Apple sues headphone entrepreneur for claiming to be Beats co-founder

“The story of how Beats Electronics was founded just got more interesting,” Eriq Gardner reports for The Hollywood Reporter. “On Friday, the new Apple subsidiary filed a false advertising and unfair competition lawsuit against Steve Lamar for holding himself out to be a co-founder of the headphones company alongside Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine.”

“Beats, now owned by Apple after a $3 billion acquisition, doesn’t like the fact that Lamar is capitalizing on Beats’ strong reputation with allegedly false and misleading claims about his association,” Gardner reports. “‘Defendants’ claims are false and misleading because Lamar is not a ‘co-founder’ of Beats Electronics, LLC,’ states the complaint. ‘He does not have — nor has he ever had — any ownership interest in the company. Moreover, Jibe Audio [once run by Lamar] was not responsible for the ‘concept, design, manufacturing and distribution’ of Beats’ headphones.'”

Gardner reports, “Beats, represented by David Walsh at Morrison & Foerster, demands Lamar be enjoined from making misleading statements about his role in the company, be ordered to remove statements made on social media sites, issue a public clarifying statement, and be ordered to pay the Apple subsidiary profits and treble damages.”

Read more in the full article here.

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


  1. This is so common in the music industry, where hanger on’s tangentially involved in production or promotion later claim much greater involvement for they own selfish promotion. However, you are now dealing with the most valued company in the world who pays a great deal to maintain its brand equity and simply won’t put up with this nonsense.

    1. “hangers-on” is the plural:


      n., pl. hang•ers-on.
      an unwanted person who remains in a place or with a group, another person, etc., in the hope of personal gain.

      1. I prefer Tribble Damages, that multiplies by itself… It’s a penalty that keeps on giving, all year long.

        Treble damages, in law, is a term that indicates that a statute permits a court to triple the amount of the actual/compensatory damages to be awarded to a prevailing plaintiff. “Treble” simply means “triple” in British English. The phrase “treble damages” survived the change from “treble” to “triple” in American English. Treble damages are a multiple of, and not an addition to, actual damages. Thus, where a person received an award of $100 for an injury, a court applying treble damages would raise the award to $300.[1] Some statutes mandate awards of treble damages for all violations. Examples of statutes with mandatory treble damages provisions are the Clayton Antitrust Act[2] and RICO.[3] Some statutes allow for an award of treble damages only if there is a showing that the violation was willful. For example, “up to three times the amount found or assessed” may be awarded by a court in the United States for willful patent infringement.[4] The idea behind the creation of such damages is that they will encourage citizens to sue for violations that are harmful to society in general.[5]

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.