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SteveKimLaw
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I am an active husband, father, lawyer (more than 24 years, how time flies), and investor. I believe in contrarian investing, i.e., going where the crowd isn't. I believe that successful investing, like successful living, requires equal parts listening and evaluating, followed by independent... More
  • Vringo Vs. Google: Judge Raymond Jackson 25 comments
    Oct 18, 2012 7:15 PM | about stocks: VRNG

    As you know, this case fascinates me. Aside from the fact that I am invested in Vringo, I am interested in seeing how the attorneys work, what kinds of motions they file, and how the presiding Judge, Hon. Raymond Jackson, responds to them.

    I am extremely impressed by Judge Jackson, so I looked him up. Here's what I found:

    Judge Jackson is courageous and does the right thing. In one famous case, he departed from mandatory federal sentencing guidelines in sentencing a defendant on a drug case, where the mandatory sentencing just did not seem fair or appropriate. The appellate court appealed him, and the case was taken to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Supreme Court reinstated Judge Jackson's sentencing, in a very important ruling that restored a measure of judicial discretion in sentencing that Congress had tried to take away. This shows me two things. First, Judge Jackson has a lot of moral courage, since it is unusual for a Judge to depart from mandatory guidelines, since they are of course mandatory. Second, he did not just do so on a "moral protest", but it turns out that he was correct, in a case that wound up making new and important law.

    Judge Jackson sticks his neck out to protect rights. In another case, he vacated a death sentence that had been imposed, under circumstances where the primary witness against the defendant later recanted, and Judge Jackson concluded that the prosecution had withheld exculpatory evidence.

    In this Vringo/Google case, Judge Jackson has made clear, concise, and decisive rulings, both in the pretrial phase, and also during the trial. He keeps the witnesses and attorneys focused, and it is clear he is watching and listening to the evidence like a hawk. When you are invested in a case like I am (like most of us are), you always have to be careful of confirmatory bias. That means you have to account for your natural tendency to see things in the light you want to see them. However, trying to set this aside, I see a Judge who has been extremely diligent in creating a level playing field and keeping the parties' feet to the fire, who is in no way "in awe" of Google or "dismissive" of Vringo.

    If Google wins fair and square, then so be it. But if Vringo wins, then I think Judge Jackson is the type of Judge who will give them an appropriate spanking when he sets future royalties and considers an award of attorney's fees and interest on past amounts owed.

    Disclosure: I am long VRNG.

    Themes: GOOG Stocks: VRNG
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Comments (25)
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  • Joe Decker
    , contributor
    Comments (96) | Send Message
     
    "Judge Jackson is courageous and does the right thing. In one famous case, he departed from mandatory federal sentencing guidelines in sentencing a defendant on a drug case, where the mandatory sentencing just did not seem fair or appropriate. The appellate court appealed him, and the case was taken to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Supreme Court reinstated Judge Jackson's sentencing, in a very important ruling that restored a measure of judicial discretion in sentencing that Congress had tried to take away. This shows me two things. First, Judge Jackson has a lot of moral courage, since it is unusual for a Judge to depart from mandatory guidelines, since they are of course mandatory. Second, he did not just do so on a "moral protest", but it turns out that he was correct, in a case that wound up making new and important law."

     

    Wow, you're proud of this guy for Judicial Activism? The politicization and moralization of the courts aside, SCOTUS included, you see a Judge that goes off of feelings as a good thing for this case?

     

    Is it true you are a Bankruptcy lawyer by specialty? Btw, I don't have anything personal against lawyers, my wife is one. But on the principle of Judicial Activism, of judges not following the law and making it up according to their personal opinions, that I'm very much against.

     

    You just better hope the judge doesnt develop sympathy for GOOG...

     

    But if he likes GOOG it's okay if he them an "appropriate" spanking ... according to whose standards of appropriate?

     

    Wow.
    18 Oct 2012, 08:22 PM Reply Like
  • Modernist
    , contributor
    Comments (2109) | Send Message
     
    When the Supreme Court upholds your decision, it's hard to say you did anything wrong.
    18 Oct 2012, 08:56 PM Reply Like
  • trexia
    , contributor
    Comments (165) | Send Message
     
    Think: NTP suing RIMM on patents. NTP had nothing going on other than the patents. Like Vringo/Innovate. NTP won over $600 million from RIMM once Research in Motion realized this is a serious issue and not one they can just chalk up to a bad nightmare.

     

    (the beginning of the end for RIMM)
    Guess who NTP’s lawyer was? Donald Stout. Guess who Vringo’s patent lawyer is? Donald Stout. Why is Donald Stout so good? He was an examiner at the US Patent Office. He knows patents. They announced all of this but nobody reads announcements of a small public company like Vringo. It’s hard enough figuring out how many pixels are on the screen of Apple’s amazng iPad 3.
    18 Oct 2012, 09:20 PM Reply Like
  • SteveKimLaw
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Darn you, I was almost at the end of counting my pixels, then you distracted me.
    18 Oct 2012, 09:23 PM Reply Like
  • Joe Decker
    , contributor
    Comments (96) | Send Message
     
    Two words, slavery & abortion.
    19 Oct 2012, 03:25 PM Reply Like
  • SteveKimLaw
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » I am not wild about mandatory sentencing guidelines, but I don't think it is fair to say that the Judge "went off of his feelings." I think it is appropriate to view it as the Judge imposing an appropriate sentence, knowing that he will get appealed, and later winning in SCOTUS. What I do think is that it is difficult for a Judge these days to display courage and conviction. I'm encouraged for the cause of justice that this guy does that.

     

    No, it's not true that I'm a bankruptcy lawyer. These days I do almost all family law of all things, but I have spent quite a few years doing commercial litigation cases in a large firm, which has included handling IP infringement cases in our Hawaii Federal Court.

     

    I don't see this Judge as developing sympathy for Google. From what I am seeing in his in-court rulings, it seems like Google is actually alienating him. If they alienate him, they alienate the jury, in my opinion. And by "appropriate spanking," I mean one that is proportionate to the evidence shown, even if it results in a very large number, as opposed to a judge (and there are many) who may choose to throw Google a bone later to try to split the baby as sometimes happens.
    18 Oct 2012, 08:31 PM Reply Like
  • Modernist
    , contributor
    Comments (2109) | Send Message
     
    Interesting angle Steve, nice work.
    18 Oct 2012, 08:55 PM Reply Like
  • Joe Decker
    , contributor
    Comments (96) | Send Message
     
    Fair enough. Don't get me wrong on the principle perspective. I'm not so naive to think human nature doesnt come into play; but that doesnt mean the principles shouldnt be fought for and upheld.

     

    Thanks for the info on your specialty; as I'm sure you know others have tried to discredit you. I think you do a good job of explaining things. However given the binary nature of the trade and the speed at which any material info will spread, what you pass along is too time late to be actionable. But it IS helpful and I am glad you write it.

     

    Hope you're right about the alienation stuff. As you know, jury's are just like... people ;)
    19 Oct 2012, 03:30 PM Reply Like
  • SteveKimLaw
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » I have been discredited for being Chinese, gay, a BK lawyer, that I sold my stock already, and I guess a few other things. All untrue, but I think most people can make their own decisions based on evaluation of what's written. I don't have any particular investment in who decides to believe what, I just think that it's helpful to further the conversation on this crazy stock and lawsuit.
    19 Oct 2012, 07:19 PM Reply Like
  • ftljr
    , contributor
    Comments (5) | Send Message
     
    How can anyone in good conscience assail a Reds fan? I appreciate the clarity, concision and objectivity you bring to the discussion. Thanks.
    20 Oct 2012, 04:00 AM Reply Like
  • stockhawk
    , contributor
    Comments (242) | Send Message
     
    Steve:FYI: I heard on a news report today, after Google's early earnings "event", that they missed on earnings and are having trouble monetizing mobile advertising. Just noting, it may be completely unrelated, but maybe facetones , ringtones etc... may help in this area down the road? I'm probably reading to much into it but maybe they are feeling a little heat from this case? Total spec on my part but just wanted to mention it. By the way heard it on NPR radio not exactly a finance station.
    18 Oct 2012, 09:28 PM Reply Like
  • SteveKimLaw
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » That's all true. Not only did they miss on earnings, but their earnings report was mistakenly released early during the trading day, resulting in a 10% PPS drop, and then GOOG halted trading! Not a good day for GOOG.
    18 Oct 2012, 09:38 PM Reply Like
  • HadjPadjj
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    Hey Steve, first of all thank you for your articles and blogs. I was wondering how you feel about the case so far. Do you think Google is thinking of reconsidering to settle with Vringo or go the distance now that they're already in court.
    19 Oct 2012, 01:52 AM Reply Like
  • SteveKimLaw
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Today was a very key day, with Vringo's liability expert taking the stand. It sounds like he did quite well, but he still has to finish his direct and go through cross exam next week. Then we have to see how Google's expert, Dr. Ungar, testifies. If Frieder does well and Ungar does not, then I think we will be fine. Finally, we have to wait for Vringo's expert Carbonell to testify concerning the invalidity issue (i.e. that the patents are valid).
    19 Oct 2012, 03:50 AM Reply Like
  • douglaskloeker
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    Cool - thanks !
    19 Oct 2012, 02:00 AM Reply Like
  • douglaskloeker
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    Thank you ~ I appreciate your DD and sharing !
    19 Oct 2012, 02:01 AM Reply Like
  • SteveKimLaw
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Your welcome, Doug. Thanks for reading.
    19 Oct 2012, 03:50 AM Reply Like
  • falanke
    , contributor
    Comments (79) | Send Message
     
    Hawaii no ka oi! =)
    19 Oct 2012, 02:27 PM Reply Like
  • SteveKimLaw
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Ua mau ke ea o ka aina i ka pono!
    19 Oct 2012, 03:10 PM Reply Like
  • Adam Gill
    , contributor
    Comments (135) | Send Message
     
    First, thank you for all the good work Steve. It has been appreciated and helpful.

     

    It is not surprising that Google might alienate the judge. I am familiar with their counsel. Quinn Emanuel is very good, but they are not sympathetic.

     

    Steve, you made a comment on attorneys' fees. As you may know, the standard for awarding attorneys' fees in patent cases is the "exceptional case" standard. Is there anything that suggests to you that this case may rise to that level?
    19 Oct 2012, 03:34 PM Reply Like
  • dollarmakmehollar
    , contributor
    Comments (5) | Send Message
     
    enjoy reading i don't have a pay pal so how can i join
    19 Oct 2012, 04:52 PM Reply Like
  • cfvaughnii
    , contributor
    Comments (55) | Send Message
     
    Steve,

     

    Thanks for your articles. Please stop apologizing for the ridiculously low fee. You have a right to earn money on your research and insights.

     

    I'm worried about the 'doctrine of laches' as it applies to this case. If google has a chance, this seems to be the best avenue. Can you elaborate on the possibilities?

     

    Thanks again!
    20 Oct 2012, 10:27 AM Reply Like
  • asia24
    , contributor
    Comments (140) | Send Message
     
    cfvaughnii - The Laches argument was also brought up in the MSJ and dismissed. It was basically in Football terms a "HAIL MARRY PASS" that didn't even make it to the end zone as MSJ was DENIED.

     

    Joe Decker - "Google's MIL No. 4: The Court reserved ruling on Google's motion to exclude evidence of Google's conduct during discovery.The Court is withholding ruling on this, a clear signal that it may allow the jury to be told of Google's pretrial tactics." Judge Jackson has already "Gone At It" with Quinn Emanuel Lawyers with the wording of the Markman ruling in regards to I believe the "Spidering, Crawling, Searching" which I can recall reading in one of the many dockets. Im sure the Jury will also see through these "dirty" tactics once and if introduced.
    20 Oct 2012, 11:27 AM Reply Like
  • cfvaughnii
    , contributor
    Comments (55) | Send Message
     
    Thanks very much! That is good news. Doesn't it seem that they are setting up some of the same arguments in the trial, though?
    20 Oct 2012, 03:50 PM Reply Like
  • asia24
    , contributor
    Comments (140) | Send Message
     
    Im hoping they do as I read their MSJ and me having NO legal expertise found Quinn Emanuel's Motion For Summary Judgement to be very weak. It will all come down to the patents, and Prior Art argument. Dr. James Carbonell, Dr. Frieder, and Ken Lang will be able to prove that Google did infringe. Judging after the first week of proceedings, it appears that Quinn Emanuel is lacking in their preparedness and Vringo's Legal team is leaps and bounds ahead and most importantly they are PROVING it in front of the jury
    20 Oct 2012, 04:14 PM Reply Like
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