Uber’s request for a stay pending its appeal for arbitration, has been denied by Judge William Alsup. This means that the case will still go to trial in October and there will be no change in the pre-decided schedule. Judge Alsup also put a limit on the number of new discovery requests and asked Uber and Waymo to co-operate on that front.
Judge Alsup also asked Uber to ensure that Otto founder and former Waymo (and Uber) employee Anthony Levandowski complies with the court and answers questions, while also agreeing to return any confidential material he may have taken from Waymo. Considering that Uber has already fired him, this particular job could prove to be difficult for the cab aggregator.
Alsup also urged Waymo to get its game together and put controls on all the patent claims it has been making.
I think you’re going to lose on all these patent claims unless you pull a rabbit out of a hat. You’re the one who wants the trial date… You’re the one who should streamline this.
He also said:
you’ll burn up a lot of time and effort for things that will end up as a distraction.
The point he was trying to impress upon the Waymo counsel was that the company would be better served focusing its attention on getting access to the documents Waymo claims were part of the due diligence process in the Uber-Otto acquisition. These documents could well make clear Uber’s knowledge of the events at various points.
To Uber Alsup said, that the company should focus on proving that the stuff Levandowski brought to the company were things that would be common knowledge to autonomous engineers and would not constitute IP — specifically, IP stolen from Waymo. On the cab aggregator’s complaint regarding the trouble it was being put to in complying with the hundreds of document requests Waymo was sending through, Alsup ruled that no more document requests should be sent until further notice.