Retail Patent Litigation

Illinois Patent Trial Attorney | R. David Donoghue

Main Street Patent Coalition: Giving Voice to How Trolls Harm Retailers

Posted in Industry Issues, Patent Trolls

The Main Street Patent Coalition has formed as a group of trade associations representing main street-type businesses has come together to give voice the epidemic of patent trolls targeting retailers and other Main Street businesses and to push Congress for necessary reforms.  The Coalition includes key retail trade associations including:

The Main Street Patent Coalition is using its megaphone to focus Congress on the following issues (in the Coalition’s own words) that need to be addressed by Congress, each of which will benefit retailers:

  • TRANSPARENCY: Eliminate trolls’ ability to hide behind multiple shell corporations
  • PATENT QUALITY: Disarm trolls by improving patent quality and providing a way to fight bad patents
  • DEMAND LETTERS: Make it easier to punish trolls that send fraudulent and abusive shakedown demand letters
  • STOP TROLLS: Protect end users from troll lawsuits based on infringements by intermediary manufacturers and producers
  • TROLLS PAY: Make trolls pay when they sue companies frivolously and stop runaway litigation costs

Crowdfunding Patent Troll Defense

Posted in Industry Issues, Patent Trolls

There is lots of talk right now about changing the patent system to reduce the troll problem, and there are plenty of providers coming on the scene offering new ways to level the playing field.  But there is one that is especially unique.  Personal Audio sued ACE Broadcasting Network in the E.D. Texas for producing podcasts.  ACE Broadcasting is the company of comedian/personality Adam Carolla and produces Adam Carolla’s podcast, which is the #1 downloaded podcast on the iTunes store.  Personal Audio likely expected podcasters, like ACE Broadcasting, to fold and pay a defense cost-based license fee.  Instead, Personal Audio is getting a fight.  And ACE Broadcasting is doing it in an interesting way — crowdfunding.  ACE Broadcasting has begun a funding drive on FundAnything.com — https://fundanything.com/en/campaigns/patenttroll.  Carolla is asking fans of his shows, other podcasters and troll opponents generally to become “Troll Fighters.”  He is also offering t-shirts and hats with an anti-troll logo — THEY HOLD THE PATENTS.  WE HOLD THE POWER.  As of the writing of this post, the crowd has raised nearly $85,000 to fund ACE Broadcasting Network’s suit against Personal Audio.  While that sum is modest as compared to the cost to defend a patent case through trial, it will cover at least the majority of a summary judgment motion briefing and argument.  Maybe it will be the summary judgment motion that wins the case and, assuming it is an invalidity motion or a noninfringement argument based upon shared industry characteristics, protect the entire podcasting industry.

And Adam Carolla’s campaign is not the only crowdfunding effort to defend against Personal Audio.  The Electronic Frontier Foundation also crowdfunded an Inter Partes Review petition as part of its Save Podcasts campaign.

Patent Reform: Patent Office Reaches Out to Troll Targets

Posted in Patent Litigation Tips

As a step in carrying out President Obama’s effort to curb abusive patent troll litigation, the Patent Office has created a valuable resource center for targets of patent troll suits and demand letters, although they refer to it as “abusive patent litigation.”  The site has considerable value for retailers, both those facing their first suit and those who see a steady course of them.  The site has pages collecting information and resources for those who have been sued, those who have received a demand letter, and more general background information:

The most valuable section of the site for most retailers will be the Resources and Glossary page.  The page aggregates well-known legal resources like Westlaw and Google Patents.  But the value comes from specialized resources, including those created specifically for the Patent Office and this resource page.  It offers information regarding related cases from three well known entities to people steeped in patent litigation:

  • Docket Navigator – Offering similar, but more limited, content as it provides to subscribers, including information about related cases and construed claims terms from the patents in suit.  In the interest of full disclosure, I work with Docket Navigator to create the Blog’s monthly retail patent litigation reports.
  • Lex Machina – Provides information on related cases and parties, again in a more limited format than it offers subscribers.
  • RPX – Provides metrics and analytics about the market & legal activity of an asserted patent.  In the interest of full disclosure, I am a lead trial counsel on RPX Insurance’s patent troll defense counsel panel.

The Patent Office’s resource page also offers several sites that aggregate demand letters, allowing a retailer to get at least some anecdotal evidence of what others are seeing from the same troll:

  • AskPatents – A crowd sourced forum about patents, including prior art for specific patents.  Of course, be careful not to offer any privileged or confidential information on these forums.
  • ThatPatentTool – Provides the ability to share and connect with others on demand letters.
  • Trolling Effects – A searchable database of letters that have been voluntarily provided to the site, and an FAQ on demand letters.

Thank you to the Patent Office and the White House for creating this resource.  It will be valuable for retailers and for any troll target more generally.

 

Patent Reform Moving in the Senate Again?

Posted in Industry Issues, Patent Trolls

After the House passed the Innovation Act, the Senate was expected to act in the first two months of the year.  Then in February, the Senate slowed down and their were rumors that a full bill would not make it to a vote before Congress went home to campaign for mid-term elections.  But late last week, Stephen Schatz, a Senior Director at the National Retail Federation, reported that NRF was hearing that the Senate was planning a series of votes on patent reform-related bills in March.  While it may not be everything retailers need from a full patent reform bill, even partial movement on patent reform should be a significant benefit.

November 2013 Retail Patent Litigation Report

Posted in Retail Litigation Report

November was relatively active for year-end.  Trolls that often take off the holidays are working through them this year.  Repeat filers included Kroy IP, Data Carriers, eDekka and ArrivalStar.

As usual, I prepared the report in partnership with and using Docket Navigator and its powerful database.  Docket Navigator is a valuable resource, and the place to go if you want to keep track of new patent litigation filings or want to know what is happening in particular cases, how your judge has historically handled a particular type of motion, or a particular plaintiff’s litigation history.

Finally, please let me know if you have thoughts about the report or changes you would like to see.  I am preparing it as a service for retailers and their supply chain who may want an overview of the patent litigation landscape.  So, I am very open to ways to improve the report for you.

Arunachalam v. Bath & Body Works Brand Management, Inc., (E.D. Tex.).

Claim:             Infringement

Defendant:     Bath & Body Works Brand Management, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Dr. Lakshmi Arunachalam

Pls. Cnsl:        Hopkins & Carley

Patent:            8,346,894 (Real-time web transactions from web applications).

Novitaz, Inc. v. Shopkick, Inc., (D. Conn.).

Judge:             District Judge Janet Bond Arterton

Claim:             Infringement

Defendant:     Shopkick, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Novitaz, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Gray Robinson; and St. Onge Steward Johnston & Reens

Patents:          7,962,361 (Customer relationship management system for physical locations); and 8,229,787 (Customer relationship management system for physical locations).

Kroy IP Holdings, LLC v. Hallmark Cards, Inc. (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases).

Defendants:

  • The Men’s Wearhouse, Inc.
  • Mrs. Fields Famous Brands, LLC d/b/a TCBY
  • Starbucks Corporation

Plaintiff:         Kroy IP Holdings, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Austin Hansley PLLC

Patent:            7,054,830 (System and method for incentive programs and award fulfillment).

Hawk Technology Systems, LLC v. Burlington Coat Factory Direct Corporation, (S.D. Fla.) (multiple cases).

Judges:           District Judge James I. Cohn; District Judge Patricia A. Seitz

Claim:             Infringement

Defendants:  

  • Burlington Coat Factory Direct Corporation
  • University of Miami
  • Brickell Financial Centre, LLC

Plaintiff:         Hawk Technology Systems, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Lipscomb Eisenberg & Baker

Patent:           RE43462 (Video monitoring and conferencing system).

Marshall Feature Recognition, LLC v. Best Buy Company, Inc. (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases).

Defendants:

  • Moen Incorporated
  • Reverse Mortgage Solutions Inc. d/b/a Security 1 Lending
  • Tilly’s Inc.

Plaintiff:         Marshall Feature Recognition, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Austin Hansley PLLC

Patent:           6,886,750 (Method and apparatus for accessing electronic data via a familiar printed medium).

Wireless Media Innovations, LLC v. Sears Holdings Corporation, (D. Del.).

Claim:             Infringement

Defendant:     Sears Holdings Corporation

Plaintiff:         Wireless Media Innovations, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Stamoulis & Weinblatt

Patents:          5,712,789 (Container monitoring system and method); and 6,148,291 (Container and inventory monitoring methods and systems).

Data Carriers, LLC v. Avaya, Inc., (D. Del.) (multiple cases).

Defendants:

  • BeachBody LLC
  • Boot Barn, Inc.
  • CompSource, Inc.
  • Discovery Communications, Inc.
  • Disney Shopping, Inc.
  • eBags, Inc.
  • Expedia, Inc.
  • Frontier Airlines Holdings, Inc.
  • HSN, Inc.
  • JetBlue Airways Corporation
  • JP Boden Services Inc.
  • Recreational Equipment, Inc.
  • Sierra Trading Post, Inc.
  • Zazzle, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Data Carriers, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Bayard; and Gardere Wynne Sewell

Patent:           5,388,198 (Proactive presentation of automating features to a computer user).

Adrain v. Amazon.com, Inc. et al, (E.D. Tex.)

Claim:             Infringement

Defendants:

  • Amazon.com, Inc.
  • Best Buy Company, Inc.
  • GameStop Corp.
  • Microsoft Corporation
  • Target Corporation
  • Toys ‘R’ Us, Inc.
  • Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Plaintiff:         John B. Adrain

Pls. Cnsl:        Capshaw DeRieux; Fairchild Price Haley & Smith; Ireland Carroll & Kelley; and Polasek Quisenberry & Errington

Patent:           5,831,669 (Facility monitoring system with image memory and correlation).

eDekka LLC v. Amazon.com, Inc. (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases).

Defendants:

  • Apple Inc.
  • Bestbuy.com, LLC
  • Blackberry Commerce Corporation
  • Blackberry Corporation
  • CDW Corporation
  • Costco Wholesale Corporation
  • JC Penney Corporation, Inc.
  • JCP Media, Inc.
  • Bodybuilding.com, LLC
  • HSNi, LLC
  • HSN, Inc.
  • Liberty Interative Corporation
  • Macys.com, Inc.
  • Office Depot, Inc.
  • Pizza Hut, Inc.
  • Sally Beauty Supply LLC
  • Samsung Telecommunications America LLC
  • Sears Holdings Management Corporation
  • Sears, Roebuck and Co.
  • Sony Electronics Inc.
  • Staples, Inc.
  • Symantec Corporation
  • Target Corporation
  • The Gap, Inc.
  • W W Grainger, Inc.

Plaintiff:         eDekka LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Tadlock Law Firm

Patent:           6,266,674 (Random access information retrieval utilizing user-defined labels).

ArrivalStar SA et al v. Lululemon USA Inc. (S.D. Fla.) (multiple cases).

Judge:             District Judge Kathleen M. Williams

Defendants:

  • Dunkin’ Brands, Inc.
  • Starbucks Coffee Company
  • GameStop, Inc.
  • Lenovo (United States) Inc.
  • PetSmart, Inc.
  • PETCO Animal Supplies Stores, Inc.
  • Save Mart Supermarkets

Plaintiffs:

  • ArrivalStar SA
  • Melvino Technologies Limited

Pls.Cnsl:         McMahon Law Firm

Patents:          6,904,359 (Notification systems and methods with user-definable notifications based upon occurance of events); 6,952,645 (System and method for activation of an advance notification system for monitoring and reporting status of vehicle travel); and 7,400,970 (System and method for an advance notification system for monitoring and reporting proximity of a vehicle).

Genetec Inc. v. Hawk Technology Systems, LLC, (S.D. Fla.).

Claim:             Declaratory Judgment

Defendant:     Hawk Technology Systems, LLC

Plaintiff:         Genetec Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Jones Day

Patent:           RE43462 (Video monitoring and conferencing system).

December in Review: A Good Month in the Fight Against Patent Trolls

Posted in Industry Issues

I am pleased to have the following guest post from David Balto.  David Balto is the former Policy Director of the Federal Trade Commission.  He represents retailers in IP and antitrust issues before the courts, Congress and regulatory agencies.

December was a busy month in the fight against patent trolls. Retailers represented their interests in fighting patent troll abuses in all three branches of the government. Retailers weighed in before Congress on key legislation, before the FTC on their industry wide investigation, and the Supreme Court.

Congress has been very busy trying to push through patent reform to stop patent troll abuse. On December 5, the House passed the Innovation Act by a wide margin.  The Innovation Act allows for fee shifting to patent trolls, creates heightened pleading requirements, permits courts to limit discovery until after claim construction to lower costs, as well as many other provisions aimed at patent trolls. The Senate Judiciary Committee has also been hard at work and currently has four bills introduced on the patent troll issue. The Senate Judiciary Committee held an extensive hearing on the patent troll issue on December 17, and many Senators were vocal about ending patent troll abuse. The Food Marketing Institute submitted written testimony supporting patent reform and small businesses were represented on the panel by the Printing Industry of America. Senators were very receptive to retailer issues concerning patent trolls.

The Federal Trade Commission has proposed a 6(b) study of patent troll business practices. Section 6(b) of the FTC Act gives the FTC broad powers to issue subpoenas to request information from industry participants to investigate market practices. This power has previously led to critical reforms and also assists the government in enforcing current laws. The FTC accepted public comments on the study and retail groups were at the forefront of calling for a tough and thorough study — retail groups such as the Food Marketing Institute, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, the National Restaurant Association, and the National Retail Federation weighed in. The FTC’s next step is to submit its proposal and comments to the Office of Management and Budget for review and the retailer advocacy will play an important role and will undoubtedly aid the FTC in getting a comprehensive study on patent trolls approved.

On December 9 the Supreme Court accepted amicus briefs in one of at least two cases this term that will decide issues important to the fight against patent trolls. Octane Fitness v. Icon Health and Fitness could reverse precedent that makes it nearly impossible for a defendant to recover attorney’s fees in a patent case. If the Supreme Court makes it easier for patent troll victims to recover attorney’s fees it would remove much of the leverage patent trolls wield to coerce settlements. The Food Marketing Institute submitted the only amicus brief representing retailer interests on this issue. This brief should go far to educating the Supreme Court on the problems facing retailers in troll litigation.

December was a successful month, but there is still much to accomplish. Legislation needs to be passed, the Federal Trade Commission needs to be more active in fighting patent troll abuse, and the Supreme Court will be accepting amicus briefs late January in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank, another important case that concerns subject matter patentability.  Retailers will continue to play a vital role in ending patent troll abuse through thoughtful advocacy before all three branches of the government.

Non-Practicing Entity Patent Litigation 2013: Plaintiff and Defense Perspectives

Posted in Legal Seminars

Last month, I chaired a day-long PLI program discussing troll cases.  The day was an excellent dialogue on changes in the law impacting troll cases and trends in defending against trolls.  We heard from the general counsel of a start-up with a unique perspective on dealing with troll suits in young, growing businesses.  And we had experts on the current patent reform legislation, the state of patent damages and the ITC domestic industry requirement.  The agenda included:

  • The View from the C-Suite: How a Start-Up GC Faces NPEs – Sean Patrick Butler
  • ITC: Recent Developments in Domestic Industry and ITC Law – Stefani E. Shanberg
  • Panel on NPE litigation – Anthony E. Dowell, Peter Kirk, Amy G. O’Toole, and R. David Donoghue
  • Damages Update: Apportionment, RAND, and Other Federal Circuit Decisions Sonal N. Mehta, Cynthia Bright, and Ahmed J. Davis
  • Overview of NPE Reform Legislation with a Focus on the Practical Impact of Legislation – Laura A. Sheridan
  • Strategies of Defending Against NPEs – R David Donoghue and Steven E. Jedlinski

Click here to register for a webcast of last month’s program

As I begin to prepare the agenda and faculty for next year’s programs – November 21, 2014 in San Francisco and December 19, 2014 in New York City – I would love reader input on what we should discuss this year.  Also, I plan to put a larger emphasis on panels over individual speakers.  So, if you have a unique perspective and would like to join one of my programs as a presenter, please let me know.  Just send me an email.

October 2013 Retail Patent Litigation Report

Posted in Retail Litigation Report

October was a busy month.  Eclipse IP filed cases in C.D. California, Delaware and N.D. Illinois.  Landmark Technology filed numerous cases.  And Cascades Branding and Activision TV also filed cases.

As usual, I prepared the report in partnership with and using Docket Navigator and its powerful database.  Docket Navigator is a valuable resource, and the place to go if you want to keep track of new patent litigation filings or want to know what is happening in particular cases, how your judge has historically handled a particular type of motion, or a particular plaintiff’s litigation history.

Finally, please let me know if you have thoughts about the report or changes you would like to see.  I am preparing it as a service for retailers and their supply chain who may want an overview of the patent litigation landscape.  So, I am very open to ways to improve the report for you.

Eclipse IP LLC v. Ridecharge Inc., (C.D. Cal.; D. Del.; N.D. Ill.) (multiple cases).

Judges:           District Judge Michael W. Fitzgerald; Magistrate Judge Frederick F. Mumm

Claim:             Infringement

Defendants:

  • Ridecharge Inc.
  • Lyft, Inc.
  • Uber Technologies, Inc.
  • Side.Cr, LLC
  • Aeropostale, Inc.
  • American Apparel, Inc.
  • CafePress Inc.
  • Recreational Equipment, Inc.
  • Obey Giant LLC
  • Vitacost.com, Inc.
  • Patagonia, Inc.
  • AutoZone, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Eclipse IP LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Olavi Dunne; Stamoulis & Weinblatt; Newport Trial Group; and Wawrzyn

Patents:          7,064,681 (Response systems and methods for notification systems); 7,479,901 (Mobile thing determination systems and methods based upon user-device location); 7,482,952 (Response systems and methods for notification systems for modifying future notifications); 7,538,691 (Mobile thing determination systems and methods based upon user-device location); 7,119,716 (Response systems and methods for notification systems for modifying future notifications); 7,319,414 (Secure notification messaging systems and methods using authentication indicia); 7,479,899 (Notification systems and methods enabling a response to cause connection between a notified PCD and a delivery or pickup representative); and 7,876,239 (Secure notification messaging systems and methods using authentication indicia)

Four Winds Interactive LLC v. Activision TV, Inc., (D. Col.)

Claim:             Declaratory Judgment

Defendant:     Activision TV, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Four Winds Interactive LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck

Patents:          6,215,411 (Remote control electronic display system); 6,384,736 (Remote control electronic display system); 7,369,058 (Remote control electronic display system); and 8,330,613 (Remote control electronic display system).

Landmark Technology, LLC v.The ADT Corporation (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases).

Defendants:

  • The ADT Corporation           
  • The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc.
  • Briggs & Stratton Corporation
  • Brunswick Corporation
  • Geeknet, Inc.
  • Genesco, Inc.
  • Genuine Parts Company
  • Gregg Appliances Inc.
  • Hugo Boss USA, Inc.
  • The Jones Group, Inc.
  • Nacco Industries, Inc.
  • Samsonite, LLC

Plaintiff:         Landmark Technology, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell; and Parker Bunt & Ainsworth

Patents:          5,576,951 (Automated sales and services system); and 7,010,508 (Automated multimedia data processing network).

Preservation Technologies LLC v. CBS Interactive, Inc. (D. Del.) (multiple cases).

Claim:             Infringement

Defendants:

  • CBS Interactive, Inc.
  • Fox Broadcasting Company
  • New York Times Digital LLC
  • Vimeo, LLC
  • Target Brands, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Preservation Technologies LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        DiNovo Price Ellwanger & Hardy; and Farnan

Patents:          5,813,014 (Method and apparatus for management of multimedia assets); 5,832,495 (Method and apparatus for cataloguing multimedia data); 5,832,499 (Digital library system); 6,092,080 (Digital library system); 6,353,831 (Digital library system); 6,549,911 (Method and apparatus for cataloguing multimedia data); and 6,574,638 (Method and apparatus for cataloguing multimedia data using surveying data).

Cascades Branding Innovation LLC v. Whole Foods Market, Inc., (N.D. Ill.)

Claim:             Infringement

Defendant:     Whole Foods Market, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Cascades Branding Innovation LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Flachsbart & Greenspoon

Patents:          7,768,395 (Brand mapping); 8,106,766 (Brand mapping); and 8,405,504 (Brand mapping).

Activision TV, Inc. v. Smashburger Master LLC (D. Del.) (multiple cases).

Defendants:

  • Smashburger Master LLC
  • Wendy’s International, Inc.
  • Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc.           

Plaintiff:         Activision TV, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Stamoulis & Weinblatt

Patents:          7,369,058 (Remote control electronic display system); and 8,330,613 (Remote control electronic display system).

September 2013 Retail Patent Litigation Report

Posted in Retail Litigation Report

September saw an uptick in troll filings, as you would expected as children get back to school and summer vacations end.  There were a number of the usual suspects — Activsion TV, Cronos, MacroSolve, Cascades Branding and Eclipse IP.

 As usual, I prepared the report in partnership with and using Docket Navigator and its powerful database.  Docket Navigator is a valuable resource, and the place to go if you want to keep track of new patent litigation filings or want to know what is happening in particular cases, how your judge has historically handled a particular type of motion, or a particular plaintiff’s litigation history.

 Finally, please let me know if you have thoughts about the report or changes you would like to see. I am preparing it as a service for retailers and their supply chain who may want an overview of the patent litigation landscape.  So, I am very open to ways to improve the report for you.

 Deckers Outdoor Corporation v. Rue Services Corporation et al, (C.D. Cal.).

Judges:           Magistrate Judge Victor B. Kenton, District Judge John F. Walter

Defendant:     Rue Services Corporation

Plaintiff:         Deckers Outdoor Corporation

Pls. Cnsl:        Blakely Law Group

Relay IP, Inc. v. Brocade Communications Systems, Inc., (D. Del.). 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendant:     Brocade Communications Systems, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Relay IP, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Bayard; and Gardere Wynne Sewell

Patent:            5,331,637 (Multicast routing using core based trees).

Activision TV, Inc. v. MGM Resorts International, (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases).

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • MGM Resorts International
  • Cinemark USA, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Activision TV, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Stamoulis & Weinblatt; and Gillam & Smith

Patents:          7,369,058 (Remote control electronic display system); and 8,330,613 (Remote control electronic display system).

Cronos Technologies, LLC v. ACE Hardware Corporation, (D. Del.) (multiple cases).

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • ACE Hardware Corporation
  • Canon USA, Inc.
  • Dick’s Sporting Goods, Inc.
  • Expedia, Inc.
  • Google, Inc.
  • New Moosejaw, LLC
  • Priceline.com, Incorporated
  • RadioShack Corporation
  • Shoebuy.com, Inc.
  • Travelocity.com LP

Plaintiff:         Cronos Technologies, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Bayard; and Russ August & Kabat

Patent:            5,664,110 (Remote ordering system).

Freeman v. Delta Air Lines, Inc., (N.D. Cal.) (multiple cases). 

Judge:             Magistrate Judge Nathanael M. Cousins; District Judge Edward M. Chen

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Delta Air Lines, Inc.
  • Starbucks Corporation

Plaintiff:         Albert John Freeman

Pls. Cnsl:        Law Offices of John W Carpenter

Patent:            5,661,284 (Commercial transaction system).

Eclipse IP LLC v. Southwest Airlines Co., (C.D. Cal.). (multiple cases).

Judges:           Magistrate Judge Ralph Zarefsky

Defendants:

  • Southwest Airlines Co.
  • Delta Air Lines, Inc.
  • Air Canada
  • US Airways, Inc.
  • Virgin America, Inc.
  • United Airlines, Inc.
  • Groundlink Holdings II LLC
  • Groundlink Holdings LLC
  • Groundlink LLC

Plaintiff:         Eclipse IP LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Olavi Dunne

Patents:          7,119,716 (Response systems and methods for notification systems for modifying future notifications); 7,504,966 (Response systems and methods for notification systems for modifying future notifications); 7,479,899 (Notification systems and methods enabling a response to cause connection between a notified PCD and a delivery or pickup representative); 7,482,952 (Response systems and methods for notification systems for modifying future notifications); 7,064,681 (Response systems and methods for notification systems); 7,479,901(Mobile thing determination systems and methods based upon user-device location); and 7,538,691 (Mobile thing determination systems and methods based upon user-device location).

MacroSolve, Inc. v. Box, Inc., (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases). 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Box, Inc.
  • Carlson Hotels
  • Chipotle Mexican Grill
  • Comcast
  • Discover Bank
  • Discover Financial Services, Inc.
  • Dropbox, Inc.
  • Home Box Office, Inc.
  • MediaFire, LLC
  • Meetup, Inc.
  • Wyndham Hotel Group,
  • Five Guys

Plaintiff:         MacroSolve, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Antonelli Harrington & Thompson

Patent:            7,822,816 (System and method for data management).

c4cast.com, Inc. v. The New York Times (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases).

Judge:             District Judge Rodney Gilstrap

Claim:             Infringement

Defendants:

  • The New York Times Company
  • CBS Interactive, Inc.
  • Time, Inc.
  • Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
  • Gametap, LLC

Plaintiff:         c4cast.com, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Ni Wang & Associates

Patent:            7,958,204 (Community-selected content).

Cascades Branding Innovation LLC v. Kohl’s Corporation, (N.D. Ill.) (multiple cases).

Judge:             District Judge Elaine E. Bucklo

Claim:             Infringement

Defendants:

  • Kohl’s Corporation
  • The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Cascades Branding Innovation LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Flachsbart & Greenspoon

Patents:          7,768,395 (Brand mapping); 8,106,766 (Brand mapping); and 8,405,504 (Brand mapping).

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. v. Lodsys Group, LLC, (E.D. Wis.).

Judge:             Magistrate Judge Nancy Joseph

Claim:             Declaratory Judgment

Defendant:     Lodsys Group, LLC

Plaintiff:         Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Rothwell Figg Ernst & Manbeck; Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek

Patents:          5,999,908 (Customer-based product design module); 7,133,834 (Product value information interchange server); 7,222,078 (Methods and systems for gathering information from units of a commodity across a network); 7,620,565 (Customer-based product design module).

Data Carriers, LLC v. 1-800 Contacts, Inc., (D. Del.) (multiple cases).

Claim:             Infringement

Defendants:

  • 1-800 Contacts, Inc.
  • Amerigroup Corporation

Plaintiff:         Data Carriers, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Bayard; and Gardere Wynne Sewell

Patent:            5,388,198 (Proactive presentation of automating features to a computer user).

August 2013 Retail Patent Litigation Report

Posted in Retail Litigation Report

The trolls went on vacation in August.  A handful of frequent fliers filed actions — Eclipse IP, Clear With Computers, UbiComm, Activision TV and Data Carriers.

As usual, I prepared the report in partnership with and using Docket Navigator and its powerful database.  Docket Navigator is a valuable resource, and the place to go if you want to keep track of new patent litigation filings or want to know what is happening in particular cases, how your judge has historically handled a particular type of motion, or a particular plaintiff’s litigation history.

Finally, please let me know if you have thoughts about the report or changes you would like to see.  I am preparing it as a service for retailers and their supply chain who may want an overview of the patent litigation landscape.  So, I am very open to ways to improve the report for you.

Eclipse IP LLC v. Avon Products, Inc., (D. Del.) (multiple cases) 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Avon Products, Inc.
  • CDW Corporation
  • Fanatics, Inc.
  • The Este Lauder Companies Inc.
  • The Golf Warehouse, Inc.
  • LL Bean, Inc.
  • Office Depot, Inc.
  • OfficeMax North America, Inc.
  • PetMed Express, Inc.
  • Sears Holdings Corporation

Plaintiff:         Eclipse IP LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Stamoulis & Weinblatt

Patents:          7,119,716 (Response systems and methods for notification systems for modifying future notifications); 7, 876,239 (Secure notification messaging systems and methods using authentication indicia); 7,319,414 (Secure notification messaging systems and methods using authentication indicia); 7,479,899 (Notification systems and methods enabling a response to cause connection between a notified PCD and a delivery or pickup representative); and 8,068,037 (Advertisement systems and methods for notification systems).

Clear With Computers LLC v Target Corporation, (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases). 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Target Corporation
  • J Crew Group, Inc.
  • Express, Inc.
  • Express LLC
  • Crate & Barrel
  • Buy.com Inc.
  • Ann Inc.

Plaintiff:         Clear With Computers, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Spangler & Fussell; Stamoulis & Weinblatt

Patent:           8,266,015 (Inventory sales system and method); 5,625,776 (Electronic proposal preparation system for selling computer equipment and copy machines); and 7,606,739 (Electronic proposal preparation system).

Hawk Technology Systems, LLC v. The Container Store, Inc., (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases). 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • The Container Store, Inc.
  • Boyd Gaming Corporation
  • Eldorado Resorts, LLC

Plaintiff:         Hawk Technology Systems, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Potter Minton; Smith Gambrell & Russell

Patent:           RE 43,462 (Video monitoring and conferencing system).

UbiComm, LLC v. Lowe’s Home Centers, Inc. et al, (W.D.N.C.) 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Lowe’s Companies, Inc.
  • Lowe’s HIW, Inc.
  • Lowe’s Home Centers, Inc.

Plaintiff:         UbiComm, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Farney Daniels; and Olive & Olive

Patent:           5,603,054 (Method for triggering selected machine event when the triggering properties of the system are met and the triggering conditions of an identified user are perceived).

Arunachalam v. Aeropostale, Inc., (E.D. Tex.) (multiple cases).

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Aeropostale, Inc.
  • American Eagle Outfitters, Inc.
  • Staples, Inc.
  • Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
  • AutoZone, Inc.
  • Office Depot, Inc.
  • Sears Holdings Corporation
  • Chico’s FAS, Inc.
  • Best Buy Company, Inc.
  • Dillard’s, Inc.
  • OfficeMax, Inc.
  • W W Grainger, Inc.
  • Edible Arrangements International LLC
  • Victoria’s Secret Direct, LLC
  • Bath & Body Works, LLC
  • The Finish Line, Inc.
  • JC Penney Company, Inc.
  • Target Corporation
  • Foot Locker, Inc.
  • Kohl’s Corporation
  • Toys ‘R’ Us, Inc.
  • GameStop Corp.
  • Walgreen Co.
  • The Home Depot, Inc.
  • The Jones Group Inc.
  • Jos A Bank Clothiers, Inc.
  • Lowe’s Companies, Inc.
  • Macy’s, Inc.
  • PETCO Animal Supplies, Inc.

Plaintiff:         Dr. Lakshmi Arunachalam

Pls. Cnsl:        Hopkins & Carley

Patent:           8,346,894 (Real-time web transactions from web applications).

Online News Link, LLC v. Dell Inc., (W.D. Tex.; D. Del.) (multiple cases). 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Dell Inc.
  • Overstock.com Inc.
  • Wayfair LLC
  • Liberty Interactive Corp.
  • Liberty Interactive Group
  • Groupon, Inc.
  • Netflix Inc.

Plaintiff:         Online News Link LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        DiNovo Price Ellwanger & Hardy; Farnan

Patents:          7,181,758 (Information distribution and processing system); 7,508,789 (Information distribution and processing system); 8,457,545 (Information distribution and processing system).

Activision TV, Inc. v. Cosi, Inc., (D. Del.) (multiple cases).

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Cosi, Inc.
  • White Castle Management Co.
  • CDL West 45th Street LLC
  • KAH 20 2nd Avenue LLC d/b/a Kahler Hotel

Plaintiff:         Activision TV, Inc.

Pls. Cnsl:        Stamoulis & Weinblatt

Patents:          7,369,058 (Remote control electronic display system); and 8,330,613 (Remote control electronic display system).

Ingeniador LLC v. Personalizationmall.com, Inc., (D.P.R.) (multiple cases). 

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • Personalizationmall.com, Inc.
  • Jeffers, Inc.
  • Kellyco Detector Distributors, Inc.
  • Kellyco Distributors, Inc.
  • Kellyco, Inc.
  • Wayfair LLC

Plaintiff:         Ingeniador, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Ferraiuoli

Patent:           7,895,127 (Rating-based sorting and displaying of reviews).

Data Carriers, LLC v. FMR LLC d/b/a Fidelity Investments, (D. Del.) (multiple cases).

Claim:             Infringement 

Defendants:

  • FMR LLC d/b/a Fidelity Investments
  • Harley Davidson, Inc.
  • H&R Block, Inc.
  • InterContinental Hotels Group PLC
  • Six Continents Hotels, Inc.
  • NBTY, Inc.
  • Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
  • United Continental Holdings, Inc.
  • Electronic Arts, Inc.
  • Brown Shoe Company, Inc.
  • Advance Auto Parts, Inc.
  • Discover Financial Services

Plaintiff:         Data Carriers, LLC

Pls. Cnsl:        Bayard; and Gardere Wynne Sewell

Patent:           5,388,198 (Proactive presentation of automating features to a computer user).