The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit affirmed a denial of injunctive relief on the basis that the district court had correctly construed the sole claim limitation at issue. The Court limited review to the preliminary injunction, which was analyzed under the “abuse of discretion” standard. Since counterclaims still remained in the district court, the Court found that there was neither a final judgment nor an appealable judgment that would give the jurisdiction required to review the district court’s grant of summary judgment and sua sponte dismissal of the remainder of the plaintiff's claims. iLor, LLC v. Google, Inc., Case No. 08-1178 (Fed. Cir., Dec. 11, 2008) (Linn, J.).
iLor brought suit against Google, alleging that the Google Notebook infringed a patent claim directed to a “method for adding a user selectable function to a hyperlink.” The district court construed the disputed limitation of the claim at issue as requiring that the user selectable function be “automatically displayed upon placement of the cursor in proximity to a hyperlink with no further action on the part of a user.” Since it was undisputed that the Google Notebook required the user to right-click on the hyperlink to display the toolbar, the Google Notebook was not found to contain the “automatic display” limitation set forth in the claim as construed by the district court.
The district court relied upon the claim language, the specification and the prosecution history to support its construction of the claim at issue. The claim recited “the toolbar being displayable based on a location of a cursor in relation to a hyperlink.” The district court found that any ambiguity in the language was eliminated when viewed in light of the specification and prosecution history. The abstract of the patent provided that “[w]hen the cursor has remained near the hyperlink for a predetermined time period, a toolbar is displayed.” Similarly, the specification described the displayable toolbar as appearing when the cursor was over or near a hyperlink. No embodiments were disclosed in the specification that required the user to take any other action in addition to moving the cursor over or near the hyperlink, such as right-clicking. Further, the district court found that the “prosecution history revealed that iLor distinguished a prior art reference … on the basis that it required further user action for display, not merely locating the cursor proximate to the hyperlink.”
The Federal Circuit affirmed the denial of injunctive relief after finding the claim construction of the district court to be correct, since iLOR disputed the denial of its motion for a preliminary injunction only on the basis of the claim construction. The remaining issues raised in the appeal were dismissed by the Court as relating to matters still remaining before the district court.