Tech Law Journal Daily E-Mail Alert
December 19, 2001, 9:00 AM ET, Alert No. 331.
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Doctrine of Equivalents
12/17. The U.S. Court of Appeals (FedCir) issued its opinion in Intermatic v. Lamson & Sessions, a patent infringement case involving the doctrine of equivalents. Intermatic holds U.S. Patent No. 5,280,135, titled "Outdoor Electrical Outlet Cover". It filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (NDIll) against Lamson & Sessions alleging patent infringement. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Intermatic. The Appeals Court addressed the issues of claim construction, literal infringement, the doctrine of equivalents, and invalidity. The Appeals Court affirmed in part and reversed in part. Judge Newman dissented in part, regarding the doctrine of equivalents.
12/17. The U.S. Court of Appeals (FedCir) issued its opinion in Bose v. JBL, another patent infringement case involving the doctrine of equivalents. Bose is the owner of  U.S. Patent No. 5,714,721 titled "Porting", which relates to loudspeaker technology. Bose filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (DMass) against JBL alleging patent infringement. JBL moved for summary judgment of non-infringement, both literal and under the doctrine of equivalents. The District Court granted JBL summary judgment of non-infringement with respect to literal infringement, but denied its motion for summary judgment under the doctrine of equivalents. After a bench trial, the District Court entered judgment for Bose and awarded damages. The Appeals Court affirmed.
The Supreme Court will hear oral argument in the Festo case, No. 00-1543, on January 8, 2002. See, Festo Corporation v. Shoketsu Kinzoku Koygo Kabushiki, 234 F.3d 558, 56 USPQ2d 1865 (Fed. Cir. 2000) (en banc), cert. granted, 121 S.Ct. 2519 (2001).  
More News
12/17. The FTC announced that it filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (NDNY) against several defendants located in Montreal, Canada, alleging violation of the Federal Trade Commission Act and the FTC's Telemarketing Sales Rule. The complaint states that the defendants operated a telemarketing scam that targeted elderly U.S. citizens, conned them into disclosing credit card numbers, and then used web site payment services to illegally bill the consumers' credit cards for merchandise they did not order. The FTC also stated that the District Court issued a temporary restraining order. See, FTC release.
12/17. The House Financial Services Committee issued its report on HR 556, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Funding Prohibition Act. See, Report No. 107-339.
12/12. The U.S. Court of Appeals (2ndCir) issued its opinion in USA v. BMI, an antitrust case involving interpretation and enforcement of the BMI consent decree, which pertains to music licensing and related matters. The Appeals Court affirmed in part, and vacated and remanded in part.
Representatives Introduce Bill to Implement NextWave Settlement
12/13. Rep. Bill Tauzin (R-LA), Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI), Rep. Bill Thomas (R-CA), and Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) introduced HR 3484, the Prompt Utilization of Wireless Spectrum Act of 2001, a bill to implement the proposed settlement agreement [PDF] between NextWave, the FCC, DOJ, and re-auction winners.
Rep. Tauzin, the Chairman of the House Commerce Committee, said in a statement in the Congressional Record (December 14, at E2318) that "Nextwave's C block licenses have laid fallow for too long and need to be put to good use. The settlement agreement authorized by the prompt utilization of Wireless Spectrum Act of 2001 may not be the prettiest or easiest way to ensure that these licenses are put to good use. But this legislation, and the corresponding settlement, appear to be the best way to put them to good use."
Similarly, Rep. Conyers, the ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, said in a statement in the Congressional Record (December 14, at E2312) that "It benefits the government by providing ten billion dollars in revenues to our Treasury. It benefits the original license holder by preserving the benefit of the bargain it had originally negotiated. It benefits our bankruptcy code, by preserving the doctrine of the stay and the power of the courts to enforce it, even against the government. And it benefits consumers by permitting the spectrum to come on the market as soon as possible, fostering much needed competition."
The bill was referred to the House Commerce Committee, House Judiciary Committee, House Ways and Means Committee, and House Budget Committee. The settlement agreement is premised upon passage of implementing legislation by December 31, 2001.
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Christmas Schedule
The Tech Law Journal Daily E-Mail Alert will not be published on Monday, December 24, Tuesday, December 25, or Wednesday, December 26.
Wednesday, Dec 19
LOCATION CHANGE. 10:00 AM. The House Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection will hold a hearing titled Electronic Communications Networks in the Wake of September 11th. The witnesses will be Steven Randich (NASDAQ), Matthew Andresen (The Island ECN), Catherine Kinney (NYSE), Kim Bang (Bloomberg Tradebook), Kevin O'Hara (Archipelago), Joel Steinmetz (Instinet), and Keith Jamiatis (NYFIX Millennium). Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL) will preside. Room 2322, Rayburn Building.
10:00 AM - 12:00 NOON. The Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Advisory Committee for the 2003 World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-03 Advisory Committee) will hold a meeting. See, notice in Federal Register. Location: FCC, 445 12th Street, SW, Room TW-C305.
Deadline to submit oppositions and comments to the FCC in response to Cingular Wireless', Nextel's, and Verizon Wireless' petitions for reconsideration of certain provisions of the FCC's October 12 orders addressing and conditionally approving requests for waivers and approval of revised deployment plans for wireless Enhanced 911 (E911) services. See, FCC Notice. (CC Docket No. 94-102.)
Deadline to submit comments to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) in response to its Request for Comments on Deployment of Broadband Networks and Advanced Telecommunications. See, notice.
Thursday, Dec 20
10:00 AM. The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a business meeting. Location: Room 226, Dirksen Building.
1:30 PM. The U.S. International Telecommunication Advisory Committee (ITAC) will hold a meeting regarding preparations for the 2002 World Telecommunication Development Conference (WTDC). See, notice in Federal Register. Location: State Department, Room 1408.
Friday, Dec 21
8:30 AM. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairman Timothy Muris will speak at the Brookings Institute roundtable titled "Trade and Investment Policy." Location: Brookings Institute, Falk Auditorium, 1775 Massachusetts Avenue, NW.
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