Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 19th Nov 2008 21:40 UTC
Legal Strike one for Apple. Curling is a better sport anyway - the first end goes to Apple. The Cupertino company sued clone maker PsyStar for licensing and trademark violations and copyright infringement, only to be greeted by a counter lawsuit from PsyStar, who claimed Apple was a monopolist. U.S. District Judge William Alsup sided with Apple on the counter lawsuit Tuesday. In his 16-page decision Tuesday, Alsup ruled Apple's products don't constitute a market to dominate. As a consequence, Apple then can't be considered a monopolist, Alsup wrote. An Apple spokesman had no comment. A representative for Psystar couldn't be reached for comment. The original lawsuit is still running, so PsyStar can, for now, continue selling its clones.
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Uhhh
by jason_ff on Wed 19th Nov 2008 21:53 UTC
jason_ff
Member since:
2006-06-29

How is this a "strike" for Apple? Isn't this a good thing for them?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Uhhh
by AmigaRobbo on Wed 19th Nov 2008 21:56 UTC in reply to "Uhhh"
AmigaRobbo Member since:
2005-11-15

I'm no expert in baseball, but isn't that what it means?

Anyway, could you imagine how terrible Apple would be if they ever got as big as MS?

better designed evil! Shudder!

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Uhhh
by Delgarde on Wed 19th Nov 2008 23:18 UTC in reply to "RE: Uhhh"
Delgarde Member since:
2008-08-19

Well, yes. In their own way, Apple really are a lot like Microsoft, just smaller and with more style.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Uhhh
by jessta on Wed 19th Nov 2008 23:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Uhhh"
jessta Member since:
2005-08-17

Apple is fair worse than Microsoft. Microsoft doesn't tie you to only buying their hardware.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Uhhh
by UltraZelda64 on Wed 19th Nov 2008 23:52 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Uhhh"
UltraZelda64 Member since:
2006-12-05

Apple is fair worse than Microsoft. Microsoft doesn't tie you to only buying their hardware.

Yeah, but they do quite a good job at anchoring the world to the Intel architecture.

I'd like to see SPARC and ARM take off. At the current rate I doubt SPARC will go anywhere fast, but with Ubuntu's new commitment toward ARM-powered netbooks/laptops, at least ARM has a chance of rising. Either one, though, I'll believe it when I see it.

Edited 2008-11-20 00:08 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Uhhh
by unclefester on Thu 20th Nov 2008 00:58 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Uhhh"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

MS supports AMD64, IA64 and x86 architectures. They also supported PowerPC back in the NT3.x days. They have never locked anyone into any hardware.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Uhhh
by UltraZelda64 on Thu 20th Nov 2008 02:06 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Uhhh"
UltraZelda64 Member since:
2006-12-05

MS supports AMD64, IA64 and x86 architectures. They also supported PowerPC back in the NT3.x days. They have never locked anyone into any hardware.

I have a hard time believing that x86-64 is much more than a 64-bit extension (or update) of x86 before it. Okay, it was designed by AMD instead of Intel, but so what? It's still basically just an extension to the same old architecture. And there's plenty of other architectures besides x86/x86-64 and IA64.

Edited 2008-11-20 02:07 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Uhhh
by proforma on Thu 20th Nov 2008 10:18 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Uhhh"
proforma Member since:
2005-08-27

Microsoft did support other processors earlier on with Windows NT. However, they were never supported properly and programmers did not write for them so they dropped off the map and Windows was later moved to Intel ONLY.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Uhhh
by mxcl on Thu 20th Nov 2008 17:42 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Uhhh"
mxcl Member since:
2008-05-22

Apple don't either. They just won't let you sell their software on other hardware. You're free to install it on whatever you want, if you can.

Anyway, Apple use open stuff all over their stack. Not everywhere, much to our annoyance, but far more so than Microsoft. I can't understand your opinion at all.

Edited 2008-11-20 17:43 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Uhhh
by mightshade on Fri 21st Nov 2008 01:14 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Uhhh"
mightshade Member since:
2008-11-20

You're free to install it on whatever you want, if you can.

Are you sure? What about that clause in the OSX EULA, allowing you to install OSX on Apple computers only? Maybe I'm just misunderstanding your post?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Uhhh
by Phloptical on Thu 20th Nov 2008 02:31 UTC in reply to "Uhhh"
Phloptical Member since:
2006-10-10

I think it's referring to Apple "throwing a strike", so to speak.....as in baseball.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Uhhh
by looncraz on Thu 20th Nov 2008 04:45 UTC in reply to "Uhhh"
looncraz Member since:
2005-07-24

How is this a "strike" for Apple? Isn't this a good thing for them?


Yes and no.

You see, while Psystar was trying to paint Apple as a monopoly, Apple was trying to paint itself to be in a unique market, of which it had the sole right to be involved.

Psystar probably figured that if their case was dismissed, then Apple's claim would also be destroyed, thereby putting Apple into the legal light of a retail OS seller, rather than an exclusive OEM, contract-only reseller.

You see, if Apple sells its software product on the shelf ( as they do ), then there is little ability on their part to limit whom may purchase and utilize that software within the legal limits, outside of some explicit contractual obligation. Transfer of license is perfectly legal. Buying ANY piece of software and reselling ( with or without profit or bundles ) is protected by law - as it should be.

Apple was trying to claim that those laws did not apply to MacOS because it was a component of another product, and not a stand-alone product ( the only way in which Microsoft would allow them to survive, and a dubious legal position if one sells the components separately like Apple ).

So Psystar isn't going to see any money from their counter-suit, which is a win for Apple, but Apple's case has been weakened at its very foundation, a win for Psystar.

Now, this is where most of these lawsuits begin to sway to he with the most funds. Psystar now has little to no chance of having an especially profitable outcome, even if they win. They have to pay the lawyers, whose fees will be enormous.

Psystar must now be able to ensure they have no operating injunctions, and they must remain rather profitable. The publicity from the suit is helpful, and the stigma of a "loss" will have varying effects ( some people will swarm all over Psystar to try and get one of the machines before they are gone - others will prefer to stick with a company with a more certain future ).

It is at this juncture when one of the greatest fundamental flaws in the U.S. legal system is exposed: the little guy can rarely take on the bigger guy and win, even if the little guy is 100% correct, and the judge/jury agrees. At some point, the money for the lawyers runs out, and the little guy settles for some puny settlement offer out of sheer desperation. No easy way to fix this without reverting to socialist ideals ( unpopular, but often the right way to go - with a "democratic" twist ).

Personally, I'd never buy a Psystar machine. But I'd do that LONG before buying an Apple.

BTW, I bought an Apple MacOS X CD and installed it on my computer, which I may sell later, did I do anything wrong? Will I break the law when I sell my machine?

Nope - not a chance, I did everything legal-like - and so has Psystar.

--The loon

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Uhhh
by mightshade on Fri 21st Nov 2008 01:11 UTC in reply to "RE: Uhhh"
mightshade Member since:
2008-11-20

I just have to say this.

Recently, I was digging through a similar thread on an Apple news site. Crawling through 200+ comments, apart from 99% "PSYSTAR GO TO HELL"-like flames I encountered only a minor piece of actual information here and there.
So I must say, your comment was the most well-informed and the most informative on that matter I've read the last few days. Thank you.

Regards

Reply Score: 1

Strike One For Apple
by asupcb on Wed 19th Nov 2008 22:00 UTC
asupcb
Member since:
2005-11-10

I think you are using this phrase incorrectly and it makes the headline confusing.

Jason

Reply Score: 3

RE: Strike One For Apple
by pepa on Thu 20th Nov 2008 16:46 UTC in reply to "Strike One For Apple"
pepa Member since:
2005-07-08

Thom probably had a boxing metaphor in mind: Round one for Apple.

Reply Score: 2

More like bottom of the Ninth and One out
by tyrione on Wed 19th Nov 2008 22:29 UTC
tyrione
Member since:
2005-11-21

Psystar is down to two outs and already behind in the bottom of the ninth.

Reply Score: 2

How much money did they got?
by Nicram on Thu 20th Nov 2008 00:42 UTC
Nicram
Member since:
2006-01-31

This is my only question.

Reply Score: 1

I'm Confused
by darknexus on Thu 20th Nov 2008 01:46 UTC
darknexus
Member since:
2008-07-15

In his 16-page decision Tuesday, Alsup ruled Apple's products don't constitute a market to dominate. As a consequence, Apple then can't be considered a monopolist, Alsup wrote.

Um, I'm missing something here. I don't understand exactly what the judge is trying to say. How do Apple's products not constitute a market to dominate? I usually don't have trouble with legal speak, but can someone put this one in plain old English, please, as I'm lost on this. Note, I'm being serious, none of this "Apple sucks," hate speech. I actually want to understand what this means.

Reply Score: 1

RE: I'm Confused
by tyrione on Thu 20th Nov 2008 02:44 UTC in reply to "I'm Confused"
tyrione Member since:
2005-11-21

There isn't a Mac Operating System Market. Apple doesn't have OEM licensing for Hardware Vendors, ala Microsoft. Apple's Hardware market is not even unique to OS X. It's a member of the overall PC Market where there are multiple Operating System players that can and do run on Apple Hardware.

The fact that OS X is only authorized to run on Apple Hardware is irrelevant to the notion of the term, Monopoly, specifically the simple fact that Apple has roughly 6% of the PC Market completely voids the notion of a Market Monopoly.

Psystar's claim that the Market is the Apple Market falls flat on it's face as there is no Apple Market.

There is the PC Market that Windows dominates. If there were a Windows Market that only Windows ran on all OEM Computer Vendors Microsoft would be even in a greater world of hurt.

Get it?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I'm Confused
by darknexus on Thu 20th Nov 2008 03:33 UTC in reply to "RE: I'm Confused"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Got it, thanks.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: I'm Confused
by looncraz on Thu 20th Nov 2008 05:22 UTC in reply to "RE: I'm Confused"
looncraz Member since:
2005-07-24

...
Psystar's claim that the Market is the Apple Market falls flat on it's face as there is no Apple Market.
...


I agree with your assessment, but I hope you realize that Apple made the claim to an exclusive Apple-only market first, in the opening paragraphs of their legal filing.

Then, Psystar's counter-suit was designed to rip the notion that Apple had some kind of exclusive market, thereby making it immune from the law.

To put it simply:

OEM licensing means nothing whatsoever. Microsoft offers it simply because OEMs demand special deals to save on costs.

Apple's not offering OEM licenses does not preclude the likes of Dell or HP from buying MacOS X at retail, bundling with one of their machines, and then selling that bundle. Not unless they broke the rules within copyright, trademark, or piracy laws.

At all times, legal software, purchased legally, may be resold legally. It can even be pre-configured, reasonable modified, and bundled. This is irregardless of innate, signature-less, licensing ( such an EULA ), at least as the laws are written.

Sadly, U.S. courts are actually not obligated to enforce the law, just to follow them. It is basically up to the judge to decide how to handle it. But, while this is true, judge's also realize that their work will be subject to much peer review, and judgments need to be tightly related to law to help prevent having a verdict overthrown.

Jury's also have this right, though few jurors are aware of this. It is perfectly acceptable for a jury to say that they believe the accused technically broke the law, but that they do not agree to the law itself. Either its validity or merit. This was the plan of the founding fathers, a legal system which would combat abuses of power from the other branches of government.

Which brings me to remind all of one important American truth:

All branches of the U.S. government are meant to be equally empowered, each capable of overruling another in a specified and pre-ordained manner, with only the people being capable of having the final say. Before the "limited democratic" republic was established, the British monarch had final say in the colonies.

The legal system was very similar to ours today, and the "Crown" found that virtually no jury in the colonies would find their neighbor guilty of refusing to pay taxes to the 'tyrant.' So taxes on goods were greatly increased instead, most especially tea - which led to the infamous Boston Tea Party.

I just hope that more Americans pay attention to what all this really means, our politicians certainly don't. They always try to say that the world has changed so much that the ways of our founding fathers are not suitable in our world today, but that is bogus. All they gave us was an outline of how the government was allowed function without renegotiations with the peoples of the various States.

Each State, btw, was free to have its own form of government, merely bound by the federal laws of interstate commerce and conflict resolution, and a singular currency which IS required to be gold and managed by congress and congress alone.

Funny thing though, congress was lazy and decided to hand over control of all moneys to a panel of 10 non-elected bankers, known as the federal reserve ( which ain't federal, its private ).

Oh well, this funny money will fail like all the rest in all of history, and then the basic trading will once again take over, with gold and other especially precious items becoming the currency standard once again.

--The loon, rambling on and on ( sorry 'bout that ).

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: I'm Confused
by adkilla on Thu 20th Nov 2008 07:06 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I'm Confused"
adkilla Member since:
2005-07-07

Very good analysis.

Unfortunately the world is far less ideal than what the founding fathers had envisioned in their time. Greed rules the current day.

-Ad

Edited 2008-11-20 07:07 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: I'm Confused
by Novan_Leon on Thu 20th Nov 2008 19:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: I'm Confused"
Novan_Leon Member since:
2005-12-07

Actually, human weakness and greed was precisely what the founding fathers had mind when they designed the way this country should work. Where things broke is when the federal government began growing it's powers unopposed by the states. In today's society there is way too much power held at the federal level, which acts as the catalyst for the majority of issues that we're dealing with today (including too much money in government).

Reply Score: 1

RE: I'm Confused
by alcibiades on Thu 20th Nov 2008 07:11 UTC in reply to "I'm Confused"
alcibiades Member since:
2005-10-12

tyrione is correct in what he says about the Psystar monopoly claim. A second important point is that the dismissal of this claim does not validate Apple's claim.

The issue is whether Apple can sell its OS at retail and then tell the user, post sale, what to install it on. Whether he does it himself, or hires someone else to do it for him.

Psystar accused Apple of violating anti-trust laws. This is irrelevant to the different question of whether they can impose post sale restraints on use by means of conditions on sale. In most jurisdictions, including the EU, this is almost certainly not possible.

It is not that they have to support or license any sort of installation on non-Apple branded hardware. It is just that they cannot prevent, by conditions of sale, anyone from doing it with the retail copies they make available.

Their problem is simple: either stop selling at retail, or live with this.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: I'm Confused
by mxcl on Thu 20th Nov 2008 17:49 UTC in reply to "RE: I'm Confused"
mxcl Member since:
2008-05-22

Are you sure? I thought it was all about Apple preventing other people from reselling OS X pre-installed on non-Apple hardware.

Which is far more reasonable than what you said.

If Pystar sold some hardware, and a copy of OS X uninstalled, with the idea being that you install it when you get both of them home. Then it would be fine.

I'm sure Apple would still be unhappy, but I can't see how they can prevent that legally.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: I'm Confused
by alcibiades on Fri 21st Nov 2008 15:24 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I'm Confused"
alcibiades Member since:
2005-10-12

Are you sure? I thought it was all about Apple preventing other people from reselling OS X pre-installed on non-Apple hardware.

Which is far more reasonable than what you said.


No, its the same thing. If I have the right to install the software on a bit of hardware, I have the right to pay Psystar or Freds Computer Shack to do it for me.

As for reselling goods he has bought at retail, Fred needs no-one's permission to do this. Not with Windows, not with Office, not with Photoshop, not with a lawnmower, not with anything. Not with OSX either. It is a total mystery why some people think you need Apple's permission to resell a copy of OSX that they made freely available for sale at retail. Of course you do not. Any more than if you go into Barnes and Noble today, buy anything in the whole store, including software, and sell it to the first person you meet in the mall. OF COURSE you do not need Apple's or MS's or anyone else's permission.

Can you imagine the police going around every thrift shop and car boot sale in the country asking everyone to produce written permission from the original manufacturer to sell the stuff second hand????

So what we got here is a combination of two perfectly legal activities, one to resell a copy legally bought at retail, and two is to perform a legal service on behalf of the person you sell it to.

Reply Score: 2

apple will never be a monopoly
by pixel8r on Thu 20th Nov 2008 03:40 UTC
pixel8r
Member since:
2007-08-11

I personally believe we will never see Apple become a monopoly until they support generic x86 hardware.

Think about it, if Apple did get popular enough, then there may well be valid lawsuits over their platform.

But even then, I cant see people being happy with only being able to buy hardware from one manufacturer, in order to run their programs. Most people dont care that much about what OS they use, just what programs they can use and what they can do with them.

Apple doesn't offer the freedom that even Microsoft does, and I think this works against them in the PC market.

Personally, I find Microsoft's products a little restrictive and expensive, but yet I still own some of them. Apple, I find even more restrictive and I refuse to buy their products on principle. There are always cheaper alternatives that do what I need just as well.

Reply Score: 1

whats next?
by TechGeek on Thu 20th Nov 2008 03:45 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

I can't wait to see the outcome of this case. I really am up in the air about how it will turn out. I dont think Apple can win on the grounds of copyright infringement. A recent court case decided that anyone can sell used software. (makers of autocad lost I believe). Also, I dont think trademark violations are occurring either. That would be like Ford suing me if I were selling a used Ford truck. I am allowed to advertise it for what it is. I think this is all going to come down to the EULA and whether or not its enforceable.

Reply Score: 4