If You're Going To Sue For Patent Infringement, It Helps To Say What Actually Infringes
from the pro-tip dept
Last year, we wrote about a guy, Greg Bender, who holds a patent (5,103,188) on a "buffered transconductance amplifier," that he's decided is infringed upon by pretty much any electronics device. He filed a ton of lawsuits claiming that his patent was infringed on by makers of computers, cell phones, hard drives, DVD players, HDTVs and MRI machines. However, it appears he failed when it came to providing specifics. Joe Mullin points to the news that Bender's lawsuit against Motorola has been dismissed for failing to state a claim. Specifically, the lawsuit was so vague and general that it wasn't clear what he was suing over. In the lawsuit, Bender claimed the following were infringing:
products [including], without limitation, cell phones, computers, network drivers, high definition television sets, ultrasound machines, MRI machines, lab equipment, arbitrary waveform generators, audio amplifiers, video amplifiers, hard disc drives, ADC/DAC converters, DVD-RW players, DSL modems, CCD cameras, satellite communication technology, and other products where high performance, high speed analog circuits are used, and/or components thereof.With such a broad list, the court noted that no one had any idea what was actually infringing:
Nowhere in the Amended Complaint does Plaintiff identify, with the requisite level of factual detail, the particular product or line of products, that allegedly infringe the '188 Patent. Instead, Plaintiff merely claims that the infringing "products include, without limitation, cell phones, computers . . . and other products where high performance, high speed analog circuits are used, and/or components thereof." [P]laintiff has done nothing more than recite a laundry list of electronic devices. These cursory allegations are insufficient to give the Defendant fair notice of the claims being alleged against it.