PDA

View Full Version : Apple Wins Patent Dispute Against Mirror Worlds After U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Case




MacRumors
Jun 24, 2013, 10:40 AM
http://images.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/2013/06/24/apple-wins-patent-dispute-against-mirror-worlds-after-u-s-supreme-court-refuses-to-hear-case/)


Back in 2008, Mirror Worlds LLC accused Apple of patent infringement for its Cover Flow, Spotlight, and Time Machine technologies. While the initial jury ruled against (http://www.macrumors.com/2010/10/04/apple-hit-with-625-million-judgment-in-patent-suit-over-cover-flow-spotlight-time-machine/) Apple and levied a fine of $625.5 million, a later appeal in federal court saw the ruling reversed (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/04/04/apple-wins-reversal-of-625-million-patent-judgement-over-cover-flow-spotlight-and-time-machine/).

Following further appeal by Mirror Worlds, the dispute made it to the Supreme Court, which today left the federal judgement in place after refusing to hear the case, reports (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-24/apple-win-in-mirror-worlds-case-left-intact-by-high-court.html) Bloomberg.
http://images.macrumors.com/article-new/2013/06/spotlight.pngApple Inc. (AAPL)'s victory in a patent-infringement case was left intact as the U.S. Supreme Court rebuffed a Texas company's effort to revive a $208.5 million verdict against the computer maker.

The high court declined to hear a case in which closely held Mirror Worlds LLC said an appeals court erred in ruling that Apple didn't infringe a software patent for a way to index and file documents. Mirror Worlds was co-founded by Yale University computer-science Professor David Gelernter.With the Supreme Court declining to hear the case, Apple's victory against Mirror Worlds will stand and the company will not be required to pay the $625 million fine.

Article Link: Apple Wins Patent Dispute Against Mirror Worlds After U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Case (http://www.macrumors.com/2013/06/24/apple-wins-patent-dispute-against-mirror-worlds-after-u-s-supreme-court-refuses-to-hear-case/)



SJism23
Jun 24, 2013, 10:44 AM
Sucks to be that guy... Unless, of course, his lawsuit was complete BS. I don't know.

litmag01
Jun 24, 2013, 10:53 AM
Wow poor guy! Disabled by the Unibomber, failed company, now this...

madsci954
Jun 24, 2013, 10:53 AM
I guess the Supreme Court is as tired of these Apple lawsuits as we are.

Plutonius
Jun 24, 2013, 11:09 AM
I guess the Supreme Court is as tired of these Apple lawsuits as we are.

Actually, the Supreme Court doesn't rule on many of the cases that it receives.

scbn
Jun 24, 2013, 11:24 AM
There are lots of cases that the Supreme Court doesn't bother to hear. Most patent cases are just wastes of money.

JGRE
Jun 24, 2013, 11:37 AM
Mirror Worlds Technologies, Inc. was a company based in New Haven, Connecticut, which created software using ideas from the book Mirror Worlds: or the Day Software Puts the Universe in a Shoebox...How It Will Happen and What It Will Mean (1992) by Yale professor David Gelernter, who helped found the company with Eric Freeman and served as chief scientist. Gelernter believed that computers can free users from being filing clerks by organizing their data. The company's main product, Scopeware, was released in March 2001 and attempted to organize a user's files into time-based "streams" and make such data more easily accessible across networks and a variety of devices. The company saw few sales, and announced it would "cease operations effective May 15, 2004".

Although they might have actually invented something, there now nothing more than a Patent Troll.

BC2009
Jun 24, 2013, 12:03 PM
This is great. The $600M+ damages was ridiculous. That is in the same neighborhood as Samsung was fined for completely and blatantly ripping off Apple's technology to build the Galaxy S and Galaxy S2.

This actually reduces those damages to zero.

Makosuke
Jun 24, 2013, 12:34 PM
It's a bit sketchy that it took him almost two years to get around to suing Apple (leaving aside that Apple bought Cover Flow from another company, so he would have had to ignore that company, as well), but at least he sued more quickly than most patent trolls and did, originally, invent something.

Still, at this point is Mirror Worlds doing anything other than trolling with some good ideas of the past?

oneMadRssn
Jun 24, 2013, 01:00 PM
Although they might have actually invented something, there now nothing more than Patent Troll.

You must have a very broad definition of patent troll. I thought the idea of a patent troll was someone who purchased patents only to use them in litigation. I'm pretty sure that an inventor of the technology cannot, per se, be a patent troll. Otherwise, all Universities are patent trolls for example.

Amazing Iceman
Jun 24, 2013, 01:11 PM
It's a bit sketchy that it took him almost two years to get around to suing Apple (leaving aside that Apple bought Cover Flow from another company, so he would have had to ignore that company, as well), but at least he sued more quickly than most patent trolls and did, originally, invent something.

Still, at this point is Mirror Worlds doing anything other than trolling with some good ideas of the past?

They can't be considered Patent Trolls, as they actually invented and produced something with their invention. The fact that it didn't succeed doesn't mean their invention was bad. It simply didn't stick at that time. There are so many factors that could influence a great patent to succeed or fail, regardless of how great it is.

In their case, it could have been the GUI, the cost, the DB backend, disaster recovery, etc. Who knows... there are so many things to consider.

I certainly hope the Supreme Court had a very good reason for dismissing the case.

JCox
Jun 24, 2013, 01:53 PM
495,631 patent lawsuits to go...

dashcs
Jun 24, 2013, 02:13 PM
They can't be considered Patent Trolls, as they actually invented and produced something with their invention.

Their "patent" was on the how documents get displayed on the screen.
They released a product in 2001 that organize files in a timeline fashion and discounting in 2004.
That was "it" from them...


When a "company" doesn't even have a website in the year 2013.They are not a company..
They are patent trolls.

The "inventor" doesn't even own his patents.
BTW Network-1 company(Patent Troll) purchased all of Mirror Worlds patents...for 3 million dollars,lol

iSee
Jun 24, 2013, 02:27 PM
You must have a very broad definition of patent troll. I thought the idea of a patent troll was someone who purchased patents only to use them in litigation. I'm pretty sure that an inventor of the technology cannot, per se, be a patent troll. Otherwise, all Universities are patent trolls for example.

That's pretty much the common definition of patent troll.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patent_troll
(Since that company doesn't seem to produce anything other than patent law suits.)

donutbagel
Jun 24, 2013, 02:43 PM
removed

Makosuke
Jun 24, 2013, 02:58 PM
They can't be considered Patent Trolls, as they actually invented and produced something with their invention.That's somewhat debatable. A lot of patent trolls work with IP that was originally used for something, but has been sitting on the shelf for years gathering dust until a company produces something profitable enough, and similar enough, to warrant a shakedown.

In this case, the patent in question has been sold not once, but twice, so it's not exactly some kindly professor getting gypped out of his retirement funds, either (he got $210K for it, and whoever bought it last paid $5M).

Further, the $600M was at the time the fourth-largest patent award in US history--on the 3D representation of Cover Flow, Time Machine, and Spotlight searches, none of which are exactly central or mission-critical features. That was rather ridiculous as an award right from the start.

JGRE
Jun 24, 2013, 03:27 PM
You must have a very broad definition of patent troll. I thought the idea of a patent troll was someone who purchased patents only to use them in litigation. I'm pretty sure that an inventor of the technology cannot, per se, be a patent troll. Otherwise, all Universities are patent trolls for example.

Well, they are not making any use of the patent themselves, they are only trying getting some (very much) money out of it by annoying others. In this respect they are no different from a patent troll.

tbrinkma
Jun 24, 2013, 03:46 PM
They can't be considered Patent Trolls, as they actually invented and produced something with their invention. The fact that it didn't succeed doesn't mean their invention was bad. It simply didn't stick at that time. There are so many factors that could influence a great patent to succeed or fail, regardless of how great it is.

In their case, it could have been the GUI, the cost, the DB backend, disaster recovery, etc. Who knows... there are so many things to consider.

I certainly hope the Supreme Court had a very good reason for dismissing the case.

With the sheer volume of cases that appeal to the Supreme Court each year (thousands), they only take those which have a very good reason for them to hear. This generally means that only cases which have had multiple district appeals courts produce differing results are heard by the Supreme Court, though there are exceptions.

numlock
Jun 24, 2013, 05:11 PM
That's somewhat debatable. A lot of patent trolls work with IP that was originally used for something, but has been sitting on the shelf for years gathering dust until a company produces something profitable enough, and similar enough, to warrant a shakedown.

In this case, the patent in question has been sold not once, but twice, so it's not exactly some kindly professor getting gypped out of his retirement funds, either (he got $210K for it, and whoever bought it last paid $5M).

Further, the $600M was at the time the fourth-largest patent award in US history--on the 3D representation of Cover Flow, Time Machine, and Spotlight searches, none of which are exactly central or mission-critical features. That was rather ridiculous as an award right from the start.

wait a minute. all three are features that apple hyped quite a lot and were both the key additions and highlights (at least for the masses) to their respective os versions

you cant rewrite history there.

further more what exactly does "central or mission-critical" even mean? we are still talking about an os that most people use for facebook, spreadsheeting and porn right and not nasa?

i also recall that when coverflow first popped up by a third party developer (who apple later bought or hired. innovation at its best) that mirror world was referenced as the ones who thought of first brought out this idea

MagnusVonMagnum
Jun 24, 2013, 05:22 PM
I have no interest one way or another in the result here, but HOW it happens does irritate me. Frankly, I think the whole US Court system is a load of horse manure. You think you won a case, but NO.... someone overturns it...and overturns it again and again and again and again.... WTF!?!? In criminal cases where you've won your innocence, that's called DOUBLE JEOPARDY and it's illegal (as it should be). I can understand appeals the other way around since we've proven jury trials get it wrong more often than anyone should be comfortable with, but I don't see why civil cases should be allowed to just flip-flop for years and years and years (I realize only one flip-flop is mentioned here, but I've seen cases where it happens multiple times).

It's like WHY EVEN BOTHER to have lower courts when what they say doesn't mean jack and will just get appealed and appealed and appealed? It just wastes time and money. It also shows that apparently judges at various levels are seemingly incompetent since someone else just overturns it. And even WHEN the Supreme Court WILL hear a case, how many of those are voted 5/4 or 4/5??? And THAT determines people or companies' fates? It's a TOTAL CROCK.

If they can't get some kind of actual consensus about something, then it should be 100% legal every time (i.e. the idea in criminal cases that if there's ANY reasonable doubt what-so-ever, then they should go free). I don't see why civil cases should be any different and I don't see how you can be found not guilty in a criminal case and then found guilty in a civil one (e.g. OJ Simpson trial). THAT is an even bigger travesty. It 100% contradicts the previous trial. That should also be considered double jeopardy since you can't be guilty in a civil case of murder and simultaneously not guilty in a criminal case by pure LOGIC alone. Either you did it or you didn't. There's no "BOTH" except in a movie with time travel paradoxes.

oneMadRssn
Jun 24, 2013, 05:47 PM
Well, they are not making any use of the patent themselves, they are only trying getting some (very much) money out of it by annoying others. In this respect they are no different from a patent troll.

That's pretty much the common definition of patent troll.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patent_troll
(Since that company doesn't seem to produce anything other than patent law suits.)

For full disclosure, I'm a student striving to become a patent attorney. I'm not at all pro patent trolls; there are some companies out there which do not benefit society or technology at all and are only out for shakedowns. However, it cannot be considered a bad thing for anyone to assert their patents if they are doing it rightfully.

In this case, it sounds like Mirror Worlds was wrong to bring the suit. Still, it shouldn't be assumed default every patent case is brought by patent trolls.

I have no interest one way or another in the result here, but HOW it happens does irritate me. Frankly, I think the whole US Court system is a load of horse manure. You think you won a case, but NO.... someone overturns it...and overturns it again and again and again and again.... WTF!?!? In criminal cases where you've won your innocence, that's called DOUBLE JEOPARDY and it's illegal (as it should be). I can understand appeals the other way around since we've proven jury trials get it wrong more often than anyone should be comfortable with, but I don't see why civil cases should be allowed to just flip-flop for years and years and years (I realize only one flip-flop is mentioned here, but I've seen cases where it happens multiple times).

It's like WHY EVEN BOTHER to have lower courts when what they say doesn't mean jack and will just get appealed and appealed and appealed? It just wastes time and money. It also shows that apparently judges at various levels are seemingly incompetent since someone else just overturns it. And even WHEN the Supreme Court WILL hear a case, how many of those are voted 5/4 or 4/5??? And THAT determines people or companies' fates? It's a TOTAL CROCK.

If they can't get some kind of actual consensus about something, then it should be 100% legal every time (i.e. the idea in criminal cases that if there's ANY reasonable doubt what-so-ever, then they should go free). I don't see why civil cases should be any different and I don't see how you can be found not guilty in a criminal case and then found guilty in a civil one (e.g. OJ Simpson trial). THAT is an even bigger travesty. It 100% contradicts the previous trial. That should also be considered double jeopardy since you can't be guilty in a civil case of murder and simultaneously not guilty in a criminal case by pure LOGIC alone. Either you did it or you didn't. There's no "BOTH" except in a movie with time travel paradoxes.

Wow... where do I start? Lets try the difference between criminal and civil court. In criminal court, the government is accusing someone, and they stand to face a punishment which harms their liberty in some way (their freedom or their purse usually). To make it difficult, we make it hard for the government to do that and give them a really high hurdle. In civil court, private parties accuse eachother, and they stand to just lose some money. When only money is involved, the standard doesn't have to be as high, and it varies depending on specifics.

OJ wasn't found guilty or anything in civil court, he was found liable for a death. Murder (criminal) and wrongful death (civil) are two very very different things. Wrongful death can be simply negligent (for example, you spilled some oil in your house that you didn't clean up, and then a guest slipped and fell and died.) For wrongful death, the liable person must repay someone, usually the familly, for the wrong. Murder is the highest form of homicide, it's only for someone who is really super culpable and morally reprehensible. For murder, we take away the guilty person's freedom for a long time usually. (not commenting on the OJ case specifically, he was totally guilty, we all know it). So as an example, in OJs case, the government didn't reach the hurdle to take away his freedom for doing a super morally reprehensible thing. The victim's familly did reach the lower hurdle of holding his responsible for the cost they suffered.

Appeals aren't retrials. Appeals happen when the lower court judge got it wrong. Sometimes appeals are sent back to the lower court with instructions to fix one aspect of the case. For example, a case can have many questions to answer, and only one of those questions is sent back to answer again. Once something has been decided on the merrits, it's done. Just like in criminal court, it cannot be decided again. When you see a case go back and forth up and down the appeals process many times, it usually means it was a very complex case with lots of questions dependent on eachother. If A is yes, then B? If A is no, then C? if C is yes, then D? etc. Once A is answered, and affirmed on appeal (or appeal denied), then A cannot be asked again. If A is appealed and reveres, then the court can make them go do B or C again because the answer to A changes what B and C were asking.

tl;dr: You're irritated because you don't understand what the courts do.

Makosuke
Jun 24, 2013, 06:39 PM
wait a minute. all three are features that apple hyped quite a lot and were both the key additions and highlights (at least for the masses) to their respective os versions

you cant rewrite history there.Time Machine and Spotlight were big-name features, of course. The interface of those features were nice decorative touches, and in the former case got shown off in the Keynote, but hardly integral to the function of either, nor worth $400M.

Perhaps you aren't clear on what this patent covered and that's what's causing your disagreement with me on that count? It didn't cover the technology of Time Machine and Spotlight, it covered the methods used to display information on a computer display screen. That is, it covered the three-dimensional display of a series of documents.

That's why it applied to Cover Flow (a horizontal view of a bunch of cover images of "albums"), Time Machine (a depth view of a bunch of windows), and Spotlight (the exact same thing as Cover Flow, but with documents). Yes, the 3D view was a novel way of presenting the restore screen for Time Machine, and Apple certainly hyped it, but Time Machine would work just as well had they used a different means of displaying the information you can retrieve from its backup system--the real novelty of it is the extreme ease of use and fairly good automatic versioning it does.

Spotlight is even more of a stretch--I don't even know anybody who uses the Cover Flow view in the Finder, and despite this victory, I believe it's considered uninteresting enough that Apple has removed it from Mavericks entirely. Again, $200M is a lot for a minor interface touch in the UI of the Finder.

Cover Flow itself at least shows up on millions of iPods, iPhones, and iTunes installations, so you can argue the law of large numbers even if it isn't a particularly important feature to any of those products (except maybe iTunes, although even there it's just one view mode of many).

charlituna
Jun 24, 2013, 06:46 PM
There are lots of cases that the Supreme Court doesn't bother to hear. Most patent cases are just wastes of money.

Generally they only hear issues of a failure to correctly apply law, not the actual facts.

So it would need something like using a law/case that had been overturned by a later one or claiming this case has precedent incorrectly. And then they would just send it back to the court that screwed it up.

numlock
Jun 24, 2013, 06:52 PM
Time Machine and Spotlight were big-name features, of course. The interface of those features were nice decorative touches, and in the former case got shown off in the Keynote, but hardly integral to the function of either, nor worth $400M.

Perhaps you aren't clear on what this patent covered and that's what's causing your disagreement with me on that count? It didn't cover the technology of Time Machine and Spotlight, it covered the methods used to display information on a computer display screen. That is, it covered the three-dimensional display of a series of documents.

That's why it applied to Cover Flow (a horizontal view of a bunch of cover images of "albums"), Time Machine (a depth view of a bunch of windows), and Spotlight (the exact same thing as Cover Flow, but with documents). Yes, the 3D view was a novel way of presenting the restore screen for Time Machine, and Apple certainly hyped it, but Time Machine would work just as well had they used a different means of displaying the information you can retrieve from its backup system--the real novelty of it is the extreme ease of use and fairly good automatic versioning it does.

Spotlight is even more of a stretch--I don't even know anybody who uses the Cover Flow view in the Finder, and despite this victory, I believe it's considered uninteresting enough that Apple has removed it from Mavericks entirely. Again, $200M is a lot for a minor interface touch in the UI of the Finder.

Cover Flow itself at least shows up on millions of iPods, iPhones, and iTunes installations, so you can argue the law of large numbers even if it isn't a particularly important feature to any of those products (except maybe iTunes, although even there it's just one view mode of many).

nowhere did i mention the patent or the merits of what just happened or the previous ruling although i must admit i did find the lack of coverage of the previous ruling surprising considering how much coverage the samsung case got. all the amounts in this case are obscene and again i never said i agreed with them.

all i did was object to your description of the marque features of apple in middle of the last decade. those 3 along with expose were the "cool" features apple was offering and promoting the hell of. you cant try and rewrite history there.

im sure time machine would have worked better without the useless extra animation but again this is something apple absolutely loved. mike matas i believe was credited with that design inside apple and you only have to look at his cv and what he did at apple to see how highly they rated him.

i was never a huge fan of cover flow. im not sure if i installed the original plugin but again apple loved it and that they might remove it 6 years later dosent mean anything other than it may have had its day. i will say however coverflow is handy when going through a folder with lots of pictures.

however i really dont find this lawsuit and these examples any "worse" than what apple has been serving up recently

Makosuke
Jun 24, 2013, 07:41 PM
Okay, we're on the same page, but I still contend that those were "flashy" features used on the keynote stage, not anything Apple was basing sales of the OS or Macs on. Cover Flow for iTunes, you could argue (although that, of course, is a free program), but Time Machine is a stretch and Spotlight is ridiculous.

Just because they showed off the cool UI in the keynote doesn't mean I'm rewriting history by downplaying the importance or significance of those features. They looked cool; they got used for advertising; they were not, in and of themselves, integral to the function of either technology.

Mainly, though, I'm complaining about the proportional scale; if you make an operating system with a 20-year history and literally thousands of features, a partial-window 3D representation of files in its otherwise entirely 2D file manager does not warrant 1/3 of the fourth-largest patent settlement in US history. If you look at retail sales of Leopard (3.5M copies the first quarter, fell off from there), the $400M for those couple of UI features works out to a nontrivial fraction of the entire gross income from the OS (less if you assume profit from each copy included with a Mac from the same period).

Mystic386
Jun 25, 2013, 12:03 AM
If Mirror Worlds took Apple to Court and won an award of $625.5 million, and Apple appealed and the ruling was overturned and then Mirror Worlds went to the Supreme Court and the SC said game up, and this took 5 years then ....



what did the lawyers on both sides earn in total?


Clearly there is a winner in this case.

MagnusVonMagnum
Jun 25, 2013, 04:35 PM
Wow... where do I start? Lets try the difference between criminal and civil court. In criminal court, the government is accusing someone, and they stand to face a punishment which harms their liberty in some way (their freedom or their purse usually). To make it difficult, we make it hard for the government to do that and give them a really high hurdle. In civil court, private parties accuse eachother, and they stand to just lose some money. When only money is involved, the standard doesn't have to be as high, and it varies depending on specifics.

You're only describing what is different. It's pointless. I already know that. Your explanation for having less severe standards for civil court boils down to "it's only money" and that's ridiculous when a lack of money can RUIN a person's life. I fail to see why civil court cases should be allowed to ping-pong while criminal cases end when a person is found innocent.


OJ wasn't found guilty or anything in civil court, he was found liable for a death. Murder (criminal) and wrongful death (civil) are two very very different things. Wrongful death can be simply negligent (for example, you spilled some oil in your house that you didn't clean up, and then a guest slipped and fell and died.) For wrongful death, the liable person must repay someone, usually the familly, for the wrong. Murder is the highest form of homicide, it's only for someone who is really super culpable and morally reprehensible. For murder, we take away the guilty person's freedom for a long time usually. (not commenting on the OJ case specifically, he was totally guilty, we all know it). So as an example, in OJs case, the government didn't reach the hurdle to take away his freedom for doing a super morally reprehensible thing. The victim's familly did reach the lower hurdle of holding his responsible for the cost they suffered.


This is a total crock and exactly what I'm talking about. Either OJ killed them or he didn't. If he killed them, then he should be liable. If he didn't kill them, he shouldn't be liable. Like it or not, there's no other possibility in this particular case. He didn't leave the stove on accidentally and that lead to the house burning down with them in it. SOMEONE shoved a knife in Nicole's back. Now the laws of physics dictate either it was his arm or someone else's arm (possibly at his request, but that's another matter and still a criminal trial). The very IDEA that you can have a SEPARATE civil trial and come to a DIFFERENT CONCLUSION to the criminal trial is what I'm getting at here and what you apparently cannot seem to comprehend. The fact you accept things how they are is neither here nor there. I'm simply giving my opinion it's BS based on plain logic.


Appeals aren't retrials. Appeals happen when the lower court judge got it wrong. Sometimes appeals are sent back to the lower court with instructions to fix one aspect of the case. For example, a case can have many questions to answer, and only one of those questions is sent back to answer again.


Yeah, the biggest thing anyone can get wrong is the result of the trial (i.e. if someone did it and gets off scot-free or didn't do it and gets prison or worse yet the death penalty when they're innocent). Unfortunately, that happens a lot these days due to the justice system being based on making MONEY rather than finding the TRUTH. If you have a high priced lawyer with a reputation for almost never losing a case, you have an example of the truth being buried because statistics dictate that every client they get cannot be innocent. This, along with things like basic needs and health care are the reasons this country is screwed up. Nothing is more important than the truth and that just goes out the windows with the high priced lawyer for hire system we have in place. Everyone is NOT equal under the law. Money goes a LONG way in the existing system and that's just wrong. You can disagree, but it won't change the facts of the matter.


tl;dr: You're irritated because you don't understand what the courts do.

I'm irritated because the system is rigged on the merits of money rather than the truth. I'm irritated because everyone sues at the drop of a hat these days and if you cannot afford to defend yourself, you're screwed even if you are right. Big companies do this all the time to smaller companies. Just sue them to oblivion and watch them fall before the result is ever determined since they cannot afford the lawsuit while the big company has lawyers on retainer they might as well use to sue.

oneMadRssn
Jun 25, 2013, 05:01 PM
You're only describing what is different. It's pointless. I already know that. Your explanation for having less severe standards for civil court boils down to "it's only money" and that's ridiculous when a lack of money can RUIN a person's life. I fail to see why civil court cases should be allowed to ping-pong while criminal cases end when a person is found innocent.



This is a total crock and exactly what I'm talking about. Either OJ killed them or he didn't. If he killed them, then he should be liable. If he didn't kill them, he shouldn't be liable. Like it or not, there's no other possibility in this particular case. He didn't leave the stove on accidentally and that lead to the house burning down with them in it. SOMEONE shoved a knife in Nicole's back. Now the laws of physics dictate either it was his arm or someone else's arm (possibly at his request, but that's another matter and still a criminal trial). The very IDEA that you can have a SEPARATE civil trial and come to a DIFFERENT CONCLUSION to the criminal trial is what I'm getting at here and what you apparently cannot seem to comprehend. The fact you accept things how they are is neither here nor there. I'm simply giving my opinion it's BS based on plain logic.



Yeah, the biggest thing anyone can get wrong is the result of the trial (i.e. if someone did it and gets off scot-free or didn't do it and gets prison or worse yet the death penalty when they're innocent). Unfortunately, that happens a lot these days due to the justice system being based on making MONEY rather than finding the TRUTH. If you have a high priced lawyer with a reputation for almost never losing a case, you have an example of the truth being buried because statistics dictate that every client they get cannot be innocent. This, along with things like basic needs and health care are the reasons this country is screwed up. Nothing is more important than the truth and that just goes out the windows with the high priced lawyer for hire system we have in place. Everyone is NOT equal under the law. Money goes a LONG way in the existing system and that's just wrong. You can disagree, but it won't change the facts of the matter.



I'm irritated because the system is rigged on the merits of money rather than the truth. I'm irritated because everyone sues at the drop of a hat these days and if you cannot afford to defend yourself, you're screwed even if you are right. Big companies do this all the time to smaller companies. Just sue them to oblivion and watch them fall before the result is ever determined since they cannot afford the lawsuit while the big company has lawyers on retainer they might as well use to sue.

This is way too much to parse.

If you really care, please read up on the difference between criminal homicide and civil wrongful death.
For criminal - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_Penal_Code and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder
For civil - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wrongful_death_claim
Basically, you can be liable for a death and not be guilty of the crime of murder. Those two things can happen, they are about two very different things. Culpability versus liability.

Consider that the reason expensive lawyers always win is because they pick and choose their clients; they only pick the cases they know they are likely to win. Sometimes because they know the client has a good defense (alibi, or what have you), or sometimes because they know the prosecutor is an idiot. Consider that public defenders do try, but they are so incredibly overworked and stretched thin it's impossible for them. These are major issues, you're right to be skeptical about the system.

You're correct to be pessemestic about our current court system, but some of your ideas of it are misguided. Our court system is in poor shape, but it's not for the reasons you give.

Otherwise, this is way off topic for this tread now; nothing to do with patent disputes anymore. If you want, PM me to continue this conversation.

gnasher729
Jun 25, 2013, 07:44 PM
I have no interest one way or another in the result here, but HOW it happens does irritate me. Frankly, I think the whole US Court system is a load of horse manure. You think you won a case, but NO.... someone overturns it...and overturns it again and again and again and again.... WTF!?!? In criminal cases where you've won your innocence, that's called DOUBLE JEOPARDY and it's illegal (as it should be).

In a criminal court, whether you lose or win, both the prosecution and the defendant can appeal. There have even been cases where both sides appealed (prosecution thinking the sentence wasn't high enough, defendant claiming their innocence). It's not double jeopardy and quite common.

Same here; after a court case you can appeal and it goes to the next higher level (if it is accepted by the higher court). Usually the case will only be accepted if the next higher judge decides that a clear error was made.

----------

You're only describing what is different. It's pointless. I already know that. Your explanation for having less severe standards for civil court boils down to "it's only money" and that's ridiculous when a lack of money can RUIN a person's life. I fail to see why civil court cases should be allowed to ping-pong while criminal cases end when a person is found innocent.

In civil cases there's often the situation that damage has happened, and the question is who pays for it. Let's say a car accident happened, I say it was your fault, you say it was my fault, but obviously one of us (or both) has to pay for the damage. The judge can't say "you're both innocent" because the damage is done and it won't get repaired if nobody comes up with the money.

Or let's say I claim that my neighbour intentionally caused major damage to my house. If that is true, he should pay for the damage and go to jail. As far as the paying for the damage is concerned, if you apply "not paying unless proven guilty" to my neighbour, that applies "paying unless proven innocent" to me. Which I would consider highly unfair. The damage caused could also ruin the victims life.

As far as OJ Simpson is concerned, a civil court had to decide whether it was more likely that he murdered two people, and the civil court said "yes". That's quite a strong statement, and not made lightly. The wrong decision wouldn't just mean that the guilty person goes free, it also means that the victim isn't compensated for their damage. There isn't just one side here, there are two, and for each side the wrong decision means financial damage, so it is just that the court decides what is more likely to be correct.

Apart from that, OJ Simpson moved to Florida after being convicted because the Florida laws allowed him to have a good life without paying a penny of the 10 million dollar compensation that he was ordered to pay. As a result, when he wrote his biography and tried to sell the rights, the murdered man's parents outbid everyone else and bought the rights for several million dollars - which they then subtracted from the money they were owed.

MagnusVonMagnum
Jun 26, 2013, 01:47 PM
In a criminal court, whether you lose or win, both the prosecution and the defendant can appeal. There have even been cases where both sides appealed (prosecution thinking the sentence wasn't high enough, defendant claiming their innocence). It's not double jeopardy and quite common.

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_jeopardy#United_States
and: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acquittal
and: http://www.anderegglaw.com/can-the-prosecution-appeal-a-case/

It IS double jeopardy if the court case was concluded (i.e. not declared a mistrial) by a jury with an acquittal. The ONLY exception to this is if the person was not in jeopardy in the first place (e.g. bribing a judge at a bench trial). This is Constitutional Law (5th Amendment) and pretty darn clear.


Same here; after a court case you can appeal and it goes to the next higher level (if it is accepted by the higher court). Usually the case will only be accepted if the next higher judge decides that a clear error was made.[COLOR="#808080"]


Appeals are for the defense only unless a finding was made before trial (e.g. judge throws case out of court before trial and new evidence surfaces to warrant a trial; in other words you have to have a trial in order for double jeopardy to apply).

Again: http://www.anderegglaw.com/can-the-prosecution-appeal-a-case/


In civil cases there's often the situation that damage has happened, and the
question is who pays for it. Let's say a car accident happened, I say it was your fault, you say it was my fault, but obviously one of us (or both) has to pay for the damage. The judge can't say "you're both innocent" because the damage is done and it won't get repaired if nobody comes up with the money.


The judge can find both at fault and declare no damages awarded. Regardless, how do you figure that civil trials deserve endless appeals from either party based on that? What is your reasoning that double jeopardy should only apply to criminal cases and not civil as well? The reasoning for the law in the first place was the stress/strain it puts on a citizen to fend for their life or livelihood. I don't see why someone getting sued shouldn't fall into that category the same way a fine or prison sentence would.

My whole point and opinion is that they should not be treated differently and the civil court system should be respecting the judgments made in the criminal court system. If a verdict of NOT GUILTY is returned for a 1st or 2nd degree murder case, how can there possibly be a civil case at that point? They weren't tried for negligence, but murder. Not guilty says it all and IF they got it wrong in the criminal court, then that is a failing of that system, not an excuse to run it over with another court. A court is a court. The Constitution makes no distinction between criminal court and civil court. That sort of thing that happened with the OJ trial is a Constitutional violation as far as I'm concerned. It also makes the entire justice system look bad when it contradicts itself.

To get back to the whole point of my comment. Here you have a company that is cleared of all charges of patent violation in regards to Apple. They are free and clear. No, they are NOT because apparently the findings of the first judge DON'T MEAN SQUAT. You get appeal after appeal for these types of cases until it finally ends up at the top anyway and so why even bother to waste the taxpayer's time and dime handling cases that obviously will NOT be decided in the lower courts (not now not ever). It's a bad, wasteful and in my opinion pointless system. Why not just eliminate the lower level courts as waste? The judges further up clearly pay no mind to the judges underneath them anyway. At best it means the lower judges are completely INCOMPETENT as they got the entire case WRONG. At worst, it means we let single individuals decide the fates of potentially millions based on their own personal opinions (as we see more and more partisan biased cases in Supreme Court rulings of 5/4 and 4/5). A criminal court requires a consensus. The Supreme Court only needs one person to shift the entire result and when all the decisions are partisan ones, it really looks bad for that wing of government's credibility, but then I suppose that's really just a sign of the times (certainly Congress' approval rating is at an all-time low).

Verbatim Cookie
Jul 1, 2013, 05:21 PM
levied a fine of $625.5 million
the $625 million fine
A fine? ಠ_ಠ