Several months ago, Amazon unveiled its “Cloud Drive” – a web application which permits users with Amazon accounts to upload up to five gigabytes of music, free of charge, to Amazon's server. Along with providing storage, the service also allows users to access, stream, and download their music from any location. Given that Amazon is providing streaming access music, there is some questions as to whether Amazon’s decision to offer the service, without a license from music owners, may result in future legal disputes. In this respect, Amazon has taken the position it is simply providing users with access to their own music files and, therefore, that no additional licenses are necessary. In contrast to Amazon's approach, Apple has actively negotiated licenses with music publishers in anticipation of it's Fall 2011 launch of its "iCloud" service. Music labels, for their part, are remaining silent on the issue as they wait to see how this “plays” out.
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Since February of 2010, Alzheimer's Institute of America (AIA) has been embroiled in a patent infringement suit it brought against a number of defendants, claiming infringement of certain patents covering the genetic mutation, dubbed the "Swedish mutation", that causes early on-set Alzheimer's disease. Last week, AIA dropped the case against one defendant, Jackson Laboratory of Bar Harbor, Maine, for an unusual and interesting reason.
Paris-based footwear designer Christian Louboutin was denied a preliminary injunction to prevent famed-fashion house Yves Saint Laurent from selling shoes with red soles similar to Louboutin's. In April, Louboutin filed a federal lawsuit for trademark infringement against Yves Saint Laurent in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York claiming that YSL infringed Louboutin's signature red soles.
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida is one of only fourteen federal districts recently selected to participate in a 10 year pilot program intended to promote expertise among U.S. district judges in the specialized field of patent law.
Yesterday, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1249, commonly known as the America Invents Act, which seeks to reform the U.S. patent system. The bill recieved bipartisan support, with over 70% of the House voting in favor. Notable provisions of this bill include:
In a unanimous decision delivered by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the Supreme Court held that an invalidity defense must be proven by “clear and convincing evidence," likely ending Microsoft's efforts to avoid a $200 million plus damages award.