November 9th, 2008 by Benjamin Duranske
There are three new filings in the SLART trademark suit. First, Philip Rosedale and Mitch Kapor have filed a Motion to Dismiss (.zip, w/exhibits) arguing that Minsky’s fraud claims lack sufficient specificity. Minsky has responded (.zip, w/exhibits), and has also filed an Answer (.zip, w/exhibits) to Linden Lab’s counterclaims.
There’s not too much to say about this round of filings. The motion to dismiss the fraud claims against Rosedale and Kapor was expected. Because of historical misuse of fraud claims, plaintiffs must plead fraud “with specificity” alleging specific fraudulent statements and explaining why the statements are fraudulent. VB does not speculate on rulings in active cases, but I will note generally that fraud claims are often dismissed on these grounds.
Minsky’s formal Answer to Linden Lab’s counterclaims is fairly straightforward, generally consisting of boilerplate affirmations and denials, as is traditional in formal Answers in U.S. legal proceedings. Minsky, who represents himself in this action, does include more argument in his Answer than is typical — for example, Minsky admits that he agreed to the Second Life Terms of Service, as Linden Lab alleges, but then argues that another court found the TOS in part unconscionable — but otherwise the Answer is unremarkable.
Up next? The beginning of discovery, and a likely decision from the court on Minsky’s earlier motion alleging that Linden Lab is not in complaince with the preliminary injunction the parties agreed to covering SLART infringement claims while this case is pending.
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