Sociology Index

Intellectual Property Rights Case Law

Intellectual Property Rights

A&M RECORDS, INC v NAPSTER, INC, 239 F-3d 1004 (9th Cir 2001) - Complaint A&M RECORDS, INC alleges that Napster, Inc. is a contributory and vicarious copyright infringer. Napster asserts an affirmative defense to the charge that its users directly infringe plaintiffs’ copyrighted musical compositions and sound recordings.

AALMUHAMMED v. LEE, 202 F.3d 1227 (9th Cir. 2000) - "This is a copyright case involving a claim of coauthorship of the movie Malcolm X. We reject the "joint work" claim but remand for further proceedings on a quantum meruit claim."

A&M v Napster, 2000 U S Dist Lexis 6243 (N D Cal 2000) - Defendant NAPSTER INC moves for summary adjudication of the applicability of a safe harbor provision of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”). The court determines that Napster does not meet the requirements of subsection 512(a). Summary adjudication inappropriate. CAMPBELL v. ACUFF-ROSE MUSIC, INC., 510 U.S. 569 (1994) - That commercial character does not make it impossible for a use to be fair. That a commercial parody can be fair use.

St. Regis Mohawk Tribe v. Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held immunity does not apply to some federal agency proceedings. The court relied on prior NLRB, EEOC and Federal Power Commission actions against various American Indian tribes as precedent. Thus, the tribe does not have immunity against a Patent Office review of patents held by the tribe.

Arista Networks, Inc. v. Cisco Systems, Inc., (Fed. Cir. 2018). A Cisco scientist assigned his rights in a network security invention to Cisco, which Cisco later patented. The Cisco scientist later left Cisco and co-founded Arista Networks, which competed with Cisco. Arista asked the Patent Office to invalidate the Cisco patent, which the Patent Office did, in part. The American Invents Act passed in 2011, allowing anyone who is not the owner of a patent to challenge the patent before the Patent Office via an Inter Partes Review, or IPR. Because Congress did not address assignor estoppel when it legislated the IPR procedure, the Federal Circuit held patent assignors can challenge the very patents they once held or had rights to.

Desktop Metal, Inc. of Burlington v. Markforged, Inc. Involves two companies in the 3-D printing game.
Desktop sued Markforged for patent infringement. The brother of one of Desktop’s employees was an employee at Markforged, so Desktop also alleged Desktop’s secrets were leaked to Markforged. Markforged was upset that Ric Fulop, a partner of Northbridge Venture Partners, had invested heavily in Markforged and yet also founded Desktop. Markforged’s counterclaims alleged Fulop was a trusted advisor and confidant of Markforged’s founder and CEO. Markforged further claimed Desktop stole Markforged’s key employees. The parties settled after a jury trial finding Markforged not liable for patent infringement.

Scholz v. Goudreau. it’s a case in Boston about the band Boston and its first album, “Boston.” Even Ernie Boch Jr. makes an appearance in the case. Barry Goudreau, the band’s guitarist from 1976 to 1979, left in 1981 in return for a share of royalties from the first two Boston albums and executed a settlement agreement limiting his marketing use of “Boston” to “formerly of Boston.” When Goudreau joined Boch’s band, Ernie and the Automatics, Boch advertised ETA and member Goudreau in a manner not always consistent with Goudreau’s settlement agreement.
Tom Scholz, a founding and current member of Boston, sued but lost because Scholz failed to show that Goudreau had any role in drafting, approving or promulgating the advertisements not in conformance with the settlement agreement.