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Apple has creatively doctored another photo to try to make Samsung look guilty of design patent infringement.  (Source: Apple via IDG)

Apple CEO Steve Jobs says his company is a master of stealing ideas. Apparently it's also becoming masters of using Photoshop to provide potentially perjurous doctored exhibits in court.  (Source: Sydney Morning Herald)

Using doctored images, Apple succeeded in convincing a German judge to ban sales of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Germany.  (Source: HiTech)
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Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) chief executive and co-founder, Steven P. Jobs has bragged about his mastery of stealing ideas from others, stating [video], "Picasso had a saying - 'Good artists copy, great artists steal.' And we have always been shameless about stealing great ideas."

I. Apple Alters Reality With Photoshop

But stealing other competitors' ideas isn't the only thing Apple is good at.  Of late it's shown itself to be a burgeoning master of Photoshop.  It was caught in Germany doctoring images (playing with perspectives and stretching pictures) to make its competitor's product look like its own.

Now Apple has been caught yet again engaging in egregious editing images -- quite literally "stretching the truth" -- in the Netherlands.

The Netherlands court filing came as part of Apple's legal crusade [1][2][3][4][5] against Google Inc. (GOOG) and its hardware partners.  Unable to compete against Google's Android operating system on the free market, Apple has come up with the creative solution of trying to use lawsuits to remove Google from the market altogether.

In this particular case, Apple's victim was Samsung Electronics Comp, Ltd. (SEO 005930).  Apple accused Samsung of "slavishly" copying the iPhone 4.  It sued trying to ban Samsung's widely successful Galaxy S smart phone family from the market in the Netherlands.

But it appears, in reality, that it was Apple who was "slavishly" copying and pasting the Galaxy S into Photoshop.  The Galaxy S is a bit larger than the iPhone 4 (122.4 by 64.2 mm) and looked decidedly different, so Apple had its work cut out for it in order convince a judge that the phone was "copying" the iPhone's patented look -- a key claim in its case.

So it shrunk the Galaxy S down to iPhone size -- 115.5 by 62.1 mm.  It also cherry-picked an image of the iPhone 3G, a defunct model it has not produced since 2009, as that model had more rounded edges -- like the Galaxy S -- and unlike Apple's current production iPhone (the iPhone 4).

A careful read would reveal flaws in the visual exhibit -- Apple did at least admit in the text, that the Galaxy S has "some non-identical elements, such as the slightly larger dimensions."

But consider that the claims of design patent infringement are critical to the case, and that the picture came on page 77, it's possible by that point that a weary justice might not be reading the small print very carefully.  

II. Images Played Key Role in Sales Ban

The recent incident, like the previous photoshopping, was identified by Dutch IDG publication Webwereld.nl.  IDG quotes Mark Krul, a lawyer at the Dutch firm WiseMen and a specialist in IT and intellectual property law, who says the visual evidence was critical in a German court's decision to ban Samsung's tablet sales in the European Union via an ex parte injunction.

Mr. Krul was astonished that doctored images appeared in a separate filing, stating, "It surprises me that for the second time incorrect presentations of a Samsung product emerge in photographic evidence filed in litigation. This is not appropriate and undermines Apple's credibility both inside and outside the court room. Apple has certainly some explaining to do, if only to clear itself from the appearance of improper behavior."

The EU court has since changed its ruling to only banning sales in Germany.  And Samsung is actively fighting to reverse that ban.  A Samsung lawyer in the EU, Bas Berghuis of Simmons and Simmons, accused Apple of "manipulating visual evidence, making Samsung's devices appear more similar to Apple's."

A legal expert who spoke to IDC anonymously said that in patent law cases often visual exhibits are the main thing judges look at, as they're considered the point that the plaintiff wants to emphasize -- more so than the text.

While the discovery of its "creative" alterations may be bad news for Apple's legal chances, on the plus side its legal team may be able to find jobs for themselves as graphics designers, should they lose the case.  After all, they're building a pretty impressive portfolio of work, already.


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This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

By ltcommanderdata on 8/19/2011 3:15:52 PM , Rating: 2
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-14542200

quote:
It is understood that the judge involved in the German case made his ruling based on a physical examination of the two tablets, rather than relying Apple's paper submission alone.

Rather than the commentary of some lawyer, it's already been reported by news sites that the German judge made the ban decision on the Galaxy Tab based on physical examination of the devices themselves and not the pictures.




By jnemesh on 8/19/2011 3:17:56 PM , Rating: 4
Even so, judges tend to get a WEE bit upset when they find out they have been LIED to! Apple should be ruled in contempt of court, fined, and have their case summarily dismissed! (at the very LEAST!)


By ltcommanderdata on 8/19/2011 3:26:53 PM , Rating: 2
Yes. There are now two parts to the case. First, while people were of the opinion that Apple had no case against Samsung, if the Judge initiated the ban based on physical examination of the actual devices then that indicates very strongly that infringement did in fact occur. Apple has a case. Second, misrepresenting evidence is a major no no. So it could well be that Apple would have won against Samsung if it weren't for that image.

That a judge can see the that the physical Galaxy Tab is infringing though could probably mean that if these current cases are dismissed, Apple has the basis to file suit in other jurisdictions with corrected pictures for the filing.


By JasonMick (blog) on 8/19/2011 3:34:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yes. There are now two parts to the case. First, while people were of the opinion that Apple had no case against Samsung, if the Judge initiated the ban based on physical examination of the actual devices then that indicates very strongly that infringement did in fact occur. Apple has a case. Second, misrepresenting evidence is a major no no. So it could well be that Apple would have won against Samsung if it weren't for that image.

But if the judge thinks that he's OUT OF HIS MIND and/or incompetent.

The iPad looks no more like the Galaxy Tab than this device looks like the iPad:
http://kpctech.com/images/TC1100.jpg

Hint: This iPad "imitator" was DISCONTINUED in 2005 .

What was this judge smoking? (Hey, I know Europe has less arbitrary drug laws...)


By ltcommanderdata on 8/19/2011 4:07:09 PM , Rating: 2
Well, if and when the judge makes his final decision, whatever it may be, he'll have to release his reasons for doing so. Then Apple and Samsung can argue over those points. Calling the judge insane when he makes a decision you don't agree on is hardly a legal defense.

And realistically given the HP tablet uses a stylus and a desktop OS and is almost 2.5 times as thick and 2.5 times as heavy as the iPad 2/Galaxy Tab, if the judge were to hold that HP tablet along with the iPad 2 and Galaxy Tab, it'd probably encourage the view that the Galaxy Tab is more similar to the iPad 2 than that HP tablet is.


By JasonMick (blog) on 8/19/2011 4:12:05 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Calling the judge insane when he makes a decision you don't agree on is hardly a legal defense.

If a judge rules that the natural color of the sky is green, I don't care how much rambling explanation he presents, I know he's wrong. There is such a thing as the "obvious", even in the court of law.

The Galaxy Tab 10.1 and the iPad look nothing alike, other than that they're thin rectangular tablets. Anyone with eyes can see that.

I don't think Apple can patent "thinness" or the rectangle, sorry.
quote:
And realistically given the HP tablet uses a stylus and a desktop OS and is almost 2.5 times as thick and 2.5 times as heavy as the iPad 2/Galaxy Tab, if the judge were to hold that HP tablet along with the iPad 2 and Galaxy Tab, it'd probably encourage the view that the Galaxy Tab is more similar to the iPad 2 than that HP tablet is.

I'm sure you could put both on some curve of weight/thickness v. time and match both the TC1100, the Tab, and the iPad 2.

Remember, the Tab is lighter and thinner than the iPad 2.

The fact that you're trying to defend Apple's ludicrous claims is appalling.


By Theoz on 8/22/2011 1:47:51 PM , Rating: 2
In Germany, infringement and validity are separate trials. Thus Apple can win on infringement and later lose the patent on invalidity (i.e. no "inventive step" which is the European equivalent of obviousness). That said, it is very odd to me that a judge would issue a preliminary injunction in a case such as this with validity very much in doubt.


By sprockkets on 8/19/2011 4:30:36 PM , Rating: 3
Yes, because 2005 technology at the time allowed for such small hardware.

Newsflash: Apple didn't invent the thin computer or tablet. They just waited until the technology became available to use it. Capacitive multi-touch screens didn't exist then either.


By ClownPuncher on 8/19/2011 3:32:22 PM , Rating: 2
That's seriously shady and amateurish.


By Tunnah on 8/19/2011 4:57:49 PM , Rating: 2
i wouldn't be surprised if the judge has said this after it came to light, as to cover himself for not properly examining the case


By JasonMick (blog) on 8/19/2011 3:26:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Rather than the commentary of some lawyer, it's already been reported by news sites that the German judge made the ban decision on the Galaxy Tab based on physical examination of the devices themselves and not the pictures.

Err.. the BBC writes "it is understood that...[the judge did not use the visual evidence]" That phrase is like "It is believed that..." It's hardly definitive.

BBC could be right, IDG could be right, both could be partially right.

The IMPORTANT point is that Apple's and its legal representatives appears to have perjured themselves at least twice in court now, in their brashly anticompetitive quest to remove Android from the market.


By JasonMick (blog) on 8/19/2011 4:06:53 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
In the German case where the aspect ratio was distorted, some form of image manipulation is occurring.

In this Dutch case, that picture of the Galaxy S looks like a stock press kit shot. Probably this one:

Weak argument. They're who put the iPhone pasted next to it. So even if you argue that the the Samsung image is a press kit image, that doesn't change the fact that they pasted an image of the iPhone with misleading proportions next to it using image editing software.

At best that's sloppy and should result in the possible dismissal of the case, at worst they should be facing perjury penalties.

quote:
You can't expect a random Galaxy S press kit shot to match the same physical scale as a random iPhone 3G press kit shot when placed side to side for the filing.

Apple is who pasted the two in there. Are you telling me that they're too incompetent at Photoshop to show proper proportions?

You just admitted that that they may have engaged in "manipulation" in the German filing, and now you're claiming they don't know how to resize an image???

And why are they using the iPhone 3G, a phone that was defunct during all but a few days of the Galaxy S's time on the market?


By mircea on 8/20/2011 1:25:55 AM , Rating: 3
Being found with the same kind of tempering of the images in two different cases rules out "sloppiness" especially considering the fact that they were not sloppy enough to forget to change the default screens to ones that looks like an iPhone, use a discontinued line of product while they sell iPhone4 now, and the amount of distortion the Tab suffered just to align that row.

No intend there, you're right.


By tastyratz on 8/22/2011 9:53:07 AM , Rating: 2
So say they get perjured... how does something like this get handled? I always wondered that. Apple themselves? the individuals at apple whom are responsible?

I wonder if this is a directive from higher up or a "clever" move by the legal team? who swallows the bomb here?


By Granseth on 8/19/2011 4:08:04 PM , Rating: 3
except the images doesn't match. They changed the screen image (of the galaxy unit) from the press release image you posted.


Was the girl in the photo also photoshopped?
By smilingcrow on 8/19/2011 3:13:53 PM , Rating: 4
I thought Apple didn’t like Adobe?




By JasonMick (blog) on 8/19/2011 3:21:35 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
I thought Apple didn’t like Adobe?

Hint: Look at the chest and the blinds...

(It's a relatively famous "photoshop fail"... you can Google that phrase for hours of fun...)
quote:
I thought Apple didn’t like Adobe?

I know, right? Irony!


By smilingcrow on 8/19/2011 3:30:06 PM , Rating: 1
OK, the image is so small that I didn’t notice the anomaly.
I enjoyed the irony of seeing Photoshop in that context which is why I mentioned it. Not that I’m a fan of Flash (Aaagh, the destroyer of the Universe). And no I don’t like Queen either. ;)


RE: Was the girl in the photo also photoshopped?
By MrWho on 8/19/2011 4:08:10 PM , Rating: 3
Love Queen. As for Flash, I'm with you.


By paydirt on 8/19/2011 6:23:42 PM , Rating: 5
Again, why do these judges make million dollar+ rulings without even looking at the physical products for themselves?


By ph0tek on 8/20/2011 12:50:59 PM , Rating: 1
Cant wait to see what you sheeple start saying when HTML5 things like JavaScript and CSS animations start being used for ads instead of Flash as it wont be something you can block kids. Not only that but also performing worse and eating up more CPU cycles as it's vastly less efficient.


RE: Was the girl in the photo also photoshopped?
By warisz00r on 8/19/2011 10:46:26 PM , Rating: 2
It's 'saviour of the universe'


By smilingcrow on 8/20/2011 3:02:21 AM , Rating: 2
Not for Steve Jobs though! (context is king).


By amanojaku on 8/19/2011 3:32:05 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Hint: Look at the chest and the blinds...
Huh, missed the blinds. I noticed the left boob and the camera strap looked funny, and the chest overall is off center. But, common, we're men. When have we ever criticized a fake chest? :-)
quote:
I thought Apple didn’t like Adobe?
Aperture? Corel? Photoshop is accepted as the best, but that hasn't stopped Steve before.


By sprockkets on 8/19/2011 4:25:02 PM , Rating: 3
Only when it helps them fuel the myth that photoshop works better on a mac.


Falsified evidence
By sonoran on 8/19/2011 8:08:03 PM , Rating: 5
Wouldn't knowingly submitting falsified evidence be a criminal offense?




RE: Falsified evidence
By Some1ne on 8/20/2011 7:13:45 AM , Rating: 2
Not if you're Apple. They'll probably just get another award for their "innovative" style of preparing legal briefs, or some such nonsense.


RE: Falsified evidence
By TSS on 8/20/2011 10:21:05 AM , Rating: 2
I saw a news message the other day that apple was valued at $340 billion, or about as big as 32 banks (didn't say which banks).

Suffice to say, they will get away with it and just about anything else they please. It's a shame it has to be that way but it's always been that way throughout history. The rich are permitted more then the poor.

The people's own fault for buying apple i suppose.


RE: Falsified evidence
By jonmcc33 on 8/20/2011 1:28:02 PM , Rating: 2
Not in a civil lawsuit.


RE: Falsified evidence
By tng on 8/20/2011 7:12:45 PM , Rating: 2
I think that in any formal law suit (at least here in the US), it can get you contempt of court depending on how the judge views it. You would think that the at the very least the judge would look at this and be a little ticked....


RE: Falsified evidence
By Theoz on 8/22/2011 1:58:26 PM , Rating: 2
In the US, the submitting party swears that what it has submitted is factually accurate. So perjury is always an option, or criminal contempt. At the least, the other party would attempt to have the submitting party sanctioned. The US actually has a much higher standard for legal ethics than any other country - very surprising to most given the way that some lawyers act - so I don't know what the situation would be like in Europe.


Can't help but wonder...
By bupkus on 8/19/2011 4:00:45 PM , Rating: 3
if perhaps Steve Job's claim “My sex life is pretty good” doesn't also involve a small stretching of the truth?

Do you think Kim Jong-il is an expert in Photo Shop, too? Can't for the life of me understand why this consideration of Steve Jobs made me think of Kim Jong-il.??

Ok, ok... how's this. How many Kim Jong-il clowns can fit into a circus clown car? Ok, now how many Steve Jobs clowns?
I think I may have found a mathematical similarity.




RE: Can't help but wonder...
By jnemesh on 8/19/2011 4:41:03 PM , Rating: 5
Well, he HAS screwed everyone in Silicon Valley AND every single one of his customers...so yeah...I would say he is doing alright!


Its like
By Jotatsud1 on 8/19/2011 4:06:30 PM , Rating: 2
Apple, Gotta Sue'em All!




RE: Its like
By inperfectdarkness on 8/22/2011 9:59:39 PM , Rating: 2
I wanna steal the very best
like no one ever has.
To not get caught is my real test
'cause i'm above the patent laws.

I will travel across the land
one keynote at a time.
Reality distorter in my hand
Hoping no one will find....

APPLE SUX!
...but it's mostly just me.
APPLE SUX! iTards, you're my best friend,
in a world we must defend (from reality)
Apple's over-price so true,
only an empty will wallet will save you!

Believe the BS and i'll save you!
APPLE SUX! gotta own them all!

/steve jobs.


RE: Its like
By cjohnson2136 on 8/23/2011 11:14:40 AM , Rating: 2
that's awesome lol


seems like they should have caught this at trial
By Nekrik on 8/20/2011 4:24:33 AM , Rating: 2
Seems like Samsung would/should have had the real devices filed as evidence and this would/should have been caught. Wonder what the attorneys got paid for missing this.

so now we have two 'Fake SteveJob(s)'?




By Nekrik on 8/20/2011 5:48:41 AM , Rating: 2
maybe should of read up more, seems the German judge might have...


Lol
By RjBass on 8/19/2011 3:16:00 PM , Rating: 2
I love it when an Apple plan backfires in their face. Unfortunately it doesn't happen nearly enough.




RE: Lol
By Tony Swash on 8/21/2011 6:38:35 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
I love it when an Apple plan backfires in their face. Unfortunately it doesn't happen nearly enough.


and it hasn't happened in this case yet, don't count your chickens before they hatch :)


wow
By Spikesoldier on 8/19/2011 3:51:14 PM , Rating: 2
damn, apple, you cant compete in the open market, cant compete in the courtroom, just end yourself already.




iPhone 3GS still for sale
By thecly on 8/19/2011 4:08:38 PM , Rating: 2
Not sure about in The Netherlands, but the iPhone 3GS (same rounded edeges of the 3G model) is still for sale by Apple.
http://store.apple.com/us/product/MC555?mco=MjI4NT...

Nobody will confuse the Galaxy of being an iPhone, by the way. I've still never seen a Galaxy in the flesh here in LA.




And speaking of fakes
By YashBudini on 8/19/2011 5:11:54 PM , Rating: 2
What's the likelihood her golden globes came from the 3M Corporation?

For some men this is the ultimate in silicon technology.




OMG!
By Tanclearas on 8/22/2011 11:49:55 AM , Rating: 2
A phone looks like a phone and a tablet looks like a tablet?! How can that be?!




soooo...
By koli on 8/24/2011 4:23:00 AM , Rating: 2
Lets see... Stealing Americans.. facts??? From the moment they set on Plymount Rock has been the same in one way or another... nothing new here it is just not been stupid enough for people to takle notice and even if they do, if it benefits in some way... just look the other way...




No more photoshopping please!
By Subzero0000 on 8/21/11, Rating: -1
"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer














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