Friday, September 01, 2006

Apple Choosing An Interesting Direction Concerning Litigation

As reported by MacMinute:

Report: Apple settles iTunes patent case

A story on Macworld UK today notes that Apple has settled an iTunes-related lawsuit which claimed the company stole the application's design from another party. "David Contois, owner of Contois Music and Technology, claimed that he demonstrated digital jukebox software at a tradeshow a decade ago, notes the report. "He filed a lawsuit in June 2005 stating: 'Apple has copied the invention. Apple's infringement has been and continues to be willful.'" The story goes on to note: "He wanted damages and fees, and also wanted Apple to be barred from distributing iTunes software. Apple filed a counterclaim in response to Conois' actions, but the case was amicably concluded in an undisclosed settlement in a US court yesterday, according to a local report.

Interesting choices Apple is making lately to just settle instead of pursue litigation. Personally I'm all for it. I think it's better for parties to mediate and settle. It also allows the defendant to see motivation behind a suit. An entity that will not settle is usually indicative of malicious or vindictive motif. I'm not sure how stockholders are going to like the "profits to less protraction" money exchange though.

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