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Determining a Discount to Encourage Participation in an Electronic Trading System is Ineligible

The District of Delaware held that patent claims for multiple patents directed to “electronic trading and settlement systems” are abstract ideas, and “[e]ncouraging participation in a system in which all parties need to utilize similar technology through the well-known concept of discounting” does not provide an inventive concept,  granting a motion to dismiss based on lack of patent-eligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. § 101 and the Alice/Mayo test. Fast 101 PTY LTD. v. Citigroup Inc., et al., No. 19-1819-RGA (D. Del. Jan. 30, 2020). U.S. Patent Nos. 8,515,867; 8,660,947; 8,762,273; and 10,115,098 are directed to “‘an invoiceless trading system that creates incentives for customers to pay suppliers within a predetermined period of time.’” The court identified claim 1 of the ‘867 patent as representative of all claims in the asserted patents. Independent claim 1 of the ‘867 patent is reproduced here:        1. A system configured for electronic settlement of an…

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Conventional Component For Accepting Credit Card Payment In Taxicab is Ineligible: Curb Mobility, LLC v. Kaptyn, Inc.

A court held that patent claims directed to “the longstanding commercial practice of paying for public transit” are abstract ideas, and “the mere assemblage of admittedly known components” does not provide an inventive concept,  granting a motion to dismiss based on lack of patent-eligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. § 101 and the Alice/Mayo test. Curb Mobility, LLC v. Kaptyn, Inc., et al., No. 18-cv-02416-MMD-EJY (D. Nev. Jan. 21, 2020). U.S. Patent No. 6,347,739 is directed to “paying for a taxicab with a credit card.” The court noted that the patent “includes two independent claims, though independent claim 11 is basically independent claim 1- a system claim- written as a method claim.” Independent claim 1 of the ‘739 Patent is reproduced here: 1.A system for communications with a network of systems which accepts cred-debit type cards for payments and which is located in a taxicab driven by drivers comprising: a) a meter…

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Patent Claims Survive Alice Challenge Despite Being Directed to an Abstract Idea: Cellwitch, Inc. v. Tile, Inc.

Patent claims directed to [a] “system for monitoring of location of items” have survived a Rule 12(c) motion for judgment on the pleadings arguing that the claims were patent-ineligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101 and the two-part Mayo/Alice patent-eligibility test. Cellwitch, Inc. v. Tile, Inc., (Case No. 4:19-cv-01315-JSW)(N.D. Cal. Nov. 21, 2019). If you are familiar with Tile – need help finding car keys, anyone? – then you know what the claims of U.S. Patent No. 8,872,655 were about. Indeed, the court found under part one of the Alice test that the claims were directed to the longstanding human practice, and abstract idea, of helping people find lost items. You can distill this abstract idea from claim 1 of the ’655 patent: A system for monitoring of location of items, comprising: a plurality of wireless devices, each of the plurality of wireless devices being associated with a monitored item; a…

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Selecting Compression Format in Streaming Digital Video Held Not Patent-Eligible: Adaptive Streaming Inc. v. Netflix, Inc.

Patent claims directed to distributing streaming video data in a first formal and then converting the data to a second format are not patent-eligible, said the court in Adaptive Streaming Inc. v. Netflix, Inc., Case No. SA CV 19-1450-DOC (KESx) (C.D. Cal. Nov. 19. 2019). The court thus granted the defendant’s Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss, holding claims of U.S. Patent No. 7,047,305 (“Personal broadcasting system for audio and video data using a wide area network”) invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 101. One lesson of this case is that even long claims with a lot of technical verbiage should not necessarily be expected to survive an Alice challenge. Here is independent claim 39 from the ’305 patent, discussed in the court’s opinion; the bolded limitations are those that the plaintiff argued, without success, represented a patent-eligible technical innovation: A system to broadcast to at least one client device, the system…

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