Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Kickstarter Invalidates Crowd-Funding Patent Under 35 U.S.C.§ 101

The court granted a declaratory relief plaintiff's motion for summary judgment that defendant's crowd-funding patent was invalid for lack of patentable subject matter and found that the claims were directed to abstract ideas. "The [patent-in-suit’s] claims are directed to the concept of crowd-funding or fan-funding, i.e., raising funds for a project from interested individuals in exchange for incentives. . . . These claims are squarely about patronage — a concept that is 'beyond question of ancient lineage.'. . . Moreover, this concept of incentive-based funding is incontestably similar to other 'fundamental economic concepts,' and to other types of 'organizing human activity,' both of which have been found to be abstract ideas by the Supreme Court and the Federal Circuit. Just because the claims do not preempt all crowd-funding does not make them any less abstract."

Kickstarter, Inc. v. Fan Funded, LLC, et al, 1-11-cv-06909 (NYSD June 29, 2015, Order) (Failla, J.)

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