Lenz v. Universal Music Corp. 815 F.3d 1145 (9th Cir. 2016)
By Caitlin B. Wiley
Plaintiff Stephanie Lenz made a short video of her children
dancing to the Prince song, Let’s Go Crazy, and uploaded it to
YouTube on February 7, 2007. In the video, titled “‘Let’s Go Crazy’ #1,” Lenz’s children played with toys and danced to the song for 29 seconds. Defendant Universal Music Corp (“Universal”) monitored YouTube videos for any unauthorized use of Prince songs, and Sean Johnson, an assistant at Universal, enforced Prince’s copyrights. During Johnson’s daily evaluation of YouTube, he came across Lenz’s “‘Let’s Go Crazy’ #1” video.
McRO, Inc. v. Bandai Namco Games Am., Inc., et al. 837 F.3d 1299 (Fed.Cir. 2016)
By Ismah Ahmad
Respondents, Bandai Namco Games Am., Inc., et al. are mostly
video game developers and gaming companies. Plaintiff -Appellant McRO, Inc. (“McRO”) are patent owners for inventions that automate pre-existing, three-dimensional (“3D”) animation to show different facial expressions animated characters make during speech. This patent dispute surrounds U.S. Patent No. 6,611,278 (“the ‘278 Patent”) which is a continuation application of U.S. Patent No. 6,307,576 (“the ‘576 Patent”), collectively titled the “Method for Automatically Animating Lip Synchronization and Facial Expression of Animated Characters.”‘
Samsung Elecs. Co., Ltd., et al. v. Apple Inc. 137 S. Ct. 429 (2016)
By Charles Cheng
The case is a design patent dispute between Apple and Samsung,
where both parties are competitors in the smartphone market. In 2007, Apple introduced its first generation smartphone, the iPhone. The iPhone has a touchscreen interface with advanced computing capabilities, large memory storage, and Internet connectivity for web browsing and applications. Apple has three patent designs in the iPhone, encompassing the shape and arrangement of icons on the phone, such as a rectangular front face with round corners and raised rim and sixteen colorful icons arranged in a grid on a black screen available for touchscreen interaction.