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E-Books Series is a concentration of the most relevant information on e-commerce and Internet laws and regulations around the world. Conveniently divided in sections consisting of articles on specific topics, supplemented with links to the sources of law and regulations, e-Books provide an excellent and quick resource of knowledge on Internet and e-commerce issues and applicable principles of law. Electronically accessed supplemental materials are provided to enhance a dynamic informative process. E-Books are conveniently accessible online or through a downloadable version. A pocket size version of eBooks is also available. IBLS e-Book Series reserves all intellectual property rights. Any re-distribution of this material without appropriate license will be prohibited. For license inquiries write to e-books@ibls.com



 

Can You Patent This?

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Can You Patent This?

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 Introduction
 Chapter 1: INTRODUCTION: Difference between Patent and Copyrights
arrowTO PATENT OR TO COPYRIGHT
 Chapter 2: Patents & Licenses of Business Models
arrowLICENSING BUSINESS METHOD PATENTS FOR INTERNET USE CREATES SPECIAL PROBLEMS
arrowBUSINESS METHOD PATENT INVOLVING CARDLESS TRANSACTIONS
arrowBUSINESS METHOD PATENT INVOLVING THE HONOR SYSTEM”
arrowTHE PATENTABILITY OF COMMERCIAL METHODS APPLICABLE TO THE INTERNET UNDER FRENCH LAW
arrowBUSINESS METHOD PATENTS UNDER THE EUROPEAN PATENT CONVENTION
arrowBUSINESS MODELS IN ELECTRONIC COMMERCE
arrowTHE LICENSING OF BUSINESS METHOD PATENTS FOR INTERNET USE
 Chapter 3: Software Protection, Licenses, and Software Piracy
arrow“SHRINKWRAP” OR "BROWSEWRAP" AGREEMENTS AND ENFORCEABILITY ON THE INTERNET
arrowLICENSING CUSTOMIZED SOFTWARE
arrowCOMPUTER PROGRAMS PROTECTION UNDER FRENCH AND EUROPEAN LAW
arrowSOURCE CODE AND RIGHT OF THE SOFTWARE USER UNDER FRENCH LAW
arrowFREE SOFTWARE UNDER FRENCH LAW
arrowKEY CLAUSES IN HIGH TECHNOLOGY AGREEMENTS
arrowREGISTRATION OF COMPUTER PROGRAMS
arrowPROTECTION TO COMPUTER PROGRAMS UNDER THE BRAZILIAN LEGISLATION
arrowHOW TO PREVENT SOFTWARE PIRACY?
arrowPATENTS AND SOFTWARE PROTECTION UNDER EU LAW
arrowCOMPUTER SOFTWARE PIRACY AND RELEVANT LAWS IN JORDAN
 Chapter 4: Example of Patents Lawsuits
arrowPAY PAL SUED FOR PATENT INFRINGEMENT
arrowADOBE AND MACROMEDIA ENTER A PATENT WAR OVER NEW TECHNOLOGY IN AN EFFORT TO MONOPOLIZE THE WEB DESIGN MARKET
arrowFEDERAL COURT RULES THAT COOLSAVINGS.COM SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN AWARDED SUMMARY JUDGMENT IN PATENT INFRINGEMENT CASE
arrowSEARCH SERVICE PROVIDER OVERTURE SUES RIVAL GOOGLE, INC. FOR PATENT INFRINGEMENT
arrowCOGNOS SETTLES SOFTWARE PATENT LAWSUIT WITH BUSINESS OBJECTS
 Supplemental Documents
arrowPatenting in Europe, EPO Fee Policy Regarding the PCT International Search Opinion
arrowLatvia Joints the European Patent Organization as its 31st Member State
arrowEuropean Patent Office continues to advocate harmonisation in the field of CII patents
arrowTrilateral patent offices set to improve mutual exploitation of their work
arrowSoftware patents: the ‘historic vote’ in the European Parliament brings the battle to an end
arrowComparative Study of the Chinese Patent Law Practice, Part I: Obtaining a Chinese Patent
arrowEuropean patent system is too costly and may be discouraging innovation
arrowUSA Technologies Files Patent Applications for I-Advertising, E-Commerce Apps
arrowThe Information Technology era is Showing its Prominence: Social Media is Seeking Patents for its Innovative Business Models
arrowCybersettle Verdict Upholds Patents for Online Dispute Resolution
arrowFree Software Community Challenges e-Learning Patent
arrowWIPO Report Reveals Changing Geography of Innovation with Highest Patenting Growth Rates in North East Asia
arrowChaotic Environment for U.S. Patents
arrowPatent Highway between the UK and Japan opens
arrowSection 103 of the US Patent Act is Alive
arrowUpdate on the US Patent Reform
arrowRussian Software 80% Pirated: Legal Producers Fight Back while IP Theft Threatens WTO Membership
arrowE-commerce Patents
arrowE-Business Patent Infringement Cases: Complex Issues to Unravel
arrowAutomatic Injunctions in Patent Cases must Conform to a Four-Prong Equitable Test.
arrowLocal Working of Patents in India
arrowLondon Agreement Patents Law to be Enacted May 2008
arrowDoes US Patent Law have Extraterritorial Application?
arrowJapan's Protection of Computer Programs
  
 

Intellectual Property offers inventors quite a few ways to protect their inventions like copyrights and patents, among others.  Traditionally, patent applications were related to complex mechanical, chemical, or pharmaceutical processes.  With the advent of the Internet, and especially after a land marking case in the United States in 1998, an increasing number of patents have been issued to software and Internet companies that have devised new ways of doing business. Business method patents are very lucrative for Internet companies because they can stop other companies from using the patented business method for approximately 17 years. Besides, the company that owns the patent can exploit it by licensing the new method. However, business method patents, and in particular, software patents are full of legal pitfalls for the unwary. 

This e-book offers the reader the latest information on e-business methods and patents; first, the reader will learn how the concept of e-business patents evolved in the United States; then, the reader will be introduced to the most prominent examples of e-business and software patents granted in the United States.  Likewise, information on e-business patents processes in the European Union will be provided.  In particular, the book explains how France has responded to the issue of e-business patents under their current IP legislation. 

The Second section of this book offers information on software patents, licenses, and software piracy.  The reader will learn how the United States (with specific legislation on software patents) and the European Union (opposing uniformed legislation on software patents) address the issue of software patents, and how computer programs and software is protected in France and Brazil.  To complement this chapter, some relevant information on international technology agreements is offered. 

Lastly, this e-book offers examples of some US software and business patents cases.  The cases reviewed in this chapter are the land marking cases solved between 2002 and 2004 when software patent litigation increased. 

  

 
CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION: Difference between Patent and Copyrights

 
arrowTO PATENT OR TO COPYRIGHT

A patent is a legal monopoly with the government that protects your exclusive control and rights to your Internet process, software, and business methods.
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CHAPTER 2: Patents & Licenses of Business Models

 
arrowLICENSING BUSINESS METHOD PATENTS FOR INTERNET USE CREATES SPECIAL PROBLEMS

A U.S. federal court of appeals ruled in 1998 that business methods are patentable. Since that time, numerous companies have applied for business method patents to protect new technologies as a form of intellectual property.
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arrowBUSINESS METHOD PATENT INVOLVING CARDLESS TRANSACTIONS

PayPal, Inc., a leading online payment service, has been sued for patent infringement by a number of companies. Although PayPal has filed patent applications, to protect their technology, they face a number of competing patent infringement lawsuits. Business method patents are becoming more controversial. Court action is being sought to enable entities to gain a monopoly position on a manner of doing business.
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arrowBUSINESS METHOD PATENT INVOLVING THE HONOR SYSTEM”

Business methods and their use on the Internet have a greatly valued asset to a company, because the technology can be licensed and royalties can be generated. If patent protection is afforded then the owner of the technology stands in a financial position to hold valued intellectual property including a trademark and a patent.
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arrowTHE PATENTABILITY OF COMMERCIAL METHODS APPLICABLE TO THE INTERNET UNDER FRENCH LAW

Under French law, an idea or a concept is unpatentable; only the technical means implemented for putting them in concrete form can be patentable. Thus, a commercial method applicable to the Internet could be patentable as long as this method embodies a concrete form. However, further requirements apply to the patentability of commercial methods, namely the novelty and inventive step requirements.
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arrowBUSINESS METHOD PATENTS UNDER THE EUROPEAN PATENT CONVENTION

Business method patents proved to be quite controversial in their initial U.S. approval stages. In the European Union (EU), business method patents are still no patentable and controversial. The increasing use of the business method patents in the U.S. and their significance on electronic commerce and Internet transactions demonstrate that there must be uniform global laws applicable to these patents as technology evolves and the economy becomes a global one.
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arrowBUSINESS MODELS IN ELECTRONIC COMMERCE

Electronic commerce business methods have been used extensively with the increasing use of the Internet. The Internet and the need for businesses to succeed have forced businesses to undergo transformation, to reconsider strategies and organizational structure. In determining which electronic business model will succeed the best is one of trial and error in which a company must evaluate its strengths and weaknesses.
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arrowTHE LICENSING OF BUSINESS METHOD PATENTS FOR INTERNET USE

A U.S. federal court of appeals ruled in State Street Bank & Trust Co. v. Signal Financial Group, (1998) that business methods are patentable. Since that time, numerous companies have applied for business method patents to protect new technologies as a form of intellectual property.
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CHAPTER 3: Software Protection, Licenses, and Software Piracy

 
arrow“SHRINKWRAP” OR "BROWSEWRAP" AGREEMENTS AND ENFORCEABILITY ON THE INTERNET

Shrinkwrap agreements, clicking on a space on a web site as if to consent to the terms required for proceeding to the next level of that site, may be binding over the Internet if they properly inform the consumer of all conditions before the potential consumer proceeds.
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arrowLICENSING CUSTOMIZED SOFTWARE

The use of customized software and its monetary investment have many practical considerations. If an entire business depends on this software and any failure in this software could bring a halt to the business, then the consequences could be dire. The negotiation of customized software also includes the negotiation of source code escrow agreements. Source code escrow agreements are an important feature of a custom software licensing deal. This type of agreement permits the licensee to obtain access to the software's all-important source code under certain limited circumstances.
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arrowCOMPUTER PROGRAMS PROTECTION UNDER FRENCH AND EUROPEAN LAW

Under French law, computer programs are protected under copyright law, but are not patentable. However, this situation might change in the near future. Indeed, on February 20, 2002, the European Commission has presented a proposal for a Directive on the protection by patents of computer-implemented inventions. The implementation of this Proposal would have an impact on the scope of protection of computer programs under French law, since patent protection is somehow wider than copyright protection.
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arrowSOURCE CODE AND RIGHT OF THE SOFTWARE USER UNDER FRENCH LAW

Under French law, the author of software enjoys an exclusive property right that is enforceable against all persons, including the user. The source code, which is a high-level computer language used to compose software, is covered by this property right. However, in certain circumstances, the user can legally access the source code without the authorization of the author. These circumstances should be strictly defined and regulated by the license agreement.
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arrowFREE SOFTWARE UNDER FRENCH LAW

As opposed to proprietary software, which use, redistribution or modification is prohibited, or requires the authorization of the author, free software is based on the principle of freedom, including the freedom to distribute and improve the program. Under French law, free software like proprietary software remains subject to the provisions of the Intellectual Property Code.
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arrowKEY CLAUSES IN HIGH TECHNOLOGY AGREEMENTS

In the area of high-tech contracts for software or other services, the use of standard clauses has been heavily negotiated and important. A web site development agreement is a critical legal contract between a developer and client. A well-drafted agreement addresses many issues, including the scope of work to be performed, ownership rights and many other topics.
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arrowREGISTRATION OF COMPUTER PROGRAMS

The Brazilian Industrial Property Office prosecutes and responds to many applications for the protection of industrial property including computer programs. Whether or not to register a computer program has become more of an issue that should be considered in regards to the benefits that could be gained. The considerations should involve financial constraints as well as the benefits that could be received.
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arrowPROTECTION TO COMPUTER PROGRAMS UNDER THE BRAZILIAN LEGISLATION

Internet transactions opened the door for a global economy but it created the need for a wide range of legislation as well. The legislation called for have two facets. In one hand, we have the regulatory legislation essential to facilitate e-commerce transactions such us digital signatures, e-contracts, intellectual property, etc. In the other hand, we have legislation that penalizes certain conducts taking place on the web (cyber-crimes laws). Latin American countries are steadily implementing e-commerce legislation. Most of these countries set their priorities regarding the laws to implement first. For instance, Brazil promptly implemented a computer program protection law in 1998 before it publish digital or electronic signature laws. Being the Latin American headquarters of major technology industries and given the country’s active import/export economy, this law was highly recommended for Brazil. This excerpt addresses the main issues considered by the Brazilian Computer Program Protection law 9,609 of 1998. This law is a mixture of rules facilitating e-commerce transactions and punishing unaccepted conducts regarding computer programs.
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arrowHOW TO PREVENT SOFTWARE PIRACY?

Copyright infringement of software, also called “software piracy” by those seeking to prevent it, is one of the main threats faced by software companies, whose main assets are the programs they develop. Same as for copyright infringement of other original works, such as images or audio files, there exist ways to prevent software piracy.
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arrowPATENTS AND SOFTWARE PROTECTION UNDER EU LAW

Patents are the protection of choice for software. European patents are regulated under the European Patent Convention (EPC), which differs quite significantly from U.S. patent regulations. Until – and if – a new Directive on the Patentability of Computer-Implemented Inventions is adopted, non-E.U. software vendors need to comply with the requirements established by the European Patent Office (EPO) in order to get patent protection in the European Union (E.U.)
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arrowCOMPUTER SOFTWARE PIRACY AND RELEVANT LAWS IN JORDAN

In order to tackle the problem of software piracy, Jordan’s government has passed several intellectual property laws. These laws include amendments to the 1992 Copyright Law and the institution of various regulations for the purpose of protecting intellectual property. Jordan’s National Library Department is responsible for enforcing these laws. Due to these governmental efforts software piracy has declined in Jordan. However, according to Business Software Alliance (BSA) statistics (2005) Jordan’s software piracy remains at 64%, which is above most of industrialized countries.
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CHAPTER 4: Example of Patents Lawsuits

 
arrowPAY PAL SUED FOR PATENT INFRINGEMENT

PayPal, Inc., a leading online payment service, has been sued for patent infringement by a California-based company, Tumbleweed Communications. This suit has been the third of the lawsuits that have plagued PayPal, Inc. Despite their attempting at filing patent applications to protect their technology, they have already faced patent infringement lawsuits.
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arrowADOBE AND MACROMEDIA ENTER A PATENT WAR OVER NEW TECHNOLOGY IN AN EFFORT TO MONOPOLIZE THE WEB DESIGN MARKET

Adobe Systems and Macromedia have waged a patent war as their desire to develop new technology has proved to be too much competition. As Adobe is determined to become more of a competitor in the web design market, Macromedia has struck back to fight for its intellectual property rights.
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arrowFEDERAL COURT RULES THAT COOLSAVINGS.COM SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN AWARDED SUMMARY JUDGMENT IN PATENT INFRINGEMENT CASE

The United States Court for the Federal Circuit in Washington D.C. ruled that the Northern District of Illinois in March 2001 improperly granted summary judgment to Coolsavings.com and found that they did not infringe, either literally or by equivalents, the claims of Catalina’s U.S. Patent No. 4,674,041 (the ‘041 patent). The court determined that the district court erroneously relied on language in Claim 1 and misapplied prosecution history estoppel doctrine and remanded the case back to the district court.
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arrowSEARCH SERVICE PROVIDER OVERTURE SUES RIVAL GOOGLE, INC. FOR PATENT INFRINGEMENT

Search service provider, Overture, sued Google for patent infringement claiming that they have infringed on its technology without authorization or licensing.
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arrowCOGNOS SETTLES SOFTWARE PATENT LAWSUIT WITH BUSINESS OBJECTS

Business Objects settled a patent infringement lawsuit against Cognos. The lawsuit involved one of Business Object’s patents and illustrates the second patent litigation involving their patent resulting in a settlement.
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SUPPLEMENTAL DOCUMENTS:

 
arrowPatenting in Europe, EPO Fee Policy Regarding the PCT International Search Opinion


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arrowLatvia Joints the European Patent Organization as its 31st Member State


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arrowEuropean Patent Office continues to advocate harmonisation in the field of CII patents


More...


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arrowTrilateral patent offices set to improve mutual exploitation of their work


More...


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arrowSoftware patents: the ‘historic vote’ in the European Parliament brings the battle to an end


More...


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arrowComparative Study of the Chinese Patent Law Practice, Part I: Obtaining a Chinese Patent


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arrowEuropean patent system is too costly and may be discouraging innovation


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arrowUSA Technologies Files Patent Applications for I-Advertising, E-Commerce Apps


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arrowThe Information Technology era is Showing its Prominence: Social Media is Seeking Patents for its Innovative Business Models

The so-called social media or search engine companies are developing creative search methods that enhance search results. Yet, these companies do not want to share their inventions. They are now seeking patents for these innovative search methods.
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arrowCybersettle Verdict Upholds Patents for Online Dispute Resolution

Cybersettle, Inc., the world leader in accelerated dispute resolution, whose President is the co-inventor of Cybersettle’s automated, online, double-blind bid system, has announced that it has won a major patent infringement case it filed against National Arbitration Forum (NAF).
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arrowFree Software Community Challenges e-Learning Patent

The Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC), provider of pro-bono legal services to protect and advance Free and Open Source Software, has filed a formal request with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for re-examination of Blackboard's e-Learning patent. If successful, the request will ultimately lead to the cancellation of all 44 claims of the patent.
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arrowWIPO Report Reveals Changing Geography of Innovation with Highest Patenting Growth Rates in North East Asia

The 2007 edition of the Patent Report of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) (http://www.wipo.int/ipstats/en/statistics/patents/patent_report_2007.html) shows that worldwide filings of patent applications have grown at an average annual rate of 4.7% with the highest growth rates experienced in North East Asian countries, particularly the Republic of Korea (ROK) and China. The report is based on 2005 figures, the last year for which complete worldwide statistics are available. It showed that patents granted worldwide have increased at an average annual rate of 3.6% with some 600,000 patents granted in 2005 alone. By the end of 2005, approximately 5.6 million patents were in force worldwide.
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arrowChaotic Environment for U.S. Patents

The recent US Supreme Court case, KSR International v. Teleflex, answered the following question: "If a new product combines, albeit in a novel way, two or more pre-existing products, is it worth a patent?” To answer this question, the US Supreme Court established a new test that experts deem it will make more difficult to obtain a patent on a new product that combines essentials of already exiting patents. The decision was rendered on April 30, 2007, and our Charter Partner and intellectual property expert, Gerry Elman, have provided the following comments to IBLS,
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arrowPatent Highway between the UK and Japan opens

A 12 month pilot scheme launched today will speed up processing patent applications in the UK and Japan. The Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) will allow patent applicants who have received an examination report by either the UK Intellectual Property Office (UK-IPO) or the Japan Patent Office (JPO) to request accelerated examination of a corresponding patent application filed in the other country.
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arrowSection 103 of the US Patent Act is Alive

Patent holders: be careful; section 103 of the US Patent Act is alive. This caveat seems to be the broad- nontechnical message obtained from the recently decided US Supreme Court case, KSR Int'l Co. v. Teleflex Inc., 127 S. Ct. 1727. This US Supreme Court decision clarified the test to be followed when granting a new patent on an item that combines elements of exiting patents. Yet, even though under 35 U.S.C. § 282 an issued patent is presumed valid, it is interesting to see how patents already acquired may be trembled (lost?) by the posteriori application of both the US Patent Act §103 (35 U.S.C. §103) and this recently refurbished test.
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arrowUpdate on the US Patent Reform

Gerry Elman, attorney for Elman Technology Law, P.C. and IBLS Contributor, provides the following update on the United States Patent Reform currently in the US Congress. Just before September 7th, the House leadership secured a rule that seriously restricted floor debate on the Patent Reform Bill, so that it could be rammed through with minimal backpressure. Yet in the limited debate time available, Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio) and Rep. Dana Rorabacher (R-California) staunchly waged a bipartisan opposition, narrowing the margin of victory achieved by the Bill’s sponsors.
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arrowRussian Software 80% Pirated: Legal Producers Fight Back while IP Theft Threatens WTO Membership

Struggling for the soul of Russian Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), legitimate software producers are attempting to gain ground against the pirates who dominate software sales by a ratio of four to one. Consumers become addicted to low price and ignore whatever inconvenience come along with second-hand products. Yet, it is doubtless that in the same way that a slave economy impoverished ancient Rome, and kept wages for freemen depressed, stolen Intellectual Property (IP) keeps consumers from paying for the genuine item and inhibits innovations. Such illegal market deformations stymie ethical producers from creating legitimate product because they rightly believe their creations will be mastered & resold without profit to them and that the Government will turn a blind eye to the practice. Such an IPR's environment has earned the ire of both Washington and the EU.
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arrowE-commerce Patents

E-commerce patents are the latest protection for innovative business methods delivered online. Many claim e-commerce models are not patentable because the subject matter they assert is not within the statutory definitions and because the United States Patent office, and most patent offices around the world, are not outfitted for this analysis. Yet, at least in the United States (U.S.) and alongside disapproval, e-commerce patents are a reality supported by strong data from the U.S. Patent Office and case law. For instance, the U.S. Patent Office July 2007 report showed that in 2006 patent requests for business methods (class 705) amounted to over 9,000 filings; just identical to those filings during the Internet bubble in 2001. According to the same report, business methods filings have steadily increased every year since 2002. Also, the U.S. Patent office is getting stricter or filings of filings for business methods are becoming meaningful; data show that the allowance rate for 2001 was 45%, 44% for 2002, and 19% for 2006. This article comments on two significant cases that laid the foundation for e-commerce patent precedents in the United States.
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arrowE-Business Patent Infringement Cases: Complex Issues to Unravel

Certainly, Google has already earned its place in history as the most-sued Internet Company. Every novel intellectual property (“IP”) cause of action has been filed against the search engine giant. First, we witnessed the copyright infringement round. Google has been sued for every type of copyright infringement on thumbnails, meta-tags, keywords, etc. Concomitant with these copyright infringement lawsuits, Google was also accused of trademark violations in keywords, sponsor links, etc. Now, it is the time for the e-business patent round. Google was sued for business patent infringement and, like in most of the other IP lawsuits, it was triumphant (well, partially) this time.
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arrowAutomatic Injunctions in Patent Cases must Conform to a Four-Prong Equitable Test.

eBay v. MercExchange seven-year-patent dispute is finally over. Ebay has bought two patents that MercExchange alleged it owned and for which MercExchange accused eBay of patent infringement. The financial terms of the settlement were not disclosed. MercExchange sued eBay for patent infringement in 2001 and after lengthy court battles, a jury ruled in favor of MercExchange in 2003 and provided a US$30 million ruling against eBay. eBay appealed this judgment and now, before any other subsequent appeal, eBay settled the case and offered to buy the two patents on dispute. Even though this case constituted another ordinary case on patent infringement, its relevance is found on the issue of 'automatic' permanent injunction for online patent cases. This question went to the Supreme Court of the United States ("US”) which rendered an important decision on this point. This article provides an overview of this renowned e-commerce patent case and US decision on permanent injunction for patent cases.
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arrowLocal Working of Patents in India

There is a requirement to file a statement of information (Form 27) regarding the working of a patent in India. The working of a patent means the commercial exploitation of the invention that is embodied in the patent. These statements can be supplied every financial calendar year, within three months of the end of each year. Although the working of an invention within India at a commercial scale amounts to local working (LW), it still is controversial as to whether the LW of a patent can only be satisfied by the local production and not importation.
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arrowLondon Agreement Patents Law to be Enacted May 2008

Getting patent coverage across Europe is set to get easier and cheaper on May 1, 2008 when a new protocol called the “London Agreement” goes into affect. The London Agreement negotiations have been ongoing for some years, and the final details hammered out October 17th, 2000. The purpose was to make getting translations of European patents easier and lessening the costs. The new rules should halve costs for UK businesses toiling to protect their intellectual property rights across all 31 European states.
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arrowDoes US Patent Law have Extraterritorial Application?

The US Patent Act (title 35 U.S.C) is the legal framework for patent protection in the US. The US Patent Act § 101 defines what is patentable in the US: "Whoever invents or discovers any new and useful process, machine, manufacture, or composition of matter, or any new and useful improvement thereof, may obtain a patent therefore…" Section 271 of the US Patent Act sets the requirements for a valid cause of action on patent infringement. Within section 271, literal (f) is one of the ones raising controversy because §271(f) seems to invite for extraterritorial application. This article analyses § 271(f) of the US Patent Act in light of its most relevant court interpretation in AT&T v. Microsoft.
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arrowJapan's Protection of Computer Programs

Even though copyright laws were not developed envisioning protection of computer programs, the world's tendency to provide copyright protection to computer programs is growing. According to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic works and the Universal Copyright Convention, once a country provides copyrights protection to domestically-developed computer programs, it must afford the same protection to computer programs developed by foreign persons from countries signatories to these international agreements. This article presents an overview of Japan's protection of computer programs.
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