Print 84 comment(s) - last by Azure Sky.. on Apr 28 at 1:18 PM

Apple's fourth generation iPhone  (Source: Gizmodo)
Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do? Whatcha gonna do when they come for you?

It's been a wild week for Gizmodo. The popular tech blog got what could be considered the tech scoop of the year (and possibly of the past decade) when it laid hands upon a prototype fourth generation iPhone.

According to Gizmodo's numerous stories on the topic, the phone was left behind at Gourmet Haus Staudt, a bar in Redwood City, California specializing in German suds. The person that found the phone tried to contact Apple directly in order to return the phone. The quest to find someone at Apple who could identify the lost prototype proved unfruitful.

Interestingly, the person who found the phone didn't hand the lost phone over to a bartender or appear to try to contact the person that actually lost the phone. The name of the person was gleaned from his Facebook profile on the iPhone and all of his pertinent information was available -- we know this because Gizmodo outed the Apple employee that actually lost the phone.

In the end, Gizmodo ended up paying $5,000 to the person that found the iPhone and ran with the story. Gizmodo later returned the iPhone prototype at the behest of Apple after it a finished a dissection.

According to Apple guru John Gruber, the iPhone in question is indeed a late prototype judging by its barcode:

One of the barcodes attached to the unit read “N90_DVT_GE4X_0493”. According to several sources (of mine) familiar with the project, “N90” is Apple’s codename for the fourth-generation GSM iPhone, slated for release this June or July. “DVT” stands for “design verification test”, an Apple production milestone. The DVT milestone is very late in the game; based on this, I now believe that this unit very closely, if not exactly, resembles what Apple plans to release.

Now, almost a week later, the police are involved according to CNET. Police in the Silicon Valley-area are now investigating whether the actions of Gizmodo and the person who found the phone were criminal and if there is enough evidence to file charges. The investigation is being headed by a computer crimes task force based out of the Santa Clara County DA's office.

CNET also reports that Apple has been in contact with the authorities regarding the incident.

The boys over at Gizmodo and Gawker Media are probably sweating a bit now that the police are involved, but the Apple employee who lost the phone may actually have a free getaway to Germany waiting for him. Lufthansa has offered the unlucky fellow a free flight to Germany where he can continue his love for great beer.

"At Lufthansa we also noted with great interest your passion for German beer and culture," said Lufthansa's marketing director for the Americas, Nicola Lange. "We thought you could use a break soon--and therefore would like to offer you complimentary business class transportation to Munich, where you can literally pick up where you last left off."


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RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By crystal clear on 4/24/2010 9:25:44 AM , Rating: -1
Here Gizmodo is responsible for exposing the new phone knowing very well that it can/could hand over the phone to Apple without exposing the interiors & other relevant details .

If they paid 5K to the seller, they could have recieved that same amount & maybe more from Apple as a token of appreciation.

Gizmodo gave Apple competitors an unfair advantage over it.

Apple competitors got free access to the interiors of the phone via the site.

Gizmodo may have gained in the short term, but in the long term end up paying huge compensations to Apple for revealing the secrets to Apple competitors.

Given the heated/cut throat competition in the smart phone market,such an exposure is a huge financial blow to Apple as the competition got an unfair advantage (early access) over Apple just before release.

No company will ever tolerate to have their product not launched yet to exposed by a website.

Gizmodo! get ready financially to pay those pricey lawyers & court hearings & end up paying huge fines or an out of court settlement paying compensations.

Not that easy & simple as it sounds in the article,Apple will destroy Gizmodo financially.

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By MartyLK on 4/24/2010 9:35:02 AM , Rating: 1
I agree, and Apple should do so.

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By HrilL on 4/24/2010 2:56:56 PM , Rating: 3
I highly doubt that. What they did wasn't illegal. Buy a stolen phone is probably the most they have to worry about. If it even was stolen.

From the sound of it he tried to return it to the owner. Apple. Since it was a company owned phone. They didn't want it until after the news came out.

Apple is completely in the wrong here. And they should have paid the 5000 to get the phone back if not more if they wanted it back. The phone was bricked by them making it impossible to find out who the rightful owner was when gizmodo finally got access to the phone from what I've read. So only the person that found it who still had access to the OS could have known who the rightful owner was. And maybe be the time he went to return it was already bricked as well. So he tried the only way he knew how and that was to contact apple who didn't take him seriously.

Apple should stop acting like a baby...

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By MartyLK on 4/24/2010 3:56:17 PM , Rating: 2
Tell that to yourself the next time you lose something, hoping someone who finds it returns it to you. If you would apply your own personal ethics to all parts of life, you would prosper. But to pick and choose what is good and right and what is bad and wrong isn't prosperous.

If a crime is a crime to one, it is a crime to all. If you hope and expect someone to return your property, that should be the same for matter that Apple is a company.

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By Azure Sky on 4/28/2010 1:18:36 PM , Rating: 2
poor poor apple, i mean they have been harmed so much by somebody fiddling with a beta phone, it probably cost them alot to get that warrent to raid his house after all.

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By dark matter on 4/25/2010 5:26:21 AM , Rating: 2
What they did was buy stolen property. You DO know how property law works don't you? You don't have to be touching your property or have it in your pocket to claim ownership. My car is out on the street right now can someone come along and simply "find it" and then sell it on to someone else who knows the car has been "found".

How about if I came into your house and "found" lots of your stuff. Or what if someone came to me and offered to sell me your stuff what they "found".

Wouldn't be so glib then would you.

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By mindless1 on 4/25/2010 10:20:42 PM , Rating: 1
You can't steal something that is technically abandoned. If the phone was picked out of someone's pocket it would be different, but it was not in the employee's possession so it is not stealing, unlike if you went into someone's house and "found" stuff.

If someone came to you and offered to sell you something they found abandoned in a bar, by all means buy it if you want it.

Remember that if someone finds something you abandoned, there is no obligation for THEM to go to extra effort to FIND YOU! Whether they keep what they found or sell it is rather irrelevant, just as it would be irrelevant whether you kept or spent a $100 bill you found lying on a sidewalk.

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By MartyLK on 4/25/2010 11:41:02 PM , Rating: 2
This last post was meant for you and was put in the wrong spot.

RE: Way to go, Lufthansa!!!
By MartyLK on 4/25/2010 11:36:50 PM , Rating: 4
That's exactly what crooks tell themselves. That is exactly the anti-social and greedy attitude. Find any way possible to justify keeping something that doesn't belong to you. To keep something rather than be neighborly and return what was lost.

First off, your attitude goes directly to the "abandonment" scheme. You see abandonment so you can feel "okay" about keeping the item. Secondly, you never consider common sense in that items like this are rarely abandoned and always either fall out of a pocket by accident or are forgotten. That, in no way shape or form, says the owner abandoned it. But you frantically see "abandonment" that you may profit from the loss and misery of another person.

People like you firmly believe you are more clever and wise than all others. But that's another delusion people like you suffer from. You want something for nothing. You spend more energy trying to get all you can without providing compensation. You believe nobody sees your real motives.

Had you chosen a social and caring life, one that looks out for others and befriends and defends others, you would be what you want to be. But instead, you want what you want without paying for it. You tend not to get any of it...because you put yourself above all others.

Regardless of the many layers a person like you devices for their lifestyle, there is only the simplicity of common sense that remains. And that is: The item wasn't yours and it wasn't abandoned. You have absolutely no right to it by any means. Can you steal it? Unfortunately, yes, you can. Can you get away with it? Unfortunately, maybe. Is it right to to do either of these things? Absolutely not! The simplicity of life dictates that you would be a criminal and wholly matter how many people you gather around you to defend your actions.

"People Don't Respect Confidentiality in This Industry" -- Sony Computer Entertainment of America President and CEO Jack Tretton

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