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The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that individual states are free to commit copyright infringement. The Court held that Congress attempted to abrogate states’ sovereign immunity in an unconstitutional manner when enacting the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act of 1990 (CRCA) (codified in 17 U.S.C. §511). See, Allen v. Cooper, No. 18-877, slip op. at 4 (Mar. 23, 2020). Sovereign immunity through the Eleventh Amendment has yet again proven to be a powerful tool for states to avoid intellectual property infringement liability, where private actors would not be so fortunate. Although Congress said that “[a]ny State … shall not be immune, under the Eleventh Amendment … or any other doctrine of sovereign immunity” from copyright infringement and that remedies available for such infringement would be “available … to the same extent as such remedies are available for such a violation … against any public or private entity,” the Court ruled that this language impermissibly abrogated states’ rights. 35 U.S.C. §511.
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By Howard Shire and Sean McConnell
On June 29, 2023, the U.S. Supreme Court set new geographic limits for infringement and false designation of origin claims raised under Sections 1114 and 1125(a) of the Lanham Act. Given the global nature of business today, the decision highlights the need for trademark owners to continually reassess and, perhaps, expand their international trademark registration strategy as product lines and brands become more international in scope.
By Steven James and Hattie Chessher
In April 2021, a food fight broke out between two of the UK’s largest supermarkets. Marks and Spencer launched legal action against Aldi over the latter’s alleged copy of its signature “Colin the Caterpillar” cake. This article takes a look at the issues surrounding lookalikes, what the English courts have said about them and what can be done by brand owners to protect against the risks they present.
By Amir Kashani, Xuechen (Rebecca) Ding and Aseet Patel
Takeaways from 'IBM v. Zillow' from a Patent Drafting Perspective
Part Two of a Two-Part Article
In Part One of this article we discussed the IBM v. Zillow case, where IBM sued Zillow for infringing on seven IBM’s patents directed to artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms for estimating property value. The focus was on the difficulties in establishing patent infringement on specific AI algorithms, as well as the strategic advantages of including additional patent claims that target ancillary features of an AI system. In this segment, we analyze the claims made in the Zillow case and present some tips for drafting AI-related claims from the perspective of patent infringement.
By Jeffrey S. Ginsberg and Joyce L. Nadipuram
Federal Circuit Clarifies Motivation to Combine to Achieve the Claimed Invention and Holds IPR Petitioner Must Be Given Opportunity to Reply Where Patent Owner First Proposes Claim Construction In a Response