Does anyone own the rectangle? Should anyone own the rectangle?
These questions may sound absurd, but they’re at the heart of U.S. patent law’s Battle of the Titans: Apple vs. Samsung.
On Aug. 24, a San Jose jury awarded Apple Inc. a whopping $1.05 billion in damages. Apple had accused Samsung of copying its intellectual property, including its very broad design patents for rectangular «electronic devices.» And Apple wants to use those patents to stop its competitor from selling items like the new (rectangular) Galaxy tablet and (rectangular) Android-based smartphones.
Now, you may be thinking that a lot of devices in your house are rectangular.… Seguir leyendo »
Of all the hangovers from the George W. Bush years, the thorniest may be what to do about the U.S. military prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. There are still 171 detainees at Guantanamo and little consensus on what to do with them. Last spring, President Obama announced the resumption of military trials for some of those charged with participating in the 9/11 attacks. These trials, known as military commissions, have been stalled for years by legal challenges. Recently, the official in charge of the Guantanamo prison, Rear Adm. David Woods, issued a draft order that compounds these challenges. The order requires all correspondence between the accused and their appointed military lawyers to be reviewed by federal officials.… Seguir leyendo »
Surely a screenplay is already in the works. An American diplomat guns down two men in broad daylight in Lahore, Pakistan. The diplomat, who secretly works for the CIA, is apprehended and turned over to the local police. In his car, according to news reports, is a Glock 9-millimeter handgun, 75 rounds of ammunition, a global positioning system device, a survival kit and a satellite phone. As U.S. officials from the president on down press for his release, he is held in a Pakistani jail, his food sniffed by dogs for fear he will be poisoned.
This improbable story, of course, really happened in January.… Seguir leyendo »
New York City is one of the world’s great centers of fashion. So it’s not surprising that New York’s senior senator, Charles E. Schumer, would take an interest in fashion designers. Last week he introduced legislation that would rewrite copyright law to cover their designs. But his bill could hurt the fashion industry more than it would help, and raise consumer prices along the way.
It strikes many people as strange that fashion designs are not already protected against copying. Creative artists like musicians and filmmakers argue, quite persuasively, that their success requires copyright protection for their work. If others could steal it, they say, innovation would grind to a halt.… Seguir leyendo »