Print 8 comment(s) - last by KristopherKubi.. on May 28 at 1:59 PM

Appeals court gives Apple the cold shoulder

Apple is notoriously tight-lipped over its new product releases and prides itself on taking drastic measures to ensure that the public has no clue on its inner workings. Apple's efforts to find the source of a product leak dating all the way back to 2004 were met today with a slammed door to the face. CNET reports:

A lower court had ruled Apple should have access to the records of AppleInsider as it tried to unmask who had revealed information about an unreleased product. On Friday, though, the appeals court ruled that the communications between the product leaker and the enthusiast Web site are protected by federal and state law.

Be it leaks in Washington or leaks in Cupertino, journalists are looking to protect their confidential sources from prosecution. This case bolsters the efforts of online journalist bloggers to have the same rights as traditional reporters in regards to their sources. According to an earlier CNET article, Apple argued that online journalists do not have the same rights as their print brethren:

Its lawyers say in court documents that Web scribes are not "legitimate members of the press" when they reveal details about forthcoming products that the company would prefer to keep confidential.

DailyTech and CNET are both online-only publications. 

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Sounds like a good decision
By peternelson on 5/27/2006 12:23:42 AM , Rating: 2

I guess now Apple will be forced to try other techniques:


"OK, we're going to start firing everyone in this department one by one until the leaker steps forward and owns up".


Send in the hostage negotiators!

RE: Sounds like a good decision
By crystal clear on 5/27/2006 8:16:58 AM , Rating: 2
I have a even better idea-Fight leaks with leaks.
How-Anyone leaking information about the leaker will get a free paid vaction to anywhere.

RE: Sounds like a good decision
By shadowzz on 5/27/2006 9:22:11 AM , Rating: 2
Sweet, looking forward to Rikers Island!

RE: Sounds like a good decision
By captchaos2 on 5/27/2006 5:51:36 PM , Rating: 3
I realize that the press has rights, but they often go too far. If a company can't even develop it's products in peace without having the press snooping around and paying employees money to "give them the goods" just so they can put out a story, then what is the incentive to develop new products? Besides, what kind of backward and stupid employee would sabotage his own place of employment just for a payoff?

By KristopherKubicki on 5/28/2006 1:59:09 PM , Rating: 2
It's ridiculously unethetical for journalists to pay an employee for information, and I don't think thats what happened here with Apple. If someone found that the Apple insiders were being paid to share that info, I think the court would have been more likely to rule in favor of Apple.

However, disclosing some level of detail about upcoming products is basically the duty of the press. Publishing a document containing the electrical specifications of a chip is excessive -- publishing a memo claiming the electrical specifications of a chip are unsafe is not.

By Aisengard on 5/27/2006 12:25:39 AM , Rating: 3

What is the "press" and why did Apple think they can determine who is and who isn't "legitimate"? If they don't advertise Apple, does that mean they're not legitimate?

Score one for the Internet.

By vanka on 5/27/2006 3:24:36 AM , Rating: 2
Finally we have some common sense in our courts.

By BenSkywalker on 5/27/2006 4:12:52 AM , Rating: 1
Years ago I used to frequent AppleInsider and their forums and can tell you that those guys are extremely loyal Apple fans who are all more then happy to handle Apple's viral marketing free of charge- these are the people Apple was trying to nail in court. Shameful beahviour, although to be expected from a company ran by the likes of Steve Jobs.

"This is about the Internet.  Everything on the Internet is encrypted. This is not a BlackBerry-only issue. If they can't deal with the Internet, they should shut it off." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis

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