Bajaj Auto and TVS Motor settle patent battle, USPTO publishes SUCCESS Act Report and other patent news

In this week’s Patent News – Rama Devi Women’s University, Bhubaneswar inaugurates IPR Cell, Canon Inc. wins infringement lawsuit against V4INK Inc., TSMC and GlobalFoundries settle patent infringement battle, Bajaj Auto and TVS Motor end 12-year patent infringement dispute, GNOME receives aid from Open Invention Network in its battle against patent troll, USPTO publishes SUCCESS Act Report 2019, EPO hosts 29th Annual Patent Information Conference in Bucharest, Japan launches new economic team to keep IP violation in check.




Rama Devi Women’s University, Bhubaneswar inaugurates IPR Cell


On 1st November 2019, Rama Devi Women’s University at Bhubaneswar inaugurated the University’s IPR Cell. The established IPR Cell will look after the activities related to Intellectual Property of the institution including filing of patents, copyrights and trademarks. In addition to providing assistance to the University, the objective of the cell is to disseminate knowledge and guide students as well as the staff in matters related to IP. The Director of the State Science and Technology Department, Mr. Rashid Khan addressed the gathering at the inaugural event and said “It will not only protect the inventions and innovations but also increase the commitment by the researchers and make their product protected”.




Canon Inc. wins infringement lawsuit against V4INK Inc.


The U.S District Court for the Central District of California in a case involving Japanese major Canon and a US based company called V4INK has ruled in favor of Canon by issuing a permanent injunction against V4INK and prohibiting the company from making, using, selling and offering toner cartridges for sale in the US, and importing the same into the US. The suit was filed by Canon against V4INK for alleged infringement of Canon’s U.S. Patent Nos. 7,869,740; 8,165,494; 8,588,646; 8,971,760; 9,494,916; 9,857,763; and 10,162,304.


TSMC and GlobalFoundries settle patent infringement dispute


Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, Ltd. (TSMC) and GlobalFoudries Inc. have reportedly reached an agreement to end all disputes between them in respect of several patent infringement lawsuits filed against each other. The companies will now cross-license each others existing patents as well as those patents that will be filed in the next 10 years. The settlement comes after TSMC recently filed a counter suit for infringing 25 of its patents.


Bajaj Auto and TVS Motor end 12-year patent infringement battle


Two-wheeler manufacturing giants, Bajaj Auto and TVS Motor have reportedly settled their long standing patent infringement dispute of about 12 years. The companies issued a statement claiming that they have entered into a settlement agreement ending the dispute. TVS Motor had filed a suit in 2007 against Bajaj after launching its new 125CC TVS Flame. Bajaj in turn accused TVS of infringing its patent related to DTSi Technology. TVS later filed a suit in the Madras High Court and also filed a suit for defamation in the Bombay High Court. The Supreme Court then directed the Madras High Court to hear all the interim applications. The Madras High Court heard the matter and permitted TVS to use the technology on the basis that there was a difference between the two technologies. In response to the same, Bajaj Auto filed an Appeal in the Supreme Court. According to the announcement made, the companies have reached a mutual agreement to withdraw all proceedings. Further, none of the companies are obligated to financially compensate the other in regard to the dispute.


GNOME receives aid from Open Invention Network in its battle against patent troll


Earlier this year, Rothschild Patent Imaging (RPI) filed a lawsuit against GNOME, a free and open-source desktop environment for Unix-like operating systems, for patent infringement, in the US. The issue revolved around RPI’s U.S patent No. 9,936,086 titled “Wireless image distribution system and method patent.” However, RPI, infamously known for patent trolling, has filed over 700 lawsuits against various companies in the last six years. In support of GNOME and against patent trolls, Open Invention Network (OIN) recently announced that it has set up an expert legal team to find prior art that can be used to invalidate the formers patent. The announcement came as a surprise to many as it was made at the Open Source Summit Europe, in France.




USPTO publishes SUCCESS Act Report 2019


On 31st October 2019, the USPTO released a special Report called the “Study of Underrepresented Classes Chasing Engineering and Science Success (SUCCESS) Act Report 2019” on the participation of women, minorities and veterans in the patent system. In order to ensure that all Americans are presented with the opportunity to innovate and seek patent protection, SUCCESS Act, 2018 consulted with the Small Business Administration and directed the USPTO to publish a Report to the Congress. The Report is based on publically available data with regard to the participation rates of women, minorities, and veterans in the patent system. As information on underrepresented groups was limited, the objective of the USPTO was to study these minorities and provide effective means to uplift the same. The published Report contains recommendations in order to increase the importance and awareness of IP among them and enable their participation in the patent ecosystem.

Important findings of the SUCCESS Act Report 2019

  • Literature Review exhibits that there is only a limited amount of information available on rate of participation of women, minorities, and veterans in the patent system.
  • While most of the literature throw light on the participation of woman, very little information is available on minorities. Further, in respect of veterans as patentees, only historical information is available.
  • The most comprehensive literature found till date is the – “Progress and Potential: A Profile of Women Inventors on U.S. Patents.” A study published by the USPTO in February 2019.
  • The Report explains that additional data is necessary in order to determine the exact participation rates of these minorities.
  • It provides a list of six new initiatives and five new legislative recommendations to be adopted by the USPTO to increase the participation of women, minorities, and veterans.

Click here to access the complete SUCCESS Act Report 2019.


EPO hosts 29th Annual Patent Information Conference in Bucharest


The European Patent Office hosted the 29th Edition of the Patent Information Conference in Bucharest between the 29th and 31st of October 2019. The EPO organized the conference in collaboration with the Romania’s State Office for Inventions and Trademarks (OSIM). The Conference was inaugurated by EPO President, António Campinos along with the President of OSIM, InoutBarbu. Andrei Iancu, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), delivered the keynote address, at the event. The three-day Conference attracted over 350 patent professionals from 45 different countries. This year’s participants included industry experts from various Intellectual Property Offices as well as dignitaries engaged in other patent services. Panel discussions and presentations revolved around the impact of digital technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, machine learning and semantic search on patent search. Participant were also given training on topics like search strategies, extending protection beyond 20 years, patent analytics and more.

Click here to access the presentations and topics that were discussed at the Conference.


Japan launches new economic team to keep IP violation in check


In reference to the increasing number of Intellectual Property violations in Japan, the National Security Council (NSC) launched a special economic team in the country. The special team currently comprises of 10 members. However, according to government reports, by the month of April in the year 2020, Japan will have a complete and highly competitive team. The team, primarily in charge of economic affairs will keep an eye on China due to a significant number of violations in the field of IP and technology theft. The move seems to have been made after the Japanese government suspected Huawei Technologies, ZTE Corp and other Chinese telecommunication companies to have had some kind of a discreet agreement with the Chinese government. Apart from China, the team will also observe North Korea due to a rise in number of cyber attacks.

Authored and compiled by Vibha Amarnath

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