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The Federal Circuit decisions in the Oracle v. Google copyright case rattled Silicon Valley not simply because the decisions upended software developers’ understandings of copyright law, but also because the decisions do not comport with the disruptive ethos of the technology industry.
The Federal Circuit decisions in the Oracle v. Google copyright case rattled Silicon Valley not simply because the decisions upended software developers’ understandings of copyright law, but also because the decisions do not comport with the disruptive ethos of the technology industry. Software development thrives on an open environment defined by creation through iteration. Yet, the Federal Circuit’s decisions grant a copyright holder a tremendous amount of control over even a small portion of code, and by extension, developers who use that code to create new products. Such control is especially acute when dealing with a copyright holder known for aggressive litigation tactics, such as Oracle. In the wake of Google’s recent petition for certiorari, Petition for Writ of Certiorari, Google LLC v. Oracle Am. Inc., No. __ (Jan. 25, 2019), this article reviews the Federal Circuit decisions and summarizes their legal, economic, and cultural impact. The analysis suggests that much of the innovation of the technology sector now hinges on the U.S. Supreme Court.
By David S. Gold
Branding is not a new concept, nor are the various intellectual property laws that protect brands. What is new to most is how this burgeoning industry can take advantage of those laws within the context of state and federal restrictions.
By Tom Gushue
The owner of a commercially successful patent may have competing desires. On one hand, the patent owner wants to protect the patent and secure its maximum benefit; on the other hand, the patent owner wants to avoid enforcement litigation with competitors because it is expensive and puts the patent at risk.
By Glenn E.J. Murphy
Many observers greeted the passage of the AIA into law as a long-overdue overhaul of U.S. patent law that aligned it with patent systems prevailing in the rest of the world. Who knew what mischief just seven of the AIA’s more than 25,000 words contained? The U.S. Supreme Court answered earlier this year.
By Norman C. Simon and Patrick J. Campbell
The decision in Romag Fasteners v. Fossil will bring welcome uniformity, ending the status quo where eligibility to recover profits under the Lanham Act depends on which court is deciding the dispute