United States District Court, D. Delaware
R. FALLOR UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
before the court in this patent infringement action is the
motion for a protective order filed by Defendant New NGC,
Inc. ("NGC"). (D.I. 107) For the following reasons,
NGC's motion is GRANTED.
United States Gypsum Company ("USG") initiated this
patent infringement suit on February 6, 2017, alleging
infringement of United States Patent Nos. 6, 342, 284; 6,
632, 550; 7, 425, 236; 7, 758, 980; 7, 964, 034; 8, 142, 914;
and 8, 500, 904 (collectively "the
patents-in-suit"). (D.I. 1) USG develops and
manufactures gypsum products used to construct walls,
ceilings, roofs and floors of various types of buildings.
(Id. at ¶ 4) NGC is a direct competitor of USG
in manufacturing, marketing and selling gypsum products.
(Id. at ¶ 5) The patents-in-suit are a group of
related patents with overlapping specifications and common
inventors, which are directed to wallboard products with
increased resistance to sag, less density, and other improved
Stored Information. (D.I. 107, Ex. B) NGC and USG
met-and-conferred and were able to resolve concerns regarding
a number of the proposed search strings. (D.I. 107 at 2)
However, the following USG email search string remains at
(Yakowenko OR Bushman OR Mascioli OR Griffith OR Adams OR
Herold OR Guinsler OR Martinez OR Holder OR Emert OR Erhardt)
AND (LWWB OR LWB OR HSL OR lite OR light OR "high
strength" OR ultralight OR Sheetrock OR USG* OR "US
Gypsum" OR "U.S. Gypsum" OR "United
States Gypsum" OR deflect* OR sag* OR STMP* OR MCM OR
phosp* OR "sodium trimeta*" OR "humid*
def*" OR "HD")
employees at issue were not identified in either NGC's or
USG's Initial Disclosures as having relevant knowledge.
(D.I. 107 at 2) Similarly, none of these individuals were
identified in either NGC's or USG's disclosures
pursuant to Paragraph 3 of the Default Standard as having
relevant knowledge. (Id.) The parties describe the
employment histories of the relevant employees, which
information was obtained from their respective Linkedln
profiles, as follows:
• Kevin Bushman: joined NGC in 2016; previously worked
at USG for twenty years, where he served in positions such as
engineering and production manager roles, as well as a
Regional Sales Manager in USG's distribution subsidiary.
• Michael Emert: is no longer employed at NGC, and while
at USG worked at their New Orleans' plant.
• Thomas Griffith: joined NGC in 2014; was a project
engineer and engineering manager at USG's Norfolk plant.
• Kelly Guinsler: joined NGC in 2014; was involved in
product demonstrations and sales ...