Apple Drops Legal Battle with Leakers
July 13, 2006 9:05 AM
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Judges say online journalists should be protected by the same laws as traditional journalists
According to reports, Apple this week decided to
drop its legal battle with several online websites that leaked information
about unreleased Apple products. Despite a long drawn out battle, Apple decided not to appeal a ruling by a panel of three judges that rejected Apple's arguments that the writers for the online websites were not "true journalists."
Apple went after AppleInsider, MacNN.com and PowerPage.org after information was released about a FireWire product codenamed
for its music application GarageBand. The
Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) ended up supporting the three websites and said that Apple's actions undermined the rights of journalists and threatened the safety of those who leak information to journalists.
Judge Franklin Elia was
quoted saying that Apple tried to "trump the First Amendment."
a court ruling denied Apple rights to have the identities of those who leaked information be revealed
. The case was originally filed in a Santa Clara County court but judges wondered why Apple had not performed any investigation internally. The judges felt that Apple had not exercised enough internal investigation to justify going outside of the company. "Apple has failed to establish that it adequately pursued other possible means to identify the source of the information in question," said the judges.
EFF attorney Kurt Opsahl said that "[Apple] just can't take a shortcut through a journalist" to identify the source of information. Although Apple did not submit an appeal -- and the deadline to do so has passed -- court documents showed that Apple's own internal investigators interviewed 29 employees. No details were released on the results of the investigation.
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RE: Legal stupidity
7/13/2006 1:36:24 PM
Amendment rights have been broken before, just in extreme circumstances, which bolsters the above poster's remarks.
For example, our right to a fair and speedy trial were essentially ignored. Lincoln suspended habeas corpus during the Civil War in order to conduct warfare in a streamlined manner. Sure, you can cry foul and say he had no right to do it, but in that sort of situation, it is much more forgivable and understandeable. Taney and the other justices might have disagreed with Lincoln, but they wouldn't on practical grounds.
Trampling on amendment rights almost always happen during times of war. Now we're in the peace time. If amendment rights are revoked/ignored during the peace, there is a massive problem with our society.
"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997
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