“Apple Computer won its courtroom battle against the Beatles on Monday when a judge ruled the company’s iTunes Music Store did not infringe on the trademark of Apple Corps, which represents the band’s interests,” Reuters reports. “Apple Corps — owned by Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, John Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono and the estate of George Harrison — has fought several courtroom battles with Apple Computer over their competing fruit-shaped logos. A 1991 out-of-court settlement, which included a $26 million payment by Apple Computer, set out areas in which each party would have exclusive use of their respective logos.

“‘I find no breach of the trademark agreement has been demonstrated,’ Mr Justice Mann said in his judgment on Monday. ‘The action therefore fails. I think the use of the apple logo is a fair and reasonable use of the mark in connection with the service,’ Mann said, referring to a central argument of Apple Corps over the use of the Apple Computer logo within the iTunes Music Store,” Reuters reports. “Apple Corps said it would appeal the decision. Apple Computer was awarded court costs.”

“The Beatles are high-profile holdouts from Internet music services like iTunes, but it emerged during the trial that Apple Corps is preparing the band’s catalog to be sold online for the first time, according to a submission by Neil Aspinall, managing director of Apple Corps and a former Beatles road manager. ‘We are glad to put this disagreement behind us,’ Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs said. ‘We have always loved the Beatles, and hopefully we can now work together to get them on the iTunes Music Store.’ A spokeswoman for Apple Corps said that no decision had been made on when the Beatles’ songs would be available to purchase online.”

Full article here.

“Apple Corps must pay its rival’s legal bill, estimated at £2m, but the judge refused an interim payment of £1.5m pending further hearings,” The Beeb reports. “Apple Corps manager Neil Aspinall said: “With great respect to the trial judge, we consider he has reached the wrong conclusion. ‘We felt that during the course of the trial we clearly demonstrated just how extensively Apple Computer had broken the agreement. We will accordingly be filing an appeal and putting the case again to the Court of Appeal.'”

Full article here.

“With appeals of this kind generally unsuccessful, however, Apple Corps likely need even more than a little help from its friends if it wants to win next time around,” Parmy Olson writes for Forbes today.

The Times Online has the Apple Corps v Apple Computer judgement in full here.

MacDailyNews Take: Monday morning turning back… Pick up the bags and get in the limousine… Step on the gas and wipe that tear away, one sweet dream came true today.* Can’t wait for the appeal, although you’d think that by now, The Beatles would be smarter to just Let it Be.

[*Can anyone name The Beatles song from whence the quoted lyrics sprang?]

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