Friday, August 08, 2008

Perception and reality

The Uniloc case has the memorable line:

The key to the analysis is perception, not reality; a judge may be required
to be recused, even in the absence of an actual bias.

The issue was the following:

Uniloc contends that the district judge should have recused himself because the
intern he hired to assist with this case possessed “financial and contractual
relationships” with Microsoft.

The CAFC noted:

Although reasonable minds could very well differ over the propriety of hiring this
intern to work on the case given his financial ties, no matter how small the monetary
amount, to one of the parties involved, the district court did not abuse its discretion in
denying the motion for recusal.

Of the summary judgment issue:

Microsoft itself conceded at oral argument that the district court erred in failing to
note that Uniloc had indeed pointed to statements from Microsoft’s affiants that the
same hashing algorithm was, in fact, used both locally and remotely. Oral Arg. at
19:29-31, available at (“The
district court did make that small error.”).


Given the presence of this evidence, which was extensive and by no means conclusory, summary
judgment of noninfringement was improper.

Liebel-Flarscheim is cited:

Liebel-Flarsheim Co. v. Medrad, Inc., 358 F.3d 898, 906 (Fed. Cir.
2004) (noting that it is inappropriate to import limitations from the specification to limit
facially broad claims “unless the patentee has demonstrated a clear intention to limit the
claim scope using ‘words or expressions of manifest exclusion or restriction’”)

***See comments to post on PatentHawk blog, including:

OK, so the judge says "if there's a problem w/ the intern you gotta' recuse me," but Moore's analysis is on the indisputable grounds that the judge himself has no connections to MS. Phfftttt.

These MS cases smell real bad. Follow this intern's career and see if he/she doesn't end up as MS counsel. MS's next step in this case will be a charge of inequitable conduct. Mark my word.

There's also discussion of the former Eli Lilly v. Medtronic case.


Post a Comment

<< Home