The CAFC (Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit) is apparantly getting a bit fed up with the EDTX Court. In In Re Hoffman-Laroche (http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/opinions/09-M911.pdf), they slapped them around for not transferring the case to a District (EDNC) which actually had a "meaningful local interest" in the dispute. Here's a quote which hints at their annoyance (plus the fact that it's kind of a slap in the face to highlight a spelling/grammar error when quoting from a lower Court's opinion).
The Eastern District of North Carolina's interest in this matter is self-evident. Meanwhile, it is undisputed that this case has no relevant factual connection to the Eastern District of Texas. The district court ignored this significant contrast, reasoning that "where a number of private interest factors weigh heavily in one direction, that venue has a slightly greater local interest," but "[w]here, however, the factors do not weigh heavily in one direction of [sic] the other, no one venue has more or less a meaningful connection to the case than any other." By relying exclusively on how other forum non conveniens factors weigh, rather than assessing the locale's connection to the cause of action, the district court essentially rendered this factor meaningless. Therefore, because the Eastern District of North Carolina has a meaningful local interest in adjudicating the dispute and no meaningful connection exists with the Eastern District of Texas, this factor also favors transfer.
and this one
Meanwhile, there appears to be no connection between this case and the Eastern District of Texas except that in anticipation of this litigation, Novartis' counsel in California converted into electronic format 75,000 pages of documents demonstrating conception and reduction to practice and transferred them to the offices of its litigation counsel in Texas. But, if not for this litigation, it appears that the documents would have remained a source of proof in California. Thus, the assertion that these documents are "Texas" documents is a fiction which appears to be have been created to manipulate the propriety of venue.
This type of tactic was clearly counseled against in Van Dusen v. Barrack, 376 U.S. 612 (1964). There, the Supreme Court explained that Section 1404(a) "should be construed to prevent parties who are opposed to a change of venue from defeating a transfer which, but for their own deliberate acts or omissions, would be proper, convenient and just." Id. at 625. A plaintiff's attempts to manipulate venue in anticipation of litigation or a motion to transfer falls squarely within these prohibited activities. The district court's contrary position here has no legally rational basis and prevents 1404(a) from carrying "out its design to protect litigants, witnesses and the public against unnecessary inconvenience and expense.
Add to this decision (handed down 12/2), the even more recent decision H-P v. Acceleron (12/4, Fed. Cir.) which makes it easier to file for a declaratory judgment of non-infringement (in your choice of Court) if you are -ahem- "threatened" by a patent troll, and it seems that the Fed Circuit it trying rein in what may be considered a rogue court. Note that these decisions don't really concern EDTX's disposition of the cases, but the question "WTF is this case doing in Marshall, Texas?"