Tuesday, July 01, 2014

(BN) Apple, Las Vegas Sands, Fracking: Intellectual Property

(Bloomberg ) Apple Inc. (AAPL) pushed organizations such as Major League Baseball to adopt its format for streaming live video, causing them to infringe a patent, a lawyer for Emblaze Ltd. (BLZ) told jurors at the start of a federal trial.

Emblaze, based in Hertzliya Pituach, Israel, argues its U.S. patent issued in 2002 covers a process for delivering live-streaming video over wireless networks without interruption.

Apple lawyer Mark Fowler told jurors June 30 that the iPhone-maker's success has made it a target of patent suits. Emblaze, by comparison, is a failure "trying to make up for that lack of success in the courtroom," he said.

Emblaze manufactured and sold audio products and attempted to sell its technology to wireless carriers and then phone companies, failing each time, Fowler said.

In a separate lawsuit filed in the same court, Emblaze accused Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) of infringing the same patent.

The case is Emblaze v. Apple, 11-cv-01079, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (San Jose).


Time Warner Unit Loses Challenge to Spanish TV Company's Mark

Time Warner Inc. (TWX)'s Cartoon Network unit lost a trademark challenge to Spain's Boomerang TV SA, Broadband TV News reported.

The dispute was over the Cartoon Network's Boomerang archive of classic cartoons, according to the industry news website.

Cartoon Network argued unsuccessfully that consumers might confuse the Spanish television company with the Boomerang archive, according to Broadband TV News.

The 6th Chamber of the European Court said that Cartoon Network's appeal of an adverse lower court ruling was unfounded, Broadband TV News reported.

Las Vegas Sands Sues Operators of 35 Chinese Gambling Websites

Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS), a Nevada-based casino operator, sued registrants of 35 Internet domain names for trademark infringement.

According to the June 27 complaint, the casino company says the domains are using Chinese characters that are equivalent to its name together with its Venetian design trademark to give the false impression they are affiliated with Las Vegas Sands.

These sites, which are accessible to U.S. citizens, then lure prospective gamblers to overseas online casinos, the company said. Las Vegas Sands said it is a strong supporter of the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling and "is presently engaged in publicity and lobbying campaigns aimed at defeating measures that would legalize Internet gambling in the United States and elsewhere."

Unauthorized use of its marks by the Chinese domain names threatens to "dilute and detract" from the casino company's efforts to halt online gambling, according to court papers.

The casino company asked the court to order domain name registers to remove or disable domain name server information for the accused domains.

The case is Las Vegas Sands Corp v. Unknown Registrants of www.368.com, 14-cv-01049, U.S. District Court, District of Nevada (Las Vegas).


Copying Unprotected Elements in Architect Plans Not Infringement

An architect from Schenectady, New York, who sued some of his former licensees in 2011 after they built houses that were modified versions of his designs, lost his appeal of his copyright infringement claims.

A federal appeals court said that while the architect's copyrights on his designs were valid, they also contained many elements that weren't protected by copyright law. The copying was of unprotected ideas rather than their concrete expressions, the court said.

The case is Zalewski v. Cicero Builder Dev. Inc., 12-3448, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (Manhattan). The lower court case is Zalewski v. Cicero Builder Dev. Inc., 11-cv-01156, U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York (Syracuse).

Trade Secrets/Industrial Espionage

Pennsylvania Doctor's Challenge to Fracking-Secret Law Fails

A Pennsylvania kidney specialist's challenge to a state law that bars a medical professional from revealing to others confidential information about the ingredients in hydraulic fracturing fluid was rejected by a federal court in Scranton, Pennsylvania.

In a June 30 order, U.S. District Judge A. Richard Caputo said Dr. Alfonso Rodriguez lacked standing to bring the suit over what the doctor called the "Medical Gag Rule" because he failed to show that he suffered an injury under the confidentiality requirement.

The case is Rodriguez v. Abruzzo, 12-cv-01458, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Pennsylvania (Scranton).

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