Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 5th Sep 2012 10:43 UTC
Legal "This is in the believe it or not category, but the foreman in the Apple v Samsung trial is still talking about the verdict and why the jurors did what they did. And the more he talks, the worse it gets for that verdict. Gizmodo asked him to sit today for live questions. And believe it or not, he did it. And when asked if the jury was ever asking whether or not a patent should have issued, he claims that they never did because that wasn't their role and the judge told them to assume the patents issued properly and not to second guess that determination. That is so wrong it's not even just wrong. The verdict form and the jury instructions specifically asked them to address that very question." Together with the earlier reports, it's quite clear by now this jury messed up completely. If a device with a keyboard can be found to infringe iPhone design patents, then everything can. This verdict should be flushed down the crapper.
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RE[5]: Incompetent, but ...
by feydun on Thu 6th Sep 2012 03:01 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Incompetent, but ..."
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Based on the fact that you disagree with Thom's opinion on the verdict, you claim that he is biased and speculate that he would have the opposite opinion if everything were the same but "Samsung" and "Apple" were interchanged. You are clearly not trolling, but maybe you should consider the possibility that you are the one having an emotional reaction, and the resulting absence of logic in your post renders it unconvincing.

I realise that I put that harshly - I'm sorry, I'm just trying to explain why it makes you sound biased.
In your previous post, which I think pretty much echoes how the jury *felt* about the case, you make it clear that like many people, you think the justice system is about justice. It's not, of course. In any true democracy, like the USA, the justice system is about the *law*. This is a good thing. Justice, like Good and Beauty and so on is important and meaningful and utterly abusable. The law is just a machine - usually works, sometimes broken but ultimately fixable.

It doesn't matter if, as you say, Samsung blatantly copied Apple. It would of course be unjust and unfair to Apple that Samsung literally steal part of the market from them, but it's legally irrelevant if Apple's corresponding patents are invalid in the first place. In that case, the law doesn't care about nonexistent infringement and inapplicable damages.

From the jury's point of view it's confusing that they are directed to a presumption of validity (and indeed lack both the expertise and the resources to systematically and conclusively establish either validity or invalidity) but are then asked to give an opinion on the validity of the patents as part of their evaluation of the infringement and damages.

An argument could be made that a degree of self-auditing should be introduced in the jury system, whereby for example the foreman would have to fill in a brief description of how each task was addressed, which would at least prevent them from skimming past the boring bits when they'd already decided apple == pinch-to-zoom => samsung copied everything, therefore they should be punished. I'm not necessarily claiming that they would be wrong to *feel* that way. I'm claiming that they would then not be doing their job, as they would be deciding what is fair, not how the law applies to the claims.

Thus, I do not think Thom is some kind of Samsung-loving Apple-hater, but that he is concerned by existing flaws in procedure and weaknesses in a system which has not kept up with technology - a system meant to encourage innovation which does no such thing. I believe it will be better for everyone if this is fixed, and therefore it will eventually be fixed, but it will be slow because companies that have learnt to game the system would prefer to maintain the status quo. It isn't surprising that many geeks are ahead of the curve in this.

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