Apple denied attempt to keep info secret in Psystar case

“Apple Inc. failed to convince a judge that information about its software in court filings that’s already available on the Internet and in print is ‘trade secrets’ that should remain sealed from public view,” Karen Gullo reports for Bloomberg.

“Apple, the maker of the iPad and iPhone, had asked U.S. District Judge William Alsup in San Francisco to seal documents containing information about its Mac OS X operating system and computer products, including Apple’s technological protection measure, system integrity checks and thermal management techniques, according to court documents,” Gullo reports. “The Cupertino, California-based company didn’t deny that the information was already public or argue that it was misappropriated, Alsup said in his ruling today. Apple maintained that because it wasn’t the source of the information and had never confirmed it, trade secret protection still exists, Alsup said. ‘Apple cannot have this court seal information merely to avoid confirmation that the publicly available sources got it right,’ Alsup said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Never-ending.

Related articles:
Would-be Mac cloner Psystar may escalate fight with Apple to Supreme Court – October 3, 2011
Judge hammers final nail in Psystar’s coffin, awards Apple key win against Psystar over Mac clones – September 29, 2011
Psystar files legal reply brief in response to Apple – July 29, 2010
Apple v. Psystar: Psystar files opening brief in appeal – May 18, 2010
Psystar files appeal against Apple win – January 18, 2010
Erstwhile ‘Mac cloner’ Psystar halts sales of Rebel EFI Mac cloning tool, will peddle Linux PCs – December 28, 2009
Lawyer: Erstwhile ‘Mac cloner’ Psystar not shutting down – December 20, 2009
Erstwhile ‘Mac cloner’ Psystar pulls plug; ‘shutting things down immediately’ – December 18, 2009
Apple wins permanent injunction against would-be ‘Mac cloner’ Psystar – December 15, 2009
With authorized Mac clones dead, Apple looks to kill off Psystar’s ‘Rebel EFI’ – December 03, 2009
BusinessWeek’s Burrows: Psystar shouldn’t have messed with Apple – December 02, 2009
Psystar agrees to pay Apple $2.7 million settlement over unauthorized Mac cloning – December 01, 2009
Apple, Psystar reach partial settlement to cease sales of unauthorized Mac clones – December 01, 2009
Apple moves to kill second Psystar lawsuit – November 30, 2009
Failure to launch: Would-be ‘Mac cloner’ Psystar sold just 768 PCs with Apple’s Mac OS X installed – November 26, 2009
Apple seeks to grind illegal Mac cloner Psystar into fine silicon dust – November 25, 2009


    1. Yeah. Kinda amusing how thoroughly he disappeared once it became clear Psystar had lost the fight. That more than anything else confirmed that he was nothing more than a troll.


  1. And this is why Apple has not been fast about suing other companies for trade secret, patent, or other IP violations. Once you go to court, everything is public record. It is very, very difficult to have any filings be sealed and kept secret. And beyond that, there was an Apple case just recently where the documents were supposed to be sealed but the judge’s clerks accidentally published them not under seal, and they were available for a few hours.

    Once the cat’s out of the bag, you can’t put it back in.

    1. Nah. This stuff is obsolete. If I’m remembering right, Psystar was copying Leopard. The most a competitor can gain from this information is a clue as to how Apple does things now.


  2. They are so harsh because they are liberal, communist judges, that hate free enterprise.

    ‘Apple cannot have this court seal information merely to avoid confirmation that the publicly available sources got it right,’ Alsup said.”.

    Uh… Yes you can,

      1. @truth – When I read the LoydX post, it seems to me more like he’s being sarcastic.

        “liberal, communist judges, that hate free enterprise” — Riiight. He’s not that stupid. He’s being funny.

        1. You’re right about that: Get rid of the “just say no” party hacks like Boner, Cantor, McConnell and the rest of those-called jobs creators so that the middle class can get back on its feet and spend. That’s free enterprise, not excessive tax breaks for the ultra rich. Gee, so the Koch brothers can buy a couple of new 60′ yachts this year. My hemorrhoids bleed for them.

  3. So…

    If I accurately guess the exact blend that makes Coke (aka Coca-Cola), Coke.
    Then market it as the New Cola, a Coke equivalent. — that is the same as Coke but at 1/3 the price.
    Then I publish the full formula on the web.
    Then Coke sues me.
    Then Coke proves in its court filings that my formula is the exact one they use and legally puts me out of business for duplicating their formula.
    That the courts can say the Coca-Cola company must publish those records and confirm to the world exactly what is in their marquee product?

    Do the courts WANT everyone to copy everything at will?

    Do the courts WANT 10,000 little Psystars out there?

    Do the courts WANT to make the Hackintosh community as big as the official Macintosh community?

    1. You cannot patent a recipe, but you can protect the presentation of that product, such as the shape of the Coke bottle and associated logo and color scheme, or the layout and photos presenting a recipe in a cookbook. But you could create your own cookbook of your own design and include that recipe. That happens quite frequently.

      To the best of my knowledge, Coke could not sue you for correctly guessing the formula and then spreading that information around.

      1. Actually, my example of a known “trade secret” of the formula for Coke is *THE* most widely recognized trade secret there is. While no one has been able to patent a recipe yet, it is conceivable that you could do such a thing as a “Systems and Methods” Patent. These types of patents are definitely allowed. I have over a half dozen “Systems and Methods” patents myself.

        And Coke absolutely could sue you for implementing something that copies their formula. Anyone who thinks that Coke would not sue you for creating then selling a drink that is 100%, absolutely indistinguishable in every possible way from Coke is hopelessly delusional.

    2. I am a long-time Mac user. Personally I think the best time for Apple to license the Mac OS would be right around when Windows 8 is released. Kill Windows once and for all. 🙂

  4. Besides…

    There is firm, legal precedent with the concept of “Neither Confirm, nor Deny.”

    Those of us with U.S. Security Clearances have long been held by this standard. There is A LOT of stuff out there on the ‘net that should not be there. It is controlled under U.S. Secrecy Orders. If anyone asks the persons with the appropriate clearances if that information is correct, the ONLY allowed answer is “No Comment.” Nothing else.

    Just because someone speculates and publishes those speculations (no matter how well or poorly tested) on the ‘net does not mean that Apple must publicly confirm what speculation is correct, or not.

    This judge is just an idiot.

    1. +1
      D*mn straight. Pissed me off that I still have “no comment” because one day I saw what I was working on in a movie.
      Right. There. On. The. Silver. Screen.
      That’s another technique, isn’t it?
      Right. There. In. Plain. View.
      No comment for the rest of us but if you have connections, make a movie and some $$$. Shouldn’t complain, good movie. Which one? “No comment.”

  5. Why Psystar even put the OS on the boxes is beyond me. They could have advertised they sold systems with the exact same hardware as Apple’s for cheaper. Hell, they could have put linux on there for free!

    And to cinch it, they could have put a disclaimer on their advertising that they do not in any way support or condone any method to put OSX on their computers, OSX is the legal and intellectual property of Apple, Inc.

    1. Even worse, Psystar had to hack and modify the OS to get it to work on their machines. That, more than anything else, cooked their goose. If they had been selling an “Apple-compatible”, capable of installing a boxed copy of OS X the customer was responsible for buying, Apple couldn’t have done squat (except maybe go after the customers for OS license violation, but that would be awful PR).


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