Whitepates, Inc. v. Jeffrey Isaacs, et al.

Whitepates, Inc. v. Jeffrey Isaacs, et al., No. 16-cv-00175) (Seeborg, J.) (N.D. Cal. July 25, 2016)

Patent(s):

8,861,698 | Entitled “Post-page caller name identification system” 

Disposition:

District Court granted a motion for judgment on the pleadings that the patent is directed to non-eligible subject matter under § 101.  

Abstract Idea:

Yes

Something More:

No

Technology:

Combining two telephone network related technologies, namely SS7 Caller Name ID (“CNAM”) and internet based reverse telephone number search. 

Summary:                 

The court described the patented method as: “permitting users to input a phone number on the web or a mobile phone app, determine the number’s carrier, search the carrier’s name database, and return the name associated with the phone number.” Accordingly, the abstract idea was reduced to: looking up a name associated with a phone number.

Patentee attempted to fend off the motion arguing that the claims were “not simply directed to finding out the identity of the person associated with a phone number, but are directed to a particular way of doing so” not previously available and arguing that the “particular” way employs a generic web browser to “connect[ ] individual users over the Internet to proprietary carrier CNAM databases via an SS7 interfacing node.” The court flat out rejected this argument because Greenflight had not invented the SS7 interface and that Greenflight had asserted in its counterclaim that  “use of SS7 technology ‘is such a common occurrence that the telecom industry simply refers to it as a name ‘dip.’” Accordingly, the court rejected the argument stating that “the patent employs industry-standard technology to perform a longstanding business practice, with no asserted improvement other than to use generic internet applications to obtain certain customer side advantages.”