Bonum Certa Men Certa

Supreme Cases and Some Supreme Outcomes That Tighten Patent Scope in the United States

Better hurry up before Trump ruins the Supreme Court

Cruz for Supreme Court



Summary: Additional and belated remarks about Apple's patent attacks on Samsung's Android phones and the upcoming Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision on Life Technologies Corp. v Promega Corp.

THINGS are about to change for the better at the USPTO because upcoming SCOTUS cases won't challenge Alice (applicable to software patents) but instead jeopardise other kinds of patents.



Regarding the unanimous decision in favour of Android or Linux or Samsung (depends on how one looks at it), there have been endless streams of articles by now. We saw hundreds of articles in English (about 300 articles!) about it, not counting all the Apple fan blogs and articles in other languages. There's also my personal take on it, as covered the other day (hours after the decision had been handed down). For those looking for some decent coverage, see Jurist, AOL, Ars, El Reg or even lesser known sites. Less objective (for either side) were IP Watch, MIP, TechDirt, and Bristows staff at IP Kat. Be careful of Apple advocacy sites disguised as news sites. Even SJVN decided to cover it, although it's typically outside his scope. Florian Müller did a blog post about it and said: "Large parts of the (U.S. and global) tech industry will breathe a sigh of relief now."

"We must understand that when it comes to patents the quantity (the more, the merrier) and quality (more is less or less is more) should be grounded on evidence-based analysis, not Battistellite 'logic' and Republican instincts.""Yesterday's Supreme Court ruling," he later added, "means design patents won't spell doom for alleged infringers anymore, but a lot depends on the Fed. Circuit" (CAFC). "The Supreme Court said what the Fed. Cir. got wrong; but now the same Fed. Cir still has to get it right," he continued. "In 2017, we'll see what happens." As we noted here before, only the lawyers win in these disputes that last half a decade or longer.

IAM always complains when patent scope is restricted and this time was no exception; they're hardly even closeted about their patent maximalist bias.

The net outcome here is a major loss for another kind of patent. We must understand that when it comes to patents the quantity (the more, the merrier) and quality (more is less or less is more) should be grounded on evidence-based analysis, not Battistellite 'logic' and Republican instincts. The EPO now moves in the opposite direction, broadening patent scope rather than tightening it.

SCOTUS is going to tackle another kind of patents quite soon (Life Technologies Corp. v Promega Corp.), as an article by Dennis Crouch, another from MIP, and more from patents-centric sites state with concern. Many articles have appeared in recent days and most of them are from the patent microcosm. We too mentioned this case before.

We continue to worry that Trump-appointed Justices (new appointees) to SCOTUS will ruin all/most of the patent progress made in recent years. Conservative think tanks, for example, are out in full force calling for the end of Alice as we know it. We'll cover that separately later tonight.

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