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To read comments to this article, go here
Apple v Samsung Foreman Gets More Things Wrong ~pj
Tuesday, September 04 2012 @ 07:29 PM EDT

This is in the believe it or not category, but the foreman in the Apple v Samsung trial is *still* talking about the verdict and why the jurors did what they did. And the more he talks, the worse it gets for that verdict.

Gizmodo asked him to sit today for live questions. And believe it or not, he did it. And when asked if the jury was ever asking whether or not a patent should have issued, he claims that they never did because that wasn't their role and the judge told them to assume the patents issued properly and not to second guess that determination.

That is so wrong it's not even just wrong. The verdict form [PDF] and the jury instructions [PDF] specifically asked them to address that very question.

Here's what he said, starting with the question from Demon-Xanth:

Demon-Xanth:
Did you have the opportunity to ask "Is this something that should be patentable?" during the trial?

Velvin Hogan @Demon-Xanth
No, however it was not the function of this jury to ask that. We were bound to use the law as it is today. The patents were issued the judge instructed us not to second guess the current patent system.

The law is that the jurors are supposed to decide whether or not a patent is infringed, which *includes* whether or not the patent is valid, because if it is not valid, it can't be infringed.

What a mess this jury made of things. IF you are ever on a jury, please use your common sense. The function of a jury is to decide facts, not just be little patent fascists. The USPTO issues patents that have the benefit of certain weight, but it is a challengeable assumption that they are valid. The USPTO leaves that to the courts. If in turn the jury leaves it to the USPTO, nobody ever decides whether or not a patent is valid.

And that is exactly what happened with this jury. They failed to fulfill their function.

He goes on to say that he understands prior art, but I think not. When asked, "Do you honestly believe that companies should be allowed to patent basic geometric forms?" he answers, Yes. He repeats the false claim that the prior art didn't count because it was not "interchangeable":

Wanhang:
Why did you choose to ignore prior art despite it being a legitimate claim?

Velvin Hogan @Wanhang
I is not ignore prior art yes it was legitimate, however it was not interchangeable therefore it did not invalidate Apples patents....Under the current law the prior art must be among other things interchangeable. the prior art sighted even Samsung does not currently use. Read the law and the statues covering Prior art.

Back at you, Mr. Hogan. Back at you. But someone calling himself Firewheels responded much more effectively:
Firewheels @Velvin Hogan
You're suggesting, then, that the patent is on the particular implementation, not the overall concept? In that case, isn't it clear that in many of the patents no infringement is possible, as clearly an implementation in Java (Android) is distinct from an implementation in Objective-C (iOS)?

If, however, you're suggesting the patent is on the concept, then clearly there IS prior art, and therefore the patents are invalid.

Either way, Samsung should not have been charged the exorbitant punitive damages you clearly believed were due.

Mr. Hogan has not replied, and it's been 4 hours. As another questioner, Bazzatoyou, phrased it after waiting an hour for a response that never came, "Looks like The Hogan has left the room ...!"

I hope Mr. Hogan's thinking deep thoughts about Firewheels' question.

One thing is for sure, this is going to be one fascinating appeal.


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