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Filed 07/12/12 Page 1 of 3 PageID #: 3169
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS TYLER DIVISION UNIFIED MESSAGING SOLUTIONS LLC, Plaintiff, v. FACEBOOK, INC., et al, Defendants. § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § § §
CASE NO. 6:11cv120 PATENT CASE
UNIFIED MESSAGING SOLUTIONS LLC, Plaintiff, v. GOOGLE, INC., et al, Defendants.
CASE NO. 6:11cv464 PATENT CASE
After reviewing the parties’ Joint Claim Construction and Prehearing Statement (see Unified Messaging Solutions, LLC v. Facebook, Inc., et. al., 6:11cv120, Docket No. 358; Unified Messaging Solutions LLC v. Google, Inc. et. al., 611cv464, Docket No. 219), the Court ordered the parties to meet and confer to (1) narrow the number of asserted claims to a reasonable number; (2) narrow the number of disputed claims terms to a reasonable number; (3) narrow the number of prior art references per asserted claim to a reasonable number; and (4) discuss
Case 6:11-cv-00120-LED Document 388
Filed 07/12/12 Page 2 of 3 PageID #: 3170
proposals regarding how to narrow the case. Docket No. 372. The parties’ have filed a joint notice to the Court containing competing proposals regarding narrowing of these cases. Unified Messaging Solutions, LLC v. Facebook, Inc., et. al., 6:11cv120, Docket No. 377; Unified Messaging Solutions LLC v. Google, Inc. et. al., 611cv464, Docket No. 249. Plaintiff has agreed to reduce the number of asserted claims from approximately 52 (independent and dependent) to 35 claims prior to the Markman hearing, and has agreed to further decrease the number of asserted claims to 15 at the time of its expert report on infringement. Defendants have agreed to “defer” the number of “claim construction issues” at this time from 27 to 16, which still implicates over 40 terms/phrases to be construed by the Court, and Defendants have further agreed to reduce the total number of prior references to 30 within 50 days after the Markman Order is issued. After consideration of the parties’ proposals, the Court remains concerned that the large number of claims and claim terms in these cases are unmanageable—and will serve only to inflate costs for both sides. The Court routinely handles complex patent cases involving multiple patents and parties and inevitably asserted claims and prior art references are abandoned as the case proceeds to trial. Narrowing the case at an earlier stage will serve to reduce the overall costs of the litigation by eliminating needless discovery regarding issues that will likely be dropped prior to trial, and allow the Court to dedicate its resources to the truly dispositive and meritorious issues. Accordingly, the Court ORDERS Plaintiff to reduce the number of asserted claims to a maximum of 20 and further ORDERS Defendant to reduce its invalidity contentions to include no more than 4 distinct bases of invalidity for each asserted claim. The parties are further ORDERED to meet and confer to make a meaningful attempt to reduce the number of claim
Case 6:11-cv-00120-LED Document 388
Filed 07/12/12 Page 3 of 3 PageID #: 3171
terms to be construed. The parties shall file a notice with the Court regarding the status of disputed claims, disputed claim terms, and the number of prior art references per asserted claim by July 16, 2012. Should the parties fail to reduce the number of asserted claims, prior art references, and claim terms to be construed, the parties shall provide good faith and specific reasons, on a claim-by-claim basis, why a particular claim or prior art reference must remain in the case. If necessary, such good faith reasons may be submitted in camera. So ORDERED and SIGNED this 12th day of July, 2012.
__________________________________ LEONARD DAVIS UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE