Above the Fold
Advertising and marketing can pose a wealth of legal hurdles. When creating content, advertising professionals and companies often incur the scrutiny of regulatory agencies, such as the Federal Trade Commission. In this blog, our team of seasoned trademark and media attorneys address emerging trends and issues in this complex area.
Delaware Intellectual Property Litigation Blog
Delaware is an important hub of business litigation and Fox Rothschild partner Gregory B. Williams closely monitors the decisions issued by the U.S. District Court of Delaware in the areas of antitrust and intellectual property law. This blog has become a resource for industry, the legal community and academia by providing concise synopses of the significant rulings from this influential court.
IP Spotlight Blog
Intellectual property is often the lifeblood of a company. As an experienced IP and registered patent attorney, Jim Singer keeps you up-to-date with the legal and business aspects of intellectual property and other intangible assets on his IP Spotlight blog. Covering topics such as licensing, due diligence, acquisition, compliance and risk management associated with patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets, IP Spotlight provides insight, commentary and tips regarding recent legislation and developments in the industry.
Recent Blog Posts
- Judge Andrews Grants Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff’s Second Count of Infringement in Second Amended Complaint Under Kessler Doctrine By Memorandum Opinion entered by The Honorable Richard G. Andrews in Viatech Technologies, Inc. v. Microsoft Corp., Civil Action No. 17-570-RGA (D.Del. July 18, 2019), the Court granted Defendant’s motion to dismiss in part by dismissing Plaintiff’s claims of direct and indirect infringement asserted in Count II of the Second Amended Complaint under the Kessler doctrine. The Kessler doctrine fills the gap between the doctrines of claim preclusion and issue preclusion and intends to prevent an adjudged non-infringer from repeated... More
- Judge Andrews Grants Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff’s Willful Infringement Claims By Memorandum Opinion entered by The Honorable Richard G. Andrews in CFL Technologies LLC v. Osram Sylvania, Inc. et al., Civil Action No. 18-1445-RGA (D.Del. July 8, 2019), the Court granted Defendants’ motion to dismiss Plaintiff’s claims of willful infringement of U.S. Patent Numbers 5,510,680 (“the ‘680 patent”), 5,510,681 (“the ‘681 patent”), 6,172,464 (“the ‘464 patent”), and 5,757,140 (“the ‘140 patent”). In granting the motion, the Court explained that, in order to “state a claim of willful infringement, the patentee... More
- Judge Connolly Grants Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgment of Indefiniteness Declaring Patent-in-Suit Invalid By Memorandum Opinion entered by The Honorable Colm F. Connolly in HIP, Inc. v. Hormel Foods Corp. et al., Civil Action No. 18-1615-CFC (D.Del. June 24, 2019), the Court granted Defendants Motion for Summary Judgment of Indefiniteness and declaring U.S. Patent Number 9,510,610 (“the ‘610 patent”) invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 112. The ‘610 patent is directed to a method of producing a pre-cooked sliced bacon product on an industrial scale. Id. at *5. “A preamble to claims 1 and... More
- Immoral & Scandalous Marks Survive It’s old news by now, but the Supreme Court ruled earlier this week that the immoral and scandalous trademark ban set forth in Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act is unconstitutional under the First Amendment because it disfavors certain ideas and thus discriminates based on viewpoint. Practically, this means that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) can no longer refuse to register such marks. This is the second case the Supreme Court has decided on two related provisions of Section... More
- Judge Andrews Denies Plaintiff’s Motion for Reconsideration of the Court’s April 25, 2019 Order Regarding Claim 17 of ‘881 Patent By Memorandum Order entered by The Honorable Richard G. Andrews in TQ Delta, LLC v. 2Wire, Inc., Civil Action No. 13-1835-RGA (D.Del. June 24, 2019), the Court denied Plaintiff’s Motion for Reconsideration of the Court’s April 25, 2019 Order regarding Claim 17 of ‘881 Patent. In its motion for reargument/reconsideration, Plaintiff claimed that the Court made two clear errors of law in its prior Order. First, Plaintiff claimed that the Court made a clear error of law by deciding to... More
- FTC’s Antitrust Guidelines for IP Licensing Since 1995, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) have maintained intellectual property licensing guidelines, most recently updated in 2017. Those guidelines, titled “Antitrust Guidelines for the Licensing of Intellectual Property,” discuss how the FTC and DOJ evaluate licensing for patents, copyrights, trade secrets, and know-how and how they analyze potential antitrust violations. The agencies explain that the guidelines are designed to provide information to businesses and consumers on how they enforce intellectual property licensing and are intended... More
- Companies Encouraged to Review Advertising Practices to Ensure Social Media Influencers are in Compliance Earlier this month, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued warning letters to four companies using social media influencers to post on their behalf. According to the FTC and the FDA, the social media influencers’ posts were in violation of advertising and labeling laws due to misbranding and failure to disclose material information. The letters highlight the importance of companies following all advertising laws when using social media influencers. The Federal Food, Drug, and... More
- Chief Judge Stark Grants Plaintiff’s Motion for Reconsideration of Portion of Court’s Claim Construction Order By Memorandum Order entered by The Honorable Leonard P. Stark in Pacific Biosciences of California, Inc. v. Oxford Nanopore Technologies, Inc. et al., Civil Action No. 17-275-LPS (D.Del. June 12, 2019), the Court granted Plaintiff’s motion for reconsideration of the portion of the Court’s Claim Construction Order that determined that the term “kinetic steps” in claim 1 of U.S. Patent No. 9,678,056 is indefinite. Initially, the Court concluded that “claim 1 ‘requires that the enzymatic reaction be able to be... More
- Judge Noreika Denies Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction Seeking to Deny the U.S. Manufacture of Defendants’ Competing Device Based on Patent Infringement By Memorandum Opinion entered by The Honorable Maryellen Noreika in Abbott Cardiovascular Systems, Inc. et al. v. Edwards Lifesciences Corp. et al., Civil Action No. 19-149-MN (D.Del. June 6, 2019), the Court denied the motion for preliminary injunction of Plaintiffs, Abbott Cardiovascular Systems, Inc. and Evalve, Inc., seeking to enjoin Defendants, Edwards Lifesciences Corp. and Edwards Lifesciences, LLC, from manufacturing their PASCAL mitral valve system in the United States. Plaintiffs claimed that Defendants’ product infringed claims of U.S. Patent Numbers... More
- The FTC Wants Honest Customer Reviews The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which enforces federal consumer protection and antitrust laws with the goal of promoting competition while protecting consumers from fraud, deception, and unfair business practices, has enforcement or administrative responsibility over dozens of laws, including the Consumer Review Fairness Act (CRFA). The CRFA is designed to protect consumers’ ability to share their honest opinions about a business or its goods/services, and it thus prohibits form contract terms that disallow or penalize consumers from freely posting negative reviews, including on social media. This week, the FTC... More
- Judge Noreika Stays Patent Infringement Action Pending Resolution of Plaintiff’s Appeal of the PTAB’s Final Written Decision in the Inter Partes Review of the Patent-in-Suit By Memorandum Order entered by The Honorable Maryellen Noreika in Agrofresh Inc. v. Essentiv LLC et al., Civil Action No. 16-662-MN (D.Del. May 31, 2019), the Court granted the motion to stay of defendants pending resolution of plaintiff’s appeal to the Federal Circuit of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s (“PTAB”) Final Written Decision in the inter partes review (“IPR”) of U.S. Patent No. 9,394,216 (“the ‘216 patent”) finding that all claims of the ‘216 patent are unpatentable. In so... More
- Trademarking the Throne On May 19, 2019, HBO’s hit series “Game of Thrones” aired its final episode. Although many fans are surely sad to see the popular series come to a close, us trademark fans have much “Game of Thrones” related intrigue to look forward to, as its trademarks live on. Game of Thrones began back in 2011 and lasted for eight seasons. Throughout those eight seasons, HBO sought to protect its brand by applying for numerous trademarks. HBO of course quickly applied for... More
- Hemp TMs Allowed, Says USPTO Earlier this month, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) issued Examination Guide 1-19, intended to “clarify the procedure for examining marks for cannabis and cannabis-derived goods and for services involving cannabis and cannabis production following the 2018 Farm Bill.” In the guide, the USPTO reminds us that use of a trademark in commerce must be lawful under federal law in order for the mark to be federally registered, regardless of legality under state law. What better/more timely example of the continued dichotomy... More
- ITC Trademark Rulings Earlier this month, the Federal Circuit ruled that trademark rulings from the International Trade Commission (“ITC”) do not have preclusive effect. This means that ITC actions do not bar district court cases, that ITC trademark rulings are not binding on district courts, and that parties are not estopped from raising arguments they’ve raised in front of the ITC to a district court. The ITC is an independent quasi-judicial federal agency that, pursuant to Section 337 of the Administrative Procedure Act, has the authority to conduct... More
- Using invention to provide service prior to patent filing can trigger on-sale bar Using an invention to provide a service before filing the patent application can trigger the on-sale bar to patentability, according to a recent decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The court’s decision in Quest Integrity USA, LLC v. Cokebusters, LLC involved U.S. Patent 7,542,874, which relates to a system for displaying inspection data collected from a furnace. The patent’s priority date was June 1, 2004. However, the court found that the patent owner used the invention to... More