EFF Asks to Intervene to Oppose Motions to Seal Clouding May 2018 Deal Between Fortress and Uniloc

January 11, 2019

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has asked District Judge William H. Alsup for permission to jump into the standing fight between Apple and subsidiaries of NPE Uniloc Corporation Pty. Limited. Last year, Apple moved to dismiss multiple cases filed against it, arguing that after a May 2018 deal between Uniloc and Fortress Investment Group LLC, the plaintiffs lack standing to assert the patents-in-suit. The EFF, a self-described “donor-funded, non-profit civil liberties organization” with “more than 39,000 active members”, has now moved to intervene in those cases (3:18-cv-003603:18-cv-003633:18-cv-005723:18-cv-00365) for a limited purpose: to oppose motions to file under seal the agreements that apparently apportion rights in the large portfolio of patents that Uniloc transferred to Fortress last May, as well as large parts of the parties’ briefs arguing about the legal consequences flowing from those agreements. EFF contends that those briefs’ heavy redactions, supported only by “rote justifications” in declarations filed by counsel for Uniloc, rob the public of its common law and First Amendment rights of access.

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