Federal Circuit Ad Patent Ruling Will Spur Early Alice Attacks

November 14, 2014

​Fenwick & West patent partner Robert Sachs was quoted in a Law360 article reporting on the ruling last Friday by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit that invalidated Ultramercial LLC's online advertising patent, for claiming an abstract idea. The court reversed itself in the wake of this past June’s U.S. Supreme Court Alice ruling that abstract ideas implemented using a computer are not patent-eligible under Section 101 of the Patent Act.

In the few months since the Alice decision, the Federal Circuit and other courts have invalidated a number of computer-related patents. Sachs said that the Ultramercial decision was further evidence of the Federal Circuit’s recent propensity to view these patents skeptically.

“It confirms what we know, that the Federal Circuit is certainly swinging in an anti-software, anti-business method patent direction. That's the trajectory," Sachs stated.

The full article is available through the Law360 website (subscription required).