“Be careful about changing patent law — it could harm innovation,” is a favorite talking point for those who oppose plans to reform to America’s troubled patent…
Sold for scrap
Aereo, the streaming start-up that was poised to upend the TV industry until the Supreme Court shut it down, has been sold for scraps. Aereo’s assets…
It’s been another bad week for America’s benighted patent system: a Texas jury ordered Samsung to pay a patent troll $16 million for…
Swim your own way
What happens when the unstoppable force of an internet meme meets the immovable object of a celebrity’s lawyers? We could find out…
Pass it, we must
Cue the “pass this law, we must” jokes. On Wednesday, lawmakers reintroduced the “You Own Devices Act” (YODA) to make sure that…
Hit the brakes
Government regulators and the taxi industry can’t stop Uber — but maybe a patent can. At least that’s the hope of Sidecar,…
I fought the law & the law...
SiriusXM recently suffered a series of disastrous courtroom defeats that threaten to harm not just its own digital radio service, but other companies —…
Here’s a shocker — Nokia, not to be confused with its former handset business that is now owned by Microsoft — has unveiled an Android tablet. And the details illustrate how Nokia will deal with the consumer market in the coming while.
When it comes to balancing creative rights on the internet, companies like Twitter and Pinterest play an important role as middlemen. How are they performing?
The U.S. is about to get a new czar to oversee piracy and intellectual property. If the country must have a czar, why can’t the person look at other IP-related problems besides just enforcement?
There’s another piece of good news on the patent troll front as a new Patent Office appeals system appears to be doing its job. This month, it agreed to invalidate a map-related patent challenged by Apple and Google.
The world’s most prestigious soccer league is warning fans not to share goals on social media, even though there is no apparent business or legal justification for doing so.
Uh oh, the world’s biggest patent troll has re-upped its weapons chest — including patents covering cloud computing.
The Obama Administration has backed away from an unpopular plan to name a Johnson & Johnson executive and patent reform opponent as head of the US Patent Office.
A Chinese man who owns trademarks and a domain name for Tesla in China is suing to shut down the company across the country unless it pays him. Given China’s unpredictable IP system, anything could happen.
Goal highlights are the most exciting, shareable and spontaneous moments of the World Cup. But ESPN and others are using copyright law to remove them from social media.
Lawyers who use copyright law to extort porn downloaders may find their days are numbered. An appeals court this week rubbed out an important part of their business model.
Regulators have put an end to certain Motorola and Samsung shenanigans in the companies’ long running anti-Apple campaigns, in decisions that spell good news for both consumers and patent lawyers.
Judge Richard Posner tried to put a stop to silly patent lawsuits over smartphones. Unfortunately, the country’s patent court — which has helped to create many patent problems in the first place — is having none of it.
The debate surrounding 3D printing is forcing legislators and regulators to rethink a broad range of legal issues, from patents to copyrights to liability.
Steve Altman built Qualcomm’s mammoth mobile technology licensing operation. Now he’s helping little-known startup MagnaCom convince the telecom industry to rethink one of underlying technologies of communications networks.
Europe’s highest court resolved a seemingly obvious question about the right to use links on websites. This week’s court decision will hopefully put an end to a long-running discussion.
Twitter lets people use famous names and icons so long as — in the eyes of Twitter — they’re not harming the original brand. A new lawsuit over James Dean will put that approach to the test, and possibly affect thousands of other Twitter accounts.
Boston University reached a license deal with Apple, Amazon and others over a 17-year-old patent. A closer look at the deal raises questions about the school’s use of legal tactics that could ultimately harm research.
Works like Narnia and Atlas Shrugged will remain off limits to the public for a long time to come due to America’s broken copyright system. Duke University offers an annual reminder of what we’re missing.
Google’s Transparency Reports get a lot of attention for their data on government action, but less so for their insights into copyright takedown requests. I analyzed nearly 1 million takedown requests to find out who’s getting the most URLs removed.
Facebook puts your profile picture in advertisements. Google is about to do the same and other sites like Twitter will likely follow one day. How exactly is this legal? Do we have any control over our image anymore?
According to a complaint filed by Zettaset, Intel’s Hadoop management software is so similar to Zettaset’s flagship Orchestrator product that “trying to run Zettaset on top of Intel is akin to trying to put a key into a lock already occupied by a key.”
Zettaset has sued Intel over its Intel Manager for Apache Hadoop product, claiming it misappropriates Zettaset’s trade secrets. The complaint was filed last week in California.
Boston University claims that Microsoft, BlackBerry and many other technology companies are violating the same patent it used to sue Apple earlier this summer.
Intellectual property protection is a major concern in the 3D printing industry, due to the possibility people will pirate and print protected designs on their home machines.
Martin Luther King Jr. wanted to keep control over his famous speech through copyright. Should his wishes be respected no matter what his family does?
Rackspace VP of Intellectual Property Van Lindberg was one of six tech-industry executives testifying before the House Judiciary Committee about intellectual property on Thursday. He highlighted the value of open source and the sometimes ridiculous nature of DMCA takedown requests.
Just when you thought the patent system wasn’t dysfunctional enough — copyright lawyers have been suing patent lawyers over science submissions. Here’s how it shook out.
Quantenna has developed a 802.11ac chipset that uses multiple antennas and multiple frequencies to deliver up to 2 Gbps of bandwidth. The partnership with STMicro will expand Quantenna’s scope beyond home networking to other industries.
In “The Slow Death of the American Author,” Scott Turow decries the state of the country’s copyright system. He gets it wrong and hurts the Authors Guild’s standing among potential allies.
Almost every tech company claims to hate patent trolls, but they certainly don’t always back up their words with actions. Recent patent activity around the Hadoop big data platform might show how companies can effectively battle trolls — if they really want to.
Grumpy Cat is the latest internet meme whose fame is growing by the day. The feline’s fame is valuable and her owners and lawyers have filed trademarks to protect it.
Huge and expensive patent battles aren’t going away anytime soon– in fact, they’re likely to continue to pick up steam this year. Efrat Kasznik, of Foresight Valuation Group, lays out some of the intellectual property battlegrounds of tomorrow.
While Apple hammers Samsung on smartphone and tablet design, Ericsson is accusing the Korean vendor of infringing on its mobile networking and technology patents. The pair’s cross-licensing deal has expired so Ericsson is taking Samsung to court.
Google exists because, by and large, it is allowed to excerpt web pages without being held liable as a publisher. Now moves in Germany and Australia threaten both of those core facts.
The European Commission wants to make it easier for digital services to offer content across the bloc’s national borders. Now research examines whether citizens want it as much as operators do.
The publisher of one-time counter-culture icon The Village Voice is expanding its legal campaign to own the phrase “best of.” Popular user review site Yelp is its latest target.
A study of 500 patent lawsuits found that those brought by patent trolls, which the study’s authors call “monetizers,” account for nearly 40 percent of the cases brought in 2011. Of course, their study doesn’t account for the untold thousands that never make it to court.
Research claims three billion songs were illegally downloaded via torrent between January and June. The problem may remain large, but it is likely shrinking.
It’s becoming ever easier to copy and share not just computer files but physical objects too. An Economist article reports that the technology could inaugurate a technological revolution — but also give rise to massive new piracy problems.
South Africa’s government has been urged to get tough with ISPs that refuse to pay royalties and to introduce graduated-response piracy measures against freeloaders, by a report that decries a dysfunctional digital content market.
Reports say the Apple-Samsung verdict is in. The case has large implications for the smartphone and mobile industry. We will be reporting shortly on whether the jury finds either side infringed the other’s intellectual property.
The jury is about to decide whether Apple and Samsung ripped off each other’s smartphones and tablets. Here’s an easy-to-read guide about how they will reach a verdict and what happens when they do.
Intellectual property is about assigning ownership of brands and ideas. Here are some highlights from a gathering of leading thinkers in the field — in an easy to skim format.
Companies have been scrambling to throw down billions of dollars to buy up patent portfolios. One expert warns the purchases reflect a market distortion while the impending Kodak sale suggests a bubble might be bursting.
Facing a lawsuit from major publishers, Boston-based free textbook startup Boundless Learning is now available for students at any university. Just in time for the new school year, the startup is opening to the public with an updated, more comprehensive platform.
Apple’s legal tactics are as carefully designed as its products. Here’s a look at Apple’s distinct efforts to wrap its gadgets in a legal forcefield and drive away competitors.
The judge in a highly-anticipated trial over smartphones and tablets sided with Apple on Friday over how a jury should look at four key patents. The ruling means the jury will act as “ordinary observers” instead of relying on detailed legal instructions to understand the patents.
The problem with paying a ransom is that the hostage takers can come back for more — as Apple can now attest. The company paid $60 million to settle a spurious trademark suit in China only to be confronted with another claim as fishy as the first.
Apple has ended a long-running trademark dispute in China by agreeing to pay $60 million to use the iPad brand name in the country. But will its settlement open the door to a sequence of ransom demands from trademark squatters?
Having learned a lesson from the backlash its peers in Congress endured recently, the White House is trying, presumably, to develop an anti-piracy strategy that’s actually sane. On Monday, it announced an open call for comments on a new IP strategy.
A global trade agreement on anti-piracy measures may need a re-think after the European Parliament was advised to vote against it.
InterDigital has been shopping its patent portfolio around for while, and on Monday it revealed it had a taker. Intel has scooped up 1700 of its patents for $375 million, bulking up the chipmaker’s intellectual property holdings in the increasingly critical mobile networking sector.
The judge in the notorious trial between Oracle and Google over Java software declared at the outset that the case was the “World Series” of intellectual property. And no wonder. The two sides have already spent nearly the annual payroll of the San Diego Padres.
Russia’s government has commissioned the building of a system which would let copyright owners identify unauthorised use of their works online.
The lawmaker leading Europe’s digital agenda initiatives is hoping France can liberalise its digital copyright regime, after it introduced a policy to warn and disconnect illegal content downloaders.
Google, Apple and Samsung get all of the attention in the mobile patent wars, but only one of them is a true powerhouse in terms of mobile intellectual property. Samsung, along with Nokia, lead the overall mobile patent portfolio rankings, according to a new study.
It’s hard to be a web user, especially since the government has gotten so interested in what we’re doing online. It’s even worse when we can’t figure out who — if anyone — is actually on our side, and what terms we’re willing to live with.
The EFF and Anonymous might have overblown the ramifications of the proposed Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act of 2011 — calling it SOPA 2.0 — but that doesn’t mean the bill is well-written. However, strong support means it might be hard to stop.
In a sign the country’s intellectual property laws may be getting out of hand, copyright lawyers are suing patent lawyers for using scientif…
Airvana is suing Ericsson for $330 million, claiming the wireless giant has reneged on its licensing deal and is instead selling a “knock-off” version of Airvana’s 3G technology to Verizon Wireless, Sprint and other CDMA operators.
SOPA and PIPA supporters still have faith in their shelved bills, citing the jobs they’ll save as making the bills worthy of salvage. However, the Internet economy is a potential job creator the likes of which Hollywood — already its own worst enemy — could ever be.
SOPA is too extreme to be a practical solution, according to Tom Gimbel of Austin City Limits, but he believes we need a policy that encourages online creativity and economic growth while also protecting intellectual property. It’s not as exciting to advocate for a compromise, but that’s what’s needed.
One day after the International Trade Commission approved a formal ban on certain HTC products that infringe on an Apple patent, an ITC administrative law judge has issued an initial determination that Motorola has infringed on four claims of a Microsoft patent with its Android products.
Last week, a European court struck down a rule forcing a Belgian ISP to monitor traffic for copyright infringement. Experts believe the decision could help rein in the spread of SOPA-like laws throughout Europe. So why is the U.S. rushing headling into deeply flawed legislation?
The proposed Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, garners a lot of hatred from commentators and the Internet industry as whole, but it’s only the next logical step after the problematic Digital Millenium Copyright Act, the safe harbor of which is more like a plea bargain.
According to a Harvard Business School professor, cloud startups can thank a copyright law decision for increased funding in the past few years. The case’s timing certainly aligns with an uptick in cloud funding, but it’s tough to see how the two are related.
Twitter has finally laid its hands on trademark rights to the word “tweet,” but the case provides yet another lesson in why companies have t…
Samsung on Wednesday became the latest and most high-profile Android licensee to agree to pay royalties to Redmond. But the deal may not be so much “extortion” — as Google quickly labeled it — as Samsung’s lack of trust and confidence in Google.
Patent acquisitions and litigation dominated the wireless industry in 2011, and it looks like we should expect more of the same going forward. If anything, experts seem to think it’s only going to get worse for anyone wanting to be taken seriously as a mobile player.
New details about Google’s $12.5 billion bid for Motorola have surfaced showing that Google was eager to buy Motorola. But why? One observer believes it was because Motorola was threatening Google with a number of dire consequences to Android if Google didn’t buy up the manufacturer.
Apple has fired back against Samsung in the UK, where the Korean company originally filed suit against the iPhone maker in June. In a new countersuit, Apple argues that Samsung’s Android tablets and smartphones infringe on its iPhone and iPad designs, not the other way around.
Google is apparently putting its new Motorola patents to work, transferring some of them to HTC, who has turned around and sued Apple for patent infringement. The move by HTC escalates the fighting between the Apple and HTC and marks a more aggressive stance by Google.
It seems Apple can’t even go a full week without being targeted with a new patent violation claim. Friday, patent-holding firm WiLAN announced that it had begun the process of litigation against Apple, as well as Dell, HP and others related to patents around wireless tech.
Apple scored another victory in its battle with Samsung in Australia, as the South Korean company agreed to a further delay of the launch of its Galaxy Tab 10.1 Android-powered tablet. The tablet now won’t go on sale in Australia until Sept. 29 at the earliest.
Social gaming giant Zynga is the subject of a new patent infringement lawsuit, the latest in a string of such claims. Now that Zynga is under a microscope as it moves toward an IPO, will its legal troubles be too much for potential investors to handle?
Google’s $12.5 billion bid for Motorola is about a lot of things, but one of the biggest assets in the deal is Motorola’s patent portfolio. UBS has put together a chart looking at some of the biggest patent-related deals recently and how much they’re worth.
The escalating patent battle provides a moment to reflect on how the implementation of patents have strayed from their intended use. Mark Shuttleworth, who leads the Ubuntu Foundation, had some thoughts on the matter, saying that patents are misunderstood, misused and are outdated in many ways.
I recently wrote that Google had passed on an opportunity to signal a stronger defense of Android during its earnings call. Today, Google reiterated its plans to defend Android and let loose a broadside attack against competitors who are targeting the operating system with patent suits.
HTC said it’s open to negotiating with Apple to settle a pitched patent fight between the two companies, but it’s unclear how willing Apple is to talk and how much HTC can extract from negotiations. My guess: Apple’s not in a cooperative mood.
Apple put away $10.4 billion in cash during the most recent quarter, bringing its total cash and securities to $76.2 billion. Apple is extremely conservative about what it does with its money, which has become a little controversial. Here’s what people are saying.
The ITC has ruled that Android manufacturer HTC has infringed on two Apple patents, handing the iPhone maker an early victory that could have large implications on HTC’s business in the U.S. and potential impacts on the overall Android platform. HTC is appealing.
Google CEO Larry Page addressed a question about what Google’s plans regarding Android’s patent situation, but generally side-stepped the query, pointing to Android’s momentum before finishing with a modest commitment to the platform. It seems like a missed opportunity to signal support to manufacturers and developers.
Apple is ratcheting up its patent war against HTC, filing a new complaint with the ITC seeking the ban of “personal electronic devices.” The filing comes after an initial complaint lodged against HTC last year and a similar case filed last week by Apple against Samsung.
The back-and-forth in the patent dispute between Samsung and Apple continues, with Samsung filing a request for a U.S. import ban against the iPhone, iPad and iPod. The complaint was filed with the ITC on Tuesday and will almost certainly provoke a response in kind.
Lodsys wants more time to address the request by Apple to intervene in its court proceedings against seven small app developers, in the ongoing saga of in-app purchasing patents. Also, Samsung doesn’t get early access to Apple gear, a judge has ruled.
Apple has amended its existing complaint against Samsung over intellectual property rights violations, removing a few infringement claims, but adding many more. The Mac-maker also clarified language in an attempt to deflect Samsung’s recent request to see unreleased iPhone and iPad hardware related to the case.
The best course of action for iOS developers faced with patent infringement suit threats issued by patent holding firm Lodsys earlier this month might be to play nice with licensing requests, according to one intellectual property researcher. It might be the only affordable course of action.
Spanish shopkeeper Alejandro Fernandez is on trial amid accusations that he is aiding piracy by selling jailbreak cartridges for Nintendo devices. But he’s trying to fight back by leading a legal action against the Japanese games giant that accuses it of breaking European law.
In a surprise attack against a fellow Chinese telecom, Huawei filed patent suits against ZTE in Germany, France and Hungary. The move isn’t just an attack on a rival, but a signal to the rest of the telecom world that Huawei plans to be a player.
Once upon a time, companies refused to let employees take their work home and forbade the use of digital media transfer devices. All to preserve the company’s intellectual property, which, the prevailing thought was, would be put seriously at risk by going digital. That’s changing fast.
Europe has halted shipments of PlayStation 3 game consoles as Sony battles with rival LG over intellectual property associated with Blu-Ray. It’s the latest salvo in a growing patent war that’s spreading across the technology industry — and the only real losers are customers.
Updated. Google’s translation services have been called all sorts of things over the years, from “incredible” to “woeful” and — by one particularly disgruntled…
Google’s upstart smartphone OS has taken the industry by storm. Sure, Android isn’t the biggest phone platform, but with 60,000 handsets shipping daily, it’s become a force to be reckoned with. Want proof? A sure sign of success for a product is the point when competitors come after it, and Android definitely has a target on its back. Apple fired the first shot with its patent infringement law suit against HTC, and Microsoft recently has indicated it believes Android is stepping on its intellectual property. Google had better be preparing a strategy to defend against these and future claims.
Skyline Solar, a 3-year-old startup working on concentrating photovoltaic systems, claims today to be among the first companies to receive a patent under a pilot program for giving greentech patent applications an express lane. More than 900 applications have flooded the program.
Starting with Mark Zuckerberg’s keynote at 10 a.m. PDT/1 p.m. EDT, Facebook will launch f8 Live, which will stream all sessions from the conference live on the Interwebz, along with a number of interactive features that are designed to let those who can’t attend feel like they are a part of the action.
While Tuesdays are known for Apple (s aapl) product launches, today the company announced not a new Mac but a lawsuit over…
I recently made the switch to the newest version of the web development application Espresso. After having used Coda for all my…
In response to a lawsuit filed by Nokia alleging infringement on 10 patents related to wireless standards and technologies, Apple has countersued…
Calling Dibs on Cleantech: “Just as the rise of the Internet spawned battles over technology rights and patents, the clean tech revolution…
Depending on who you ask, compulsory licensing — an option for governments to force companies to license technology if they’re not selling…
The T-Mobile G1 has been a pretty solid first Android (s GOOG) effort for T-Mobile in the U.S., and now the carrier…
Late last month, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce pulled together a small, motley crew of companies with a stake in upcoming climate…
For most folks, the idea of dressing up as Star Wars’ Boba Fett is silly. Even sillier is the notion of going out in public dressed as Boba Fett and being videotaped as you “battle” your friends… who just happen to be dressed like Stormtroopers. But, what’s silly to some is a passion for others, and making “fan films” is a passion for many aspiring filmmakers today. While these projects could easily be dismissed as a nerd’s folly — they might be an untapped resource for Hollywood studios to maintain and generate buzz for a film franchise.
The Participatory Culture Foundation (PCF) unveiled version 2.0 of its open-source video player, Miro, yesterday. The new version features a revamped UI,…
Stealing on the internet is easy. It takes very little effort for someone to copy your work and slap their name on it. Almost every month I hear of a photographer, blogger, or designer I know whose work gets used without their permission. With all this copyright infringement going around, I’d be surprised if a majority of WWD readers claim that this has never happened to them.
Hillcrest Labs, a Rockville, Mnd.-based startup, says it has filed complaints for patent infringement against Nintendo, related to the Wii video game system. The company claims that many consumer electronics companies (not disclosed publicly) have licensed Hillcrest’s technologies.