Eight former SpaceX employees on Wednesday became the latest to sue the company and CEO Elon Musk alleging a hostile and abusive workplace that demeans women and LGBTQ+ people, saying in California state court they were unlawfully fired when they objected to his conduct.
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Fired SpaceX Workers Say Musk Runs Co. 'In The Dark Ages'

By Lauren Berg

Eight former SpaceX employees on Wednesday became the latest to sue the company and CEO Elon Musk alleging a hostile and abusive workplace that demeans women and LGBTQ+ people, saying in California state court they were unlawfully fired when they objected to his conduct.

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School Says Declaration Bares Quinn Emanuel Lies In IP Feud

By Andrew Karpan

Columbia University has told the Federal Circuit that a declaration from a former Norton Lifelock Inc. computer scientist shows that the company's former lawyers at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP are lying about his refusal to testify in the school's decade-long $600 million patent case in Virginia federal court.

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Microsoft, OpenAI Call Papers' Suit A 'Copycat' Of NYT's Case

By Ivan Moreno

OpenAI and Microsoft Corp. have asked a New York federal court to toss the bulk of a copyright complaint from eight newspapers that accuses the companies of stealing their content to develop versions of ChatGPT, contending the lawsuit is modeled after one from The New York Times and saying the allegations mischaracterize the technology.

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FTC Tells DC Circ. It Can Modify $5B Meta Privacy Deal

By Lauren Berg

The Federal Trade Commission told the D.C. Circuit on Wednesday that it has the authority to reopen its in-house proceedings in order to revise a $5 billion privacy settlement with Meta Platforms, saying the courts do not have oversight of the agency's administrative order.

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Hytera Tried 'End Run' Around Court's Power, Motorola Says

By Lauraann Wood

Hytera Communications should not be able to get around an antisuit injunction that forced it to end Chinese litigation addressing mobile radio trade secrets, Motorola Solutions told the Seventh Circuit on Tuesday, arguing that Hytera must be stopped from doing an "end run" around the American case against it.

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FTC's Amazon Prime Trial Moved To June 2025 Amid Doc Fight

By Dorothy Atkins

A Washington federal judge agreed Wednesday to push back to June 2025 a high-stakes bench trial over the Federal Trade Commission's claims Amazon.com Inc. tricks consumers into enrolling in its Prime service, delaying the trial by months after the FTC accused Amazon of delaying discovery production.

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Samsung Competitor Can't Get Quick Win On Laches Claim

By Adam Lidgett

Mojo Mobility couldn't convince a Texas federal magistrate judge to recommend it get partial summary judgment in its suit accusing Samsung of infringing wireless charging patents, rejecting Mojo's attempt to stake the decision on part of the patent prosecution process.

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CalPERS Opposes $5B Atty Fee In Musk Pay Fight

By Jeff Montgomery

The nation's largest public pension fund lined up Wednesday against a proposed $5 billion-plus fee for stockholder attorneys whose Delaware Court of Chancery suit blocked Tesla CEO Elon Musk's one-time $56 billion compensation plan, one day ahead of a Tesla shareholder vote to resurrect the pay deal.

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Amazon Flex Drivers Seek to Arbitrate Employment Status

By Abby Wargo

Nearly 16,000 Amazon drivers filed arbitration claims against the e-commerce giant with the American Arbitration Association this week seeking unpaid wages and compensation for work-related expenses because of their misclassification as independent contractors.

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POLICY & REGULATION

Lawmakers Reach Deal With DOD On Spectrum Sharing

By Christopher Cole

A Senate committee said late Tuesday that lawmakers reached an agreement with the U.S. Department of Defense that will allow legislation for new sales of commercial spectrum licenses to move forward.

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Miss. Social Media Age Law Faces Free-Speech Challenge

By Nadia Dreid

Mississippi is the latest state to enact a law that requires social media companies to verify the age of all users, but a challenge seeking to block that law from taking effect is already on the docket in federal court with a preliminary injunction hearing slated for this month.

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Teams Can't Prop Up Fox Philly TV License, Group Says

By Jared Foretek

The group of advocates calling for Fox's Philadelphia affiliate to lose its broadcast license over its parent company's 2020 election coverage is pushing back against claims from three of the city's sports teams, saying the station's sports content is beside the point.

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FCC Told Alaska Needs More Broadband Support

By Jared Foretek

A major telecommunications provider in Alaska is telling the Federal Communications Commission that the government will need to boost its funding if it wants providers to meet high-speed broadband deployment goals for the state.

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LITIGATION

Fed. Circ. Affirms PTAB Ax Of Slide-To-Unlock Patent

By Andrew Karpan

The Federal Circuit has quickly disposed of an appeal over an administrative board ruling that wiped out language in a patent asserted in a small Swedish smartphone company's litigation against Apple and Samsung over claims its founder was the first to develop a "slide to unlock" feature.

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Okta, Investors Reach $60M Deal In Cyberattack Coverup Suit

By Katryna Perera

Okta Inc. investors have asked a California federal judge to give the first OK to a $60 million settlement reached in a suit alleging the software company misled the certified class about a 2022 cyberattack.

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Mobile Game Maker Ruled Liable For Illegal Gambling In Wash.

By Greg Lamm

Two of High 5 Games' mobile apps are illegal gambling games, a Washington federal judge has ruled in an order that said the "virtual coins" used by players were things of value under Washington law, even though they are sometimes free and can't be cashed in for real money.

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Apple Gets PTAB To Cut Some Voice Recognition IP Claims

By Adam Lidgett

The Patent Trial and Appeal Board has invalidated the vast majority of claims in a series of Zentian Ltd. patents related to voice recognition technology but upheld some claims in challenges from Apple and Amazon.

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QuantumScape Shareholders Seek Initial OK For $47.5M Deal

By Katryna Perera

Investors of QuantumScape have asked a California federal judge to give the first green light to a $47.5 million settlement to end their class action suit, which alleged published articles revealed the company made false statements about the quality of its batteries and the tests it used to measure performance.

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Directors Of Defunct Med Tech SPAC Seek Toss Of Del. Suit

By Leslie A. Pappas

Directors of a special purpose acquisition company that merged with now-defunct medical technology company Better Therapeutics Inc. urged Delaware's Court of Chancery on Wednesday to toss a shareholder's suit about the $15 million de-SPAC merger, saying it wasn't like other problematic SPAC deals.

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Colo. Tech Co. Says Startup Founder Can't Shield Sale Docs

By Parker Quinlan

A Colorado technology company is arguing that the founder of a startup it acquired shouldn't be allowed to withhold nearly half of the documents it is seeking by asserting privilege in his $15 million fraud suit, as he claimed to rely on his law firm's advice when he approved the deal.

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Microsoft Faces EDTX Patent Suit Over AI Supercomputer

By Andrew Karpan

Microsoft has been hit with a patent infringement lawsuit in the Eastern District of Texas over its artificial intelligence supercomputer by a business led by a German lawyer who once ran the patent licensing outfit IPCom.

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DEALS

Spacecraft Maker Clinches $95M Series B Funding Round

By Jade Martinez-Pogue

Spacecraft manufacturing company Apex on Wednesday announced that it clinched its Series B funding round after securing $95 million from investors, which will be used to help the Los Angeles-based company ramp up production to meet growing customer demand.

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SPAC Dealmakers Expect Modest Pickup After Market Bottom

By Tom Zanki

Market professionals expect a slow pickup in deals involving special-purpose acquisition companies starting in the second half of 2024, predicting on Wednesday that a leaner market will emerge following the recent crash and imposition of tighter regulations.

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ENFORCEMENT

Ex-Navy Employee Pleads Guilty To Contract Bribery Scheme

By Daniel Wilson

Former U.S. Navy civilian official James Soriano has pleaded guilty to accepting bribes from Navy contractors to help steer hundreds of millions of dollars in deals to the companies, after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors.

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SEC Says Texas Crypto Cases Aren't Related To Fraud Suit

By Spencer Brewer

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission asked a Texas federal judge not to stay its case accusing a crypto asset mining and hosting company of securities fraud, saying in a Wednesday brief that the judge's concerns about other pending cases creating "moving-target precedents" were unfounded.

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4 Charged In $50M Email, Romance Fraud Schemes

By Elliot Weld

Four people were charged by Brooklyn federal prosecutors with participating in a series of fraudulent email and romance fraud schemes that resulted in $50 million in losses to the alleged victims.

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EXPERT ANALYSIS

Key FCC Enforcement Issues In AT&T Location Data Appeal

AT&T’s decision to challenge a $57 million fine from the Federal Communications Commission for its alleged treatment of customer location information highlights interesting and fundamental issues about the constitutionality of FCC enforcement, say Patrick O’Donnell and Jason Neal at HWG.

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How SEC Could Tackle AI Regulations On Brokers, Advisers

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission held an open meeting of its Investor Advisory Committee on June 6 to review the use of artificial intelligence in investment decision making, showing that regulators are being careful not to stifle innovation or implement rules that will quickly be made irrelevant after their passage, says Brian Korn at Manatt Phelps.

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Patent Lessons From 7 Federal Circuit Reversals In May

A look at recent cases where the Federal Circuit reversed or vacated decisions by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board or a federal district court provide guidance on how to succeed on appeal by clarifying the obviousness analysis of design patents, the finality of a judgment, and more, say Denise De Mory and Li Guo at Bunsow De Mory.

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Litigation Inspiration: Attys Can Be Heroic Like Olympians

Although litigation won’t earn anyone an Olympic medal in Paris this summer, it can be worthy of the same lasting honor if attorneys exercise focused restraint — seeking both their clients’ interests and those of the court — instead of merely pursuing every advantage short of sanctionable conduct, says Bennett Rawicki at Hilgers Graben.

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LEGAL INDUSTRY

Analysis

How 3 Firms Cleared 2 Ex-Autonomy Execs In HP Fraud Case

By Bonnie Eslinger

A California federal jury's rejection last week of fraud charges against the founder and former finance vice president of British software company Autonomy validated an approach by the defendants' three law firms — Steptoe, Clifford Chance and Bird Marella — to form a "seamless" collaboration throughout the trial, from jury selection to closing arguments.

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Alston & Bird Wins Bid To Arbitrate COVID Vax Claims

By Lauren Berg

Alston & Bird LLP can arbitrate a former aide's allegations that she was fired after refusing to get the COVID-19 vaccine, a Georgia federal judge ruled Thursday, putting the litigation on ice pending the outcome of arbitration.

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Abortion Medication Case Ends 'With A Whimper' At High Court

By Theresa Schliep

A case that threatened to cut off access to a widely used abortion medication while disrupting the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's authority over drugs and medical devices ended Thursday at the U.S. Supreme Court with a decision concerned solely with challengers' right to sue.

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Analysis

Justices Hand Abortion Advocates An Incomplete Win

By Dan McKay

The U.S. Supreme Court's rejection Thursday of a challenge to the abortion drug mifepristone will do little to safeguard long-term access to the medication while suggesting that it will be up to voters, not judges, to settle some of the nation's abortion debates, attorneys say.

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Analysis

Thomas Targets Group Standing In Mifepristone Ruling

By Katie Buehler

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas joined his colleagues Thursday to unanimously uphold broad access to the abortion medication mifepristone for now, but he wrote separately to challenge a standing rule that often serves as the key to the courthouse doors for litigants of all varieties.

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Senate Panel OKs Fix For Federal Courts' 'Genuine Crisis'

By Courtney Bublé

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted out unanimously on Thursday a bipartisan bill to create 66 new and temporary judgeships to alleviate the federal courts' workload.

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Justice Thomas Failed To Disclose More Trips, Dems Say

By Courtney Bublé and Katie Buehler

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas failed to disclose more private jet trips gifted by billionaire and Republican donor Harlan Crow, according to new information released Thursday by Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

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Rakoff Says Criminal Justice Act Attys Should Work Weekends

By Pete Brush

Indigent defendants requiring free criminal legal advice should have access to conflict-free counsel even over the weekends, U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff in Manhattan said in a blistering Thursday opinion, citing a suboptimal sequence of events in a high-profile drug case.

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Contentious Del. Corporate Law Changes Sail Through Senate

By Jeff Montgomery

After triggering rare public dissent, a multipart Delaware General Corporation Law amendment that would let boards cede some governance rights to big stockholders whisked through the state's Senate on Thursday without debate or an opposing vote, with a House vote expected as early as next week.

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Southern Poverty Law Center Lays Off A Quarter Of Its Staff

By Matt Perez

The Southern Poverty Law Center reduced its staff by a quarter Wednesday, including letting go the entirety of its Immigrant Justice team, according to statements shared by the nonprofit's union on the social platform X, with the SPLC in an email Thursday calling the layoffs part of an "organizational restructuring."

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Rutgers Fights Law School Vice Dean Subpoena In Bias Suit

By Jake Maher

Rutgers University argued in New Jersey state court this week that an attempt from a Jewish law student to subpoena the law school's vice dean for documents is really a means to "harass" the university because the student has already subpoenaed Rutgers for the same information.

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Colo. Judge's Voir Dire Tip: Jurors Dislike Judgmental Attys

By Thy Vo

The District of Colorado's chief judge urged attorneys to tread carefully while playing jurors off one another during voir dire, telling lawyers at a presentation Thursday that referencing another juror's response can come off as judgmental.

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IP Forecast: Cooley Atty Faces DQ Bid Over Past Patent Work

By Andrew Karpan

A prominent Cooley LLP lawyer will face questions next week in a Philadelphia courtroom over her work a decade ago at her former firm defending a cloud software startup that is now suing a Cooley client. Here's a spotlight on that case — plus all the other major intellectual property matters on deck in the coming week.

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COMPANIES IN TODAY'S NEWS

AT&T Inc.

Activision Blizzard Inc.

Agricultural Products Extension LLC

Alliance Defending Freedom

Amazon.com Inc.

American Arbitration Association

American Civil Liberties Union

Andreessen Horowitz LLC

Apple Inc.

AstraZeneca PLC

Brennan Center for Justice

CTIA

Chevron Corp.

Churchill Downs Inc.

Citigroup Inc.

Deere & Co.

Delaware State Bar Association

Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd.

Drexel University

Federalist Society

Fox Corp.

Google LLC

Instagram Inc.

Jefferies Financial Group Inc.

Johnson Rice & Co. LLC

LKQ Corp.

LifeLock Inc.

LinkedIn Corp.

Meta Platforms Inc.

Microsoft Corp.

Mirae Asset Financial Group

Moelis & Co.

Motorola Solutions Inc.

Mountain Crest Acquisition Corp.

NASDAQ Inc.

National Association for the Advancement of Colored People

New York Daily News Co.

New York University

Nokia Corp.

Novo Nordisk A S

Okta Inc.

Pegasystems Inc.

Perceptive Advisors LLC

Personalized Media Communications LLC

Pew Research Center

Pfizer Inc.

Playboy Enterprises Inc.

Refugee & Immigrant Center for Education & Legal Services

Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.

Sonos Inc.

Southern Poverty Law Center Inc.

Space Exploration Technologies Corp.

Spectrum Management Holding Co.

Straight Path Communications Inc.

T-Mobile US Inc.

TTEC Holdings Inc.

Temple University

Tesla Inc.

The Center for Reproductive Rights Inc.

The New York Times Co.

Therapeutics Inc.

TikTok Inc.

Total Quality Logistics Inc.

Twitter Inc.

University of California Davis

Veeva Systems Inc.

Zebra Technologies Corp.

LAW FIRMS IN TODAY'S NEWS

Adamski Moroski

Alston & Bird

Andrews & Springer

Archer & Greiner

Ashby & Geddes

Baker Donelson

Bartlit Beck

Berg Hill

Berke Farah

Bernstein Litowitz

Bird Marella

Bunsow De Mory

Burgess Law Offices

Capshaw DeRieux

Carney Badley

Clement & Murphy

Clifford Chance

Cohen Milstein

Cooch & Taylor

Cooley LLP

Covington & Burling

Cravath Swaine

DLA Piper

Dailey LLP

Davis Polk

Davis Wright Tremaine LLP

Doar Rieck

Edelson PC

Ellenoff Grossman

Erise IP

Fenwick & West

Finnegan

Friedman Oster

Gibbs Law Group

Gibson Dunn

Gillam Smith

Graves & Shaw

Green LLP

GreenClark PLLC

HWG LLP

Hilgers Graben

Hogan Lovells

Holland & Hart

Hueston Hennigan

Javerbaum Wurgaft

Jayaram Law

Keker Van Nest & Peters

Kirkland & Ellis

Labaton Keller

Latham & Watkins

Law Office of Rajeh A. Saadeh

Levi & Korsinsky

Lieff Cabraser

Loeb & Loeb

Manatt Phelps

Marc Carlos Law

Mazie Slater

McCarter & English

McKool Smith

Morris Nichols

Morrison Foerster

Morvillo Abramowitz

Nelson Robinson & El Ashmawy

Newman Ferrara

Noroozi PC

Orrick Herrington

Paul Hastings

Quinn Emanuel

Recht Kornfeld

Richards Layton

Ross Aronstam

Rothwell Figg

Steptoe LLP

Sullivan & Cromwell

Sunstein LLP

Susman Godfrey

Tousley Brain

Wilson Sonsini

Womble Bond

GOVERNMENT AGENCIES IN TODAY'S NEWS

California Public Employees' Retirement System

City of New York

Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency

Delaware Court of Chancery

European Union

Federal Communications Commission

Federal Trade Commission

Food and Drug Administration

Internal Revenue Service

Judicial Conference of the United States

Los Angeles Superior Court

National Labor Relations Board

National Telecommunications and Information Administration

New York State Assembly

North Carolina Department of State Treasurer

U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of California

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York

U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

U.S. Department of Agriculture

U.S. Department of Commerce

U.S. Department of Defense

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

U.S. Department of Justice

U.S. District Court for the Central District of California

U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

U.S. Government Accountability Office

U.S. Navy

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

U.S. Supreme Court

United States District Court for the District of Colorado

United States District Court for the District of Utah

United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio