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Past Week’s Daily News™

Wednesday, 20 February, 2019 7:54 am

SENATE IP SUBCOMMITTEE TO HOLD HEARING ON IPEC ANNUAL REPORT

The Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Intellectual Property will hold its first hearing on 26 February 2019 at 10:00a.m. ET. The topic of the hearing is “Examining the 2019 Annual Intellectual Property Report to Congress,” which was published last month by the Office of Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC). Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator VISHAL AMIN will be the sole witness. The hearing will be held in 225 Dirksen Senate Office Building. It will not be webcast.

SESSIONS FOR IN-HOUSE COUNSEL AT IPOwners Spring Summit™ – 7 March

IPOwner’s Spring Summit™ will begin on the morning of 7 March with concurrent sessions for in-house and outside counsel. Sessions for in-house counsel include:

A session on “Software Tools to Assist IP Lawyers” that will address ways to use technology and computer-based tools to enhance IP function. Speakers DIANA ROBERTS GERHARDT (IBM Corp.) and RUSSELL SLIFER (Black Hills IP) will present key metrics used to assess the effectiveness of your IP practice.

A session on “Intellectual Asset Management” that will explore how to develop and apply an integrated approach to protecting innovation, content, and brands using the traditional business frameworks that corporate leaders apply to corporate strategy and management. Speakers include JOHN CHEEK (Tenneco), HEATH HOGLUND (Dolby Laboratories), SHITAL SHAH (Caterpillar Inc.).

The conference will take place at the Hyatt Regency in Austin, Texas. For additional information or to register, visit www.ipo.org/SpringSummit19.

IPO OFFICE CLOSED FOR INCLEMENT WEATHER

The IPO office will be closed today due to inclement weather in Washington, D.C. Scheduled committee teleconferences will occur without interruption.

IP IN THE MASS MEDIA

Movie Studios Sue Omniverse for Distributing Unauthorized Copyrighted Content

Yesterday Ars Technica reported on a copyright infringement suit filed by numerous Hollywood movie studios against Omniverse One World Television Inc. for distributing their copyrighted content to streaming services without authorization.

Above the Law Discusses Copyrightability of Dances

Yesterday Above the Law published an article discussing the “copyrightability of choreographic works” such as dance moves, suggesting that the U.S. Copyright Office should provide additional guidance about how to distinguish between “[i]ndividual movements or dance steps” that are not eligible for copyright protection and “composition and arrangement of a related series of dance movements and patterns” that are eligible.




Tuesday, 19 February, 2019 8:06 am

TUESDAY, 19 FEBRUARY 2019, 9:00a.m. ET

IP IN THE MASS MEDIA

TMZ Reports that Kardashians File Applications for Trademarks on Children’s Names

Yesterday TMZ reported that a number of members of the Kardashian-Jenner family filed applications to register trademarks on their children’s names.

Copyright Office Denies Two Copyright Applications for “Carlton” Dance

According to the New York Times, the U.S. Copyright Office denied two of three copyright applications submitted by actor ALFONSO RIBEIRO. As previously reported, the actor, who played Fresh Prince of Bel Air character Carlton Banks, sued Epic Games for copyright infringement claiming that characters in its video game Fortnite can perform a dance made popular by his character.

The Fashion Law Discusses Company Seeking Trademark for a Green Shoe Sole

Yesterday The Fashion Law discussed a company’s application for federal trademark registration of a green shoe sole that the article says used an almost exact replica of a drawing that another company submitted when applying for a red sole trademark over a decade ago.

SESSIONS FOR OUTSIDE COUNSEL AT IPOwners Spring Summit™ – 7 March

IPOwner’s Spring Summit™ will begin on the morning of 7 March with concurrent sessions for in-house and outside counsel. Sessions for outside counsel include:

Most corporations have criteria related to diversity and inclusion that are considered when selecting outside counsel. A session on “Partnering for Diversity and Inclusion” will address how the make-up of law firms impacts which firms are chosen and how in-house and outside counsel teams can effectively partner to increase the diversity and inclusion of legal teams. Speakers include LAURA CAPONI (Bristol-Myers Squibb Company), ELDORA ELLISON (Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox), and DWAYNE NORTON (Toyota Motor North America).

In recent years, many companies have adopted a legal operations approach to manage the law department function, often relying on procurement professionals or other non-lawyers (or lawyers that have moved into an operations role) to the business relationship between the firm and the company. A session on “Legal Operations – The New Attorney-Client Business Relationship” will address how to adapt your business relationship to work with someone whose primary function may not be substantive legal work. Panelists include DAN ENEBO (Cargill, Incorporated), SKYE JONES (Dell Technologies), and JAMIE LELIEVER (Murgitroyd).

The conference will take place at the Hyatt Regency in Austin, Texas. For additional information or to register, visit www.ipo.org/SpringSummit19.




Monday, 18 February, 2019 8:43 am

IPO SUBMITS COMMENTS ON EPO STRATEGIC PLAN

On Friday IPO President HENRY HADAD (Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.) submitted IPO’s response to a request by the European Patent Office (EPO) inviting IPO to comment on the EPO’s Strategic Plan for 2019-2023. In the letter, IPO stated that one of the most important challenges that the patent system faces is finding ways to advance procedural and substantive harmonization between patent offices around the world and suggested that the EPO and IPO can foster cooperation to find ways to resolve differences between patent systems. IPO’s European Practice Committee assisted with preparing the comments. Thank you to committee co-chair GAUTIER ENGISCH (Procter & Gamble Co.) for spearheading the effort.

THIS WEEK’S BLACK HISTORY IN IP SPOTLIGHT: PATRICIA BATH

IPO Education Foundation is celebrating Black History Month by showcasing notable inventors each Monday in February. PATRICIA BATH became the first African American to complete a residency in ophthalmology in 1973. In 1981, she began work on her groundbreaking invention, the Laserphaco Probe, a laser technology used to treat cataract surgery that was less invasive and painful than previous technologies. She received a U.S. patent on the invention in 1988, becoming the first African-American female doctor to receive a medical patent. Check out Episode 7 of the Stroke of Genius podcast to hear how Bath’s work led to today’s advancements in laser eye surgery.

USPTO SEEKS COMMENTS ON PROPOSED REQUIREMENT THAT FOREIGN TRADEMARK APPLICANTS AND REGISTRANTS HAVE U.S. LICENSED ATTORNEYS

On Friday the USPTO published a Federal Register notice seeking comments on a proposal to require trademark applicants, registrants, or parties to a proceeding whose domicile or principal place of business is not located within the U.S. to be represented by a U.S. licensed attorney. The Notice states that this requirement “will instill greater confidence in the public that U.S. registrations that issue to foreign applicants are not subject to invalidation for reasons such as improper signatures and use claims and enable the USPTO to more effectively use available mechanisms to enforce foreign applicant compliance with statutory and regulatory requirements in trademark matters.” Written comments are due by 18 March 2019. IPO committees will be studying the proposal.

IP IN THE MASS MEDIA

Wall Street Journal Reports on Alleged Attempt to Steal Coca-Cola’s Trade Secrets

Last week the Wall Street Journal reported that a former employee of companies that partner with Coca-Cola is accused of attempting to steal Coca-Cola’s trade secrets for use by a Chinese business.

Walmart Loses Trademark Infringement Trial

Last week the Arkansas Democrat Gazette reported that a jury found that Walmart willfully infringed on a grill company’s trademark and awarded the grill company, Variety Stores Inc., $95.5 million dollars.

ENTER THE IP VIDEO CONTEST FOR CHARITY

The IP Video Contest offers applicants the opportunity to enter on behalf of a favorite charity. Select a charity of your choice; create an exciting, 60-second video; and qualify to win a $5,000 donation for the charity. To learn more about this opportunity, visit IPOEF.org The contest is open for submissions from 1 March to 30 April 2019. Help spread the word by forwarding the contest information to others within your organization or community!




Friday, 15 February, 2019 8:09 am

* FEDERAL CIRCUIT REVERSES JUDGMENT OF NONINFRINGEMENT

CenTrak, Inc. v. Sonitor Techs., Inc., 17-2510 — Yesterday in an opinion by Judge CHEN, the Federal Circuit reversed a district court judgment that CenTrak’s patent was not infringed and remanded. The patent claimed a system and methods for locating portable devices in facilities such as hospitals. CenTrak argued that although Sonitor did not make, use, or sell some of the claimed components, it “made” an infringing product by installing or configuring the system.
The Federal Circuit found that the district court erred in granting summary judgment. CenTrak presented evidence sufficient to raise “a triable issue of fact” concerning whether Sonitor personnel “completed at least a portion of the final system configuration and software setup necessary to make the system work—in other words, that Sonitor ma[de] a combination of hardware and software that is ‘configured’ to infringe.”
(1 to 4 stars rate impact of opinion on patent & trademark law)

USPTO APPOINTS NEW CHIEF INFORMATION OFFICER

Yesterday the USPTO announced the appointment of HENRY “JAMIE” HOLCOMB to be the Office’s Chief Information Officer beginning on 25 February. According to a post on the USPTO website, Holcomb brings more than 20 years of industry experience to the position. He holds master’s degrees from George Washington University and Chaminade University and earned his bachelor’s degree from the United States Military Academy at West Point.

IP IN THE MASS MEDIA

MIT Professors Sue Ford for Infringing Patents on Energy Efficient Engine Technology

Yesterday the Boston Globe reported that three professors from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) sued Ford Motor Co., arguing that its EcoBoost energy efficient engines infringe their patents for dual port- and direct-injection technology.




Thursday, 14 February, 2019 8:06 am

EU NEGOTIATORS FINALIZE LANGUAGE OF PROPOSED COPYRIGHT DIRECTIVE

Yesterday the European Commission announced that it had reached an agreement with the European Parliament and the Council of the EU to finalize the text of a proposed Copyright Directive. The text must be approved by the European Parliament and the Council.

MANAGE YOUR MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS

Are you using your IPO benefits to their fullest potential? Are you new to IPO? Would you like to get your staff more involved? Join us for a 30-minute IPO membership orientation call. Calls for corporate and small business members are held on the 3rd Tuesday of each month at 2:00p.m. ET. Calls for law firm members are held on the 4th Tuesday of each month at 2:00p.m. ET. Contact Lorna Soderberg for further information or to sign up to participate.

IP IN THE MASS MEDIA

Google Takes Down YouTube Channel for Abusing Copyright Takedown System

Today BBC News reported that Google removed a YouTube channel that attempted to extort money from other channels in exchange for dropping fraudulent copyright takedown notifications.

Forbes Discusses Protecting against Corporate Espionage

On Tuesday Forbes published an article discussing “How to Protect Your Company from Corporate Espionage” in the wake of two incidents of Apple employees accused of stealing the company’s trade secrets.

WILLIAM GRIFFIN TO SPEAK AT IPOwners Spring Summit™ – 7 MARCH

WILLIAM GRIFFIN, Deputy Director for the Office of Enrollment and Discipline at the United States Patent and Trademark Office, will discuss Ethics in IP Practice at the IPOwners Spring Summit™ on 7 March in Austin, Texas. For additional information about the Summit, visit www.ipo.org/springsummit19.