Articles Tagged with “Patent Infringement”

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In the California business world, intellectual property can certainly be a hot topic. Companies with intellectual property assets like patents, copyrights and trademarks must often vigorously defend those resources. One recent patent infringement lawsuit pits California-based Apple Inc. against a company called VirnetX Holding Corp., which is based in a different state.

VirnetX filed a complaint in a U.S. District Court alleging that Apple has violated four of their patents. The patents relate to using a domain-name service in order to establish virtual private networks (VPN). This process allows website owners to interact with their consumers in a method that is more secure. Alternatively, a company’s employees may be able to access files from their work computers while they are working at a home computer in their own personal residence.
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Two companies — one based in the U.S. and one based outside the country –seem to be engaged in a back-and-forth patent infringement dispute. Mitel Networks initially brought a patent infringement case against California-based Facebook Inc. last April. In its initial lawsuit, the company claimed that Facebook had infringed upon two of Mitel’s patents. Mitel’s lawsuit further alleged that Facebook had failed to respond to communication attempts made by the other company.

That company’s original lawsuit apparently sought infringement damages in whatever amount the court deemed reasonable. Facebook, on the other hand, apparently responded to those infringement charges by making some of their own. The company filed its own patent infringement lawsuit in a U.S. District Court within the state of California, claiming that jurisdiction is appropriate.
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In an intellectual property trial that was held between Google and Oracle in California over Android software, the jury found in favor of Google in the second phase of the three-phase trial. Oracle had claimed that Google committed patent infringement by stealing two patents for their Java programming language. All 10 of the jury members made the decision unanimously this month that no patent infringement had occurred.

On May 7, the search engine giant lost the battle in the first phase of the trial when the jury decided that they had indeed infringed on copyrights owned by Oracle. They ruled that Google had infringed copyrights on nine different lines of code when they used similar language to the Java language used by Sun Microsystem.
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One of the most vital responsibilities of a business is to protect its intellectual property and to act against those who infringe upon it. At the same time, however, those who are accused of infringing upon the intellectual property of another may well believe that the claim has no merit. In a case that may interest California readers, this was most recently put on display when Yahoo accused Facebook of patent infringement.

Although Yahoo is not disclosing the number of patents that it believes Facebook is infringing upon, it has said that it believes the popular social networking site is violating patents relating to how to handle user data. The company informed Facebook of the possible infringement through an e-mailed statement, and it is requesting that Facebook pay licensing fees. If the social network fails to do this, then Yahoo has threatened to press its claim in court.
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