Imagine if criminal trials were treated the same as patent trials

“My feelings on Apple’s litigious nature are mixed. On the one hand, Apple has a right – perhaps even a duty to its shareholders – to defend its intellectual property,” TheMacAdvocate writes. “egal protection is theoretically one of the most important barriers between Apple and the army of knock-offs willing to clone their innovations.”

“On the other hand, the practical limits of what patent litigation has accomplished for Apple has been negligible. Tens of thousands of billable hours have yielded only minor victories for Apple, and none of them have been in this country,” TheMacAdvocate writes. “I attribute this to equal parts volume and systematic apathy. Apple has the most control over the volume, but the effectiveness of the system leaves a lot to be desired.”

TheMacAdvocate writes, “Take the most recent example from Apple’s case against Samsung in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, presided over by the Honorable Judge Lucy Koh. Koh has been riding the parties to “streamline their claims” if they want to have their scheduled July 30 day in court… Imagine if this happened in criminal proceedings. ‘The defendant is accused of 12 counts of murder, but that’s a onerous number of charges for a jury to consider. Mr. DA, get with the accused’s defense counsel and see if you can pare those counts back to something more reasonable – whatever that is. And be quick about it or I’ll have to postpone the trial. Until then, the accused has posted bail, so he’s free to go…'”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “FinneasMax” for the heads up.]

18 Comments

    1. Criminal trials ALWAYS winnow down the charges to make the case more streamline. There is very little in the legal system that is about justice. Much of it is about vengeance or expediency.

    1. Google create this mess. They gave away Apples crown jewels and the cornerstones of Apples entire profits for what? What exactly did Google gain? They will never recover the sunk costs from development, and purchasing Mororolla the money losing handset maker has-been.

      What they lost is incalculable. Any hope of a future synergy with Apple.

      1. What google gain? Life. Without Android, nobody will search with Google anymore. Because if you search restaurant you will use Yelp. If you need to buy car, you have Craiglist, etc.

  1. Actually that’s essentially what happens with a serial murderer. Only a select few murders are chosen to go to trial with. (Of course if they fail, the others haven’t been permanently taken off the table).

  2. Imagine if
         Pundits were required to have their brains engaged before punting
         Interweb posters were required to have their brains engaged before posting
    What a wonderful world it would be…

  3. Or, we can tell a bank robber that he’s free to keep robbing banks while we hold a pre-hearing to the hearing to determine if what he’s doing is illegal.

    1. – and if we eventually determine that what the bank robber is doing is illegal, we’ll tell him he’ll have to give some of the money back . . . unless he files for an appeal.

  4. There is no patent police. You have to sue or you lose your intellectual property. Same thing with trademarks and copyrights. If someone breaks into your house and steals something, you call the police and they take it from there. If someone steals your intellectual property, you have to sue.

    Apple isn’t being particularly litigious. Others are being particularly larcenous. Apple is constrained to sue.

    1. My point isn’t that Apple is being litigious; it’s that the courts are failing as an effective venue for Apple to stop the theft of its property.

      I find the notion that a judge has to repeatedly direct counsel to jointly “whittle their claims” out of consideration for the jury’s “capacity” rather galling when Apple has by far the stronger claims. Samsung’s counterclaims are little more than defensive posturing.

      It’s been over a year since Apple filed its suit. If Apple and Samsung can’t come to an “acceptable” number of claims, it stands to wait another year. All the while Samsung is turning a buck by ripping off Apple’s IP. It may be the system we’re stuck with, but it sucks.

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