Apple CEO Tim Cook: U.S. court system is too slow to adequately protect tech firms’ intellectual property

“In the midst of a larger discussion with U.S. senators on international corporate taxes, Apple CEO Tim Cook took an aside to discuss another area of regulation where the iPhone maker would like to see changes: the United States’ intellectual property protection environment,” Kevin Bostic reports for AppleInsider.

“Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) broke from the larger topic of discussion to talk intellectual property with Cook during Tuesday’s Senate hearing on taxes. Asked by Ayotte about the intellectual property benefits of running a company based in the United States versus those in other countries, Cook responded that, actually, the U.S. system could use improvement,” Bostic reports. “‘I actually think,” Cook said, ‘that we require much more work on IP in this country.'”

Bostic reports, “Cook specifically pointed out the slowness of the U.S. court system, which can take years to resolve or even come to trial. The process, Cook said, is ill-suited to deal with the realities of the technology sector, which can move through several cycles in the time it takes the court system to resolve one case. ‘The U.S. court system is currently structured in such a way,’ Cook said, ‘that it’s currently difficult to get the protections a technology company needs, because the cycle is very long.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Seoul won’t be pleased to hear even mere talk of this. The glacial pace of the court systems in the U.S. and elsewhere a major component of Samsung Electronic’s business plan.

It used to be that the knockoff peddlers of the world would embrace, extend, and extinguish. Now they just steal, stall, and stuff their pockets.


        1. Two sides to that argument.

          Yes, term limits will likely make it easier to replace those who are so deeply embedded in Washington, having amassed colossal war chests of campaign money, that it is almost impossible to get them out.

          On the other hand, when a congressman knows he has only two terms to make the most of it, his highest priority would be to get on the best possible committee, in order to get as much money and perks as possible in the shortest time possible. The existing levels of corruption (in America, it is called lobbying) is nothing compared to what might happen if those in the office know they only have so much time to squeeze as much out of the system as they can.

          There are very, very few people who run for political office because they want to represent people. Vast majority of them do this for reasons of power and money.

          1. “There are very, very few people who run for political office because they want to represent people.”

            Actually, from personal experience dealing with several Representatives and Senators, the majority of them start out wanting to do what is right by their constituents and the U.S. However, I have yet to meet a single one who has been there for over four years that has not succumbed to the “It’s all about the Power.” frame of mind. Some Representatives get through there first term relatively untainted. None make it out of their second term, and no Senators make it out of their first term, without succumbing.

            By they time they’ve been there 4+ years none of them really care about anything but what power they can broker and what power they can accumulate. And I can say this from having known many of them personally — from both sides of the isle.

    1. “It used to be that the knockoff peddlers of the world would embrace, extend, and extinguish. Now they just steal, stall, and stuff their pockets.”

      And with that note from MDN, why would anybody want to fuel the Korean country more than it deserves? Apple had already partnered with them and paid them a handsome price.

      But the greed was strong, not competition greed, find a traitor – Google who provided the key to Samsungs’ plan.. it was far too easy for Samsung to mass market the closest iPhone copy thanks to Google.

      Yes, IP and patents need to be better protected and now. Specially from the countries who innovated the product first.

    2. The problem is the language.

      We all know Samsung stole the thing. We see it, we feel it. But, we can’t write it.

      It is very difficult to “write it”.

      Some patent language is very broad.

      The legal system and those in it cannot be experts on every topic. They’re human and need time to assimilate.

    1. While I, like many, thought that this whole trip to Washington thing was a waste of Tim Cook’s time, it appears that it is in fact a good investment. Granted, the initial reason of the tax investigation was bogus, but the rest of the face time put in by Cook with those in power in Washington may prove to be worthwhile. Apple is the #1 company in the US; this is long overdue. We may not like kowtowing to Washington, but that’s how the game is played, like it or not.

      1. I think it proved that Tim is the right leader for Apple and not to be trifled with. Investors this morning are voting approval of Tim’s leadership yesterday making Congress look disingenuously manipulative and grandstanding. No one is fooled and most of them looked foolish and out of touch. Really McCain, tired of software updates? Like how does software improve without them and why don’t you know that and not looked the fool for having asked the question? You have Tim Cook himself there and that’s the best Apple question you can come up with? Doddering old fools…

  1. Tim Cook has shown himself as a well purposed leader with exemplary manners, a hero on many levels in front of a group of mostly idiotic government employes entrenched in foul business of their own (guided by the lobby militia).

  2. Fawning over Tim Cook’s appearance before the easiest target anywhere is stupid. So he looked good in front of the political theater of a senate hearing. So what? Where we AAPL investors and Apple customers want him to look good is at the head of the table where the CEO sits. He can’t do that and that’s why the value of our investment in the company has plummeted and why it will not recover as long as he sits in that chair.

    So, fawn on if it makes you feel better even if it makes you look like fools to those of us disgusted with his weak leadership, undelivered promises, and hopeless utterances of how everything is just fine.

    1. Don’t be an ass. You bellyache, kvetch, moan, and whine about how he should be doing something for the investors and yet when he does just that, you find a way to turn it into a negative. Tim did a great job in DC. Yes, they may be a comedy/tragedy theater, but those clowns have power to destroy on an order greater than wallstreet, and Tim handed them their asses after eating their lunch in a professional dignified way. Go craw back under your bridge.

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