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In the upcoming GSVLabs Fidelity Accelerator program event, Morgan Lewis partner Don Shelkey of our Boston office will participate in a mentorship event for financial technology startups focused on intellectual property issues. The GSVLabs event is part of a broader program focused on mentoring financial technology startups on a broad range of business and legal issues.

The event will be held on February 14, 2018, in Boston.

Upcoming Webinar

October 17, 2017

On October 25, A. Benjamin Klaber, a lawyer in our technology, outsourcing, and commercial transactions group, will be co-presenting a CLE-webinar, “Drafting Website and Mobile App Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and IP Protections.” The webinar will offer guidance on drafting and enforcing terms of use, privacy policies, and IP protection language for websites and mobile apps to effectively mitigate business risk.

The webinar will take place from 1:00–2:30 pm EDT. 

Additional information regarding the webinar, registration, and CLE credits can be found here.

In light of recent significant ransomware cyberattacks such as the one that originated in Ukraine and quickly spread to affect hundreds of thousands of computers in more than 150 countries, we wanted to provide a few pointers on shoring up your company’s contractual language to mitigate (or at least shift) the risks involved with these types of attacks.

The US Patent Act[1] gives patent holders the right to prevent others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling the invention in the United States or importing the invention into the United States.[2] The premise behind granting these rights in new inventions is to encourage inventors to disclose new technology to the public by offering the inventors a limited monopoly on the use of such technology.

The doctrine of patent exhaustion limits the ability of a patent holder to control the future sale and use of individual items that contain or use the patented technology. When a patent holder sells or authorizes the sale of an individual item, the patent holder can no longer control that item by asserting its rights under the US Patent Act. That is, the patent holder cannot claim that the subsequent sale of that item infringes the patent holder’s patent rights. The patent rights are said to be “exhausted.”

In addition to the recent FTC Guidance on COPPA, discussed in a previous post, the FBI has released a Public Service Announcement about the dangers of internet-connected toys and other kids’ devices. Our privacy group has put together a comprehensive LawFlash on both the FTC Guidance and the FBI’s Announcement. Read the LawFlash for more detail and reminders for compliance.

A feedback clause generally gives the recipient of feedback ownership or license rights to ideas, know-how, improvements, or suggestions that the recipient might receive from another party. Feedback clauses are typically found in agreements where one party is evaluating or testing the products or services of another party and providing input—such as evaluation or beta agreements, collaboration agreements, and sometimes non-disclosure agreements. The purpose of a feedback clause is to protect the recipient of feedback from later claims by the discloser that the recipient used intellectual property (IP) of the discloser to develop, modify or improve its services or products.

A typical feedback clause will include a nonexclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free license for the benefit of the recipient of feedback to use any suggestions, modifications, improvements, or ideas provided by the discloser. The feedback is usually provided on a voluntary basis, without any representations or warranties from the discloser.

The U.S. Copyright Office recently released a third-edition public draft of the Compendium of its practices for comment. The final version is targeted for release in December and will serve as a guide to fundamental principles of copyright law and a technical manual regarding copyright registration, documentation of copyright ownership, and recordation of copyright documents, including assignments and licenses. With the last edition published more than 20 years ago, we have summarized below some notable new aspects, particularly with respect to changes driven by the Internet and new technologies.