Apple ordered to pay ‘Asteroid’ bloggers $700,000 in legal costs

“Bloggers and online journalists have completed their final victory lap in a protracted fight against iPod maker Apple Inc. Earlier this month, a Santa Clara County Court ordered Apple to pay the legal fees associated with the defense of subpoenas issued to online journalists (and other related entities) in response to online reports about a confidential audio/video product — code-named ‘Asteroid’ — under development at the Cupertino-based company. The ‘Asteroid’ product was never released, but Apple claimed the news reports violated California state trade secret law and that the journalists were not entitled to First Amendment protections. However, following an appeals decision last year that strongly sided with the journalists, the Court ordered Apple to pay all legal costs associated with the defense, including a 2.2 times multiplier of the actual fees,” MacNN reports.

MacNN reports, “In total, Apple was ordered to pay nearly $700,000 — a small amount for a company that reported nearly $1 billion in profit in the December quarter, but a large moral victory for bloggers, journalists and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) which helped defend against Apple’s subpoenas.”

Much more in MacNN’s full article here.

Related articles:
Apple discontinues legal effort to expose ‘Asteroid’ leaker – July 12, 2006
The Great Apple Asteroid Hoax – June 09, 2006
Judge uses Wikipedia as source to blast Apple in ‘Asteroid’ case – May 30, 2006
Apple loses ‘Asteroid’ appeal in California’s 6th District Court – May 26, 2006
Apple questioned in ‘Asteroid’ trade secrets case – April 20, 2006
San Jose court to hear Apple ‘Asteriod’ case, weigh in on bloggers’ rights – April 17, 2006
Apple wins initial ruling in ‘Asteroid’ case, can pursue publishers’ confidential sources – March 04, 2005
Apple suspends legal action against three journalists – February 17, 2005
Stop the presses! Apple sues ThinkSecret over ‘Headless Mac,’ ‘iWork,’ and other rumors – January 05, 2005
Apple Computer sues three for posting Mac OS X ‘Tiger’ on Web – December 21, 2004
Apple sues anonymous people over leak of unreleased Apple product info on Web – December 17, 2004
RUMOR: Apple preps analog to FireWire audio device for GarageBand users – November 23, 2004


  1. ” F- the execs at Apple for trying to litigate the very people that are the source of interest for their products.”

    Crack must be cheap in your neighborhood. The interest comes from the great products Apple makes. No one that runs an Apple-themed blog or rumor site generates that interest, they only report on it. They don’t design anything Apple makes. They ahve no hand in its creation. Quit trying to give too much credit to those guys. Half the time they are full of crap anyway.

    Apple is like any other company in that it disdains and fights against litigation when brought against it. That’s standard operating procedure for ANY company and its not going to change. Stop placing them into some sort of corporate-rule defying category.

    “F- the execs at Apple for trying to litigate the very tool that they have used on occasion — the media leak. The ship that leaks from the top is sometimes a necessity, so don’t do unto others…”

    What is this courtesy class? Dont do unto others? The big difference is if they leak the info its part of their media build up and branding. The big difference being that THEY are the owners of the intellectual property that is being leaked and guess what that makes it OK.

    Get down off your high horse and learn something about the way companies are run.

  2. Further more, i’ve always found it funny that the people that runs these rumor sites claim to be big Apple fans and yet they think nothing of revealing trade secrets that damage Apple’s ability to keep ahead of the innovation curve.

    I’ve always found that interesting.

  3. Apple was on the wrong side of this one, and i am very happy they lost. Good to see the system does sometimes work the way it is supposed to.

    @ alansky: In this case, the journalists acquired the information legally. They were not under NDA. If Apple wants to keep their secrets secret, it is Apple’s responsibility to guard them, no one else’s.

  4. “Funny, no one seems to care what “secret” projects MS is working on.”

    They have secret projects???

    I thought they screamed and shouted about future products at least year before launch.

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