[conspire] Patent Case Fall Out

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Wed Aug 29 12:01:55 PDT 2012

Quoting Ruben Safir (ruben at mrbrklyn.com):

> Am I the only one deeply upset with the recent ruling against
> Samsung?

Comprehension is more useful.  Over at Groklaw, PJ has posted several
bits of analysis articulating her view that the jury went totally off
the rails in important ways:

1.  Jurors badly misunderstood the concept of 'prior art' in patent
law, erroneously ignored instructions on how to assess that evidence,
and thus summarily rejected Samsung's prior-art evidence in defiance
of the law.  (http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20120828225612963)

2.  Jurors' decision was riddled with inconsistencies, e.g., ruling that
Samsung's owed $219,694 in actual damages for model Galaxy Tab 10.1 LTE, but
failed to find that it had infringed any of Apple's patents.

3.  Jurors believed (ignoring the jury instructions) that they were to
award punitive damages, whereas they were charged with assessing actual
damages if any.

4.  The very short time the juries took to deliberate on the ~700
questions on the verdict form was not credible, suggesting if nothing
else did that they did not competently grapple with the evidence.

5.  The jury foreman is quoted as saying that they had not bothered to
consult the jury instructions on important points ('The foreman told a
court representative that the jurors had reached a decision without
needing the instructions.'

6.  During the trial, Judge Koh excluded on very questionable ground
important evidence Samsung had attempted to enter into evidence, with
the result that jury instructions were skewed against Samsung.

PJ is confident that Samsung is preparing a Rule 50(b) motion for a new
trial, or for a directed verdict, and is very confident the jury's
ruling will be overturned.

On another matter, vanishingly few articles actually bothered to detail
what the specific patents' claims and methods really are.  I gather that
they are design patents.  I also gather that none of them address any
core Android technology, i.e., that they're all piddly UI matters.

Prof. Michael Risch of Villanova Law School praised the Groklaw coverage
as actually competent, accurate, and based on actual cited source
documents.  He agrees with PJ, and predicts that the USSC will use this
case to rein in out-of-control design patents.

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