INDIANA PATENT BLOG

Patent News From The Heartland℠

Invention of the sports bra

by John Roberts on September 14, 2017

Today in 1993, two women inventors received a patent for a protective and supportive brassiere, otherwise known as a sports bra. Their idea developed during a conversation on the fact that there were many male inventors but not enough inventions for women. After discussing what they would invent for women, inventors Sheryl C. Unsworth and May N. Moy Au recognized that female joggers needed more support while exercising. Their invention includes rubber-covered plastic cups with air holes that provide ventilation and shock absorption.

See https://goo.gl/29LwyZ

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

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“A patent is an incentive to develop technology to begin with and to tell people how it works,” said Chief Economist Alan Marco at a recent TEDxTysons presentation. Marco talked about patents and the market for technology, and how it all fits in with economic growth. Learn more by watching his presentation on the parable of the Land of Lincoln and what it has to do with the patent system: http://bit.ly/2g5LJ6z.

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

7 Ways to Save Big Bucks On a Patent Attorney

by John Roberts on June 5, 2017

Good tips for choosing and working with a patent attorney-from Entrepreneur.com:

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/229315

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

New TMEP Available

by John Roberts on May 9, 2017

The USPTO has issued the April 2017 Trademark Manual of Examining Procedure (TMEP). This revision clarifies USPTO trademark policies and practices and includes relevant Trademark Trial and Appeal Board and court decisions reported before March 1, 2017. This revision supersedes prior versions of the TMEP, examination guides, or any other statement of USPTO policy to the extent that there is any conflict. For a complete list of changes, see the section called “Change Summary.”



John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

The Patents and Trademarks Behind Lucky Charms Cereal

by John Roberts on March 17, 2017

Lucky Charms™ ever-changing kaleidoscope of multicolored marshmallow shapes are covered by a number of design patents for rainbows, clovers, hearts, balloons, horseshoes, shooting stars and more.

Read more about how General Mills protects their product’s unique appearance and branding with patents and trademarks:

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/sponsored/patents-and-trademarks-behind-lucky-charms-cereal-180962517/?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=socialmedia

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

Sincerely yours,

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

Supreme Court Limits Foreign Reach of U.S. Patents

by John Roberts on February 28, 2017

This week the Supreme Court in Life Technologies Corp. et al. v. Promega Corp., No. 14-1538, 580 U.S. __ (2017) (see copy here) ruled that the supply of a single component of a multicomponent invention for manufacture abroad does not give rise to liability under Section 271(f)(1) of the Patent Act, which prohibits the supply from the United States of “all or a substantial portion of the components of a patented invention” for combination abroad. It does not matter if that single component arguably creates “a substantial portion” of the infringing product, because the Supreme Court created a bright-line rule that a single component can never be enough. Thus, to violate 35 U.S.C. 271(f)(1), an alleged infringer will need to have shipped from the United States at least two components of a device, that when assembled in a foreign country, reads on a valid claim of a U.S. patent.

The Supreme Court has not favored bright-line rules in its recent jurisprudence under the Patent Act. In fact, the Supreme Court has often overturned the Federal Circuit for creating such bright-line tests, which make the law easier and more predictable to apply but sometimes at the cost of doing justice in a particular case. Perhaps the Supreme Court has become aware of the havoc they have created with unintelligible decisions like Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International, 573 U.S. __, 134 S. Ct. 2347 (2014).


John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

Roberts IP Law was pleased to attend the U.S.-China Chamber of Commerce’s Executives Forum and 20th Annual Chinese New Year Dinner Celebration in Chicago on February 2, 2017.

Roberts IP Law would like to thank Siva Yam, CPA, CFA, President of the Chamber, for hosting this event, providing an interesting panel discussion, and inspiring speakers regarding the future of US-Asia business relations. It was suggested that person-to-person social connectivity made possible by recent and forthcoming technology would, over the long haul, tend to bring people of like interests together worldwide.

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

Justices to hear free speech clash over offensive trademarks

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Justices to hear free speech clash over offensive trademarks

By Sam Hananel, Associated Press
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court will consider whether a law barring disparaging trademarks violates a band’s…

Interestingly, the law in question relates to prohibiting registration of trademarks the government deems offensive. Whether such marks could nonetheless be enforced as unregistered common-law trademarks under state law is a separate but potentially related question.

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

For the first time in 120 years the Supreme Court today delved into the murky waters of design patent law. The Court ruled in Samsung Electronics Co. v. Apple that an “article of manufacture” is not necessarily the whole product. This is important because under design patent law an infringer must turn over its profits on the patented “article of manufacture.” In view of today’s decision, Samsung is now free to argue on remand that it should only be liable for its profits on some components of its phones, as opposed to its profits on the entire phones.

But the impact of this victory is unclear, because there will still be arguments about what components are patented here, and how much of their profits should be attributed to those components,
where the design patents appear to cover the overall ornamental appearance of the modern smart phone. Hundreds of millions of dollars are at stake; stay tuned!

http://abovethelaw.com/2016/12/supreme-court-unanimously-bails-out-samsung/

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com

On December 1, 2016, important changes to the Federal Rules of Civil and Criminal Procedure will take effect. The changes include, among others, amendments to the “3-day service” rules. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(d); Fed. R. Cr. P. 45(c). All counsel and interested parties should review and analyze these amendments to assess how pending and future cases may be affected.

See:

www.supremecourt.gov/orders/courtorders/frcv16_757a.pdf (Civil Rules); and

www.supremecourt.gov/orders/courtorders/frcr16_mj80.pdf (Criminal Rules).

If you have questions you can call the Southern District of Indiana District Court Clerk’s Office at 317-229-3700. Though the Clerk’s Office cannot provide legal advice, they are usually quite helpful with procedural matters.

John Roberts

812-418-3663

www.indianapatentlawyer.com