Judge Denise Cote approves 'unusual' settlement offer
Federal court Judge Denise Cote has approved Apple's $450 million e-book suit settlement offer with US states. The agreement, proposed in July, will settle allegations made in 33 states and territories, with $400 million reaching customers affected by the price fixing. The agreements only settles the states' complaints, with the publishers settlements remaining discrete.
Settlement should cover other companies such as Time Warner, Suddenlink
Cisco is said to be preparing to pay a $188 million pre-tax charge to settle a lawsuit brought against it by Rockstar, the Apple-led patent holding firm born out of the remains of Nortel Networks. The company recent mentioned a $188 million payout in an earnings call. The connection to the settlement can be made, as Cisco has asked the judge in the lawsuit to stay litigation because it has signed a "term sheet" with Rockstar.
Second pager-related suit in two months
Apple has been ordered to pay a Texas firm, Mobile Telecommunications Technologies, $23.6 million for illegally using pager patents in its products. A federal jury in Marshall, Texas has ruled that six patents owned by MTel are still valid, and were infringed by products including the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and the AirPort router line. The patents were originally issued in the mid- to late-1990s, and are either recently expired or set to expire soon.
Computer builder 'caught off guard,' believes fallout will affect employees, community
Custom computer builder Velocity Micro is stuck in a legal battle between two computing powerhouses after Samsung lumped the company in with Nvidia over a patent dispute. The Virginia-based company issued an open letter today admitting it is confused by the whole situation, adding that it intends to fight the suit that will drain company resources.
Nvidia responds to benchmark criticism with multi-benchmark graph
Samsung has filed a lawsuit against chip producer Nvidia, accusing it of infringing its patents and faking benchmark results for its processors. Nvidia has since spoken up about the suit, filed last week, claiming Samsung's accusations of benchmark deception is false, by comparing its Tegra K1-powered Shield Tablet against Samsung's Galaxy Note 4 and its Exynos 5433 processor.
Company didn't warn people about obstructions
Apple will have to face a lawsuit charging that it didn't warn people they would lose text messages if they switched away from the iPhone, US District Judge Lucy Koh has ordered. The plaintiff in the case, Adrienne Moore, says that iOS' poor handling of text messages interfered with her contract with Verizon, which she kept after switching from an iPhone 4 to a Samsung Galaxy S5 in April. Koh argues that Moore has the right to show that Apple disrupted the contract and broke California's unfair competition law, and that she doesn't have to claim an "absolute right to receive every text message." The judge has, however, dismissed some claims linked to another state consumer protection law.
Suit alleged HP, Intel colluded to artificially increase benchmarks
A class-action suit alleging that Intel and HP colluded in producing processors and computers with known poor-performing first-generation Pentium 4 chips has reached a settlement. Consumers who bought a new PC with the processor between November 20, 2000 and December 31, 2001 are entitled to a $15 refund after opting into the class.
India's iVoice Enterprises blames Apple for collapse of early phone deal
In a case somewhat similar to the Mexican lawsuit that successfully argued that an earlier "iFone" trademark superseded Apple's mark, a company called iVoice Enterprises is India is challenging Apple's iPhone trademark. The company was at work on a low-cost mobile phone for India that was dubbed the "India phone" or "iFon," but never came to market as partners backed out and the deal collapsed shortly after Apple announced the iPhone in January 2007.
Sonos asks Denon to stop copying its wireless speaker system
Sonos is suing Denon for patent infringement over a set of wireless speakers it released earlier this summer. The Denon Heos range is apparently violating four patents owned by Sonos relating to wireless audio products, prompting Sonos to file a lawsuit in its incorporation state, Delaware, against Denon's parent company D&M Holdings.
Company's desire for secrecy could result in another tangle with the DOJ
This Wednesday, the court handling the bankruptcy proceeding for GT Advanced Technology will hear arguments from Apple that its objections to GT's bankruptcy filing should be sealed so as to protect sensitive information, including product plans, research finds and business dealings. The request could bring the iPhone maker into another dispute with the US Department of Justice, which is acting as the US trustee in the case, and the state of New Hampshire -- both of whom want the filings to be public.
In light of judge's rejection, plaintiffs now believe agreed-upon settlement too low
In a strange turn of events, the plaintiffs in a lawsuit accusing many of Silicon Valley's top tech companies of suppressing wages by engaging in a "gentlemen's agreement" not to poach employees from each other have now said that Judge Lucy Koh, who is hearing the case, should formally reject a previously agreed-to settlement offer. Following Judge Koh's initial rejection of the $324.5 million settlement -- signed off on by the representatives of the plaintiffs and the companies involved -- the plaintiffs have now agreed with the judge that the sum is a bit too low.
Twitter lawsuit accuses FBI, DOJ of First Amendment violations
Twitter has launched a suit against the US government. The lawsuit, filed in the US District Court of Northern California, demands that Twitter's full transparency report about law enforcement requests be published in its entirety, and that restrictions placed on what may be disclosed are illegal under the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Owner 'knowingly and intentionally' ran sham operation, while maintaining it wasn't a scam
A Texas court has found that the operator of Bitcoin Savings and Trust (BTCST) must pay back $40.4 million in profits and interest earned in a Ponzi scheme. The case is the result of lawsuit brought against Trendon Shavers for offering securities through BTCST and personal solicitation without being registered with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
Friend of Snapchat founders accepts settlement of 'mutually agreeable terms'
Snapchat's largest legal issue came to a close today, as the company decided to settle its dispute with Frank Reginald "Reggie" Brown. In a press release announcing the closure of the legal battle, it was said that the settlement would bring an end to the suit that Brown filed, alleging that he originally came up with the idea for a disappearing picture message.
Carrier claims Huawei built its own testing machine based on stolen information, parts
Wireless carrier T-Mobile USA has filed a lawsuit against Huawei, alleging that the Chinese phone manufacturer stole a number of trade secrets relating to the carrier's phone-testing robot. In the suit filed with a federal court on September 2, the company claims that employees of Huawei took pictures of T-Mobile's "Tappy" robot, attempted to steal components, and tried to sneak back into the testing facility in Washington after they were banned.
Suit claims that Apple was damaged in the processes of price fixing with publishers
It seems that the legal issues involving Apple colluding with publishers to allegedly fix the prices on e-books are taking another turn, as an Apple shareholder has filed a lawsuit in California against CEO Tim Cook and several Apple executives and directors. In the filing it's alleged that the parties involved "showed a reckless disregard for their duties" at Apple, therefore causing "significant damage" to the company in the process.
Judge rejects first attempt, suggests slightly higher amount would be 'fair share'
The remaining four tech firms involved in a California lawsuit stemming from a "gentlemen's agreement" to stop poaching each other's employees have headed back to the bargaining table to hammer out another settlement after the first attempt was rejected by the judge in the case. Apple, Google, Adobe and Intel have resumed settlement talks with plaintiffs representing thousands of employees who say the cooperation limited their job opportunities and illegally suppressed wages.
New ruling forces defiant Microsoft to hand over data held overseas
A stay giving Microsoft permission to deny a warrant ordering email release from a user whose data is stored in Ireland has been lifted by Judge Loretta Preska. As a result of the order, issued on August 29, Microsoft has until September 5 to coordinate with the US Department of Justice and inform the court how it will comply with the original court order, demanding Microsoft surrender the data. Microsoft promises to fight the order, and does not intend to hand over the data.
Promised lawsuit outlines complaints, promises made by Oracle over failed system
More than two months after Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber promised legal action against the company contracted to build the state's healthcare marketplace, the State of Oregon has sued Oracle. The Oregon Department of Justice filed a complaint last week with the Circuit Court for the State of Oregon, containing 14 claims for relief, including breach of contract, fraud and offenses under the Oregon Civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
Terms under 'quiet period' until September 30, Adam Carolla crowdfunded defense fund
Big name podcasts may be in the clear for the time being, as Personal Audio and Adam Carolla's Lotzi Digital recently agreed to jointly dismiss a patent lawsuit without prejudice last Friday. The filing, obtained by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), comes after a settlement was reached between the two parties, the details of which have yet to be announced. Both companies are under a "quiet period" until September 30.
Lawsuit launched in Austrian court, points to privacy issues, violation of EU law
Law student Max Schrems has turned from filing complaints against Facebook's Irish subsidiary to filing a European lawsuit against the social media company for privacy violations. Schrems filed a class-action lawsuit against the company, asking people from outside the United States and Canada to join in. At the heart of the matter are violations Schrems and his group, Europe vs. Facebook, believe are against European data privacy laws.
Free games, subscriptions offered as compensation for PSN intrusion
Sony has agreed to a preliminary settlement worth $15 million in a hacking class-action lawsuit in the United States. The agreement, which still requires approval from a judge, will see Sony handing out free games to console owners affected by the April 2011 PlayStation Network hack, which saw the shutdown of the service and Qriocity for several weeks, as well as compromising personal data and credit card information from over 77 million users.
Retail employees complain of violations of break and meal times, final paychecks
While Apple wrestles with a lawsuit alleging an improper "gentleman's agreement" that prevented it and other tech firms from "poaching" their most valuable employees, the company has now been named in another legal action that concerns itself with labor violations for its retail and corporate operations workers. The new lawsuit, granted class certification on Monday, charges Apple with mismanaging and providing inadequate breaks and meal times, as well as being slow on issuing final paychecks.
Suit makes a third attempt at suing tech company over March 2012 policy change
Google's attempt to dismiss a lawsuit that dates back to 2012 failed today, after a California district judge ruled that the search company will have to fight the breach of contract and fraud claims. The first lawsuit was dismissed last December, with the stipulation that any further pursuit would require an amended complaint. The new complaint could have been dismissed "with prejudice" after two previous complaints were dismissed by the judge.
Marty O'Donnell takes settlement in individual suit after Harold Ryan denied benefits
Composer Marty O'Donnell, best known for his work on the Halo video game franchise, settled his individual lawsuit with Bungie President Harold Ryan last week on a judge-approved deal. In the lawsuit against Ryan, which was filed in May, O'Donnell claimed that Bungie owed him unpaid time off and other benefits under company policy, which Ryan denied.
Parking auction app suspends service before lawsuit threat deadline
MonkeyParking has temporarily halted its service in San Francisco, just one day before a deadline set by the City Attorney. The parking app, which allows drivers to sell their spot to others, was sent a cease-and-desist by the city late last month, with City Attorney Dennis Herrera threatening a lawsuit if it did not cease operations before July 11th.
Suit files complaints about wanton, and unauthorized, in-app purchases
According to a US Federal Trade Commission report filed today, Amazon has billed parents and other account holders for millions of dollars in unauthorized in-app charges incurred by children. The FTC's lawsuit seeks a court order requiring refunds for consumers for the unauthorized charges, and permanently banning the company from billing parents and other account holders for in-app charges that have been made without their consent.
Wild game restaurant near DC blames erroneous listing for closure
Long-time Washington DC metro area restaurant The Serbian Crown has sued Google. After experiencing a 75 percent drop in weekend customers, owner Rene Bertagna filed the suit following a discovery that the restaurant's Google Places listing had a grievous error -- it incorrectly stated that the restaurant was closed on Saturday through Monday. The suit alleges that the incorrect information given to customers from the search engine lead to a death spiral of the restaurant, with declining revenue forcing layoffs, which in-turn, drove diners away from poor service and declining food quality.
Deleted accessory listings, counterfeit accusations prompt Amazon seller lawsuit
An accessories retailer has filed a lawsuit against Amazon and Apple, over removed product listing requests and lost sales. Filed last week, Hard 2 Find Accessories claims Amazon took down product listings from its site and suspended its seller's account after a request by Apple, a move which is allegedly costing Hard 2 Find more than $180,000 a month in lost revenues.
Judge rules CCI's 'six strikes' program relevant to porn studio suit
Despite the ostensible goal of the US Center for Copyright Information's (CCI) "six strikes" program being education, US Magistrate Judge Mark Dinsmore has ruled that the center must divulge Copyright Alert System (CAS) warnings. Pornography studio Malibu Media is seeking messages that the CCI sent to one of its many lawsuit targets, and will be used as proof of the woman's alleged copyright violations in court.
Document claims Palmer Luckey invented device in 2010 before contact with ZeniMax
It appears that the battle between Oculus VR and ZeniMax Media may be heating up. In a filing with the United States District Court in Texas today, Oculus defended its position that the company has not stolen any intellectual property. Oculus asked for a jury trial in the filing, while accusing ZeniMax of using an opportunistic ploy to get money out of the company on the back of its success and acquisition by Facebook.
Public parking space resale apps come under fire from San Francisco City Attorney
San Francisco is taking a stance against apps that provide paid street parking services. City Attorney Dennis Herrera has sent a cease-and-desist notice to MonkeyParking, an app which allows drivers to sell their parking space to other motorists, which Herrera believes is an illegal practice that could land participants in parking auctions a fine of $300, and the company itself a fine of $2,500 per violation.
Payout contingent on result of Apple's appeal of original verdict
Attorneys representing some 33 US states and territories along with some consumer groups on Monday filed a document with the court offering to settle the class-action lawsuit against Apple over alleged e-book price-fixing. The filing notes that all parties involved have agreed to the settlement, leaving Judge Denise Cote will little justification to deny it. Specific amounts were not mentioned in the agreement -- and in what could be a brilliant legal move, Apple's payment of anything is contingent on the verdict of the appeals court.
Mexican carriers expected to appeal government ruling to federal court
A Mexican government agency has absolved Apple itself of any wrongdoing in a trademark lawsuit over the name "iPhone," which was brought by a local call center company named "iFone" which had an earlier trademark on the phonetically-identical name. The Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI) has declared that since Apple is not a telecommunications provider, it cannot be sued for trademark confusion; however, Apple's carrier partners in Mexico are liable for monetary fines and civil damages.
Patent licensing includes royalties for 3G, 4G technologies up to 10 year term
A agreement between Samsung and InterDigital has been reached today over wireless patents, saving Samsung from facing a ban on the import of its phones into the United States. Samsung will license patents from InterDigital, bringing an end to the litigation between the two companies. Details on the agreement were outlined in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Both Apple, Samsung file near close of business on Friday
Both Apple and Samsung petitioned Judge Lucy Koh's court late on Friday afternoon, seeking to redress grievances brought about by the jury verdict and various court rulings. Bolstered by its most recent victory in court, Apple has filed for a Samsung product sales embargo for most of the Samsung devices found to be infringing the '172 patent covering user text prediction, the '647 data detectors patent, and the "slide to unlock" '721 patent. Additionally, the company is seeking triple the damages awarded by the jury, as Samsung was found to be willfully infringing on Apple's patents.
Filing claims cheat devalues game, developers commit copyright infringement
An article from Torrentfreak outlines a legal battle between Starcraft II creators Blizzard and a number of unnamed defendants over the creation of a maphack cheat said to alter the online experience. The lawsuit, filed in California federal court, levies three different charges of copyright infringement, trafficking in circumvention devices, breach of contract and interference with contractual relations.
Hagens Berman, consumer rights law firm, files class action
Claims that Google orchestrated events to prevent paying AdSense earnings by shuttering accounts just before payouts were due have escalated into a class-action lawsuit. Hagens Berman, a consumer rights law firm, today filed a national class-action lawsuit against Google, claiming that the search engine is in violation of contracts with users and in violation of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, unjust enrichment, and violation of the California Unfair Competition Law.
David Hyman fired to avoid compensation payments, lawsuit alleges
The founder of MOG, the music subscription service that was to become Beats Music, has sued Beats Electronics over a loss of earnings. David Hyman claims he was fired from the company before he was able to earn shares in the company, with the situation exacerbated by the anticipated acquisition of Beats by Apple for an estimated $3.2 billion.
Feral Interactive's Hitman: Absolution - Elite Edition now available for Mac
Feral Interactive has announced Thursday that its stealth-action game Hitman: Absolution Elite Edition is now available for Mac. Players navigate the game as Agent 47, a genetically-engineered assassin who is on the run from previous employers, and seeks to protect a young girl from the criminal world. The Elite Edition features all previously-released additional content for Hitman Absolution, including "Sniper Challenge," a standalone mission where players use sharp-shooting abilities to execute long-range hits.
Says $324 million offer too low, was not informed of deal meetings
The named class representative in the lawsuit brought against five top tech firms has filed a letter of complaint with the presiding judge in the case, US District Court Judge Lucy Koh, protesting the proposed $324 million settlement on charges of illegal conspiracy to stop the firms poaching each others' employees, thus potentially denying opportunity and capping wages.
Jury begins deliberations a day early as lawyers wrap up
The trial portion of the second Apple-Samsung patent lawsuit is over, with lawyers for both sides giving final closing arguments both offensively and defensively in a case that saw Apple suing Samsung for copying five of its patented inventions, while Samsung countered that Apple had infringed on two patents it bought from others. The jury began deliberations immediately, and will work on the complex jury form assigning guilt and damages from 9:30AM to 4:30PM each day until it arrives at a conclusion.
New ruling complicates trial, may change outcomes
What had started off with all parties thinking it was the final day of testimony turned into a protracted and difficult legal exercise, as US District Court Judge Lucy Koh and attorneys for both sides wrestled with the surprise ruling from the Federal Court of Appeals, which resurrected a previously-dismissed lawsuit between Apple and Motorola that involves one of the patents being fought over in the Apple-Samsung trial.
States, consumer groups may need to wait until first appeal is heard
The Second US Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to hear Apple's emergency request to overturn Judge Denise Cote's latest denial, and could temporarily halt the efforts of multiple state attorneys general and consumer group to launch a class-action lawsuit against Apple for damages related to its alleged price-fixing conspiracy with publishers. Apple has argued that the class-action should be put on hold while it appeals the original decision.
Is the US judiciary serving the people to the best of its ability?
It can be argued that we're always on the cutting edge of technology -- every day there are new advances, and new techniques developed to do legacy tasks some other way. Likewise, hardly a day goes by without a new lawsuit from an entrenched company, claiming that this new way somehow infringes upon, or unfairly penalizes, an old-guard way of doing business. This seems to be the way of things, but as technology marches on, our judicial system doesn't seem to be able to keep in step.
Latest in long string of denials may be appealed to higher court
Once again, US District Court Judge Denise Cote has denied an Apple motion -- this time asking that the court delay the class-action lawsuit brought by 33 states and various consumer groups while Apple appeals her original guilty verdict in the federal case that alleged Apple led a conspiracy to fix e-book prices. The states are hoping to get further damages from Apple, up to a possible $840 million if the judge triples the damages asked for due to a finding of willful guilt.
Suit more than two years after raid on MegaUpload property, Dotcom home
Six US film studios have filed suit against MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. The suit alleges that Dotcom, while running the now-closed Megaupload site, "facilitated, encouraged and profited" from a business model promoting piracy and paying bounties to users that had popular content.
Suit alleges shareholders were mislead about company future intentions
HP has agreed to dole out $57 million in response to a legal challenge, accusing the company's previous executives of defrauding shareholders. The claim arose when HP changed corporate direction towards services and away from hardware, and ditched the WebOS platform with abandonment of the TouchPad tablet after less than two months availability.
Relatively minor suit could set the stage for patent law's future
For the first time in over three decades, the US Supreme Court is hearing significant arguments on whether "computer-implemented inventions," otherwise known as software, can be patented. The debate will center around what qualifies for a patent, centering on a debate about a computer system used to handle financial transactions, evaluating risks of default. Despite the suit itself being relatively small, the ruling will set precent for patent law for decades to come.
Claims Apple products shown in video would be 'prejudicial'
Ahead of its second patent battle with Apple in a case set to open on Monday, Samsung is objecting to a US government video intended to instruct jurors on how patents are granted. The video, which has been updated since the first Apple-Samsung trial, now shows some Apple products -- leading Samsung attorneys to claim showing it would be "highly prejudicial," as it would leave jurors with the idea that Apple products are innovative enough to be patentable.