News and Commentary
In a summary of his forthcoming law review article, Sam Howard discusses the issues with Fair, Reasonable, and Non-Discriminatory (FRAND) patent licensing terms for standard essential patents. While standard setting organizations have been reluctant to formalize royalty rules for standard essential patents, he argues that they should incorporate standards beyond the scattered case law which already exists for valuing reasonable royalties for SEPs.
After failing at the Ninth Circuit, Denise Daniels is petitioning the Supreme Court to examine her allegations of copyright infringement against Disney. Daniels pitched a show called “The Moodsters,” with color-coded characters representing different emotions, to Disney in the mid-’00s. She alleges that Disney’s film Inside Out, based on a similar premise, infringes on her idea.
Niki Minaj has prevailed in claims of infringement brought against her by Tracy Chapman. The latter claimed that the use of portions of her song “Baby Can I hold You” in the former’s “Sorry” constituted infringement, even though it was never officially released. The judge ruled that artists must be free to experiment with such sampling, and that Minaj’s use was fair and thus not infringing.
The Federal Circuit has affirmed that Federal Reserve Banks are to be considered “persons” in the context of filing a Covered Business Method review at the USPTO. In this case, twelve Federal Reserve banks sought a declaratory judgment that the claims in a patent for fraud detection and check clearing were ineligible under the 2014 Alice decision.
In IAM, Adam Houldsworth rights about recent changes in the landscape of the Bayh-Dole Act. Knowledge Ecology International has found at least eleven instances of patents which failed to disclose support from DARPA, and in the face of high drug prices increasing pressure is being applied to exercise march-in rights which would grant compulsory licenses on patents.
In an effort to further develop cutting-edge technology, the CIA has announced the creation of CIA Labs, which will allow researchers to claim patent rights in inventions developed there and a 15% stake in any royalties with a cap of $150,000.