Peter Menell

Supreme Court trims federal appeals court’s authority in patent cases

Peter Menell quoted in Daily Journal (registration required), January 21, 2015

“This decision creates a clear pathway for better information to enter the record in patent cases and for more sound claim construction decisions,” Menell said. “Many district judges have not taken expert testimony on the record, nor have they provided detailed explanations for why they construe a claim one way or another.”

Patent claim construction and distrust

Peter Menell writes for the Daily Journal (registration required), November 14, 2014

The Teva case poses a fundamental question going to the heart of the American justice system. Should factual determinations underlying patent claim construction be subject to substantially less deference (or more distrust) than the factual determinations made in every other area of federal adjudication?

Symposium: Aereo, disruptive technology, and statutory interpretation

Peter Menell and David Nimmer write for Scotus Blog, June 26, 2014

No one should be entirely satisfied with where the Supreme Court’s resolution of this case leaves the larger policy determination. The Copyright Act of 1976 is indeed creaky. While its drafters enunciated purposes and principles that have guided the evolution of copyright protection, we are nearly half a century beyond those drafting choices. Thus, while we commend the Supreme Court’s faithful execution of its Constitutional role, we nonetheless believe that the time is ripe to consider how best to reform the Copyright Act for the current technological age.

Much ado about copyright’s ‘making available’ right

Peter Menell writes for The Media Institute, May 9, 2014

Concern over outsize statutory damage awards in file-sharing and user-generated content platform cases has distorted statutory interpretation of other provisions of the Copyright Act and contributed to growing public disdain and disregard for the copyright system.

Commerce department holds meeting to discuss Internet task force green paper

Peter Menell quoted in Bloomberg BNA, December 20, 2013 (registration required)

Peter Menell…. urged stakeholders to keep the big picture in mind and to think about how the current statutory damages provisions help or inhibit enforcement efforts…. “In the Internet age, we want a copyright system that garners public approval,” Menell said. “And I think that is something that has been lost, and statutory damages played a very significant role” in the erosion of public support, he said.

Pandora’s price

Peter Menell, quoted in East Bay Express, December 18, 2013

Peter Menell … noted that musicians have often been pushed aside in these debates. “Artists are an underrepresented part of the ecosystem,” he said. “They are now starting to speak up.”

Scholar joins scrum on claims construction standard

Peter Menell cited in The Recorder, July 2, 2013

Cybor, Menell wrote in Monday’s filing, has “undermined the transparency of the claim construction process” and “produced alarming levels of appellate reversals.” Rather than fostering predictability, the Cybor dynamic has “discouraged settlements following claim construction and trial, delayed resolution of patent disputes, and run up the overall costs of patent litigation.”

Claim construction Catch-22: why the Supreme Court should grant certiorari in retractable technologies

Peter Menell and Jonas Anderson write for Patently-O, December 5, 2012

In its filing last week, the Solicitor General has unfortunately recommended against Supreme Court review principally on the ground that Retractable Technologies is not an “appropriate vehicle” because the district court did not specifically rely upon factual findings. Therein lies the Catch-22. No district court since at least the Federal Circuit’s 1998 en banc Cybor ruling has been willing to make factual findings in construing patent claims for the pragmatic, logical, and legal reason that to do so would contradict Federal Circuit law that claim construction is a pure question of law.

Google, PageRank, and symbiotic technological change

Peter Menell writes for The Media Institute, August 24, 2012

Technological change is rarely without downside risks; nor is it uni-dimensional. Society does not just want automobiles; we want safe, non-polluting automobiles. Similarly with respect to information dissemination technologies, the proper framing should recognize society’s multi-faceted interest in promoting technological advance, expressive creativity, and freedom of expression.