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IPR Enforcement Actions on Information Technology Products

Thursday, September 05, 2013
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

New IPR Infringement Petition on Optical Disc Drives. The International Trade Commission received Sept. 3 on behalf of Optical Devices LLC a petition requesting that it institute a Section 337 investigation regarding certain optical disc drives, components thereof and products containing same. The proposed respondents are located in Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Taiwan and the U.S.

Section 337 investigations primarily involve claims regarding intellectual property rights violations by imported goods, including the infringement of patents, trademarks and copyrights. Other forms of unfair competition involving imported products, such as misappropriation of trade secrets or trade dress and false advertising, may also be asserted. The primary remedy available in Section 337 investigations is an exclusion order that directs U.S. Customs and Border Protection to stop infringing imports from entering the U.S. In addition, the ITC may issue cease and desist orders against named importers and other persons engaged in unfair acts that violate Section 337, including selling infringing imported articles out of U.S. inventory.

New IPR Infringement Investigations of Flash Memory Chips, Network Communication Devices. The International Trade Commission has instituted the following investigations to determine whether imports of the products indicated are violating Section 337 of the 1930 Tariff Act by reason of patent infringement.

- investigation 337-TA-892 of smartphone handsets, table computers, e-readers, smart TVs, gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, VoIP phones and set-top boxes that have methods for establishing point-to-point communication links over a network and/or programs or interfaces for establishing the link (complainant Straight Path IP Group Inc.; respondents located in Taiwan, Korea, Japan and the U.S.)

- investigation 337-TA-893 of flash memory chips used in devices such as laptops, wireless routers, video game consoles, handheld gaming devices and game cartridges (complainant Spansion LLC; respondents located in Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong and the U.S.)

The complainants request that after these investigations the ITC issue an exclusion order, which would direct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to prohibit the entry of the infringing products into the U.S., and cease and desist orders, which would require the named respondents to cease actions that violate Section 337, including selling infringing imported articles out of U.S. inventory.

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