Category Archives: Defenses

Graphical Indicator Patent Gets “Definite” Win Under § 112

Authors: Shayda Shahbazi
Editor: Kevin D. Rodkey

In Sonix Technology Co., Ltd. v. Publications International, Ltd., No. 16-1449 (Fed. Cir. Jan. 5, 2017), the Federal Circuit reversed the district court’s decision that the claim term “visually negligible” rendered the claims indefinite.

Sonix brought suit against Publications International, alleging infringement of U.S. Patent No. 7,328,845, which is directed to using a “graphical indicator” to encode information on the surface of an object that can be read using an optical device to output additional information. The asserted claims of the ’845 patent recite that the indicator is “visually negligible.” The district court granted summary judgment, finding the term “visually negligible” indefinite, concluding that it relied on the user’s perception with no objective standard to measure the scope of the term. Continue reading

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Procedural Missteps Lead to Default Judgment

Authors: Thomas J. Sullivan
Editor: Lauren J. Dreyer

In United Construction Products, Inc. v. Tile Tech, Inc., No. 2016-1392 (Fed. Cir. December 15, 2016), the Federal Circuit affirmed the district court’s entry of default judgment against Tile Tech. The panel noted that, throughout the course of the litigation, Tile Tech repeatedly failed to comply with discovery requests—including an order to compel. Applying Ninth Circuit precedent on default judgments, the Court found that four of the five Malone factors favored dismissal: (1) the public’s interest in expeditious resolution of litigation; (2) the lower court’s need to manage its docket without routine noncompliance; (3) Tile Tech’s failure to comply with discovery requests prejudicing the plaintiff’s ability to adjudicate the matter fairly; and (4) the lack of availability of less drastic sanctions. The Court held that the last factor—public policy favoring disposition of cases on their merits rather than dismissal by default judgment—always weighed against default judgment. Continue reading

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Federal Circuit Trends of 2016

Authors: Alissa Lipton, Eric Raciti
Editor: Lauren J. Dreyer

Join us as we review what has been an exciting year at the Federal Circuit and help ring in 2017 with a New Year’s reception at Finnegan’s Boston office on Wednesday, January 11, 2017! We will provide insights on the top Federal Circuit decisions and trends of 2016.

Below, we highlight some of the issues we will discuss on January 11:
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