Print 14 comment(s) - last by omnicronx.. on Jan 28 at 3:29 PM

IBM says okay to Mark Papermaster joining Apple early

With iPod creator Tony Faddell bowing out of Apple, and Mark Papermaster, former manager of IBM's critical blade server business and mastermind of the PowerPCs, stepping in as the iPod division head, things were looking good for Apple.  However Big Blue was a little upset about the move, as Mr. Papermaster had signed a non-compete contract and had intimate knowledge of IP that could help Apple make headway into the server business.  IBM decided to sue Apple, as it was also fearful that Mr. Papermaster might also be trying to lure IBM employees to Apple.

IBM pointed out that the non-compete clause forbade the 26-year veteran from taking a position with a competitor for one year after he quit, and that he took such a position in November just a month after leaving IBM.  However, Mr. Papermaster countered that the nature of his work would be quite different and that a delay would be bad for the tech industry and force him to lose his "
dream job".

As a result, Apple's iPod division was without a definite head, casting much doubt and disarray among the ranks.  Despite an unexpectedly great sales quarter for the division, it cast a black cloud over all their business.

Fortunately, the dispute has now been settled.  Both companies announced an agreement Tuesday, freeing Mark Papermaster to assume his role as Apple's head of the iPod and iPhone divisions.  His official title will be
senior vice president of devices hardware engineering.  He will officially start April 24.

Neither IBM nor Apple was willing to give specifics on what the settlement entailed.  IBM would merely say that the settlement ensured the protection of its intellectual property.

Mr. Papermaster will submit to monitoring by a New York federal court, which will last until October 24, 2009.  In July and October he will have to certify "that he has complied with his legal obligations not to use or disclose IBM's confidential or proprietary information."

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I bet
By SandmanWN on 1/28/2009 10:08:20 AM , Rating: 2
100 bucks Apple submits a blade server patent before the end of 2009.

RE: I bet
By Aloonatic on 1/28/2009 10:33:10 AM , Rating: 5
The iBlade will be a revolution and introduce the idea of a "server" to the industry and they will soon have a patent for it. No one else will be able to produce one, including IBM, without Apple's say so.

RE: I bet
By Cullinaire on 1/28/2009 10:46:00 AM , Rating: 2
Can't forget the iSheath enclosures that the iBlades will slip into.

RE: I bet
By Murloc on 1/28/2009 2:21:31 PM , Rating: 2
and what about the iRibs where the iBlades will be pushed into.
Animals will be terminated for patent infringement, they use iRibs without the permission of apple.

RE: I bet
By mezman on 1/28/2009 3:29:38 PM , Rating: 1
Comon Mods! Give him a 6!

I agree here
By Spivonious on 1/28/2009 10:11:47 AM , Rating: 2
The iPod division at Apple is definitely not a competitor to IBM, so I don't think he violated his non-compete clause at all. I guess Apple just wanted this to go away quickly.

RE: I agree here
By morkmeister on 1/28/2009 11:40:59 AM , Rating: 1
see my post below

RE: I agree here
By omnicronx on 1/28/2009 12:38:11 PM , Rating: 3
The division he works for does not make a difference when it comes to non-compete clauses, what you think is a non issue here. I personally have a non compete clause in my contract, and if my company wanted, they could block me from working for a competitor altogether, regardless of what division it is in.

"Not a competitor?"
By morkmeister on 1/28/2009 11:40:38 AM , Rating: 2
Regardless of which department he works in. Apple is a competitor of IBM. Pure and simple. I don't like IBM any more than the next guy, but my christ, he signed a non-compete agreement. Boo Hoo, I might miss out on my dream job. :( double :( :( . DEAL WITH IT. Do you think that the 360 division of Microsoft only used tech ideas from within their own design group? Come off it folks. If he works for Apple (in any division) his ideas are their property. Period. They will use them as they see fit.

RE: "Not a competitor?"
By Spivonious on 1/28/2009 1:26:43 PM , Rating: 2
Apple makes consumer products such as Macs, iPods, and iPhones.

IBM makes business IT solutions and sells IT support.

Sure they're both in the computing industry, but they are definitely not direct competitors. Of course, without seeing the wording of the no-compete clause, any argument about this is pointless.

RE: "Not a competitor?"
By omnicronx on 1/28/2009 3:29:42 PM , Rating: 2
Who are you to make this claim?

IBM is very much so still in the server business, which puts them in competition with Apple.

IBM is such a $#$! company...
By Marlin1975 on 1/28/2009 10:06:16 AM , Rating: 1
The treat their staff like shit yet when soemone trys to leave they do what they can to put them down more.

IBM is good to work right after college to build up your resume. But if you are there 3-5 years later it will hurt you.

<--SO works IBM and I have known others that work/ed there.

RE: IBM is such a $#$! company...
By omnicronx on 1/28/2009 12:43:55 PM , Rating: 2
The man held a very high position in which he had access to some very sensitive information. I really don't see how this is treating staff like 'shit'. He deserved what he got, its unacceptable to leave to a competing company knowing full well that you have a signed that does not allow you to work for a competing company.

I also know many people that work at IBM that love their job.

By omnicronx on 1/28/2009 12:28:03 PM , Rating: 3
However, Mr. Papermaster countered that the nature of his work would be quite different and that a delay would be bad for the tech industry and force him to lose his "dream job".
How is that countering? He signed an agreement, plain and simple. If this was his 'dream job' then why on earth would he agree to a non compete clause knowing that he may pursue it in the future.

"I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired." -- North Korean Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il
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