Akamai Techs., Inc. v. Limelight Networks, Inc.., No. 09-1372 (Fed. Cir. 2015)Annotate this Case
The 703 patent concerns a method of delivering internet content. A jury found that Limelight practices every step of the methods disclosed in the patent’s four claims except the “tagging” step, which is performed by Limelight’s customers. Customers must tag the content to be hosted and delivered by Limelight’s content delivery network. Limelight instructs its customers how to tag, and employees are on call if customers require additional assistance. In a 2014 decision, the Federal Circuit held that because Limelight did not perform all of the steps of the asserted method claims and because there was no basis on which to impose liability on Limelight for the actions of its customers who carried out the other steps Limelight did not directly infringed the patent under 35 U.S.C. 271(a). After remand by the Supreme Court, the Federal Circuit again found no infringement, stating that the statutory framework “does not admit to the sweeping notions of common-law tort liability argued in this case.” The court noted that the case involved neither agency nor contract nor joint enterprise. Encouraging or instructing others to perform an act is not the same as performing the act oneself and does not result in direct infringement.
This opinion or order relates to an opinion or order originally issued on December 20, 2010.