Vol. LVI No. 3
Foreword

Foreword

It is a particular pleasure to introduce readers to this special patent-themed issue of the Boston College Law Review. In response to the number of excellent and publishable articles on patent law they received this last cycle, the Law Review editors decided to dedicate an entire issue to this timely and important subject. It is […]

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Article

Dubious Patent Reform

Abstract: The 2011 America Invents Act sought to drastically improve the American patent system by creating new review processes for already issued patents. These processes were meant to reduce patent litigation costs and clear the field of “dubious patents,” all the while increasing certainty in the existence and scope of patent rights. Though this was […]

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The Completeness Requirement in Patent Law

Abstract: This Article argues that courts have created a de facto extra-statutory condition of patentability, herein termed the “completeness” requirement. This requirement bars patents on certain inventions whose chief value lies in their function as inputs into downstream research. The Article contends that the notion of completeness explains doctrinal innovations that are difficult to rationalize […]

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When Nominal is Reasonable: Damages for the Unpracticed Patent

Abstract: To obtain a substantial patent damage award a patentee need not commercialize the patented invention; the patentee need only show that its patent was infringed. This surely incentivizes patenting but it dis-incentivizes innovation. Why commercialize yourself? The law allows you to wait for others to take the risks, and then you emerge later to […]

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Essay

Inter Partes Review as a Shield for Technology Purchasers: A Response to Gaia Bernstein’s The Rise of the End-User in Patent Litigation

Abstract: In her Article, The Rise of the End User in Patent Litigation, Professor Bernstein makes the case for legislative and judicial action designed to protect technology users from abusive patent enforcement that exploits their relative lack of resources and technical knowledge. This Essay presents the findings of an empirical study designed to determine the […]

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Note

Drive at Your Own Risk: Uber’s Misrepresentations to UberX Drivers About Insurance Coverage Violate California’s Unfair Competition Law

Abstract: Ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft have revolutionized the private transportation market. Given the lack of clear regulations over these businesses, however, insurance industry experts disagree with Uber about the adequacy of uberX drivers’ existing insurance coverage. This Note asserts that Uber misleads uberX drivers about the type and amount of coverage available […]

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“Cracking” the Code: Interpreting Sentence Reduction Requirements in Favor of Eligibility for Crack Cocaine Offenders Who Avoided a Mandatory Minimum for Their Substantial Assistance to Authorities

Abstract: In 2010, the Fair Sentencing Act (“FSA”) increased the quantities triggering mandatory minimums for crack cocaine offenses and directed the U.S. Sentencing Commission (“USSC”) to make similar reductions to the crack cocaine guideline ranges. After the USSC made these changes retroactive, offenders sentenced in accordance with the previous scheme sought sentence reductions. Due to […]

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Fighting SLAPPS in Federal Court: Erie, the Rules Enabling Act, and the Application of State anti-SLAPP Laws in Federal Diversity Actions

Abstract: Legislatures across the United States have passed laws to combat strategic lawsuits against public participation (“SLAPPs”)—suits brought solely to harass a party that has exercised protected speech or petitioning activity. Federal courts exercising diversity jurisdiction have struggled to determine whether these nominally procedural laws—particularly their hallmark special motions to dismiss—apply outside of state courts. […]

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#Fired: The National Labor Relations Act and Employee Outbursts in the Age of Social Media

Abstract: The National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) has long protected employees’ rights to engage in “concerted activity” for their mutual aid or protection. Enacted in 1935, the NLRA could not have foreseen the twenty-first century collision between employment law and social media. When evaluating social media cases, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) has had […]

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My Ears Hear More Than English: Granting Multilingual Jurors Accommodations and Treating Multilingualism as a Common Type of Juror Expertise

Abstract: To find an example of court-sanctioned discrimination against Spanish-speaking prospective jurors, one need not look further than the 2011 U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit decision in United States v. Cabrera-Beltran. Three multilingual jurors were struck for cause during voir dire for not agreeing to ignore all Spanish-language evidence that would be […]

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