“A ripple was felt through the Mac community early this morning, as one of its oldest and best-known rumor sites announced that it would be closing its doors. ThinkSecret announced that it had settled a three-year-old lawsuit with Apple, which resulted in the site’s tipsters to remain anonymous, apparently at the expense of the site’s continued operations,” Jacqui Cheng reports for Ars Technica.
“ThinkSecret has a long history of reporting on rumors, successfully predicting the introduction of the Mac mini as well as iWork in 2005. That prompted a lawsuit from Apple in an attempt to identify the leakers and to stop the site from continuing to publish what Apple called ‘trade secrets,'” Cheng reports.
“Apple argued that Ciarelli solicited for inside tips on his site, which the company argued was a violation of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act,” Cheng reports. “The reaction to ThinkSecret’s closing has been mixed. Although not everyone has been fond of the site’s ‘me too’ reporting as of late, the precedent set by Ciarelli’s settlement is very troubling. With ThinkSecret down, who will Apple go after next?”
Cheng reports, “But the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Kurt Opsahl has a different perspective on why things went down the way they did, and what it means for the community. ‘I’m very happy to see that no sources were disclosed,’ Opsahl told Ars… ‘Apple was faced with losing the case and having to pay attorney’s fees,’ explained Opsahl, which is likely part of the reason why it decided to settle instead of continuing to pursue it. As for Ciarelli, ‘We understand that Nick is very satisfied with the outcome of the case,’ Opsahl said. ‘We hope that Apple learns a lesson over this.'”
More in the full article here.