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Dynetix Design Solutions Inc., A California Corporation v. Synopsys Inc.

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA SAN JOSE DIVISION


December 17, 2012

DYNETIX DESIGN SOLUTIONS INC., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SYNOPSYS INC., A DELAWARE CORPORATION, AND DOES 1-50, DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Paul S. Grewal United States Magistrate Judge

For the Northern District of California United States District Court

ORDER GRANTING-IN-PART ADMINISTRATIVE MOTION TO FILE UNDER SEAL (Re: Docket No. 115)

In response to the court's order denying Defendant Synopsys Inc.'s ("Synopsys") administrative motion to seal information designated confidential by Plaintiff Dynetix Design Solutions Inc.'s ("Dynetix")*fn1 based on Dynetix's apparent failure to file a timely supporting declaration, Dynetix has brought to the court's attention that it did file a supporting declaration under Local Rule 79-5.*fn2

However, Dynetix fails to acknowledge that it filed its supporting declaration seven days past the cutoff set by the rule. On those grounds alone, the court could and perhaps should still deny Synopsys' motion.

But in light of the potential harm of exposing proprietary information, the court 2 nevertheless proceeds to consider the substance of the supporting documents.*fn3 Under Local Rule 3 79-5, a sealing order is appropriate only upon request that establishes the document is "sealable," 4 or "privileged or protectable as a trade secret or otherwise entitled to protection under the law."*fn4

When the submitting party has filed an administrative motion to comply with a stipulated 6 protective order, the designating party must within 7 days file a supporting declaration establishing 7 the document is "sealable" and a narrowly-tailored proposed order.*fn5 Additionally, the party must 8 meet the "good cause" standard of Rule 26(c).*fn6 To show good cause, the party must make a 9 "particularized showing"*fn7 that "specific prejudice or harm will result" if the information is 10 disclosed.*fn8 "[B]road allegations of harm, unsubstantiated by specific examples or articulated reasoning" will not suffice.*fn9

For the Northern District of California United States District Court

Synopsys filed a motion to seal Exhibits I and J of the Yu Declaration. Exhibit I is a copy 13 of Dynetix's brochure for their RaceCheck product. Exhibit J is a copy of the V2Sim and 14 RaceCheck Release Notes and User's Guide. Dynetix's declaration asserts in a conclusory fashion 15 that the brochures and manuals were trade secrets marked "Highly Confidential," and on that basis 16 alone, should remain under seal. However, brochures and user manuals are by definition 17 distributed to potential and actual users, which without more suggests they are not trade secrets. 18

Dynetix makes no additional showing that the brochures and user manuals are trade secrets, nor 19 does it show any particularized harm that would result if the documents were unsealed. This is 20 insufficient to meet the "good cause" standard. 21

Synopsys also filed a motion to seal portions of the Walker declaration referring to the 2 function of Dynetix's source code. Dynetix's declaration describes the information in the Walker 3 declaration as proprietary and secret. Confidential source code is generally accepted to be 4 proprietary and sealable.*fn10 The redactions are narrowly-tailored to protect only sealable 5 information. This does satisfy the "good cause" standard under Rule 26(c). 6

The motion to seal the Walker declaration is hereby GRANTED. Regarding Exhibits I and J of the Yu Declaration, the motion to seal remains DENIED. Synopsys shall file unsealed copies 8 of Exhibits I and J within 7 days. 9 10

IT IS SO ORDERED.

United States District Court For the Northern District of California


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