Digest of Buysafe, Inc. v. Google, Inc., No. 2013-1575 (Fed. Cir. Sept. 3, 2014) (precedential). On appeal from D. Del. Before Hughes and Taranto.

Procedural Posture: Patentee appealed a decision invalidating the asserted claims under 35 U.S.C. §101. CAFC affirmed.

  • Patent Eligibility (Section 101): A claim that merely requires generic computer implementation of an abstract idea is not subject matter eligible under section 101. At issue were claims directed toward a method of guaranteeing performance of an online transaction, involving receiving an online transaction request, underwriting the requesting party, and offering a transaction performance guaranty on the online transaction. The claims were held ineligible because (1) arrangements involving contractual relations are abstract ideas, especially where the contractual relations constitute “a fundamental economic practice long prevalent in our system of commerce” and (2) the claimed computer use, of receiving a transaction request and transmitting an offer of guarantee, is generic and not inventive. The attempt to narrow long-familiar commercial transactions to a particular technological environment is insufficient to bring the abstract guarantee idea within section 101.