Tuesday, October 16, 2007

It's Obvious!

The Department of Commerce’s United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has published Examination Guidelines to help USPTO examiners make appropriate decisions regarding the obviousness of claimed inventions in light of the Supreme Court’s recent decision in KSR International Co. v. Teleflex Inc., 550 U.S. __, 82 USPQ2d 1385 (2007).

To help patent examiners make obviousness rejections that are supported by appropriate facts and reasoning, the Guidelines identify a number of rationales suggested by the Supreme Court in the KSR decision. For each rationale, the Guidelines explain the underlying factual findings, and provide guidance about how to reason from the facts to the legal conclusion of obviousness. The Guidelines emphasize, however, that the identified rationales are only examples, and that any explanation of facts and reasoning based on the Graham inquiries may be used to support a rejection for obviousness.

See the Guidelines at http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/com/sol/notices/72fr57526.pdf


The .asia regional internet domain has officially opened for business. On October 9 the sunrise period for the domain opens that lets governments and companies register interest in specific domain names. Companies will be able to register domains for which they own a trademark and governments will get a chance to earmark those on a reserved list. See http://www.asiaregistry.com/?gclid=CNrQhYXUk48CFSdCYQoduTF-mQ

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Target.com ADA Class Action Certified

In a ruling filed October 2, 2007, Judge Marilyn Hall Patel of the Northern District of California certified a class action against Target Corporation (owner of Target department stores and the related Target.com website). The suit alleges that Target failed to comply with provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act because the Target.com site was not fully accessible to blind persons. Judge Patel was careful not to delve into the merits, but the lesson here should still be obvious: your site needs to be fully accessible to persons with disabilities.

CDA To The Rescue--Again

In another example of the breadth of the application of the Communications Decency Act, federal judge John Coughenour granted Kaspersky Labs motion for summary judgment in a case brought in the Western District of Washington by spyware maker Zango. In his August 28, 2007, ruling Judge Coughenour held that Kaspersky Labs is a provider of an interactive computer service (a term that is critical to limiting liability under the CDA) because it is an "access software provider." This is great news for those of us who dislike spyware, and an interesting demonstration of how the parade of things against which the CDA offers exculpation continues to grow.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Blogging Story in IBR