Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Patents Businesses Apple

Apple Fails Due Diligence in Trade Secret Case 236

Posted by samzenpus
from the do-your-homework dept.
Brett writes "Despite claims to the contrary, it now appears that Apple didn't do any serious investigation inside the company before they sued AppleInsider and the PowerPage. This is quite a bit of a problem because Californian law and First Amendment precedent requires Apple check up on itself before threatening journalists. From the article, "It appears that Apple has adopted a shoot-first, ask questions later approach to dealing with rumors sites. The company took no depositions, required no oaths from its employees, and failed to subpoena anyone related to the company or the development of the device in question.""
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Apple Fails Due Diligence in Trade Secret Case

Comments Filter:
  • by narzy (166978) * <narzy2001@NOSPAM.gmail.com> on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:18AM (#13565321) Homepage
    Way to go Apple, you ass hats.

    When the story first broke that apple was sueing rumor sites I withheld judgement, you see I run a review site, I understand the dynamics of the tech industry and the vital role of a journalist, I also understand the letters NDA, and what they mean to a company, and what they mean to me when I sign one. I do feel that as a journalist I have protections given to me by the US constitution protecting me and everyone for that matter from persecution and prosocution as a result of what I write.

    That being said it also needs to be aknowlaged that there have to be some checks and balances in the system that allow companies to protect information that if released early could damage the company. We need to recognize that we do have great freedoms and powers in the press but that we need to make sure we use those powers and freedoms responsibly, for example not outing a CIA agent that isn't doing anything more then her job, that isn't say stealing from the Repbulican National Convention headquarters, but is making our country a safer place. You know that thing we refer to as common sense.

    We as a society also need to infer and compel in to people that when they make a resonable agreement with someone be it a company or other individual or institution, they need to be held to that agreement, meaning if employee's of apple did disclose information about an upcomming product and had signed an NDA, and the upcomming product was not part of a large and publicly damaging scandal they had no right to reveal that information to a third party, and thusly the third party doesn't have the right (even under freedom of the press / speech) to reveal that information to the public.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:19AM (#13565324)
    What?

    What the hell part of this was meant to make sense?

    Apple suddenly can have their software pirated due to the result of a legal case in a completely different arena of the law?

    What the fuck are you talking about?

    Indeed what on earth was the grand parent talking about?

    Granted the OS is pretty, but we're comparing ancient to modern, compare Vista to Leopard (or whatever it will be called) for a fair comparison.

    Compare Apple's Office products to MS', who makes the better software?
  • by amodm (876842) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:19AM (#13565325)
    Not that apple shouldn't have done checks at home, but given the fact that most employees are aware that they can be easily monitored under company premises (especially when working on a secretive stuff), most of such sources would typically NOT use company resources, so it doesn't make much sense to search them.

    Instead ask the "journalist" himself.

    Again, Apple SHOULD have done checks at home, just to be on the safe side of law at least.
  • by backslashdot (95548) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:22AM (#13565345)
    Apple did introduce a great product in Ipod, proving that usability and industrial design can help corner a market. And the tie in to itunes was an excellent idea from the perspective of locking in a market. Furthermore the inability of ipod to understand any DRM other than Fairplay means taht any musician who wants to sell music and have it be portable while having DRM must sell via itunes. These are all great ways to sell a product, and "bring portable music to the masses."

    History is full of great but evil inventors. For example, the inventor of the process that enables nitrgen rich fertilizers which saves countless lives also designed and took pleasure in designing German poison gas weapons.

    I am not comparing Apple to that in any remote sense, but I am making the point that just because someone brings forth innovation to the world doesnt mean they get a free pass trampling rights.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:23AM (#13565352)
    Apple just wanted rumor sites to be afraid, so that they don't spoil Apples announcement to Intel-procsessors.

    Think about what it would have done with PPC-Mac sales, if rumors about Intel had been wild long before WWDC... No-one would have bought PPC-machine, if there were rumors that Intel-switch was coming this summer.

    Oh, and that Apple employee called "As Seen On TV" here at /. was one part of that ploy also -> Apple wanted to give rumor mill an extra spin of their own just to get focus off the upcomig and very major Intel-switch.

    And don't get me started to point out that Apple prolly leaked the Intel-info to WSJ and Cnet, so that Steve could show that "It's True"-slide in his presentation...

    Think about that. Think different, indeed.
     
  • by AnonymousYellowBelly (913452) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:40AM (#13565426)
    Well, sometimes Apple is no better than some of the assholes that run/runed the company. For the sake of the people that live in the RDF: I'm not talking of Steve Jobs -many mistakes but good overall-.

    Yes, some of this guys are control freaks, DRM-lovers, RIAA-bitches, that are no different than MS/SCO/SUN troops.

    What IS different is the organizational culture of Apple and other companies. I believe it is better than Microsoft's, Sun's and, definitely, SCO's. That I like, and because of it Apple is capable of making great products not only because they want big profits but for the sake of doing things right.

    Sometimes it seems that they are forced to do "Good Things", or that their intentions are not 'pure', like some interactions with the OS community.
    But look at their DRM strategy compared to M$. They looked at things from the user's perspective and tried to change the views of the RIAA to match the 'reality' of us. I don't think this was only motivated by profit but because Apple 'thinks different' than M$.

    As for the case at hand: I don't think Apple should be suing those websites. They should plug their leaks.
     
  • I think you'll find that if Linus doesn't enforce his trademark, he loses it.

    And to be honest, the amounts of money being demanded for use of the trademark (in Australia) are small change to the companies involved.

    Would you like to see Micro$oft release a software product called Linux, just because Linus didn't retain the trademark on his own product?

  • by RradRegor (913123) <rdarr1@@@adelphia...net> on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:54AM (#13565521) Journal
    That being said it also needs to be aknowlaged that there have to be some checks and balances in the system that allow companies to protect information that if released early could damage the company.
    Yes, balances are lacking in a lot of ways. The other side of the coin is that in this industry, everything is under NDA. When I accept employment, I have to sign a paper that says basically my employer owns everything that crosses my mind, and I can't talk to anyone about anything that the company owns. Ergo I violate the NDA whenever I communicate with anyone.
  • by jtwJGuevara (749094) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:55AM (#13565529)
    Good point.

    http://www.ilaw.com.au/linuxfaq.html/ [ilaw.com.au] explains it a bit.

    It seems like Linus (or his lawyers rather) want to protect the Linux trademark. Hypthetically speaking, if I had a product titled Lunix Utilities, I wouldn't seem to fall under that trademark use. However, if my company or product name was MikeRoweSoft [cnn.com] or Lindows [internetnews.com], Microsoft could and would sue me.

    *Shrug* It's a pretty hairy issue. I see where Linus or his lawyers are coming from, but I wonder why the demand in monetary payment in order to ensure their trademark isn't abused.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2005 @09:02AM (#13565578)

    I run a review site, I understand the dynamics of the tech industry and the vital role of a journalist

    You certainly do. It's spelt "suing", not "sueing"; "prosecution", not "prosocution"; "acknowledged", not "aknowlaged"; "Republican", not "Repbulican"; "reasonable", not "resonable"; and "upcoming", not "upcomming". Also, proper nouns tend to start with a capital letter, and apostrophes aren't used for plurals. You need more commas too.

    I don't usually play spelling/grammar nazi, but your spelling and grammar was so ridiculously bad that I seriously wondered whether you were drunk when you wrote it.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2005 @09:22AM (#13565697)
    What IS different is the organizational culture of Apple and other companies. I believe it is better than Microsoft's, Sun's and, definitely, SCO's. That I like, and because of it Apple is capable of making great products not only because they want big profits but for the sake of doing things right.

    A friend of mine interviewed for some iPod special projects group at Apple. When asking for specifics about the position, he was told that he shouldn't care what he was working on as long as it was for Apple.

    Another person was excused from his interview when he answered the question "Give an example of when you changed your values for an employer" with "I wouldn't do that."

    If true, Apple sounds like a great company to work for.

  • by Raindeer (104129) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @09:34AM (#13565787) Homepage Journal
    http://blogs.msdn.com/chris_pratley/archive/2004/0 4/27/120944.aspx [msdn.com]

    Follow the link for some history and yes you will find support for the claim.
  • by Anders Andersson (863) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @10:54AM (#13566476) Homepage
    Apple didn't fulfil its obligations to investigate internally FIRST.

    Sitting in a different jurisdiction, knowing little about U.S. law, I find myself asking: So all it takes for a U.S. corporation to compel a journalist (or anybody else) to reveal his source is that they conduct an internal investigation?

    I understand we are talking about the First Amendment here, about fundamental civil rights. You should be able to talk to the press and trust them not to reveal their source unless some action of your own allows them to. If the law won't respect your anonymity, you should know so beforehand and not talk at all. But here your right to anonymity is appearantly dependent on a procedural matter of fact that can be established only after you have talked to the press, and it's the plaintiff alone that gets to decide whether that investigation will happen.

    Imagine being denied your Fifth Amendment right not to testify against yourself merely because the plaintiff has acted with due diligence and performed the (hypothetically) required tap-dance-on-a-harpsicorde in the courtroom. It's not like Apple must obtain someone's permission to conduct an internal investigation, right?

  • Devils advocate... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Formz (870969) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @11:18AM (#13566743)
    Did anyone stop and think that it was more of a scare tactic than anything else? I for one can't sit here and actually believe that the lawyers for the fastest growing computer company in the world has inept lawyers.

    My guess is they did it to scare the people who were leaking, just to prove that they CAN do something, without actually DOING something.

    But then again, I'm just speculating.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2005 @11:39AM (#13566962)
    Anyone knowledgable care to comment on whether Apple, a non-governemental body, is bound to conduct the same sort of investigation for a civil matter that the government is required to conduct for a criminal matter?

    Knowledgable, means, specific knowledge, not an opinion, thanks. I already have one of those.
  • by argent (18001) <peter.slashdot@2006@taronga@com> on Thursday September 15, 2005 @02:50PM (#13569023) Homepage Journal
    Then why can't I play songs purchased from iTunes on my Creative player?

    Turn their old "RIP MIX BURN" ad campaign on its head.

    MIX the songs into a playlist about 70 minutes long.

    BURN them to CD.

    RIP them to MP3.

    In some cases there MAY be a detectable loss of quality from the re-encoding, but if you cared about quality you'd have bought the original CD instead of the lossy-compressed online versions anyway.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve immortality through not dying. -- Woody Allen

Working...