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IP Newsletter - February/March 2019

February 1, 2019

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Printed publication bars patents on drug tracking system
How often do people browse the Federal Register? For most people, the answer probably is never. But if they want to patent an invention that falls within the regulations of a federal agency like the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Federal Register might trip them up. This article looks at how it did just that for one patent applicant. A sidebar notes that indexing or searchability is unnecessary for a reference to be a printed publication for prior art purposes.
Jazz Pharmaceuticals, Inc. v. Amneal Pharmaceuticals, LLC, No. 17-1671, July 13, 2018, Fed. Cir.

Factual compilation qualifies for “thin” copyright
More and more personal information is collected every day, but some of the most valuable consumer data continues to be pairings of names and addresses. Companies build massive databases that compile this information — but are these compilations protected by copyright? This article discusses when these compilations may have copyright protection and whether that protection may be considered “thin.”
Experian Information Solutions, Inc. v. Nationwide Marketing Services, Inc., No. 16-16987, June 27, 2018, 9th Cir.

What’s fair in copyright and trademark …
Alleged infringement of technical standards raises questions
Thousands of private organizations produce technical standards, some of which are incorporated into laws by federal, state and local governments. A federal court of appeals recently considered whether these organizations can invoke copyright and trademark laws to prevent the unauthorized copying and distribution of such works. This article reviews the case in which the court failed to provide a conclusive answer, focusing instead on fair use matters.
American Society for Testing and Materials v. Public.Resource.Org, Inc., No. 17-7035, July 17, 2018, D.C. Cir.

Court blocks trademark for sports shop
Registration of a trademark hinges, in part, on whether there is a likelihood of confusion with an earlier application or registration. This article examines a recent case in which a sports specialty shop learned that the trademark it sought for registration was considered likely to be confused with that of a private social club.
In re Detroit Athletic Co., No. 17-2361, Sept. 20, 2018, Fed. Cir.

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