Post Tagged with: "Patent"

Supreme Court Rules Against Patent Evergreening

The Canadian Supreme Court has issued another decision that recognized the limits of intellectual property.  This case, a pharmaceutical patent fight between AstraZeneca and Apotex, includes language from the court that explicitly warns against the practice of evergreening, whereby pharmaceutical companies seek to extend the life of patent protection by […]

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November 3, 2006 1 comment News

Desire2Learn Files Response in Patent Suit

Last month I wrote about the patent battle between Blackboard and Canada's Desire2Learn.  Desire2Learn has just filed its response in the Texas court.

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September 15, 2006 Comments are Disabled Must Reads

Canadian Online Learning Company Hit With Patent Suit

A Waterloo, Ontario company spends years developing new technologies that leverage the power of the Internet.  It develops a global following.  Then, seemingly out of the blue, it is hit with a patent infringement suit by a U.S. company, instantly facing the prospect of years of costly litigation in U.S. courts.  With limited resources, it must defend itself by arguing that the patents are invalid.

So begins my weekly Law Bytes column (Toronto Star version, BBC International version, homepage version) which does not discuss the RIM-NTP patent suit but rather the recent patent lawsuit launched by Blackboard, a learning management system company, against Desire2Learn, a Canadian competitor.  Both the patent and the lawsuit have generated enormous anger within the academic and open source software communities.

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August 14, 2006 4 comments Columns

Supreme Court Nominee Could Have Big Impact on IP

My weekly Law Bytes column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) examines new Canadian Supreme Court nominee Mr. Justice Marshall Rothstein, whose lengthy record on patent, copyright, and trademark matters suggests that he may very well challenge the status quo at Canada' s highest court. The column uncovers several speeches by Justice Rothstein that reveal a candid judge who is uncomfortable with incorporating policy into the legal decision making process, who is willing to examine intellectual property laws of other jurisdictions, and who recognizes the limits of intellectual property law.

Justice Rothstein, who appears before a House of Commons committee today, has emerged as a prominent jurist on intellectual property cases at the Federal Court of Appeal.  His best-known decision is the Harvard Mouse case, which addressed the question of whether higher life forms, in this case the "oncomouse", could be patented.  Justice Rothstein ruled that it could, concluding that there was nothing in the definition of "invention" under the Patent Act to preclude such patents.

Justice Rothstein has also presided over leading copyright and trademark cases.  He wrote a concurring opinion in Law Society of Upper Canada v. CCH Canadian, a copyright case that focused on the photocopying of legal decisions.  He sided with the majority in a high-profile trademark battle between Lego and Montreal-based Mega Blocks.

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February 26, 2006 2 comments Columns

As It Happens – RIM Patent Battle

As It Happens – RIM Patent Battle, Professor Geist discusses the Canadian government’s decision to intervene in the RIM patent battle in the United States.

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April 18, 2005 Comments are Disabled Audio