|Macromedia Sues Adobe for
filed a complaint
District Court (NDCal) against Adobe Systems alleging patent
infringement. Both Macromedia and Adobe make software products
for creating and editing web pages and web sites. Macromedia's
products include Dreamweaver, Dreamweaver UltraDev and
Fireworks. Adobe makes GoLive. Macromedia alleges in its two
count complaint that Adobe infringed two of its patents, U.S.
Patent No. 5,845,299, titled "Draw-Based Editor for
Web Pages", and U.S.
Patent No. 5,911,145, titled "Hierarchical Structure
Editor for Web Sites".
Macromedia seeks declarations that Adobe has infringed these
two patents, preliminary and permanent injunctions against
further infringement, compensatory damages, treble damages for
willful infringement, interest and attorneys' fees.
Macromedia is represented by Darryl Woo of the law firm of Fenwick & West. The
case was filed in the San Jose Division of the Northern
District of California, and is numbered 01-03940 SI (Judge
|New SEC Chairman Addresses
|10/22. Securities and Exchange
Commission (SEC) Chairman Harvey Pitt gave a speech
in Miami Beach, Florida, to the American Institute of
Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) Governing Council in
which he touched on reforming the financial disclosure model
in light of new technologies and the Internet.
Pitt stated that "It is axiomatic that comprehensible
information is the lifeblood of strong and vibrant markets.
The time is right for us to step back and rethink our
financial disclosure model, with an eye toward simplifying it
so that everyone can understand the fundamentals of every
company and find absolute comparability from firm to firm.
Technology will play a very exciting role in this process.
"As we have seen in the post September 11 world, the
Internet is capable of disseminating critical information
quickly. It is inherently customized: users can find as much
or as little information as they want and quickly. Information
is there and it is powerful. In rethinking our existing
disclosure system, we should consider how technology can put
information into investors' hands more promptly and help
investors sort through material in a user friendly way,"
This was Pitt's first formal speech as Chairman of the SEC. He
used it to reach out to accountants, a group often criticized
by former SEC Chairman Arthur Levitt. Pitt stated that "I
have been privileged to represent this fine organization and
each of the Big Five accounting firms that are among its
members. Predicated on that experience, I know that the
profession is comprised of individuals who are committed to
our disclosure system, and who are critical partners with us
in making financial disclosures meaningful. Somewhere along
the way, accountants became afraid to talk to the SEC, and the
SEC appeared to be unwilling to listen to the profession.
Those days are ended."
|WTO Meeting in Doha
Scheduled to Proceed
|10/22. World Trade
Organization (WTO) Director General Mike Moore issued this
statement about the WTO's 4th Ministerial Conference,
scheduled to take place in Doha, Qatar, on November 9-13:
"We are going ahead. I am confident with the planning and
preparations here in Doha. If something seismic or
catastrophic happens we will reconsider. But we're planning to
come here to Doha in just over two weeks time".
|10/22. The U.S. Court
of Appeals (6thCir) issued its opinion
in Herman Miller v. Palazzetti Imports and Exports, a
dispute between furniture companies over designs of lounge
chairs and ottomans. Plaintiff prevailed in the District Court
on its trademark infringement and dilution, unfair
competition, and right of publicity claims. The District Court
dismissed its trade dress infringement and dilution and false
advertising claims. The Court of Appeals affirmed in part and
reversed in part.
10/19. A grand jury of the U.S. District Court (CDCal)
returned an indictment against Peter Ebel charging production,
transportation and possession of child pormography. The
evidence was found by U.S. Customs on his PC and CDs when he
arrived at Los Angeles International Airport on a flight from
Eastern Europe. See, release.
|DOJ Seeks to Block
SunGard's Purchase of Comdisco's Availability Solutions
|10/22. The U.S.
Department of Justice filed a complaint in U.S. District
Court (DDC) against SunGard
and Comdisco seeking to
block SunGard's purchase of Comdisco's Availability Solutions
business for $825 Million. Comdisco, which has filed for
protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, announced the sale on
October 12. See, release.
Availability Solutions provides disaster protection and relief
to keep computer systems accessible in disasters and other
SunGard Ch/CEO James Mann said in an October 22 release
that "We believe that the government's case is without
merit, and we look forward to proving that in court. This
transaction is procompetitive, since it will assure that there
is a strong independent business continuity vendor to compete
against the hardware giants with enhanced services and reduced
Mann added that "in light of the recent attacks on
America's infrastructure, it is contrary to public policy for
the government to oppose a transaction that obviously will
strengthen the ability of SunGard and Comdisco to service the
nation's disaster recovery needs. Now more than ever, our
country needs a vital and capable business continuity
industry. With Comdisco in bankruptcy and its Availability
Solutions division continuing to support companies devastated
by the terrible events of September 11th, a prompt resolution
of this antitrust challenge is critical."
Comdisco filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition in U.S. Bankruptcy Court (NDIll)
in July. The sale of Availability Solutions is also subject to
approval by the Bankruptcy Court.
|Commerce Secretary Urges
Senate to Extend Net Tax Ban
|10/22. Secretary of Commerce Donald
Evans released a statement
in which he encouraged the Senate to pass an extension of the
moratorium on access taxes and on new and discriminatory
Internet taxes. The House passed HR 1552,
the Internet Non- Discrimination Act, on October 16 by a
unanimous voice vote. This bill extends the current moratorium
for two years. The current ban, which was enacted in the 1998
Internet Tax Freedom Act, expired on October 21. Said Evans,
"we urge Senators to extend the bipartisan moratorium as
soon as possible."
Evans continued: "During the campaign, the President
expressed his desire to see a five-year extension of the
existing moratorium on multiple or discriminatory Internet
taxation, and the continued ban on Internet access taxes. We
have reiterated that desire recently. But whether for five
years or two, the most important thing is to extend the
moratorium. I commend the U.S. House of Representatives for
its expeditious handling of this issue, and I look forward to
working with Congress on tax simplification efforts. Right
now, however, we need to say no to new taxes and extend the
Internet moratorium for at least two years. In a time of
uncertainty, we must continue to reassure consumers,
businesses, and markets that we continue to create the right
environment for growth."
|DOC Official Discusses
|10/18. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Samuel Bodman gave an
interview with CCTV in Shanghai, China, in which he addressed
information technologies and digital divides. He stated that
there "will be a series of individual projects, be they
related to preventing the spread of infectious disease, to the
very vital programs that APEC is sponsoring on e-commerce and
on educating the citizens of this region about the
opportunities made available by the Internet and by related
information technology. Attacking this whole question of the
digital divide such that the poorest person will have an
opportunity to join in the Internet revolution, if you will,
and have an opportunity to improve his or her life. And that's
really what it's all about." See, transcript.
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|Tuesday, Oct 23
|The U.S. Capitol is scheduled to re-open. But, neither the
Senate nor House office buildings will be open. The Senate is
scheduled to reconvene at 9:30 AM, and resume consideration of
HR 2506, the Foreign Operations Appropriations Act. The
House is scheduled to reconvene at 12:30 PM.
10:00 AM. FCC Chairman Michael
Powell will hold a press conference. Location: FCC
Meeting Room, 12th Street Level, 445 12th Street SW,
|Wednesday, Oct 24
|10:00 AM. The House
Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and
Consumer Protection is scheduled to hold a hearing titled
"Challenges Facing the Federal Trade Commission."
FTC Chairman Timothy Muris will be the only witness.
Location: Room 2123, Rayburn Building.
10:00 AM - 12:00 NOON. The FCC will hold a public forum on the
Commission Registration System (CORES) and FCC Registration
Number. Location: FCC, 445 12th Street, SW, Commission Meeting
Room, Washington DC.
2:00 PM. The Senate
Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Technology,
Terrorism and Government Information is scheduled to hold a
hearing titled "The World's Most Wanted Terrorists - Who
Are They and What Do They Want?" Location: Room 226,
2:30 - 4:30 PM. Roe Hemenway, Manager of Optical Network
Equipment Research at Corning's Sullivan Park research
facility, will give a presentation on optical fiber
communications. See, FCC
release. Location: TW-C305, Commission Meeting Room, FCC,
445 12th Street, SW, Washington DC.
Deadline to submit comments to the FTC's
Bureau of Competition regarding AOL Time Warner's requests for
approval of two alternative cable broadband ISPs. On September
26 and 24, AOLTW submitted two motions to the FTC titled
"Motion for Approval of Non Affiliated ISP and
Alternative Cable Broadband ISP Service Agreement". AOLTW
is required, pursuant to ¶ II.A.2 of the FTC's Decision and
Order [PDF] approving the merger of AOL and Time Warner,
dated April 17, 2001, to enter into such agreements, and
obtain FTC approval. The FTC published a redacted
version of the motion [PDF] regarding AOLTW's agreement
with Internet Junction Corp.
and a redacted
version of the motion [PDF] regarding AOLTW's agreement
with New York Connect.Net, Ltd.
|Thursday, Oct 25
|8:30 - 10:00 AM. Harold Furchtgott-Roth
and others will hold an informal discussion titled "The
Telecommunications Sector in a Slowing Economy". RSVP to
Veronique Rodman at 202 862-4871 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Location:
American Enterprise Institute, 1150 17th Street, NW, 11th
Floor Conference Room, Washington DC.
9:30 AM. The Senate
Commerce Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing to
examine promoting broadband, focusing on securing content and
accelerating transition to digital television. Location: Room
253, Russell Building.
9:30 AM. The House
Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Telecommunications
and the Internet is scheduled to hold a legislative hearing on
2417, the Dot Kids Domain Name Act of 2001. Location: Room
2123, Rayburn Building.
10:00 AM. The Senate
Judiciary Committee might hold an executive business
meeting. Room 226, Dirksen Building.
12:15 PM. The Federal
Communications Bar Association's (FCBA) Common Carrier
Committee will host a brown bag lunch. The speakers will be
Tamara Preiss, Blair Levin, and Jonathan Askin. The topic will
be "Perspectives on Local Competition and Local
Competitors". RSVP to Naja
Wheeler. Location: Wiley
Rein & Fielding, 1750 K Street, 10th Floor, Washington
Deadline to reply submit comments to the FCC in its rule making
proceeding regarding locating spectrum bands below 3 Ghz for
possible reallocation for Third Generation (3G)
wireless services, and for other purposes. (ET Docket Nos.
00-258 and 95-18 and IB Docket No. 99-81.) See, notice
in Federal Register.
Deadline to submit reply comments to the FCC in its rule making
proceeding regarding permitting Mobile Satellite Service (MSS)
operators flexibility to use their spectrum for land based
transmitters. (IB Docket No. 01-185, ET Docket No. 95-18.)
in Federal Register.
|Friday, Oct 26
|9:30 AM - 12:00 NOON. The American
Enterprise Institute (AEI) will host a panel discussion
titled "What Should the Government Do about the
Transition to Digital Television?" The participants will
be Harold Furchtgott-Roth (AEI), Stanley Besen (Charles River Associates),
Thomas Hazlett (AEI), Bruce Owen (Economists
Incorporated), Edward Fritts (NAB), Robert
Sachs (NCTA), Gary
Shapiro (CEA), Richard
Wiley (Wiley Rein & Fielding),
and Gregory Sidak (AEI). Location: Wohlstetter Conference
Center, Twelfth Floor, 1150 17th Street, NW, Washington DC.
11:00 AM. The Heritage
Foundation will host a panel discussion titled "How
Internet Based School Report Cards are Revolutionizing
Educational Accountability." The speakers will be Bill
Owens (Governor of Colorado), Eugene Hickok (Undersecretary of
Education), and Tom Hinton (Heritage). Location: 214
Massachusetts Ave NE, Washington DC.