Judge Denny Chin sided with Google's argument that displaying small excerpts of scanned books in search results is protected by the fair-use doctrine.
Legal dispute noted in IPO filings
In an amended S-1 filing with the SEC, Twitter has revealed that it has been threatened with a patent-infringement lawsuit by IBM. In a letter sent to the former ahead of its IPO, IBM accused the company of violating US Patent No. 6,957,224: "Efficient retrieval of uniform resource locators," No. 7,072,849: "Method for presenting advertising in an interactive service," and No. 7,099,862: "Programmatic discovery of common contacts."
Settlement calls for $40 payment from Apple, discounted service from AT&T
Claim forms have gone out to participants and affected customers as part of a settlement in a customer lawsuit against AT&T and Apple, accusing the former of reneging on a promise that "unlimited" data customers could use their existing plans on a 3G-capable iPad, while the latter supported the later-revoked claim through advertising and endorsement. Claimants could receive a $40 one-time payment from Apple along with discounted AT&T service.
Backlit display from LG suspected, plaintiff seeks class-action status
In a new lawsuit against Apple, an Idaho Falls man is charging that Apple was aware of a problem with displays used in some previous generations of iMac that were made by LG for the company, but did nothing about the problem despite numerous customer complaints that the LED displays in the models made between 2009 and 2012 might fail, specifically that half the display would go dim for no user-caused reason. Apple has not yet responded to the suit.
Plaintiffs claim wages, opportunities hurt by agreement
Over 64,000 top technical, engineer and other skilled workers will get their chance in court to prove that an informal anti-poaching agreement between Apple, Google, Intel and Adobe harmed them through lost opportunities for advancement and higher pay. The plaintiffs claim that the arrangement was an illegal conspiracy that aimed to hold down rising wages as well as prevent employees from taking advantage of other opportunities.
Apple sole defendant to avoid settlement
Apple has won a legal victory in the ongoing patent-infringement lawsuit filed by WiLAN. The latter company had been fighting for damages worth $248 million, however the jury has cleared Apple of wrongdoing and found several of WiLAN's patent claims to be invalid.
Judge refuses to interrupt service
Aereo has won a partial victory in a Boston federal court, avoiding an injunction that would have interrupted its streaming broadcast-TV service. The company also announced that its Android app will be available on October 22, following development delays that pushed it past the original September launch window.
Amazon to build private cloud
Amazon has reportedly won a legal battle with IBM over a $600 million contract with the Central Intelligence Agency. The companies have been competing for a ten-year agreement to help the agency build and manage a large-scale private cloud network for data-mining operations.
Display producers to work together rather than continue legal action
Samsung and LG Display are ending their display-related patent lawsuits against each other, with a view to working together on the technologies in the future. The agreement, which effectively ends a courtroom battle that commenced in September 2012, was rumored to have been close to dropping in March of this year, but has only just finished.
Deal worth well over $8 billion dollars put on hold by shareholder suit
The Delaware Chancery court has issued a ruling on a lawsuit, putting the pending sale of Vivendi's portion of Activision Blizzard back to its founders on hold. Activision is seeking to buy back 429 million shares of itself from Vivendi for $5.83 billion, with chief executive Bobby Kotick and chairman Brian Kelley will each purchase about 172 million shares of Activision stock.
Megaupload founder denies resisting arrest
Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom has filed a lawsuit against the New Zealand government, alleging he was subjected to illegal surveillance and misconduct during the subsequent raid on his home. Legal filings referenced by The New Zealand Herald outline the case, which seeks NZ$8.55 million (~$7 million USD) in damages.
Steering mechanism in Samsung cleaner copies patent, claims Dyson
Samsung has found itself in yet more legal trouble, thanks to a recently-launched vacuum cleaner. Dyson, a manufacturer of bag-less vacuum cleaners, believes that the Samsung Motion Sync cleaner revealed at IFA last week uses a similar steering mechanism to its own cylinder cleaner, one that Dyson patented in 2009.
Likely to be dismissed due to content owners determining 'seasons'
Noam Lazebnik of Ohio has filed suit against Apple, saying that the company should not have advertised a "season pass" to the fifth season of the hit television series Breaking Bad that does not contain what he considers to be the full season. Apple is one of several resellers who offer streaming downloads of the show, most of which have offered the currently-airing second set of eight episodes as "Season 6," apparently as set by the show's producer, American Movie Classics (AMC). The case, should it get to trial, is likely to center on which company determined the "seasons."
Case viewed as important in Aereo battle
Television broadcasters have won a legal battle against FilmOn X, a company that provides online streams of broadcast TV content. Judge Rosemary Collyer of the US District Court for DC has ordered the company to shutter its services, noting that broadcasters will likely prevail in arguing that the service violates copyright laws.
Activist group fights for transparency
The Electronic Frontier Foundation has reportedly won a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the Justice Department, forcing the agency to make public "hundreds of pages" of documents. The activist group requested material relevant to the government's previously secret interpretation of Section 215 of the Patriot Act, which covers collection of "tangible things" related to investigations.
Plaintiffs call foul on e-mail scanning
Google has continued to defend its Gmail scanning and ad-targeting practices, pushing for dismissal of a privacy lawsuit filed in a San Jose federal court. In a Thursday hearing, the company's attorneys argued that "all users of e-mail must necessarily expect that their e-mails will be subject to automated processing," as quoted by the AP.
Judge rules plaintiff unable to show any anti-competitive harm done
A woman who initially sued Apple in 2005 over the iPod, the iTunes Store and the FairPlay DRM that Apple once used (at the insistence of the record companies) to prevent purchased songs from being pirated has lost an appeal in an attempt to reinstate the case. For a second time, a judge has ruled that Stacey Somers and her attorneys have been unable to show that Apple created or abused its iTunes "monopoly," that prices had escalated overall due to Apple's lock-in, or that consumers were harmed in any way by Apple's behavior.
'Wiggly' power buttons on iPhone 4, 4S claimed to be safety hazard
A US District Court Judge has thrown out a lawsuit aimed at Apple that alleged that supposedly "wiggly" power buttons on some iPhone 4 and 4S handsets present a danger to users, including on an aircraft -- since the alleged defect meant users can't shut down the iPhone per the flight crew's instructions. Two users claim that Apple knew that the power button was faulty and would likely fail after the original warranty.
$10 million going to lawyers, $10 million to charity, privacy rules overhauled
Despite objections from privacy advocates to the contrary, Judge Richard Seeborg of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California approved Facebook's $20 million settlement offer over its controversial "sponsored stories" program. Additionally, the social network must give users more control over how personal content is shared, which Facebook's attorneys places at a value of $145 million. Between January 2011 and August 2012, Facebook charged advertisers $234 million for the program in question.
Court refuses suit, citing sufficient Netflix investor notifications
US District Court Judge Samuel Conti in San Francisco has ruled in Netflix's favor in a class action suit, and denied an effort by shareholders to force the media streaming company to pay damages. The shareholders and the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System alleged that Netflix didn't provide accurate information about the company in a series of quarterly earnings statements, leading up to and through the company's 2011 reorganization.
Plaintiffs found to have suffered no harm over App Store, may refile
A lawsuit claiming that Apple's iTunes App Store is an illegal monopoly -- as it only sells iOS apps, takes a 30 percent commission on sales and disallows third-party iOS app stores -- has been thrown out of court on procedural grounds, since the plaintiffs could not show any grounds for complaint, as they had not purchased the apps challenged in the lawsuit. "At a minimum," wrote the judge in her dismissal order, "plaintiffs must allege facts showing that each named plaintiff has personally suffered an injury-in-fact based on Apple's alleged misconduct."
60-day review process begins on infringing devices import ban
Updated with Samsung statement on ruling The US International Trade Commission (ITC) ruled today that assorted Samsung mobile products do in fact infringe on two of four Apple-held patents in a complaint going back to 2011. The panel has issued an import embargo on some of Samsung's older mobile products, preventing it from selling and distributing the infringing devices. Today's ruling begins the 60-day Presidential review process of the ITC ruling.
SEC suit against Bitcoin hedge fund forced district court ruling
Bitcoin is a recognized currency that is subject to the laws of the United States, according to a federal judge ruling over a lawsuit by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against a Bitcoin hedge fund owner. Judge Amos Mazzant in Texas declared Bitcoin as "a currency or form of money," paving the way for government regulation in the virtual currency.
One patent removed from dispute
Apple has won an appeal in a patent lawsuit against Motorola Mobility, mostly overturning the International Trade Commission's dismissal ruling. The patent-infringement dispute is headed back to the ITC for another round of deliberation, though Apple declined to appeal its claims regarding on one of the three patents included in the initial suit, according to a report by patent analyst Florian Mueller.
Mitsubishi, Philips, Thompson allege Motorola willfully violating patent
Adding to Google's legal woes due to its acquisition of Motorola Mobility, a coalition of companies consisting of Mitsubishi, Philips, and Thompson have filed suit in the Southern District of Florida over the MPEG-2 video codec standard. The complaint alleges that Motorola Mobility is willfully violating patents licensed through the MPEG-LA licensing group and is continuing to receive profit through the group despite no longer paying for a license since December 31, 2010.
Claim that searches, bag checks are done off-the-clock
A group of former retail employees of Apple Stores in Los Angeles and New York have filed a class-action suit against Apple, saying that the company demands employees submit to extensive anti-theft searches and other security measures, but doesn't pay them for the time involved. The security checks, which happen whenever an employee leaves the store, take 10 or 15 minutes according to the claim filed, adding up to millions of dollars in uncompensated employee time -- possibly as much as $1,400 per employee per year.
Apple forced to appeal rejection
The US Patent and Trademark Office has reportedly moved to finalize its rejection of Apple's pinch-to-zoom patent, which has been asserted in several high-profile lawsuits. Working to gain an advantage in its first of several lawsuits with Apple, Samsung is said to have notified the court of the agency's decision to reject all claims of the patent (No. 7,844,915) that describes APIs for scrolling operations.
Both parties fight original dismissal
The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has scheduled the first cross-appeal hearing in an Apple v. Motorola lawsuit focusing on patent infringement and FRAND licensing. As noted by patent analyst Florian Mueller, attorneys are set to meet on September 11. Judge Richard A. Posner, who presided over the original case, heard arguments from both sides before dismissing with prejudice all claims and counterclaims, forcing the companies to appeal the dismissal decision itself.
Typo led to addiction, divorce, hospitalization; wants default 'safe mode'
A Tennessee lawyer is suing Apple essentially because it is possible to use its products to view pornography. Mark "Chris" Sevier claims that the company is negligent by not setting a default "safe mode" that would bar all pornography automatically -- as though such a thing were possible -- and blames Apple for his addiction to pornography that destroyed his marriage, and that Apple "failed to provide him with warnings of the dangers of online pornography." Sevier is seeking relief in the form of an injunction against Apple and forced donation to anti-pornography groups among other demands.
Little actual market value at stake; all 18 devices more than two years old
Microsoft filed a lawsuit today accusing the US Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) of not enforcing a US International Trade Commission (ITC) embargo order of Google's Motorola Mobility phones. Microsoft believes that US Customs held secret meetings with the search engine, and that after the meeting the agency continued to let the embargoed phone enter the country.
Poorly-worded bill was intended to outlaw Internet cafes, slot machines
The state of Florida, already the butt of many jokes because of its penchant for news-making citizens, reviled governor and incompetent state government has taken another one on the chin with the news that a poorly-worded law intended to ban Internet cafes and slot machines has overreached and declares any electronic device capable of playing a "game of chance" on the Internet to be illegal. The law is being challenged in court by an Internet cafe owner who was forced to shut down her business following a scandal involving the lieutenant governor.
Man alleges added $1 charge reaped 'millions in undeserved profits'
A San Francisco man is suing Apple for formerly allowing people who rent high-definition movies even though their equipment is incapable of displaying the format -- meaning the customers who didn't understand the difference essentially got charged $1 more than they should to rent movies or other videos from the iTunes store. Apple has since corrected the issue, and now displays a warning when HD-renting customers are using standard-definition (SD) devices, but plaintiff Scott J. Weiselberg claims that while the rented movie would fall back to SD automatically, Apple kept the $1 HD premium charge.
Compensation, possible rebranding could be ordered by judge
Microsoft has lost a trademark case in the United Kingdom over the branding of its cloud storage service. The ruling, which covers both the UK itself and the European Union, states that Microsoft infringed on British Sky Broadcasting's trademark of the Sky brand with SkyDrive, which could impact the way that the software company offers it across the continent.
Apple calls precedent dangerous, Samsung wishes embargo enforced
In a letter to the agency that President Obama has delegated the authority to override US International Trade Commission embargo orders, Apple is requesting a rare Presidential veto. The letter to the United States Trade Representative requests that a veto of the order banning import of the AT&T iPhone 4 and iPad 2 be entered, as the ITC ruling in Apple's view sets a dangerous precedent for future ITC rulings and "makes the ITC an outlier internationally and domestically" in its ongoing patent legal battles with Samsung.
Group seeks deletion of records, admission of constitutional violation
The American Civil Liberties Union, in conjunction with the New York Civil Liberties Union, is suing the US government. The suit alleges that the National Security Agency's phone monitoring program violates the groups' first and fourth amendment Constitutional rights violating freedom of speech, freedom of press, as well as unreasonable search and seizure. Both groups are Verizon customers, and the belief is that the groups' rights are being violated by the sweeping nature of the monitoring program.
Legislative proposals added; order could arrive as soon as June 5
President Obama has signed a host of executive actions intended to tighten down on the rash of lawsuits from non-practicing entities, colloquially known as "patent trolls." The President's orders aim at firms that collect patents without using them in products, and use them as weapons to force primarily technology companies into expensive and time-consuming litigation.
Apple unrepentant, remains in legal battle against USDOJ, states
Publisher Penguin and parent company Pearson have proposed a settlement with 33 US State Attorneys General and other plaintiffs for $75 million to resolve its lawsuit accusing it of price fixing in conjunction with Apple and the iBookstore. If accepted by the judge, the settlement resolves all antitrust complaints against Penguin related to the suit on the state level.
Court examining merits of suit proceeding as class action or individual
A US federal appeals court has begun the discussion of whether plaintiffs in the Google e-book digitization project lawsuit should proceed as a class, or as individuals. The Authors Guild is claiming that the Google Books project is, in essence, copyright infringement on a massive scale -- and believes that a class of plaintiffs would squeeze more money out of the search engine giant more efficiently than separate suits, judged on individual merits.
Facebook, Square, Dwolla, AirBnb, Mt Gox, hundreds of others named
Frequent litigant Aaron Greenspan, one-time claimant to Facebook co-foundership has filed a lawsuit against the vast majority of Silicon Valley's largest investors, and many Internet companies offering "money services businesses" with cash transfers as a primary product. The list of corporate defendants include frequent Greenspan target Facebook, Airbnb, Dwolla, and Square, troubled BitCoin exchange Mt. Gox, and many others. Individuals named in the suit inlude Paypal founder Max Levchin, Airbnb creator Brian Chesky, billionaire Yuri Milner, and Reddit CEO Yishan Wong.
Little actual agreement on anything, Samsung on the defensive
Apple and Samsung have submitted a joint case management document to the Northern District of California court for the second omnibus smartphone patent trial, scheduled for 2014. Besides making clear that there has been no progress towards a settlement since December, the parties have narrowed the scope of the trial to 16 patents, with further winnowing expected at some point before the trial.
Holder claims Wi-Fi violates patent originally granted to AT&T in 1996
Apple has once again attracted the ire of a non-practicing entity. Patent troll Wyncomm claims that Apple is violating a patent that AT&T developed (that Wyncomm now holds) regarding simultaneous voice and data transmission. Patent number 5,506,866 covers "Side-channel communications in simultaneous voice and data transmission," and was filed by AT&T in 1993, with a granting of the patent in 1996.
False positive moisture sensor reading prevented warranty repair
According to a settlement set to be filed in San Francisco federal court soon, Apple has agreed to pay $53 million to settle a class action suit accusing Apple of not honoring warranty repair terms. While not yet filed, and as such, not finalized, Apple chief litigation counsel Noreen Krall signed the agreement agreeing to the terms on April 10.
Apple prevails in six constructions, loses one SEP term buildout
In pre-trial claim construction court filings for the 2014 Apple vs. Samsung trial, Apple has emerged victorious in all but one patent claim. Late Wednesday, Judge Lucy Koh of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California issued a claim construction order relating to seven of the patents involved in the next omnibus smartphone patent trial. While the order addresses how terms are used and little else, the background information provided by the claim construction can color how the rest of the trial proceeds.
Claims seven patents infringed by Red in cameras
Sony is fighting against high-end camera manufacturer Red's patent infringement lawsuit with one of its own. The new filing, claiming that Red has infringed seven of Sony's patents, has been filed in a Central District court in California, and seeks a number of sales injunctions as well as financial compensation.
Claimant allegedly presented forgeries as proof of Facebook ownership
Paul Ceglia, a claimant to the Facebook throne who once claimed half ownership of the social network using forged documents, has been handed a significant defeat in his efforts by a federal judge today. US Magistrate Judge Leslie Foschio said in a final ruling that there is "clear and convincing evidence" that the 2003 contract that Foschio presented to the court as proof he owned 50 percent of CEO Mark Zuckerberg's share of Facebook is a "recently created fabrication." The judge added that the lawsuit should be dismissed with prejudice.
Refrigerator capacity fight reaches Seoul District Court
Samsung is suing LG over allegations it is tainting the value of Samsung's brand. The lawsuit, filed in the Seoul District Court in South Korea, sees Samsung demanding 50 billion won ($45 million) in compensation for "tarnishing its corporate image", and is the latest move in the ongoing feud between the two electronics manufacturers over its refrigerators.
One patent remains to be heard by ITC in this battery of complaints
A change of heart by an administrative law judge with the US International Trade Commission (ITC) has resulted in a ruling that Microsoft has not violated a patent owned by Google's Motorola Mobility when it created the Xbox 360 video gaming console. The ruling by Judge David Shaw is a reversal of his own previous decision in April 2012, where he declared that Microsoft had infringed four patents and did not infringe a fifth. The ruling follows the unusual return of the matter by the ITC to the judge in June of 2012.