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Mattel sues makers of Bratz dolls for trade secret misappropriation
November 27, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

Mattel, the manufacturer of Barbie dolls, sued a former employee, Carter Bryant, for trade secret misappropriation in 2004. Now, Mattel is attempting to add MGA Entertainment, makers of the relatively new Bratz dolls, to the case. Mattel alleges that Mr. Bryant conceived of the Bratz doll design while working for Mattel, and therefore Mattel owns the rights to Bratz dolls.Mattel is also attempting to register se....... Read More


US Copyright office issues new exemptions from DMCA
November 25, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

Every three years, the United States Copyright Office seeks proposals for exemptions from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ("DMCA"). The DMCA was enacted in 1998. As part of the DMCA, it became unlawful to circumvent access control measures copyright holders used to secure their copyrighted works. For example, it is a violation of the DMCA to use a program to "break" the content scramble system ("CSS") encr....... Read More


Majority of Federal Circuit appears ready to reconsider claim construction standard of review
November 22, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

Today the Federal Circuit denied rehearing en banc in Amgen, Inc. v. Hoechst Marion Roussel, Inc., a case dealing with synthetic human erythropoietin, a protein that stimulates red blood cell production. In order to rehear a case en banc, a majority of active judges on the court must vote to rehear the case. There are twelve judges on the Federal Circuit, five of whom voted to rehear this case, thus rehearing wa....... Read More


Enablement standard for prior art less stringent than enablement standard for patents
November 21, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

The Federal Circuit, in Impax Laboratories, Inc. v. Aventis Pharmaceuticals Inc., discussed the requirements for a prior art reference to be enabled, and thus anticipate a patent. Aventis is the owner of U.S. Patent No. 5,527,814, covering the use of the compound riluzole to treat ALS, commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease. Impax wanted to produce a generic version of riluzole,so it filed an abbreviated new dru....... Read More


Showing a strong Spine, the Federal Circuit addresses the Doctrine of Equivalents
November 21, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

In DuPuy Spin, Inc. v. Medtronic Sofamor Danek, Inc., the Federal Circuit concluded that the district court erred in granting summary judgment of non-infringement on Medtronics Vertex? model with regards to U.S. Patent No. 5,207,678 (the '678 patent). Additionally, the Federal Circuit concluded that the district court's judgment of non-infringement for Medtronics bottom-loaded screw device was proper and that the....... Read More


Washington Apple Commission takes on Chinese trademark office
November 21, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

The Washington Apple Commission has filed suit against the Chinese Trademark Review and Adjudication Board over its refusal to register a trademark. The mark at issue is shown below:This mark is registered in the United States, but in China, "well-known" geographical names cannot be used as trademarks unless there is also another meaning. The Apple Commission contended that "Washington" was a....... Read More


Analysis of overall appearance determines whether patented design is dictated by function
November 19, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

In PHG Technologies, LLC v. St. John Companies, Inc., the Federal Circuit vacated the preliminary injunction of the district court finding St. John raised a substantial questions of validity of the two patents-at-issue.At issue were two design patents owned by PHG: the '405 and '197 patents. The '405 and '197 patents depend from a utility patent for patient identification labels....... Read More


Jimmy Buffett sues website owner for trademark infringement
November 17, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

Singer Jimmy Buffett has sued an individual operating a website that he asserts sells trademarkeditems without his permission. Apparently the website (which is currently down) states it is "Jimmy Buffett's Online Store for Merchandise." He previously sued and won a judgment and injunction against this individual in the past in Nevada, but now he has moved to Texas, and allegedly continues to infringe.The alleged....... Read More


02 Micro takes strike three
November 16, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

02 Micro International Limited and 02 Micro, Inc. (collectively "02 Micro") recently appealed a Northern District of California district court's grant of summary judgment of non-infringement in favor of Monolithic Power Systems, Inc. ("MPS") to the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. 02 Micro contended that the district court errored in denying it leave to amend its infringement contentions an....... Read More


Two patents held obvious, "no question" that motivation to combine references existed
November 16, 2006
Post by Blog Staff

Optivus Technology sued Ion Beam Applications (IBA) for infringing its patents relating to the use of proton beams in cancer therapy, and specifically to proton beam therapy facilities with multiple treatment rooms using the same proton source. In addition to patent infringement, Optivus also claimed violations of California and Florida unfair competition laws and a Lanham Act "false statement" claim. The distri....... Read More


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The attorneys of McKee, Voorhees & Sease, P.L.C. designed this blog as an informational and educational resource about intellectual property law for our clients, other attorneys, and the public as a whole. Our goal is to provide cutting-edge information about recent developments in intellectual property law, including relevant case law updates, proposed legislation, and intellectual property law in the news.

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