The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) saw activity in August 2018 involving a variety of frequent litigants. This included petitions for inter partes review (IPR) filed against two NPEs controlled by Fortress Investment Group LLC, INVT SPE LLC and Uniloc 2017 LLC, the latter of which has in recent months cofiled a barrage of lawsuits with subsidiaries of Australian NPE Uniloc Corporation Pty. Limited (Uniloc). The PTAB also instituted trial in August for IPRs against Uniloc 2017 and some of its campaign coplaintiffs, and in an IPR against an NPE controlled by patent attorney Brian Yates, whose US litigation has waned as he pursues a new patent licensing initiative through his company iPEL, Inc. Finally, the PTAB issued final decisions in August for IPRs against Uniloc, Empire IP LLC, and Quarterhill Inc.
Link Engine Technologies LLC, which is managed by the founders of Empire IP LLC, has kicked off its first litigation campaign. In four separate complaints filed on October 3-4, the NPE asserted a network browsing patent (7,480,694) against Funny Or Die Media (2:16-cv-01071), M. Roberts Media (2:16-cv-01076), NYP Holdings (2:16-cv-01083), and IAC/Interactive (Vimeo) (2:16-cv-01070), accusing the companies’ video sharing websites of infringement. While this week’s suits are Link Engine’s first, Empire IP affiliates have collectively filed over 400 patent infringement cases since 2011.