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Amazon loses domain bid, Medtronic settles with Edwards Lifesciences, Nintendo scores patent victory, Led Zeppelin in copyright fight - the week in IP



Alli Pyrah


Amazon's loss to South American countries over the .amazon domain, a Led Zeppelin copyright dispute, Medtronic's billion dollar settlement, the Scotch Whisky Association's objections to Asian trade marks, Apple and Samsung negotiations, and a patent infringement case win for Nintendo were among the intellectual property stories hitting the headlines this week

The biggest news this week was Chief Judge Randell Rader standing down at the Federal Circuit and the Supreme Court ruling laches cannot be evoked in Petrella v MGM.

Below is a selection of intellectual property stories attracting attention on the internet in the past week that were not covered on www.managingip.com (see the bottom of this blog post for the top stories published by Managing IP this week).

Amazon loses domain fight

Online retailer Amazon has lost its bid for the .amazon domain to a group of South American countries.

Countries including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru and Uruguay argued that the online retailer's gTLD bid infringed on their geographical interests.

In a letter to ICANN, Peru's vice minister of foreign affairs Fernando Rojas Samanez said the preservation of the Amazon region should prevail over the interests of a private company whose name was inspired by it.


Stairway to Heaven or Road to Hell?

Blomberg Businessweek reports that rock band Led Zeppelin is in a legal dispute over the copyright to the song Stairway to Heaven.

The lawsuit is being filed on behalf of the late Randy California of the band Spirit, by Spirit bass player Mark Andes and a trust that manages royalties for California.

According to California's obituary in the Independent, Stairway to Heaven "bears more than a passing resemblance"  to California's song Taurus.

California died in 1997 rescuing his 12-year-old son Quinn from a rip current in the Pacific Ocean.


Medtronic settles with Edwards Lifesciences

Medtronic will pay more than a billion dollars over the next eight years to settle a long-running patent infringement dispute with Edwards Lifesciences over transcatheter heart valves.

Forbes reports that Medtronic will pay a one-off fee of $750 million with the remainder of the settlement paid in royalty payments until April 2022. The royalties will range between $40 and $60 million per year.

The settlement follows an appellate court's April decision to grant Edwards an injunction prohibiting Medtronic from selling its CoreValve device. The court made an exception that allowed Medtronic to sell its device to patients who could not be helped by Edwards' device.

Enforcing the ban, however, may have alienated cardiologists, Edwards' core customers.

Whisky sours relations between Scots and Asians

The Scottish Whisky Association has filed objections to more than 100 whisky trade marks in 2013, according to its annual report.

The organisation made 19 objections to trade marks filed in India and 17 objections to trade marks filed in China. It made 17 objections to the use of the word glen, which it claims is “suggestive of Scotland.

The Chinese trade mark office initially dismissed the claims as being backed by insufficient evidence that glen was indicative of Scotch whisky. But the Trade Mark Review and Adjudication Board (TRAD) since rejected eight trade mark applications including Glend, Glen Range, Glen Volis, Glen Dare, Glen Lyon, Glen Jent, Glenroyal and Castle Glen.


Apple and Samsung ready to settle?

The Korea Times reports that Apple and Samsung have resumed negotiations in an effort to settle claims of patent infringement from both sides.

Citing sources involved in the matter, the Times said the electronics giants' key goal is to dismiss all lawsuits.

After yet another court battle, the jury returned a mixed verdict this month. It found Samsung infringed three of the five Apple patents in the case and ordered Samsung to pay $119.6 million. Apple had sought $2.2 billion.

But the jury also found that Apple infringed a Samsung patent and ordered the iPhone maker to pat $158,400. Samsung had sought $6.2 million.

Meanwhile, both companies have claimed victory after a Japanese court ruled earlier this month that Samsung could claim 9.96 million Yen from Apple for patent infringement. The case involved Apple's use of Samsung's data transmission technology in the iPhone 4 and iPad 2. The court rejected a request for an injunction that would have prevented the sale of the devices.

On May 16, Apple and Google announced that they had agreed to drop all patent litigation against each other.

Game over for Nintendo infringement case

Nintendo scored a victory in a Texas district court, which granted a joint motion to dismiss a patent infringement suit filed against it by Wall Wireless.

The dismissal follows the USPTO's invalidation of the patents at issue.

Wall Wireless had claimed that products including the Nintendo DS, Nintendo DS Lite and one of its Mario Kart titles infringed on at least two claims in its US Patent No. 6,640, 086. The patent related to a "Method and apparatus for creating and distributing real-time interactive media content through wireless communication networks and the internet."

Nintendo told media that the Japanese patent office also recently found that it did not violate Japanese patents owned by Wall Wireless.



Managing IP published the following stories this week, available to subscribers and trialists:

Rader steps down as Chief Judge of the Federal Circuit

The prospects for patent reform after Leahy bill pulled

PTAB grants motion to amend in IPR for first time

Chinese authorities suspend InterDigital anti-trust investigation

Leahy takes patent reform off Senate agenda

Sheppard Mullin adds partner in New York

IP specialists give tips on cashing in on patents

Litigation financing: How small inventors can tackle Goliaths

Taylor English hires former Rader clerk

How arbitration may help with international enforcement challenges

Could Nortel have doubled the $4.5 billion paid for its IP portfolio?

Supreme Court rules laches cannot be evoked in Raging Bull case

From the blog:

Are big changes coming in India?

How to develop a talent pipeline

Rader steps down as Chief Judge of the Federal Circuit

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ICYMI: Our report on this week's #SCOTUS ruling in Star Athletica v Varsity Brands https://t.co/Rf3TWplNUrhttps://t.co/TrZ5YcvKQr

Mar 24 2017 01:35 ·  reply ·  retweet ·  favourite
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@Oblon_IP @PatentPostGrant Congratulations Scott! #mipawards

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@KellyIPllp Well done to all at the firm!

Mar 24 2017 02:16 ·  reply ·  retweet ·  favourite

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