03
Nov
judgejudythumb

Let this be a lesson to you all: if a judge orders you to issue a statement saying X, it might not be a good idea to say "Well, that guy said X, but everyone else in the world thinks he's an idiot, so it doesn't really matter." That's roughly what Apple did when it posted this court-ordered concession on its website. When the UK judge came back and said, "Um, no, try that again," the Cupertino company was forced to issue a new version, sans snark. Here it is in full:

Samsung / Apple UK judgment

On 9 July 2012 the High Court of Justice of England and Wales ruled that Samsung Electronic(UK) Limited’s Galaxy Tablet Computers, namely the Galaxy Tab 10.1, Tab 8.9 and Tab 7.7 do notinfringe Apple’s Community registered design No. 0000181607-0001. A copy of the full judgment of
the High Court is available from www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Patents/2012/1882.html.

That Judgment has effect throughout the European Union and was upheld by the Court of Appeal of England and Wales on 18 October 2012. A copy of the Court of Appeal’s judgment is available from www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2012/1339.html. There is no injunction in respect of the Community registered design in force anywhere in Europe.

This version lacks any mention of the German or US cases that the previous version claimed contradicted the UK court's opinion. Unsurprisingly, the judge was not pleased with Apple insinuating to the world that his judgment was obviously incorrect. In addition to the dedicated page with the above statement, the company also placed the following on the front page of its website:

On 25 October 2012, Apple Inc. published a statement on its UK website in relation to Samsung's Galaxy tablet computers.That statement was inaccurate and did not comply with the order of the Court of Appeal of England and Wales.The correct statement is at Samsung/Apple UK judgement.

Obviously, this isn't something that Apple was too keen on putting on its front page. It's also worth pointing out that the company clearly complied with the 48-hour redo mandate, indicating the requested two weeks to comply due to "technical difficulties" was the delaying tactic the judge thought it was.

The notice will remain on Apple's UK site for a period of one month, presumably starting now that the revised version has been posted. This is pared down by the appeals court after the initial ruling which stated the declaration would need to be visible for a six month time period.

In the meantime, we'll leave you to the comments to discuss just how deserved this punishment is. We're sure at least a couple of you have opinions.

Source: Apple

Thanks, Debadatta

Eric Ravenscraft
Eric is a snarky technophile with a taste for the unusual. When he's not obsessing about Android, you can usually find him obsessing about movies, psychology, or the perfect energy drink. Eric weaves his own special blend of snark, satire, and comedy into all his articles.

  • asdasdasdas

    see Apple?! wasn't that difficult.

  • http://iamandroid.co/profile/rocktoonz Rocktoonz

    I would like to have seen the judge also mandate that the updated statement contain an apology to the UK courts for their contempt in the previous statement. I little humility for Apple would go a long way.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1559995258 Alec Smith

    This is a huge ego hit for apple. Ha but yeah the first statement they made would have pissed me off as a judge. BUT Apple couldn't be too pleased either since they received a punishment that the UK courts never dish out. I'd bet money the judge didn't like apple to start off with or else he would have made apple pay cash like every other court case instead of embarrass themselves.

  • TylerChappell

    Yet another douchebag move by a company that thinks it own's everyone else and can do whatever it wants. I am so glad that Apple is going to lose any relevancy it has left thanks to the new Nexus 10 and Windows 8/RT devices.

  • Neopanther

    The pleasure I got from reading this cannot be expressed without profanity...lol.

  • Bariman43

    "Teacher, Sammy copied me!" "No I didn't!" "Yes he did!" "No I DIDN'T!" "YES YOU DID!!"

    "APPLE, THAT'S ENOUGH! I want to see you after school with a written apology"

    Schoolchildren. This whole bout of utter useless nonsense has turned our tech companies are now schoolchildren. I am ashamed to be a tech fan.

    • ssj4Gogeta

      They should be ashamed of being tech companies.

      • Bariman43

        The shame is so great I can feel it myself.

      • PINJ

        Really? So Let Them NOT Be Tech Companies And Let Us Live Back In The Nokia Stone Ages. YOU Decide.

  • tylerwatt12

    you forgot the part where they used JavaScript to make it so, you still have to scroll down to the bottom of the page no matter what screen resolution you have. essentially tucking it away, hiding it from the mass of Apple.co.uk-goers. they also made the iPad mini larger, pushing it down the screen.

    http://i.imgur.com/KH555.jpg

    • Morality

      Also the fact, that I heard UK addresses now redirect to apple.com instead of apple.co.uk, which you have to enter manually.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

      I was actually just researching this and, while it's true the UK site automatically expands to fill even a full-screened browser window, so do many other international sites. Change your nationality to France, Italy, Australia, or Japan, for example, and you'll find the same effect.

      While it does result in the legal announcement being pushed beneath the fold, it's not easy to say for sure that Apple did this specifically to hide the statement.

      • Thomas

        The fact that it was only implemented on european sites, plus the timing of it all is just too coincidental for my taste.

        At the very least it should require a formal enquiry, even though i suspect that Apple could argue that it was due to the new iPad Mini that they decided to make the redesign, still it is a question that should be asked.

        Either way, it may not actually contradict their order, so i think for the future that the courts/judges should word their decisions more specifically to be something like this:

        1. Full-sized ad before entering the site, with a non-legalese wording.
        2. Big notice on the top area of the site (Like this: http://i.imgur.com/4rgUg.png ) again with a non-legalese wording on the actual page.

        Given that these notices are meant to restore reputation it may have tarnished i really don't understand how anyone can get away with a notice noone (But those looking for it) will read.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

          "The fact that it was only implemented on european sites"

          Australia and Japan are not in Europe. As I stated, this is far more than just European countries. I'll admit that the timing is suspect, but given the broad rollout of this design, it's a little presumptuous to say it was done just for this order. Possible, but not definitive.

          As for forcing the apology to be placed above Apple's own products, that's likely to be far more damaging to Apple than is either right nor the courts are allowed to do. Yes, this is being done to help Samsung's reputation, but that space on Apple's site is reserved for only the most prominent advertising the company aims to do, and that's not just true for Apple. That's all companies. There's nothing more valuable than the very first thing people see when they visit your site. Forcing it to be information on a competitor is overkill.

          I agree it's a little shady, and Apple's certainly not above slight trickery to get out of jams (as evidenced by, among other things, the previous version of this apology), but short of being ordered to not redesign the site to hide it (which, to be fair, the court tried to do, requiring a certain size font, etc.), there's not much more the court can do. In any case, this apology is hitting the news so it's going to get plenty of attention.

          • Thomas

            Ah i had not seen it was in Japan and Australia as well.

            But yeah i agree, there's probably not more that can legally be done regardless of whether or not they did it on purpose.

          • http://www.facebook.com/vivecuervo7 Isaac Dedini

            I think a better solution would be to allow Samsung to show/promote a court-written (non-legalese) statement in their advertisements or web pages etc. Then Apple might have started thinking about how much they can afford to piss other companies off.

      • Freak4Dell

        I can't find a recent (but before today) archive of the page. I looked at archive.org, and the latest one they have is June 8th, 2011. That page does not contain the script for resizing, at least not the one used today. That's no proof, of course, though. I don't think there's any way to prove it unless we find the source before and after. Or I guess we could wait until the month is over and see if they remove the script.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

          To be honest, even if it was done because of this order, I imagine they'd leave it because, really, it's not a bad design. it keeps what's on the page simple and clean no matter what size monitor or browser you're on, while still leaving all the legal stuff visible below the fold. I agree the timing is suspect, but more than likely this still complies with the court order.

          • Freak4Dell

            True that.

        • Royal2000H

          Archive.org has really been slacking lately

          • Freak4Dell

            Indeed. I don't use the site that much, but it definitely has been lackluster this year.

          • Royal2000H

            Google already crawls and caches tons of pages, they should just hold a history and be a way better archive.

  • Thomas

    Apple also created a userscript 3 days after the verdict that pushes the statement below the browser window:

    http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4736985

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/ron-amadeo/ Ron Amadeo

    The court screwed this up so badly. The idea was to reverse some of the damage done to Samsung's brand right? Well this doesn't accomplish that. Writing the thing in legalese destroys the impact and the common customer isn't going to understand it.

    "Samsung did not infringe Apple’s Community registered design No. 0000181607-0001" doesn't mean anything to anyone. You needed to put "SAMSUNG DID NOT COPY THE IPAD" in big capital letters somewhere, that's how you communicate with the public. I don't know if this whole circus was necessary or not, but they really screwed up the execution.

    • http://www.facebook.com/andresdroid Andres Schmois

      Then again, the court told Apple to do something, Apple did something stupid. The court told Apple to fix it, Apple did something stupid. I think this is much better than the court forcing a statement on them. Maybe the judge saw it coming and did it on purpose, or maybe being too forceful might give Apple an opportunity to fight back. You are right though that Samsung's damage wasn't reversed (could it anyways?) but I think making Apple look bad is much better in my book.

  • Morality

    Check the actual apology out, when displayed with normal resolutions, the ipad mini commercial scales itself so it doesnt show the act cleverly hidden right behind a scroll. No normal resolution will show the so-called "apology" at the front page unzoomed.

    You can try this out yourself by zooming in and out at apple.com/uk, and seeing the ad scale just the right amount.

  • ThatGuy.

    Yea, and guess what. Apple resized their website so people won't see the little link below. It's on Reddit. http://www.reddit.com/r/funny/comments/12kce9/apple_resizes_website_so_that_the_samsung_apology/

    This is the screenshot.http://i.imgur.com/KH555.jpg

    Shame, so shame.

  • http://twitter.com/Stoutlagger Rob

    While I completely agree that the Samsung Galaxy Tab doesn't infringe on Apple's design, court ordered apologies are complete bull. Just like the judge that ordered a teen to delete her facebook page after typing LOL about her dui case, this judge has also overstepped his authority. People, and companies, have the right to choose whether or not they should apologize for being complete dickheads. So Apple sues Samsung and loses, end of story. Apple shouldn't need to kiss their ass afterwards.

    IMO, Apple does need to quit with the patent trolling though. This shit is getting old.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

      The reason for this decision is because that, regardless of the outcome of the case, the damage to Samsung's reputation is going to be done either way. If Apple has "the right to choose whether or not they should apologize for being dickheads," they will obviously not do so. Meanwhile, they will also not choose to quit patent trolling. Even if they lose every court case (which they haven't), the belief that Samsung is nothing but an Apple copycat will continue to proliferate. This hurts Samsung's brand and its sales, which puts Apple at an advantage. A market advantage acquired via legal maneuvering. This apology is a way to prevent Apple from using the courts to defeat Samsung in the marketplace even if it loses.

      And make no mistake, that's exactly what's happening here. It's the reason Apple seeks injunctions on devices instead of damages. Apple isn't interested in monetary compensation for relatively minor patents that make up a tiny percentage of a device's value. They're looking for technicalities they can use to block sale of devices entirely. Unfortunately, the patent system is broken such that if an otherwise innovative device uses a bounce back animation that another company does, it can legally be barred from sale. The whole system is already stacked in favor of Apple. This seems like a relatively minor method of balance.

    • PINJ

      That Doesn't Make Any Sense Whatsoever. Its A Legal Battle Of Mass Proportions. The Losers Impact On The Industry Is A Fierce One. Now Imagine You Being The Person Wrongfully Blamed And Convicted For A Crime You Didn't Commit; Skeevy Newsreporters (Eh Except AP Of Course) Spreading False Rumors And Intentionally Misworded Statements. Not Only Potential Tech Customers But The General Public Is Aware Of Your Seeming Wrongdoing. Now Would You Want To Leave The Decision To Apologize With The Person/Company That Was Unscrupulous Enough To Make A Claim Like That In The First Place Or With The Court?

  • thekafka

    it is literally insane that we live in a world that will allow a company to copyright a rectangle, as if the only practical way to create a device is something intellectually unique. Pay no heed to the fact that Apple has copied every aspect of every device previously created and use their marketing machine to convince the world they are innovators. Its nonsense! Hp made a tablet in 2003 that was a rectangle, and had similar specs to the ipad...do you see HP suing Apple for copyright infringement? NO, because they aren't literally go glib as to think they own the concept.

    • PINJ

      Agree With The First Part, Disagree With The Second. If HP Had Put Patents All Over Their Rectangle, Are You Seriously Claiming (SERIOUSLY) That HP Would Turn The Other Cheek To That Potential Of Wealth That They Would Get?

  • PhilNelwyn

    If the judge isn't able to force Apple to do it right, do it yourself British citizens: print big stickers saying "Samsung didn't copy the iPad" and put it on Apple Stores' window.

    • adi19956

      Good idea, I'm going to Southampton tomorrow t'any rate, will give it a shot!

      • Charles Thompson III

        btw, "t'any" isn't a real word, as there is no valid contraction for the word "at".

        • adi19956

          Oh dear I've offended someone. Apologies, my liege.

          • Daniel Wiggins

            You really should be careful exploring around the internet like that... :P

  • Freak4Dell

    I kind of want to go to law school now, so maybe one day I can dish out sweet justice like this.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1645382940 Красимир Стефанов

    So... when Apple wins some case, it's everywhere - "Samsung is stealing from Apple!", but when it's the other way around it's "Samsung did not infringe Apple’s Community registered design No. 0000181607-0001 bla bla".

  • master94

    I was hoping the Judge would force Apple to put a Samsung GS3 ad on its home page. Imagine going to Apple UK and the first thing you see is, The next Big thing is Here ad.

  • Nathan J

    There's no justice in forcing Apple to concede on their website that Samsung did nothing wrong. The average consumer knows this. The average consumer doesn't care that two products look the same. The average consumer probably can't tell a Ford truck from a Chevy truck without seeing the badge. Or Dodge. Or a Toyota from Nissan, or a a Honda car from a Toyota car. Cars and trucks mostly look the same, and they do the same thing. If you can drive a Ford, you can drive a Chevy or a Honda. They all have their gas and brake pedals in the same place, they all have their gear shifter in the center or on the steering column, they all basically do turn signals and wipers the same, headlights are in one of two places, and so on and so forth. So too then, do they expect smartphones, whether it's Android or iOS or BlackBerry, or Apple or Motorola or HTC or Samsung or Nokia, to all do basically the same things.

    Want justice? Make Apple publicly admit that since Android has come out, they cannot openly compete, and need to resort to courtroom trickery in order to level the playing field. Open source operating software provided for free means Android devices can and do spend more money on big 16:9 HD screens, quad-core processors, 1-2GB of RAM, top-end video graphics, etc. Apple just figured out how to do a 16:9 screen and it's not even 720p. It's what, 11**x6**? And it's what, a dual core? Triple core? Or is it a quad? I don't think it's a quad, but I'm not sure. Anyway, it's their big thing and it's already behind the curve. Apple used to be exciting. It was like "I don't want that... but damn Apple raised the bar... what will Android do next?" We haven't had that for years. iPhone 4, 4S, and 5 have all come out in third place or lower.

    And Samsung did copy Apple. No point in denying it anymore. They did, Apple had the documents to prove it, and Samsung couldn't get them tossed out, like Apple did with the proof that Samsung didn't copy the hardware. (But we all saw that, so we know the truth.) I saw the presentation where Samsung basically told their people to copy the iPhone. But there are certain things a phone must do to basically function, and it's BS that we're somehow allowing one company to buy the rights to this "idea" and lock out competitors. If it was a company like Samsung making top-end products for fair prices, and didn't want a company like Apple making an underpowered joke of a knockoff, putting a hipster badge on it, and selling it for twice as much... okay that would be understandable. But for Apple to be making these devices with specs 2-3 years into the past and trying to shut out cutting-edge tech, and trying to limit advancement based on their profits? No, we should not stand for that. I just can't wait for a judge who understands the tech and understands the industry to tell Apple to try being competitive and try making a better device. If they can't do that, I don't think they deserve to keep being bailed out. Samsung and the others shouldn't have to pay for their failed business practices. Let them take some responsibility for bad business.

    • vikings football

      what document said to copy the iphone/pad? from what I read, that document u are referring to said to 'make something like an iphone/pad'

    • Zaeem Shahzad

      tl;dr

    • meliorist

      "I saw the presentation where Samsung basically told their people to copy the iPhone." I do not believe you saw any such presentation. If you think you did, please quote, verbatim, the EXACT WORDS from the presentation where you think Samsung bosses told their staff to copy the iPhone, and provide a link to the source.

      • Nathan J

        Explain to me why I should put forth the effort. I was downvoted by rabid fanboys for voicing an unpopular opinion with some strong basis in fact. Obviously 8 commenters were so upset with the facts they decided to shoot the messenger. So find it yourself.

        I'll tell you what I do remember about it, though. It was a huge presentation (well over 50 pages... maybe over 100) that picked apart Samsung's UI, and it had tips on how to "improve". In nearly all of the comments below each slide, it basically said "iOS does it this way. Do it the same way." This is not a secret document. It's been posted on tech blogs. AP may have even posted it. If not, find some iOS fans, they probably hold it as their holy grail. I dunno. But it's out there.

        • meliorist

          I read the same document, and it does make lots of comparisons to the iPhone, but it never tells the designers to copy the iPhone or iOS. If you look at the features discussed in that document, and at the differences between the Galaxy S and the Galaxy S II, you will see that the designers followed the advice given in the memo, and in so doing they made Touchwiz more differentiated from, not more similar to, the iPhone.

          In fact, the only place where the document mentions copying, it says "Remove a feeling that the iPhone's menu icons are copied by differentiating design." (That's a verbatim quote, you can check it.) In other words, there's an explicit instruction to make the design more different, presumably because the management thought it looked too similar to the iPhone interface.

          • Nathan J

            I don't think we read the same document, then. The one I read was very obviously a smoking gun. This is the one that the courts saw, and I agree with the judgment of the court as it relates to Samsung copying the software, just not the amount, because I don't believe anybody who wanted an iPhone bought a Samsung phone instead, unless they were swayed by the lower price or a universal standard like micro USB for charging or something like that.

          • meliorist

            You're still arguing, but you still are unable to corroborate your point. All you have is vague memories of subjective impressions of something you probably didn't read properly and that Apple's lawyers primed you to interpret in a particular way.
            Until you can corroborate your point with VERBATIM quotes, I'm not interested in hearing any more of this.
            As for people only buying Samsung on price, that might possibly have been true once upon a time, but it is certainly not true any more. Samsung is a powerful brand in its own right, and is being imitated by rivals. (You can even get knock-off Samsungs in China.)

          • Nathan J

            Well, this is all based on stuff that happened "once upon a time". We're talking about the original Samsung Galaxy S line. I had one (not a flagship model) and it was terribad. It was actually not powerful enough to run Samsung's custom UI, it was pretty much AOSP. Samsung Acclaim. Look it up and have a good laugh.

            I wasn't primed to interpret anything by Apple's lawyers. I wasn't a juror on that case, if that's what you're thinking. I'm just a guy who saw the document and agreed with Apple. So did a court of people we can probably assume we were reasonable, so the onus is on you to prove that they decided wrongly as you are disputing an established fact. So post the link you saw. As for your interest level, your actions contradict your words. You want to convince me of something, but what you don't realize is, I don't care about brand loyalty or bias. Only facts. I don't like iOS but Apple was clearly right in this case.

    • PINJ

      One Thing I STRONGLY DISAGREE With. You OBVIOUSLY Don't Know Much About Leading Technology If You Think Apple HASNT Put Enough Effort In Their iPhones To Make Them Beat The Competion In The Overall Benchmarks And Come Out On Top In Every Generation Since The iPhone 3GS. Do Your Research Kiddo.

      • PINJ

        That Obviously Includes The Horrific Processor In The ipad 4(Maybe Its iPad 3 I Dunno With Those Morons Anymore)

    • aiden9

      Those "documents" were misquotes/cherry picked parts spread about by media more into headlines than real facts.

      http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20121004050859829

      ""Be people with creativity", he told them. It's *others* who told him to make something like the iPhone, but he tells the designers instead to be creative. Muster up more strength, he says, and make something so easy to use it's like flowing water. He definitely didn't tell them to copy the iPhone, just to strive for quality."

      "Could it be any clearer? He told them to make the screen larger, larger than the iPhone, and he says he has confidence in the design of their products, the hardware. But they could do better and should think about the future. Apple had changed the marketplace, raised the level of perfection, and they had to acknowledge that they needed to up their own game to compete.

      Do you see him telling them at all anywhere to copy the iPhone? Me neither. Instead I see this:

      Designers rightly must make their own designs with conviction and confidence; do not strive to do designs to please me (the president); instead make designs with faces that are creative and diverse."

  • stinkyfeet

    who cares

  • Scott

    OK cool...now WHERES THE NEXUS 4 REVIEW RON?!?!

    =D

  • Justin Swanson

    Did anyone else notice that this is at the very bottom of the webpage? I don't really care that much, just thought it was funny :P

  • Ricky

    Where is that mob ANONYMOUS when you need them??
    They should hack ALL apple pages and put up an image of the Nexus 7 in that hand.
    With a statement like:
    "Not the "coolest" tablet... NO. Cool in school grew up to be the janitor... Brains grew up to run the world."
    Also put a chat bubble over Jonathan Ive's head saying "my lsd just kicked in"

  • http://www.facebook.com/jeansebastien.beaulieu.334 Jean-Sébastien Beaulieu

    Seeing all the fanboy comments here, I had to comment something:

    You all seem to forget one thing : it isn't only an Apple thing to sue others over patent infringement. Samsung does the same, over as-much ridiculous patents. Nobody here seems to care...

    ALL major mobile manufacturors will have to calm the **** down over this, sooner or later. These kinds of patents shouldn't even be approved in the first time.

    I get that this website is an Android-fanatics reunion, but it is not a reason to stop being objective. Samsung does have a part in this conflict. They won in UK, but they lost in US. Whatever, these trials are a goddamned joke.