Sosumi: more on the Beatles’ lawsuit against Apple Computer, Inc.

“The Beatles own a holding company called Apple Corps, Ltd.,


  1. “In 1981 they made him sign something agreeing never to go into the music business in order to keep a name they had trademarked…”

    I have no idea what the original contract’s terms were, but no valid contract can be written that has no end date.

    There are two possibilities:

    1. The end of the contract has been exceeded, and Apple Computers can do as they please. Now that Apple Computers is much more widely known, Apple Corps may be forced to add “Not affiliated with Apple Computers, Inc.” in all of their advertising and labels.
    2. Apple Computers (Steve) feels the potential profit for entering into the music industry makes any fines from an archaic lawsuit over an equally archaic company insignificant.

    Apple Corps, Ltd. would be best served by cooperating with Apple Computers and their innovative digital distribution services. They can fight the tidal wave or they can ride it.

  2. what a crock of stew! who the hell is Apple holdings anymore? what nimrod is going to confuse the Apple record label with Apple computers? if Jobs and company created another music label I could see the conflict, but all this over iTunes and the itms?

    Sir Paul and Mister Ringo- aren’t you rich enough? wake up you insufferable tits and realize that practically NO-ONE remembers your Apple label.

    and those that do remember include Steve Jobs… whom you are suing. morons. i’m a little less excited about the Beatles over this.

  3. Ary- it reminds me of “The Burlington Coat Factory” – a chain that runs discount outlet malls for clothing. They simply place a disclaimer stating that they are not affiliated with Burlington Industries (a fabric mill) and they stay in the clear.

  4. I find it hard to believe that Apple (Computer) failed to anticipate the likely action of Apple (Corps): they’d already had one expensive go-round with them, and if Apple’s legal department didn’t remind His Steveness of the likely consequences of getting into the music biz – i.e. a “let’s have some of your money” lawsuit from Apple (Corps) – then they all ought to be laid off.

    This suggests three possibilities. One is that Apple (Computer) think that the cost of a settlement is likely to be less than the profit to be made from being in music. A second is that they now think they can win, and are eager to get the Beatles and their lawyers off their backs for good. A third is that Steve Jobs overruled his lawyers, and Apple’s legal department are now all beating their heads on their desks and pulling their hair out in handfuls.

    My guess would be #2, but I wonder how they’re going to make this work: while I think Apple could successfully argue that the Beatles’ injunction constitutes unfair restraint of trade, a contract is a contract and the prior court decision is not going to help them in this battle.

  5. I think it’s more Yoko than Ringo, or Sir Paul…

    She was the greedy one. Remember what she did to John’s eldest son… He was given a portion of inheritance, great by itself, but nothing compared to what he was due… and he is not allowed to talk about it.

    Watch, she will use it to stimulate her new book deal or something else.

  6. Where’s the name Apple in, iTune’s, iPod, iTunes music store? The answer is it’s not. Why not buy Apple corp., fire all of its scum sucking lawyers, liquadate the damed thing, and tell the remaining Beatles to screw off, nights of the realm or not. There are lots of companys that use Apple in their name, check the phone book in any large city.

  7. You folks have missed the possibility that Apple Computer has considered the situation and has decided that ther free publicity from being sued by Apple corps and the Beatles wouild greatly outweigh any money they might have to pay the Beatles.

    Simply speaking they consider whatever they might have to pay the Beatles as part of their advertising budget. Count on their legal staff to keep this as high profile and as lengthy a case as they can.

  8. It’s good news, because it is NEWS! This is the kind of news that generates sympathy and good will toward Apple. And while the company prepares to launch it’s Windows version of the product it will compound the user interest in those products. Whatever the costs of the case, more people will know Apple.

  9. Simpathy for Apple Computers, I think not…

    They’ve been sued twice for this crap and still haven’t learned. I hope when the judge rules on this one he takes into account the repetitive breaches in agreement and awards punitive damages.

    Just because Apple makes good products doesn’t mean they should be held above the law. Not to mention, if anyone else pulled these kind of dealings with Apple, Apple’s legal department would be up-in-arms and suing the infringer to the full extent of the law.

  10. The question, “another possibility,” is whether or not they were ever in breach of the Apple Corp’s Apple Music trademark. There are a lot of similar business names in the world, so as long as Apple Computer stops talking about the Apple Music Store, it seems to me that everything should be OK (I am not a lawyer). I don’t know how the previous legal settlements factor into this – perhaps they can be invalidated if Apple’s lawyers are more competent than Apple’s advertisers generally are.

  11. Are all the beatles dead yet? If not, I wish they would hurry up. Nobody, contrary to what the lawyers think, is a big enough idiot to confuse Apple Computers with “Apple Corps” records … and if they did, what would be the monetary damage? That they couldn’t find a beatles song for sale on Apple’s site?

    Apple Records should go after the real culprits who are doing them harm — the file trading networks. I should know — I have almost the entire Beatles collection and I haven’t paid one red cent for any of it.

    God I’m glad I didn’t go to rip-off, I mean law school.

  12. In the US, the Supreme Court has recently ruled that any trademark dilution claims must be proven to have had a negative impact on the plaintiff, or is intented to mislead customers.

    Apple computers can claim that any contract they had was written in a different legal environment, which had a less demanding standard.

  13. I agree, when i misspelled simpathy I intended to say among potential customers. Yes Apple is like a rabid dog in defending its positions against rumor sites etc., and that is unfortunate for us all.

    I think the news is positive for Apple though because it has the ring of unreasonable leagl bindings, against a struggling technologist.

  14. In 50 years, people will go to museums to see what a Mac looked like. The company will have been bought out or have gone out of business. Meantime, the Beatles will continue selling millions of CD’s or whatever is the latest high tech music medium at that time. Apple = Beatles FOREVER.

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