Non-Profit Organization Appellee Described as Representing the Public Interest Not Excluded from Appearing in Court to Defend a PTAB Decision
PERSONAL AUDIO v. ELECTRONIC FRONTIER FOUNDATION: August 7, 2017. Before Newman, Clevenger, and O’Malley
A non-profit organization appellee described as representing the public interest is not excluded from appearing in court to defend a PTAB decision in view of the Consumer Watchdog decision with the appellant satisfying the Article III standing requirement.
Personal Audio appealed the decision of the PTAB in inter partes review (IPR) finding claims directed to a system and apparatus for storing and distributing episodic media files unpatentable under 35 U.S.C. §§ 102 and 103. CAFC affirmed.
Standing: The CAFC held that the appellee, described as a non-profit organization advocating in the public interest of consumers of digital technology, was not excluded from appearing in court to defend the PTAB decision with Article III satisfied as to the appellant. Standing to appeal is measured for the party “seek[ing] entry to the federal courts for the first time in the lawsuit.” Consumer Watchdog raises no question as to whether the appellee had standing.
Claim Construction: The CAFC concluded that the PTAB correctly construed the terms “episode” and “updated version of a compilation file” based on the patent specification. The temporal claim limitations did not restrict the application to episodes produced at different times, but referred to the conditions under which an updated version of a compilation file was produced. The claim language and the specification did not require the updated version of the compilation file to be created from a previously existing compilation file.
Anticipation/Obviousness: The CAFC affirmed the PTAB’s judgment of unpatentability for anticipation and/or obviousness. Substantial evidence supported the PTAB’s findings that both references disclosed “episodes.” The PTAB correctly found that both the first reference’s disclosure of automatically generating and storing a new version of the “contents.html” file with the day’s news stories and the second reference’s disclosure of making episodes of a science magazine show available each week along with accompanying text satisfied the claim limitation “updated version of a compilation file.” Further, substantial evidence supported the PTAB’s findings that one of the references disclosed “two processors” and taught the claimed “back-end configuration” of the processors and servers.