Sunday, October 30, 2016

Happy Halloween

     From all of us at the Henry Park Law, may you have a safe and fun filled day (and night).

- Henry Park and Joseph J. DiDonato

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Daylight Saving Time ends in Europe

     This Sunday, October 30th, will mark the end of daylight saving time (DST) for countries in Europe.  This means that the standard number of hours separating the U.S. from the other parts of the world will decrease by one hour.  An exception to this rule is Iceland, which does not observe DST.

     For the next week until November 6th, the difference between New York, NY and Zurich, Switzerland is five (5) hours, instead of the standard six (6) hours

- Henry Park

updated on 10/30

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Voting in the General Election

     As a registered absentee voter, I received yesterday the following letter.

     And, in that letter was ballot for the general election.

     Yes.  I will be voting.

- Henry Park

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

USPTO - Java Web Start is almost here

     This is an update to my September 13th post.

     The USPTO announced on its website, link, that its interim authentication method will be available starting on October 24th.

     And, sure enough, they sent on October 21st an email making that same announcement in case you didn't see the website announcement.

     Additionally, they published a bit more information about Java Web Start, link

The key take away is that you will be downloading a JNLP file, and running that file using Java:

     My, oh my, wouldn't it be great if they consolidated all of this information into one location.

- Henry Park

updated on 10/23

USPTO and Java v8 update 111 build 14

    On my Macintosh, I received a notice that there is an updated version of Java v8 update 111 build 14 (released on October 18).


      I called the US Patent Electronic Business Center (EBC), and talked to Agent 44. She said that they have not yet tested the update, and that she suggested holding off on the update for a few days.

      A colleague mentioned that the EBC has approved this release of Java.

- Henry Park

updated 10/27

Monday, October 17, 2016

Contracts - Be careful with your choice of law provisions in EU consumer contracts

     On July 28, 2016, the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) held that a choice of law provision in a e-commerce website's terms and condition could be unfair to consumers.  Verein für Konsumenteninformation v. Amazon EU Sàrl, Case C-191/15.

      In this case, the 2012 version of the Terms and Conditions of Amazon Germany's website ( contained a choice of law provision requiring Luxembourg law.  Case C-191/15, at ¶ 30.  Applying the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts of 1993, Directive 93/13/EEC, the ECJ found the choice of law provision could be unfair if it leads Austrian consumers to believe that only Luxembourg law applies when in fact, the consumer has certain mandatory rights under Austrian law.  The ECJ then sent the case back to the Austrian court, which had asked the ECJ to examine this question, for a determination as to whether the choice of law provision was unfair.

      What does this mean for you?

      If you have a choice of law provision in your EU consumer contracts, you should examine those provisions carefully to determine whether you need to add some qualifying language about the consumer not waiving any rights under their national laws.

 - Henry Park

Reciprocity - New Jersey's list is growing

    This is an update to my earlier April 18th, August 19th, and September 1st posts.

    31 jurisdictions now have reciprocity with New Jersey; with six of them in the last month and a half: District of Columbia, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

     My big question:  When will New York and New Jersey strike a reciprocity arrangement?

- Henry Park

Friday, October 7, 2016

EU and the United Kingdom - Hard Brexit

     Last week, Prime Minister Teresa May provided a glimpse concerning how the United Kingdom will manage its laws, which consists of U.K. and European Union (EU) laws [link].  EU laws consist of regulations, which are similar to a law and applies in all EU states; directive, which sets out rules that EU states must adopt into their national laws; and decisions, which affect only a certain issue or country [link].

     First, a Great Repeal Bill will repeal the 1972 European Communities Act which made EU law automatically binding in the UK, made EU law take precedence, and made the European Court of Justice the court of last appeal.

     Second, most EU laws will be transposed into domestic laws on exit day, and then the government can choose which laws it wishes to replace.  Domesticating EU law is important because it is estimated that somewhere between 15-55% of UK laws are influenced by EU law [link 1, link 2].  Domestication also is important because it provides businesses with some certainty about the state of the laws in the UK that probably will exist on exit day.

    However, the UK appears to be demanding greater immigration controls, which conflicts with the EU's open migration policy.  This demand likely will affect the UK's ability to participate fully in the EU market and, thus, to negotiate trade bills with the EU by exit day.  This latter result creates great uncertainty about how current and future intellectual property rights and programs will be handled.

     For example, European patents are not at risk because they were created by the European Patent Convention, which is separate from the EU.  However, the UK had signed up to participate in the forthcoming Unified Patent Court (UPC) which would have exclusive jurisdiction over European patents. Unfortunately, the UPC is limited to members of the EU, and the UK had not yet assented to the UPC. Thus, there are questions about whether the UPC will be formed and whether the UK will be a part.

     As another example, through the Madrid System (Agreement and Protocol), a person could register a trademark for the EU that would cover the UK.  That won't be true after the UK leaves the EU.  Additionally, what happens to the previously registered trademarks through the Madrid System that covered the EU, and the UK?

    Similarly, as a member of the EU, the UK was a part of the EU IPO (formerly OHIM).  Thus, trademarks and design marks registered with the EU IPO covered the UK.  But, they won't after the UK leaves.  Again, what happens to the marks that previously covered the UK?  Will the UK grandfather those registered marks into its own books?    

- Henry Park

G2E, The future of gaming revealed

     The Global Gaming Expo (G2E) 2016 conference in Las Vegas on September 27-29 provided a “window” into the current state of gaming and an understanding of the variations in appreciation of the future of gaming. Most particularly, it was obvious that an overwhelming number of gaming manufacturers  companies have taken the position that improved graphics, modern themes and brighter lighting will provide the ability to attract new and additional patrons to gaming while others recognized the future requires a departure from the conventional games of the “brick and mortar” casino.

     The auditorium hall had variations of interest to all things gaming uniforms, fraud prevention, food preservatives, cyber security, the focus of the convention, table and slot games. The majority of the games however we're basically the conventional "slot" machines and  table games with variations that have been around for a number of years. The convention featured multiple type “side wager” variations to conventional table games of Black Jack, Texas Hold’em and Baccarat.  These game variations are directed to obtain additional wagers from current players rather than attracting “new” players.  More particularly, the motivation to developing these “side wager” variations is based on the ability to provide a method to get “more” out of the same gaming populations rather than attracting new patrons to gaming.  This “small risk” type change to gaming will need to be reviewed regarding its success over the next few years.

     However, a lurking doom seem to be evident in the hall with regard to the conventional type “slot” machines and table games in the future in gaming.  It was recognized and acknowledged by all that traditional games will be a part of the future of gaming but their space in the gaming arena (and casino floors) will be reduced to make way for the igames and e-sports that will be required to attract the millennials; the sector of the population that will over the next 10 years become to core focus of gaming revenues considerations.   Economically, the future of gaming will bet on the millennials recognizing their reliance and affinity for computer software inclusive games which include an element of skill, while keeping the traditional players to the greatest extent possible.  A majority of the members of the gaming community present at the convention recognized the future is going to be based on igames, e-sports and player to player (P2P) type games. Though many companies did not have these types of games “on the floor”, conversations with executives and technology leaders of these companies recognized that this was the future of gaming.

     A spin off consideration to the “P2P” gaming is provided based on the “ancillary” type commercialization of these types of games in contrast to “house games”.  Most particularly, P2P gaming (in various forms) allows for the inclusion of the sectors outside of the “brick and mortar” type casino.  Further, P2P provides the ability to incorporate “analytic” type software to the entertainment package.  For example, P2P can be an “event” at various venues in the retail area such as large bar and restaurant facilities without any concern of a requirement of a “gaming license”.  The venue can offer such events at entertainment and allow for prizes rather than money winnings.  Much like the sport of boxing, venues can be of various sizes and the event schedule can include leagues.  The surrounding commercialization benefit can be shared by all, in addition to the ability grow gaming via this type of event.

     The G2E conference provides a forum for many of the issues regarding gaming and established that the correct combination of intellectual property protection, development, marketing and entrepreneurship can provide a “re-newed” interest in gaming for both existing players and new players for many years in the future. 

- Joseph J. DiDonato

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Privacy - Apple Messages and Metadata

     A few days ago, the Intercept published an article about Apple storing and potentially sharing metadata associated with Apple's Messages application on its iOS and MacOS devices with law enforcement agencies. [link] Among the metadata being stored is the date and time of a communication, the number being communicated with, and your IP address.  Much digital ink has been spilled over this relevation.

     The better question is why are people surprised?

     First, Apple needs that metadata for its Messages application to function.

     Second, Apple as a provider of "electronic communication service[s]", much like AT&T or any other wire or electronic communication service provider, would be subject to a pen register or trap and trace device order. See 18 U.S.C. § 3123. These orders allow law enforcement to collect transactional information related to communications (i.e., metadata), but not the communications themselves. Thus, in order to comply with such orders, Apple would have to have a metadata log.

      Perhaps people are surprised because they never understood Apple's various businesses and, thus did not realized that Apple was a provider of electronic communication services.  Or, perhaps they read too much into Apple's statements that it values its customer's privacy, it doesn't read or scan your messages, and that its Messages application was encrypted end-to-end [link 1, link 2].  Or, perhaps they are starting to realize that metadata can be just as enlightening as actual communications.

     What does this mean for other electronic communication services with US operations?  It means that they too are collecting metadata.

- Henry Park

Saturday, October 1, 2016

How to re-enable Java on Safari v10.0

     Updates and upgrades are the bane of every patent practioner because they always break something with the USPTO.  If you are using an Apple Macintosh computer and you upgrade to Safari v.10, then you will need to re-enable Java. Here is how to do so.

1.  In Safari, go to

2.  Go to Safari menu --> Preferences --> Security --> Plugin Settings...

3.  While holding down the Option button -- click on Java.


4.  While holding down the Option button -- select the option menu -- and deselect / turn off "RUN IN SAFE MODE"


5.  This will bring up a pop-up window.  Select "Trust".


     This post is derived from a colleague's message.

- Henry Park

Java updates - CPU and PSU

     A colleague recently asked which of these Oracle Java updates he should install onto his new computer.

     The answer to that question requires understanding the difference between a CPU and a PSU.  According to Oracle: 
CPU - Java SE Critical Patch Updates contain fixes to security vulnerabilities and critical bug fixes. Oracle strongly recommends that all Java SE users upgrade to the latest CPU releases as they are made available. 
PSU - Java SE Patch Set Updates contain all of fixes in the corresponding CPU, as well as additional non-critical fixes. Java PSU releases should only be used if you are being impacted by one of the additional bugs fixed in that version. The release notes call out the additional fixes available in Java SE PSU releases.
[link].  Further, the subsequent CPU release will contain all of the additional bug fixes from the current PSU.

     Finally, both CPUs and PSUs are cumulative, so you only have to install the latest version to receive all of the current and previous updates.  However, PSUs may contain a different patching mechanism.  [link to PDF at p.25]  Thus, once a PSU has been installed, you would need to continue  using PSUs.

     Thus, unless you are being impacted by some of the additional bugs that were fixed in the PSU, you should use the CPU.

- Henry Park