Posts in District Courts

Newman Tells D.C. District Court Her Removal from Bench is ‘Unprecedented in American Judicial History’

Late yesterday evening, the New Civil Liberties Alliance (NCLA)—the firm representing U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) Judge Pauline Newman in her district court case against CAFC Chief Judge Moore and other members of the panel of the Judicial Council who are accusing Newman of being unfit to serve on the court—filed a brief asking the D.C. district court to deny the Council’s September Motion to Dismiss and to halt her recent suspension from duties. The brief calls the Council’s actions thus far “ultra vires and inconsistent both with constitutional strictures and the [Judicial Conduct and Disability] Act [of 1980] itself.”

Latest Copyright Suit against Generative AI Targets Anthropic’s ‘Claude’

Music publishing companies Universal Music, ABKCO and Concord filed suit on Wednesday, October 18, in a Tennessee district court against generative artificial intelligence (AI) company, Anthropic, alleging “widespread infringement of their copyrighted song lyrics.” Anthropic’s core product is the AI ChatBot, Claude, which can be used to generate song lyrics to popular songs owned by the publishers or to generate “original” song lyrics in response to “requests to write a song about a certain topic, provide chord progressions for a given musical composition, or write poetry or short fiction in the style of a certain artist or songwriter,” for example, according to the complaint. These outputs also copy the publishers’ lyrics because Claude is trained on the infringing works and does not license the copyrights to those works, like other music lyric aggregators, said the publishers.

CAFC Says Invalidity Ruling Based on Vacated Collateral Estoppel Decision Can’t Stand

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) issued a precedential decision on Friday vacating-in-part a district court decision that granted SonicWall, Inc. summary judgment of invalidity based on a collateral estoppel decision that the CAFC had since vacated. Judge Bryson concurred in part and dissented in part, disagreeing with the majority’s analysis affirming the district court’s grant of summary judgment of noninfringement as to the claims of certain patents.

Trader Joe’s Charges Crypto Company with Fraud, Trademark Infringement/Dilution

A trademark lawsuit filed by popular grocery store chain, Trader Joe’s, against a cryptocurrency platform called “Trader Joe”—which the complaint alleges is a deliberate reference to the supermarket—has come to light this week. Trader Joe’s claims that the crypto firm buried its origin story in order to win international litigation over the domain name, traderjoexyz.com. Trader Joe’s has offered grocery services under the mark TRADER JOE’S for more than 50 years. According to the lawsuit, a co-founder of the crypto company Trader Joe, going by the handle “cryptofish,” admitted in a Substack publication that the company’s name originally derived from the name of the Trader Joe’s supermarket chain.

Lock System Inventor Dealt Another Blow at CAFC

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) on Tuesday, October 10, affirmed a district court’s dismissal at the pleading stage of a patent infringement, unjust enrichment and antitrust case against Qualcomm, Inc. Larry Golden sued Qualcomm in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, alleging infringement of his patents on a system for locking, unlocking or disabling locks on vehicles upon detection of chemical or biological hazards, as well as antitrust and unjust enrichment claims.

Five Key Points from the Invasion of Privacy Lawsuit Against OpenAI

On September 6, OpenAI faced its second invasion of privacy lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Northern California, for allegedly stealing private information from millions of internet users. While the Plaintiffs acknowledge in their complaint that Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the potential to create life-saving technologies and herald discoveries that could improve our daily lives, they claim OpenAI crossed the line of using altruistic means of reaching its objective when it abruptly restructured itself into a for-profit business. Following this restructuring, the Plaintiffs allege OpenAI scraped private information from millions of users to train their Large Language Models. Here are five key allegations from the privacy suit against OpenAI.

Social Media Ad Company Seeks Injunction, Damages in First Trademark Suit Against Musk’s ‘X’

Following Elon Musk’s bold rebrand of social media platform Twitter, the many lawsuits that have been expected have begun to roll in. In what is said to be the first, X Social Media, LLC has filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, charging Musk’s X Corp. with willful trademark infringement, as well as common law violations under Florida competition, trademark and service mark laws and violations of Florida’s Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act.

Independent Inventor Seeks New Trial for LG’s Alleged Violations of Sotera Stipulation

On September 25, independent inventor Carolyn Hafeman filed a reply brief  arguing that efforts by consumer tech giant LG Electronics to prejudice Hafeman’s legal claims in front of a Western Texas jury require the court to grant a new patent infringement trial in the case. Among other things, Hafeman contends that LG’s invalidity arguments at trial violated LG’s own Sotera stipulation filed in inter partes review (IPR) proceedings brought by LG suppliers Google and Microsoft to challenge the validity of Hafeman’s patent claims asserted against LG.

Atlas Global v. TP-Link: A Missed Opportunity to Clarify the Scope of Standards Related Licensing Obligations

A recent decision out of the Eastern District of Texas granted the plaintiff patent owner summary judgment with respect to the defendants’ counterclaim that the plaintiff breached licensing related obligations owed to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) by not communicating with the defendants prior to suing for infringement…. While the result is reasonable, the explanations provided by the court raise several questions.

More Authors Sue OpenAI for Copyright Infringement

A Pulitzer Prize-winning author and a number of Tony, Grammy and Peabody award winners are the latest to sue OpenAI for copyright infringement based on the way it trains its popular chatbot, ChatGPT. In July, comedian Sarah Silverman and authors Christopher Golden and Richard Kadrey brought a similar suit against OpenAI.

Federal Circuit Says Bid to Dismiss Case for Improper Venue Doesn’t Meet Mandamus Standard

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) issued an order on Tuesday denying Charter Communications Inc.’s petition for a writ of mandamus seeking to direct the district court to dismiss Entropic Communications’ patent infringement suit against it for improper venue. Entropic sued Charter in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, alleging patent infringement, and Charter moved to dismiss for improper venue. The district court denied the motion, holding that Charter “committed acts of infringement and has a regular and established place of business” in the district.

CAFC’s Joint Inventorship Analysis Challenged in SCOTUS Petition

HIP, Inc. recently filed a petition for writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court asking the Justices to review a May 2023 U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) decision holding an inventor’s contribution to a patent for methods of pre-cooking bacon and meat pieces did not satisfy the joint inventorship test because the contribution was “insignificant in quality.”

Rapper Future Defeats Copyright Lawsuit Over ‘When I Think About It’

Last week, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois dismissed a copyright infringement lawsuit filed against the rapper and singer, Future. A Virigina-based rapper, Gutta, accused the rap star of copying his song “When U Think About It” when Future released “When I Think About It” on a 2018 mixtape. The district court judge ruled that none of the elements brought forward by Gutta were protectable under U.S. copyright law. The Virginia rapper argued that the two songs shared both subject matter and similar phrases.

U.S. Chamber Says Biden Administration is Rushing IRA Drug Pricing Regime Under Cloud of Legal Uncertainty

On August 28, officials from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce held a video call to discuss the trade organization’s legal action against the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), including a motion for preliminary injunction filed against the HHS last week in U.S. district court. The U.S. Chamber officials noted that the legal uncertainty looming over the HHS’ implementation of drug price control mechanisms under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) will cast a significant pall over the Biden Administration’s celebration of the program one year on.

DC Court Says No Copyright Registration for Works Created by Generative AI

On Friday, Judge Beryl Howell issued an opinion in Dr. Stephen Thaler’s challenge against the U.S. Copyright Office (USCO) over the denial of his application for a work generated entirely using generative artificial intelligence (AI) technology. The opinion supports the USCO’s refusal to register a work in which the claimant disclosed in the application that the image was the result of an AI system, called The Creativity Machine. The case is Stephen Thaler v. Shira Perlmutter and The United States Copyright Office (1:22-cv-01564) (June 2, 2022).