Candy Crush Developer Learns to Play Nice with Others


Updating my earlier blog posts regarding the Candy Crush disputes, King, the maker of Candy Crush, has now settled their trademark disputes over word ‘Candy’ and ‘Saga’ in the United States.   As you may recall, King has been aggressive in opposing and policing use of the ‘Candy’ and ‘Saga’ trademarks, using numerous cease-and-desist letters and an acquisition of a ‘Candy Crusher’ trademark in February. King provided no real explanation for its reasoning behind...
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Mars and Hershey in a 'Whopper' of a Dispute


Two candy company giants are going to court over chocolate-covered malt balls and how the public recognizes them.   In 2010, Hershey made the decision to rebrand “Whoppers” as “Maltesers” and sell them in red packaging.  Meanwhile, Mars claims to have been selling its chocolate-covered malt balls under the name “Maltesers” since as early as 1936.  Mars claims use of the red packaging back to 1978.  Mars does not dispute, however, that it has never applied for registration of...
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How Much is a Tweet Worth?


Katherine Heigl thinks a tweet sent out by Duane Reade Inc., a subsidiary of Walgreen Co. is worth $6 million.  Duane Reade tweeted a picture of Heigl, along with the caption “Love a quick #DuaneReade run? Even @KatieHeigl can’t resist shopping #NYC’s favorite drugstore.”    The photograph used by Duane Reade in its tweet shows Heigl with two Duane Reade bags in hand, and appears to have been from JustJared, a celebrity news website which uses paparazzi photographs.  Heigl’s...
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The Ongoing Royalty in Patent Infringement Cases


Judge Davis recently ruled on ongoing royalties in patent infringement in VirnetX Inc., et al. v. Apple Inc. , Case No. 6:13-CV-211.  After a jury found infringement and awarded $368 million in past damages, Judge Davis denied VirnetX’s motion for injunctive relief  (a decision that is currently being appealed).  Judge Davis then decided that VirnetX was entitled to ongoing damages in the form of a 0.98% royalty.  The royalty included 0.65% in damages and 0.33% in enhanced damages. Judge Davis’s...
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Google v. Hollywood


Google and Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter are publicly sparring over copyright issues. In one corner, Google’s attorney published an article arguing against “copyright lobbyists” and the use of voluntary agreements to protect copyrighted works.  Google argues that the voluntary agreements won’t work because they threaten free expression and online innovation and because the voluntary process does not have checks and balances.  According to Google, the copyright lobbyists are “like exes...
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Supreme Court Unlikely to Clarify the Law for Computer-Based Software Patents


The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Monday in Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int’l regarding the patent eligibility of Alice Corp.’s patents.  The patents relate to a computer system that facilitates financial transactions.  The case has been closely followed and has divided the country's largest corporations, with companies like IBM, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, Verizon and Dell filing amicus briefs warning that new restrictions could render worthless thousands of existing patents and the billions...
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Eastern District of Texas launches expedited Track B Option for Patent Suits


On February 25, Chief Judge Davis of the Eastern District of Texas unveiled an alternative case management track available for patent suits filed in the District.  This option, dubbed Track B, is intended to complement the default procedures of the traditional case-management scheme (now known as Track A) by providing litigants with the choice for a faster, less expensive route for resolving patent cases.  Track B may be invoked sua sponte by the court or by joint agreement of the parties.  Otherwise, Track A will...
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