§102(b) : CAFC Alert

Article posted to online periodical qualified as “printed publication” under §102(b) where person skilled in the art could have located it

Sadao Kinashi | November 15, 2012

Voter Verified, Inc. v. Election Systems & Software

Decided  November 5, 2012

Panel: Lourie, Reyna, and Wallach.  Opinion By: Lourie

Summary

The patent holder alleged that automated voting systems of its competitors infringed U.S. Reissue Patent RE40,449 (“the ‘449 patent”).  The district court found that claim 49 of the ‘449 patent was invalid as obvious under 35 U.S.C.S. § 103 in view of an article in an online periodical before the patent’s critical date.  The district court found that an article in an online periodical qualified as a printed publication under 35 U.S.C.S. § 102(b).  CAFC affirmed holding that the article could have been located by someone skilled in the art before the critical date.

特許権者は、競合企業を再発行特許RE40,449号の侵害で訴えた。地裁は特許のクレーム49がオンライン定期刊行物の論文から自明であり、無効であるとした。地裁は、その論文は102条の「刊行物」に該当すると認定した。CAFCは、その論文が出願日の1年前より前に、当業者が見つけることができる状態にあったとして、地裁の判断を維持した。


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