Intellectual property and more...

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  • In a novel case involving videogame “avatars” based on real-life college football players, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that rights of publicity trump First Amendment protections. In reaching its decision, the appeals court relied on the transformative use test, which is grounded in copyright law. In Hart v. Electronic Arts Inc., former Rutgers […]

  • In a battle of intellectual property lawyers, U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeffrey Keyes recently sided with the patent attorneys. He ruled that a law firm’s use of copyrighted scientific journal articles in prosecuting patent applications constituted fair use. American Institute of Physics v. Schwegman Lundberg & Woessner involved science and technology articles published by Plaintiffs American […]

  • Businesses that rely on the fair use doctrine and open source technology recently testified before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet. The hearing featured testimony from representatives of crowdfunding website Indiegogo Inc., nonprofit software developer Beneficent Technology Inc., manufacturer SparkFun Electronics Inc., television monitoring company SnapStream Media Inc., and cloud-computing […]

  • As Congress continues to hear testimony regarding potential changes to the U.S. copyright system, the Department of Commerce issued a green paper on Copyright Policy, Creativity, and Innovation in the Digital Economy. It addresses striking the proper balance between the rights of copyright holders and the innovative power of the Internet and the free flow […]

  • While there are several anti-patent troll bills pending in Congress, the STOP Act seems to be gaining the greatest traction. It would make the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Transitional Business Method Program permanent and expand it to other industries. The new post-grant review procedures under the America Invents Act allow a third party to […]

  • The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DCMA) exempts certain online service providers from liability for copyright infringing acts by its users, provided that certain conditions are satisfied. It can also be a powerful tool to remove infringing content from the Internet.  Online service providers must remove user-generated content at the content owners request or face significant […]

  • President Obama signed the Patent Law Treaties Implementation Act.  The Act amends federal patent law to implement the Geneva Act of the Hague Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Industrial Designs and the Patent Law Treaty. It will take effect one year from the date of enactment. Under the Hague Treaty, any person who is […]

  • Yesterday I discussed the new changes in copyright laws in Great Britain.  Today, we are going to review how this change might affect your rights. Although there is no such thing as an “international copyright” that automatically protects your work throughout the world.  There are more than 160 countries that have ratified a treaty intended […]

  • The United Kingdom has relaxed many of its copyright laws, that have been criticized as “archaic.”  The changes will impact a number of mediums, including computer games, paintings, photographs, films, books, and music. Under pressure from various sources, including a report entitled “Modernising Copyright,” that was prepared in response to the Hargreaves Review of IP […]

  • Satellite Offices that is.  The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is moving full steam ahead with its efforts to open four satellite offices. The America Invents Act requires the agency to establish at least three regional USPTO satellite locations by September 2014 as part of a larger effort to modernize the U.S. patent system. The […]

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