Contributory Infringement

News & Analysis as of

An IP Lesson from Bikini Bottom: What SpongeBob Teaches Us about Trademark Licensing and Liability

It turns out that SpongeBob Squarepants is more than just an absorbent, yellow and porous cartoon character who lives in a pineapple under the sea. He can also teach us an important lesson about trademark licensing and...more

Gibson Guitar Corp. v. Viacom International, Inc. (USCA, Ninth Circuit, February 19, 2016)

Ninth Circuit affirms district court's dismissal of SpongeBob SquarePants trademark suit against Viacom but revives claims against U.K.-based defendant on grounds that question of whether product was used in commerce in U.S....more

Patent Dispute over Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Launched in the Northern District of Georgia

Burkhard Wiggerich (“Wiggerich”), a German citizen residing in Arnsberg, Germany, commenced a patent infringement action against a Kansas limited liability Company, Blue-Chip Unmanned Aerial Solutions, LLC (“Blue-Chip”), on...more

Entertainment and Media Litigation Update - February 2016

Be Reasonable: The U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Review the Standard for Awarding Attorneys' Fees to the Prevailing Party in Copyright Infringement Suits - Why it matters: On January 15, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court...more

Plaintiff Secures Sweeping Jury Verdict in Hotly-Contested Patent Fight

In a long-running patent fight involving two medical device manufacturers, a Massachusetts jury determined last week that the defendant Kaz had infringed two of plaintiff Exergen’s patents relating to temporal thermometers,...more

ISPs on ALERT: Failing to Terminate Repeat Infringers Can Be Costly

A recent court order from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia—and a resulting jury verdict – may be instructive to internet service providers (“ISPs”) when it comes to their “repeat...more

GoDaddy victorious in dispute over OSCARS and ACADEMY AWARDS marks | World Trademark Review

In Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences v GoDaddy.com, the US District Court for the Central District of California has entered judgment in defendant GoDaddy’s favour, holding that plaintiff Academy of Motion Picture...more

The Complications of Copyrighted Images in the Yellow Pages - Yellow Pages Photos, Inc. v. Ziplocal, LP

Reviewing a spectrum of copyright-related issues following the conclusion of a jury trial, the U.S. Court of the Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit affirmed the district court, concluding that willful copyright infringement...more

Patent Owner’s Licensing Program Was Fatal to Its Patent Infringement Theory - JVC Kenwood Corporation v. Nero, Inc.

Addressing whether an accused defendant infringed patents through the distribution of its software, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upheld the district court’s summary judgment that the defendant did not...more

Federal Circuit Patent Updates - August 2015

The Dow Chemical Company v. Nova Chemicals Corporation (No. 2014-1431, -1462, 8/28/15) (Prost, Dyk, Wallach). Dyk, J. Reversing award of supplemental damages. "We hold that the intervening change in the law of...more

Standard Essential Patents Unenforceable on Theory of Indirect Infringement

A recent decision by the Federal Circuit in JVC Kenwood Corp. v. Nero, Inc., decided August 17, 2015, involves nuanced details of standard-essential patents, but arrived at a common sense result: either the patents at issue...more

Objections to Magistrate’s R & R are overruled in pharma case.

Stark, C. J. Defendants’ objections to the Magistrate’s Report and Recommendation are overruled. Defendants’ motions are granted in part and denied in part to the same extent as in the Report. ...more

And the Winner is? Digital Platform Liability for Trademark Infringement

Much has been made of the question of liability for the operation or furnishing of digital platforms in the copyright context. Since the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that the provider of the Betamax recorder did not itself...more

ALJ Shaw Confirms ITC’s Post-Suprema Authority to Exclude Articles That Infringe After Importation Based on Contributory...

The International Trade Commission has recently released the public version of the Administrative Law Judge’s Final Initial Determination in Certain Marine Sonar Imaging Devices, Including Downscan and Sidescan Devices,...more

Design meets 3D Printing!

This week in Milan everything is about design. Recently, 3D printing generated a lot of interest in the design industry, allowing any user to manufacture small batches of identical copies of an object at a low cost....more

Fourth Circuit Dispenses Comity and Limits Relief in Paper Towel Dispute

The Fourth Circuit recently ruled on several important issues regarding the scope of relief that may be granted for trademark infringement. The backdrop for the decision in Georgia Pacific Consumer Products LP v. Von Drehle...more

ITC Section 337 Update - March 2015

Commission Files Brief In 833 Investigation Appeal Regarding Digital Models Qualifying As “Articles” – On February 18, 2015, the International Trade Commission filed its brief in an appeal to the Federal Circuit of the...more

U.S. Supreme Court Issues Landmark Decision for Broadcast Television Industry: American Broadcasting Companies, Inc., et al., v....

On June 25, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in American Broadcasting Companies, Inc., et al., v. Aereo, Inc. The case involves a lawsuit brought by ABC and other television producers, marketers,...more

Claims for Inducing Infringement and Contributory Infringement Dismissed for Failure to Allege Knowledge of Patent-in-Suit

Unisone Strategic IP, Inc. ("Unisone") filed a patent infringement action against Tracelink, Inc. ("Tracelink"). Tracelink filed a motion to dismiss the claims for indirect (induced and contributory) infringement because...more

Innocent Infringement: Intent and Copyright Law

One of the most commonly misunderstood aspects of copyright law is the significance of intent. The elements of direct copyright infringement are the plaintiff’s ownership of a valid copyright in a work and the defendant’s...more

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit Rules There Is No Cause of Action for “Contributory Cybersquatting”

On December 4, the Ninth Circuit ruled that the 1999 Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA), 15 U.S.C. § 1125(d) does not provide a cause of action for contributory cybersquatting. In Petroliam Nasional Berhad...more

Australia’s Highest Court Takes A Knife To Indirect Infringement: “Carve-Outs” In Product Information Leaflets Are A Legitimate...

Under Australian law, indirect or contributory infringement of method of treatment claims has been an issue for quite some time. In particular, there have been a number of injunctions granted in circumstances where an...more

Use of Competitor’s Trademark As Trigger for Sponsored Ad is Not Trademark Infringement According to Tenth Circuit

Despite years of litigation over keyword advertising, very few courts have reached the important question whether the use of a trademark solely as a trigger for an advertisement is likely to cause confusion. Last week, in a...more

Federal Circuit Holds that A Good-Faith Belief in Patent Invalidity Is a Defense to Claims of Inducing Patent Infringement

This week, the Federal Circuit issued an important decision for device manufacturers, developers, service providers, and any other company that might be targeted as an “indirect” patent infringer based on customers' use of...more

Contributory Infringement and Copyrights: If It Involves Your Customer, It Could be Your Problem Too

Right on the heels of our blog on trademarks and contributory infringement, comes a case in which the court refused to dismiss a claim against Amazon for sales by third parties of allegedly infringing photographs on its site....more

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