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Category: News Releases

Privacy & Cybersecurity and Intellectual Property Attorney Matthew Wes Joins Hoge Fenton

By Hoge Fenton | 04.20.2018 | Firm Post

Hoge Fenton is pleased to announce that Matthew Wes will be joining the firm’s Privacy and Cybersecurity and Intellectual Property groups. Matt brings valuable IP, privacy and data security experience, having served previously as a Privacy Fellow at LinkedIn and as a post-Bar legal fellow at the Wikimedia Foundation, Mozilla (the Firefox company), TRUSTe, and the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office. Matt received his J.D. at Santa Clara University School of Law and is CIPP/US certified by the International Association of Privacy Professionals. “Matt is the perfect addition to the Privacy & Cybersecurity and Intellectual Property groups. His experience at online technology companies at the forefront of privacy and data security issues, as well as working within government agencies, gives Matt a unique and valuable insight into these dynamic areas of the law, which he will use every day in serving Hoge Fenton’s clients,” said Stephanie Sparks, Chair of the firm’s Privacy and Cybersecurity and Intellectual Property groups. “We are excited to add Matt Wes to our growing team.” Please join us in welcoming Matt. Find out more about our IP/Privacy Practice

Pilot or Paparazzi? Drone Photography Can Violate Anyone’s Privacy, Not Just Celebrities’

By Hoge Fenton | 03.2.2018 | Firm Post

Most people know that they have some right to privacy, and that others’ invasion of that privacy is a legally recognized offense. California, a leader in the privacy law landscape, has an “anti-paparazzi” law in Civil Code section 1708.8 to address sneaky privacy violators who use technology, such as drones, to gain access to private property. But people are unlikely to realize that section 1708.8 law protects everyone, not just celebrities. Section 1708.8 creates a civil cause of action against one who knowingly enters a plaintiff’s property or airspace without permission intending to capture any kind of image or recording of private activities. While it may sound like a violation occurs only if the intruder captures intimate moments, “private activities” includes most conduct on a residential property. Any activity indoors, within a fenced yard, or recessed from the boundaries of a property is likely to offer a reasonable expectation of privacy. The sting of section 1708.8 is in the remedies. If you successfully sue a harasser, you may be able to obtain: treble damages; punitive damages; disgorgement of the defendant’s profits if the images were sold; and/or the ability to pursue any other person who solicited the defendant to invade your privacy. This powerful claim recognizes that technological advancements—like drone-mounted photography—have made it easier to harass without a physical entry onto your property. Despite being called an anti-paparazzi law, section 1708.8 provides relief to many “everyday” plaintiffs. Drone pilots should consider section 1708.8. Although punitive damages are only available upon a showing of malice, a violation only […]

Senior Litigator and Trial Attorney Eugene Ashley Joins Hoge Fenton

By Hoge Fenton | 02.28.2018 | Firm Post

San Jose (March 1, 2018) – Hoge Fenton is pleased to announce that Eugene “Geno” Ashley has joined the firm’s Business Litigation group. A senior litigator and trial attorney, Geno, a former Hopkins & Carley shareholder, brings a wealth of litigation and trial experience to Hoge Fenton. For more than 24 years, Geno has both counseled and advocated on behalf of his business clients in significant matters. A veteran trial lawyer, Geno’s experience ranges from “bet the company” lawsuits with multi-million-dollar outcomes, to prosecuting and defending actions arising out of contracts and business torts, unfair business practices and trade secrets claims, and construction and real estate disputes. In addition, his experience as his previous firm’s General Counsel has provided him with a strong foundation in legal ethics and professional responsibility. “Geno is a stellar trial attorney with a remarkable record, especially when dealing with high stakes cases,” said Alison Buchanan, Chair of Hoge Fenton’s Business Litigation practice group.  “His ability to formulate strategy and achieve client objectives is impressive. I am so pleased to have Geno as part of the Hoge Fenton Business Litigation team.” “I am thrilled to join Hoge Fenton and feel that my clients will be well served at the firm,” said Geno Ashley.  “Hoge Fenton’s reputation for passionate client advocacy and its diverse practice offerings define quality service.” “We want only the best attorneys who also share the values and culture of the firm.  Geno exemplifies the qualities that we look for in an attorney: excellence […]

Federal Circuit Provides Lifeline for Software and Business Method Patents

By Hoge Fenton | 02.26.2018 | Firm Post

  After nearly four years of post-Alice precedent allowing the early invalidation of software and business method patents, the Federal Circuit has begun looking more favorably on patents for computer-implemented inventions. The patent enforcement landscape has been relatively hostile to these kinds of patents since the 2014 decision in Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. V. CLS Bank Int’l, 134 S. Ct. 2347 (2014), in which the Supreme Court held that mere computer implementation did not make an abstract idea concrete and protectable. Starting in 2016, the Federal Circuit gradually began acknowledging the validity of some software patents involving improvements to computer operation or technological processes. February has seen a continuation of this trend, as the Federal Circuit overturned the rulings of two district courts, in the Seventh and Eleventh Circuits. Both courts had ruled that the patent claims at issue were ineligible for protection as abstract ideas, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 101. First, in Berkheimer v. HP Inc., (Fed. Cir. 2018), the Federal Circuit denied summary judgment, finding that there was an underlying issue of material fact as to whether a patent for data sorting and archiving involved an improvement to computer operation or a previously unknown method. Then, faced with patents covering data collection and organization in Aatrix Software Inc. v. Green Shades Software Inc., (Fed. Cir. 2018), the Federal Circuit overturned a dismissal for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), finding a factual issue regarding whether […]

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