Charles Bieneman
Principal author, The Software IP Report

Clickwrap Agreement Is Binding (But Arbitration Provision Is Not)

A “clickwrap” agreement can form a binding contract even when all agreement terms are not included in the document to which the user assents, and the user must access other documents to be informed of the entire contract. Gros… Read More

When to Apply Section 101? Federal Circuit Divided

Should a court should evaluate patent claims for statutory subject matter under 35 U.S.C. § 101 before or after considering validity based on prior art?  In MySpace, Inc. v. Graphon Corp., No. 2011-1149 (Fed. Cir. March 2, 2012)… Read More

Computer Fraud and Abuse Act: Unauthorized Access

Under what circumstances can an employee, having accessed a computer via means provided by an employer, be civilly liable to the employer under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act for “unauthorized access” of the computer?  Cour… Read More

Case Note: Reverse Engineering and Trade Secret Misappropriation

Reverse engineering of a proprietary computer program is not necessarily, and in this case was not, a misappropriation of trade secrets.  Aqua Connect, Inc. v. Code Rebel LLC, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17962, No. CV 11-5764-RSWL (C.D… Read More

Patentable Subject Matter: New Federal Circuit Case

Yet another post-Bilski pronouncement: the Federal Circuit has held that patent claims directed to “an investment tool designed to enable property owners to buy and sell properties without incurring tax liability” do not recit… Read More

Computer Fraud and Abuse Act: Civil Rights of Action Have an Uncertain Bar

Federal district courts have been split, and the courts of appeals thus far silent, on what allegation of “loss” a plaintiff must make to state a case under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.  18 U.S.C. § 1030.  The… Read More

Detroit Patent Office to Cover Software

Detroit is excited about the branch office of the United States Patent and Trademark Office opening downtown in July.  And with good reason.  Moreover, based on the USPTO’s recent job posting for people with computer backg… Read More

Case Note: Copyright First Sale Doctrine

A California court recently reaffirmed the principle that a restrictive software license is not a “sale” for purposes of the federal copyright laws, and that the license could not be used to assert a defense to copyrig… Read More

Introducing the Non-Lawyers' Pages

While this site presents issues mainly of interest to other lawyers, those issues are vitally important to the non-lawyers who work in the information technology industry.   Therefore, I am introducing The SWIP Report’s &#… Read More

Will the Supreme Court Revisit Software Patents?

Last fall, in Ultramercial, LLC v. Hulu, LLC [1], the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals surprised many people by upholding a patent claim, reproduced in footnote [2], directed to a “method for distribution of products over th… Read More