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Clouding Ip, LLC v. Amazon. Com, Inc.

United States District Court, Third Circuit

May 24, 2013

CLOUDING IP, LLC, Plaintiff,
v.
AMAZON.COM, INC., and AMAZON WEB SERVICES, LLC, Defendants. CLOUDING IP, LLC, Plaintiff,
v.
ORACLE CORPORATION, Defendant. CLOUDING IP, LLC, Plaintiff,
v.
RACKSP ACE HOSTING, INC., RACKSPACE US, INC., and JUNGLE DISK, LLC, Defendants.

Richard D. Kirk, Esq., Stephen B. Brauerman, Esq., Vanessa R. Tiradentes, Esq., BAYARD, P.A., Wilmington, DE, Marc A. Fenster, Esq., Jaspal S. Hare, Esq., RUSS, AUGUST & KABAT, Los Angeles, CA, Attorneys for Plaintiff Clouding IP, LLC.

Steven J. Balick, Esq., Lauren E. Maguire, Esq., Andrew C. Mayo, Esq., ASHBY & GEDDES, Wilmington, DE, Matthew C. Bernstein, Esq., Miguel Bombach, Esq., Tawen Chang, Esq., Di Zhang, Esq., Kai Zhu, Esq., PERKINS COlE LLP, San Diego, CA, Nancy Cheng, Esq., Dan Shvodian, Esq., James Valentine, Esq., PERKINS COlE LLP, Palo Alto, CA, Attorneys for Defendants Amazon.com, Inc. and Amazon Web Services, LLC.

Elizabeth R. He, Esq., Frederick L. Cottrell, II, Esq., RICHARDS LAYTON & FINGER, PA, Wilmington, DE, Douglas Lumish, Esq., Gabriel S. Gross, Esq., Joseph B. Shear, Esq., Patricia Young, Esq., Rebecca Unruh, Esq., KASOWITZ BENSON TORRES & FRIEDMAN LLP, Redwood Shores, CA, Robert Watkins, Esq., KASOWITZ BENSON TORRES & FRIEDMAN LLP, New York, NY. Attorneys for Defendant Oracle Corporation.

Kenneth L. Dorsney, Esq., Richard K. Herrmann, Esq., Mary B. Matterer, Esq., MORRIS JAMES LLP, Wilmington, DE, Melanie G. Cowart, Esq., R. Laurence Macon, Esq., Kirt S. O'Neill, Esq., AKIN GUMP STRAUSS HAUER & FELD LLP, San Antonio, TX, Attorneys for Defendants Rackspace Hosting, Inc., Rackspace US, Inc., and Jungle Disk, LLC.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

LEONARD P. STARK, District Judge.

Presently before the Court are motions to dismiss filed in three related, coordinated cases. Defendants Amazon.com, Inc. and Amazon Web Services, LLC (collectively, "Amazon") have filed a motion to dismiss Plaintiff Clouding IP, LLC's ("Clouding") claims of induced infringement and willful infringement. (Civ. No. 12-641, D.I. 15) Defendant Oracle Corporation ("Oracle") has moved to dismiss Clouding's First Amended Complaint in its entirety, including claims of direct infringement, indirect infringement, and willful infringement. (Civ. No. 12-642, D.I. 18) In the alternative, Oracle seeks a more definite statement. ( Id. ) Defendants Rackspace Hosting, Inc., Rackspace US, Inc., and Jungle Disk, LLC (collectively, "Rackspace") have moved to dismiss Clouding's claims of induced infringement and willful infringement. (Civ. No. 12-675, D.I. 16) For the reasons below, the Court will grant the motions in part and deny them in part.

I. BACKGROUND

Clouding filed separate patent infringement actions against Amazon and Oracle on May 22, 2012. (Civ. No. 12-641, D.I. 1; Civ. No. 12-642, D.I. 1) On May 29, 2012, Clouding filed a patent infringement action against Rackspace. (Civ. No. 12-675, D.I. 1) In August 2012, Clouding amended its Complaints against Amazon, Oracle, and Rackspace (collectively, "Defendants") to include claims of induced and willful infringement. ( See Civ. No. 12-641, D.I. 11; Civ. No. 12-642, D.I. 16; Civ. No. 12-675, D.I. 13) Defendants filed their motions to dismiss in September 2012. (Civ. No. 12-641, D.I. 15; Civ. No. 12-642, D.I. 18; Civ. No. 12-675, D.I. 16) The Court heard oral argument on Oracle's motion on January 25, 2012. (D.I. 50) (hereinafter "Tr.")

II. LEGAL STANDARDS

The sufficiency of pleadings for non-fraud cases is governed by Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, which requires "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." When presented with a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, courts conduct a two-part analysis. See Fowler v. UPMC Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir. 2009). First, courts separate the factual and legal elements of a claim, accepting "all of the complaint's well-pleaded facts as true, but [disregarding] any legal conclusions." Id. at 210-11. This first step requires courts to draw all reasonable inferences in favor of the non-moving party. See Maio v. Aetna, Inc., 221 F.3d 472, 500 (3d Cir. 2000). However, the Court is not obligated to accept as true "bald assertions, " Morse v. Lower Merion Sch. Dist., 132 F.3d 902, 906 (3d Cir. 1997) (internal quotation marks omitted), "unsupported conclusions and unwarranted inferences, " Schuylkill Energy Res., Inc. v. Pennsylvania Power & Light Co., 113 F.3d 405, 417 (3d Cir. 1997), or allegations that are "self-evidently false, " Nami v. Fauver, 82 F.3d 63, 69 (3d Cir. 1996).

Second, courts determine "whether the facts alleged in the complaint are sufficient to show that the plaintiff has a plausible claim for relief."' Fowler, 578 F.3d at 211 (quoting Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 679 (2009)). A claim is facially plausible "when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged." Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. This is a context-specific determination, requiring the court "to draw on its judicial experience and common sense." Id. at 679. At bottom, "[t]he complaint must state enough facts to raise a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of [each] necessary element" of a claim. Wilkerson v. New Media Tech. Charter Sch. Inc., 522 F.3d 315, 321 (3d Cir. 2008) (internal quotation marks omitted).

"[W]hen the allegations in a complaint, however true, could not raise a claim of entitlement to relief, this basic deficiency should... be exposed at the point of minimum expenditure of time and money by the parties and the court." Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 558 (2007) (internal quotation marks omitted). Finally, although a non-fraud claim need not be pled with particularity or specificity, that claim must "give the defendant fair notice of what the... claim is and the grounds upon which it rests." Id. at 555.

III. DISCUSSION

All moving Defendants contend that Clouding has failed to state a claim for induced infringement and willful infringement. Defendant Oracle also contends that Clouding has failed to state a claim for direct infringement. As an alternative to dismissal, Defendant Oracle seeks a ...


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