Yesterday brought some of the most important news a Web Slinger fan could possible hear.
The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that Marvel Entertainment is not required to pay future royalties to inventor Stephen Kimble for his patent on a toy he made that shoots pressurized string from a can, which simulates web shooters. The two parties’ original settlement paid Kimble $500,000 and 3% of all future sales, but that last part had no end date. Marvel cited a previous court case to declare that they could stop paying him after his 20-year patent expired. Kimble tried to get the land’s highest court to overturn that case, arguing that it stifles innovation. But the majority, represented by Justice Elena Kagan, disagreed, saying that there wasn’t any empirical evidence proving that, and that altering that case would be something better left to others more versed in policy. As Justice Kagan wrote:
“…we can decide, we can undecide… but stare decisis teaches that we should exercise that authority sparingly. Cf. S. Lee and S. Ditko, Amazing Fantasy No. 15: “SpiderMan,” p. 13 (1962) (‘[I]n this world, with great power there must also come — great responsibility’). Patents endow their holders with certain superpowers, but only for a limited time…”
Spoken like a true nerd. I’m glad some of our judges have a sense of humor.
Oh, and some dude was cast to play him in a movie.