“The 18-minute video presented to the Apple v. Samsung jury Tuesday did a good job explaining what a patent is,” Philip Elmer-DeWitt reports for Fortune. “What it didn’t explain was the difference between a design and a utility patent or, more important, the vast difference in the rewards involved if infringement of one or the other can be proved.”

P.E.D. reports, “Enter Christopher Carani, a patent attorney at Chicago-based intellectual property law firm McAndrews, Held & Malloy, Ltd. In an e-mail sent to reporters Wednesday, he [explains]… ‘The no apportionment language (i.e. disgorgement of infringer’s ‘total profits’) was placed in the Patent Act in 1887 in response to a 1886 U.S. Supreme Court case regarding infringement of a design patent on a carpet design, whereby the Court said the design patentee was only entitled to 6 cents in damages – the portion of the damages attributable to the design. In response to that holding, a holding that members of Congress felt was a miscarriage of justice, the 1887 Patent Act was enacted and provided a remedy for ‘total profit’ without apportionment for design patent infringement. The provision has largely been a sleeper for 125 years. Now, it has surfaced and done so in a big, big, way – to the tune of $2.0bil, which, if awarded, would represent the largest U.S. patent infringement award of all time.'”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dan K.” for the heads up.]

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