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05.19.16

CAFC Rules Against Software Patents But Witness With Horror the Silence From Patent Lawyers (Bias by Omission)

Posted in America, Law, Patents at 3:24 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Only an article or two about the decision against software patents and two dozen or so about a decision in their favour

Status quo bias
Reference: Status quo bias

Summary: In an effort to protect software patents in the United States, where these patents came from in the first place (and continue to spread from), patent lawyers pretend not to see cases where software patents get invalidated and instead focus on the rare exception

The Supreme Court ruled against software patents two years ago. Things have changed thoroughly since then. Right now patent lawyers hope that another software patent/s case will reach the Supreme Court, which can potentially change course and reset the record (precedence).

“It doesn’t seem as though anything that can change Alice is on the horizon.”Patent maximalists (lawyers) watch closely as the Supreme Court picks up cases. To quote Professor Dennis Crouch’s overview (he keeps updated this kind of SCOTUS zeitgeist): “It is now time to begin looking for an opinion in the Halo/Stryker regarding whether the Federal Circuit’s test for willful infringement is too rigid. Those cases were argued in February 2016. We can also expect a decision in Cuozzo prior to the end June 2016.”

It doesn’t seem as though anything that can change Alice is on the horizon. This is good news. The Cuozzo case we have already mentioned here earlier this month and last month. It’s not going to change takeaways from Alice.

“They would rather ignore or hide it from the public/judges/clients.”According to this new post, Enfish v Microsoft [1, 2] is already forgotten as CAFC rules against software patent, quite frankly as usual. It’s only when it rules for software patents that there is typically a media frenzy, initiated by self-serving patent lawyers. To quote IP Kat: “The patentability of computer-implemented inventions has been in doubt in the United States since the U.S. Supreme Court decision Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank. However, the recent Enfish v. Microsoft case provided some hope to those who favor patentability of computer-implemented inventions. The Federal Circuit has issued another patent eligibility decision, TLI Communications v. AV Automotive, et al. Notably, both Enfish and TLI Communications are authored by Judge Hughes–and reach opposite results, but on different facts.”

We actually found out about this two days ago. Patent Buddy showed that CAFC got back to killing software patents when he wrote: “(1/2)The ’295 patent killed by the CAFC today w/101 has a priority date of 1996. Its a pioneer patent.”

Are they already fixing the Enfish v Microsoft error? After less than a week? As Patent Buddy put it: “Federal Circuit Held Image Manipulation Claims Ineligible under 101/Alice Today: http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/sites/default/files/opinions-orders/15-1372.Opinion.5-12-2016.1.PDF

“Such is the nature of media that is dominated by patent lawyers and their interest groups…”Will patent lawyers quiet down now that this decision is out? Or maybe not mention this newer decision at all? Were the celebrations short lived? So far we have found just one article about this decision (and we watch these things very closely). At the same time, in spite of this newer decision (against software patents), patent lawyers are evidently desperate enough to latch onto the older decision. They just wish to make software patents stay in the US. See for example what Michael D. Van Loy and Howard Wisnia from Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. have just published. Stinson Leonard Street LLP, likewise, cherry-picks the pro-software patents decisions, as usual. Gerard M. Donovan, Richard A. Graham, Amardeep (Sonny) Grewal and Marc S. Kaufman say that “Federal Circuit’s Enfish Is An Important 101 Decision” because it serves their agenda and it’s only a case like this which they are likely to cite in the future, not TLI Communications v. AV Automotive, et al.

MIP rightly called Enfish v Microsoft as it should. A “rare boost” is the way it got dubbed and MIP added: “The Federal Circuit has found software patents valid under Alice for only the second time, in Enfish v Microsoft.”

Compare that to the many times CAFC ruled against software patents, including the latest decision. Where were software patents lobbyists/proponents/boosters when these decisions happened? They would rather ignore or hide it from the public/judges/clients. Such is the nature of media that is dominated by patent lawyers and their interest groups…

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