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Monday, August 12, 2013

Ridiculous lawsuits filed by Apple

lawSince the beginning of the judicial system, there have been countless lawsuits that just make you want to slap the plaintiff; cases that just make you want to shake the plaintiff and smack some sense into them. Apple has a history of being one such plaintiff.

While they certainly have the right to protect their products and ensure that their intellectual property doesn’t get used inappropriately, there are some cases that seem just a little overboard. Here are a couple of my favorites:

The small Apple vs. the big Apple

In 2008, New York City developed a logo for its “GreenNYC” movement. Essentially this was a movement to get the city read to expect and participate in changes in lifestyle that will better the local economy, fight against climate change and better the lives of those in New York City… Hence: Green.
New York City, long known by its nickname “The Big Apple” created a modern design logo of a green apple, combining its long standing mascot, the Apple, with its GreenNYC initiative. Apple (The “Small Apple”?) didn’t like that.

The Small Apple claimed that the logo chosen by New York City infringes on its own (very boring) already been chewed apple logo, and would injure Apple’s reputation. New York City responded that the claim has no merit, and the logo won’t cause any confusion at all.

How a company can get so self-important as to feel like anything involving the world “apple” is immediately going to make consumers think of them is beyond me. Besides that, what’s so wrong with the possibility of a vague association with an initiative to clean up the world and improve quality of life in one of the most famous cities on the planet? It should be considered free advertising.

What’s next for the Small Apple? One wonders why they don’t go after super markets for selling apples for less than $400 apiece.

Apple Vs Samsung

It’s difficult to understand why Apple seems to enjoy picking fights with Samsung, since Apple relies on Samsung for a good amount of the hardware Apple uses in its iPods, iPhones, and even MacBooks. Yet on several occasions, it has lashed out at Samsung.

First, Samsung touted its Galaxy S2 as the thinnest smartphone, and indeed sections of it were. However, it had two bulbous sections that stuck out on the top and bottom that made it thicker than iPhone 4.

Apple, like the stereotypical vapid self-conscious run way model said “How dare you claim you’re thinner than us!” They filed suit, and unfortunately won, once again enforcing the disgusting ideal that being thinner is more important than being smart(phone).

Of course, this wasn’t the only lawsuit filed against Samsung, there was another regarding patents, wherein Samsung supposedly copied the look and feel of the iPhone and the iPad with their Galaxy S devices, and then later expanded the scope to include other products.

Fortunately in the UK, Apple lost. The judge stated that Samsung did not infringe on Apple’s patents, and nobody was going to confuse the Samsung Galaxy tablets with iPads because they (the Galaxy tablets) were not as cool.

Most notable was the edict that the judge imposed on Apple. That they publish on their UK site, as well as printed newspapers that Samsung did NOT in fact infringe on Apple designs, and should remain there for six months.

Obviously, no company likes to use a rival companies name in their articles, particularly on their own website, let alone in print. The judge’s intentions were to correct any false impressions that may have been made on the consumers that Samsung violated patents, and reverse any damage done by these accusations, but one cannot help but feel that it may also have been a thinly veiled punishment for being so frivolous in their accusations.

Apple historically spends more on legal battles than they do on research and development. Perhaps it’s time for Apple to take that money, and instead of putting it toward vanity titles like “World’s thinnest phone” and put it toward moving forward. Then again, perhaps we’re better off without yet another new iToy that costs more than other products that more efficiently do the same thing.

About the author: Serge is the technical founder of Edictive a film production and ep movie magic scheduling platform. With time he has found that distributing software through Apple iTunes network comes at a great price of being controlled by a platform. He would advise other founders to consider basing their entire business on a platform controlled by others.

* Image license: Massimo Barbieri; CC BY-SA 2.0