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Facebook and Apple are squabbling over document requests in the ongoing Epic v. Apple legal battle, according to a new discovery letter filed with the court today. Facebook is involved because Facebook executive Vivek Sharma is set to testify on behalf of Epic.

fortnite_apple_featured.jpg

Apple wants a "limited set of documents" that are needed for a fair cross examination of Sharma, who plans to testify about Apple's restrictions on iOS app distribution, the App Store process, and Facebook's interactions with Apple, but Facebook does not want to produce the documents that Apple is asking for.

There are apparently more than 17,000 documents related to Sharma that Apple feels are relevant in the case, but Facebook says that producing tens of thousands of documents is an "untimely, unfair, and unjustified request to redo fact discovery." Facebook has already provided Apple with more than 1,600 documents, including 200 involving Sharma, but Apple does not believe that is sufficient.

According to Apple, Facebook has been continually ignoring requests for documents and using delaying tactics. Apple says it served multiple subpoenas to Facebook starting in December and met with Facebook several times to narrow the scope of the requests, but Facebook has refused to produce many of the documents in question.

Apple was fed up with Facebook and ultimately agreed not to pursue additional documents if no Facebook executives testified, but Epic added Sharma to its witness list, and Apple again wants the documents.
Despite Facebook's knowledge of the time constraints in this action, it stalled for five days purportedly because "there is unavoidable technical processing time baked in to" investigating the burden of production, and finally admitted on March 29 it did not intend to produce more documents.
Facebook claims that Apple waited to ask for the documents after the discovery period had closed (and before Apple confirmed Sharma would be a witness), making the timing of the request "improper." Facebook also claims that Apple is asking for additional unrelated documents pertaining to iOS 14 and Facebook's response to App Tracking Transparency that are irrelevant to the case.
If Apple believed that production was insufficient in any way, it had every opportunity to move to compel within 7 days of the close of discovery as required by the Court's Rules. Apple chose not to, making this motion untimely. Instead, claiming surprise by Epic's disclosure of Mr. Sharma as a trial witness--even though Epic's complaint quoted him by name--Apple now demands that Facebook review and produce an enormous number of additional documents.
Apple is asking the court to order Facebook to comply with Apple's request for Facebook's documents so that "Apple has a fair opportunity to cross examine the newly-disclosed trial witness." Facebook argues that it should not be compelled to "review tens of thousands more documents because Apple wants to go fishing for some theoretical additional cross material," and therefore the court should deny the request.

Update: The court has denied Apple's request to compel Facebook to produce additional documents, calling it "untimely" and ruling in favor of Facebook. The judge said that Apple could, however, raise a motion to have Vivek Sharma dismissed as a witness if Epic failed to disclose him in a timely manner.




Article Link: Facebook Doesn't Want to Give Apple Requested Documents in Epic v. Apple Fight [Updated]
 
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mtneer

macrumors 68040
Sep 15, 2012
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What does it mean that a Facebook executive is going to testify on "behalf" of Epic? Did this guy previously work for Epic and now working for Facebook? Otherwise what standing does this guy (and Facebook) have in the beef between Apple and Epic?
 
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rjp1

macrumors 6502
Mar 27, 2015
471
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Facebook is just pissed and retaliating because Apple's going to let people decide not to be tracked in an upcoming version of iOS. Not surprising given the company's apparent aversion to respecting their user's privacy and personal data in the slightest.
This is really a non news story. It is standard to ask for everything under the sun and then argue over what is reasonable.
 
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Cosmosent

macrumors 68000
Apr 20, 2016
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La Jolla, CA
Rather than waiting on the Below to become New Law, it would be fantastic if it would become disclosed at least for the here & now (i.e., the current STATs), during this court battle:

A proposed First New Law would require Apple to disclose per-Category Revenue Numbers for (at least) the iOS App Store here in the States, & require them to do so "at the end of each work week".

And, last but NOT least, to specify what percentage was generated by the Top 10 apps in each category, as well as what percentage of apps in each category that generated NO revenue.

Such a simple First New Law would NOT ONLY illustrate just how catastrophically broken the (NON-Game portion of the) iOS App Store currently is, but more importantly, very-likely become the Catalyst that forces Apple's Mgmt to quickly fix it.
 
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cmaier

macrumors Core
Jul 25, 2007
21,850
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California
What does it mean that a Facebook executive is going to testify on "behalf" of Epic? Did this guy previously work for Epic and now working for Facebook? Otherwise what standing does this guy (and Facebook) have in the beef between Apple and Epic?
Looks like he's going to testify as to how the app store policies screw Facebook. Since Epic's claims relate to alleged anti-competitive behavior, I guess the effect on other "competitors" is relevant. (See Tim Cook's explanation in another story today as to whether Facebook is a "competitor.")
 
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apparatchik

macrumors 6502
Mar 6, 2008
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The ONLY good thing that came out of Epic was Unreal and the Unreal Engine. Nothing good has come out of Facebook period. If both companies disappeared tomorrow, I wouldn't shed a tear.

That was a VERY different Epic, there's almost no trace of 90's Epic in today's Chinese behemoth (Tencent) subsidiary. Just like there's no trace of 80's Electronic Arts 10 people rebel studio or Harvard's The Facebook.
 
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subi257

macrumors 6502a
Sep 13, 2018
580
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New Jersey
Thats pretty significant in gaming industry..
And, they are making way more money in the broadcast world...www.zerodensity.com is using the Unreal Engine 5 for virtual sets for broadcast television. Look at Weather Channel, they are using it there via Zero Density. I have got to imagine there is much more money there...but Maybe it's being driven by Tencent as the like 40% owner.
 
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