ThinkSecret Seeks Dismissal of Lawsuit

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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ThinkSecret announced that it has filed a special motion to have Apple's lawsuit against the rumor site dismissed on First Amendment grounds.

The lawsuit in question is distinct from the issue of subpoenaed information which is also an ongoing legal battle between Apple and a number of Apple-releated websites.

In this instance, however, Apple had sued ThinkSecret itself for posting Apple trade secrets and encouraging the release of contractually protected information.
 

~Shard~

macrumors P6
Jun 4, 2003
18,388
42
1123.6536.5321
I don't know who I'm siding with on this one. I like the rumor sites (obviously!) yet I don't think that news and upcoming products releases should be released sometimes if they are of detriment to Apple and perhaps lessens their competitive advantage. Also, I think lots of people abuse the whole 1st Amendment thing, but that's for another discussion...
 

MattG

macrumors 68040
May 27, 2003
3,760
212
Asheville, NC
~Shard~ said:
I don't know who I'm siding with on this one. I like the rumor sites (obviously!) yet I don't think that news and upcoming products releases should be released sometimes if they are of detriment to Apple and perhaps lessens their competitive advantage. Also, I think lots of people abuse the whole 1st Amendment thing...
Same here. I think this is taking the whole 1st Amendment argument a little too far.
 

nbs2

macrumors 68030
Mar 31, 2004
2,713
485
A geographical oddity
Not sure if I should report or not, but the first link doesn't work. [Note from the moderator: fixed]

As for my thoughts? I don't think it will get dismissed. Looking at the allegations in the most favorable light to Apple, TS is dead in the water.
 

Palomino

macrumors member
Mar 6, 2005
55
0
Adelaide, South Australia
Interesting, however Applemac has always been very secretive. Not sure this has helped them gain market share as intel and AMD are always releasing product roadmaps and plugging products yet to hit the shelves. Case in point is the fact that they had versions of the Athlon 64 running in 2001, but they weren't released until 2004.

Cheers
Jordan
 

Eniregnat

macrumors 68000
Jan 22, 2003
1,841
0
In your head.
I was think about the fact that we, as a society, are in a difficult spot. The first amendment doesn’t protect against anything other than government suppression, thou it has been extended. I am of the opinion that another amendment needs to be created so that business can't stifle speech, as long as no trade secrets, financial information and the like are revealed. Personal information about people shouldn't be freely expressed, i.e. people shouldn't be able to post anybodies home address and phone number, but they should be able to express why they are pissed off an individual, corporation, etc. Look at the number of people fired over blogging. Some of whom were fired over short-stories, posted class work, and or things that they did on their off time.
Remember that McCarthy and good old Walt Disney both wanted to be able to control, judge, and act on peoples “private” lives.
 

PlaceofDis

macrumors Core
Jan 6, 2004
19,232
4
i dont know, i agree with Shard here.....not sure who to side with, both have compelling arguments
 

bosrs1

macrumors 6502
Feb 23, 2005
400
0
MattG said:
Same here. I think this is taking the whole 1st Amendment argument a little too far.
Especially after today's update.

"internal documents recently obtained by Think Secret"

He's stealing insider information. Which is not a protected right by the First Amendment no matter what kind of press member you are.
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
bosrs1 said:
MattG said:
Same here. I think this is taking the whole 1st Amendment argument a little too far.
Especially after today's update.

"internal documents recently obtained by Think Secret"

He's stealing insider information. Which is not a protected right by the First Amendment no matter what kind of press member you are.
He didn't think that he was doing anything wrong before, and was ignoring Apple at his own peril.

Now that he finally has a lawyer that has convinced him that he's not doing anything wrong, he has launched an offensive against Apple.

Generally lawyers will tell people to cease all activities relating to a lawsuit, if it at all feasible.

Taunting Apple and continuing in a brash manner will do nothing but dig him a deeper hole with respect to Apple and the judge, especially lines like today's "internal documents recently obtained by Think Secret."

I look forward to reading more because this is going to make for some rather interesting legal entertainment for us in the future.
 

bosrs1

macrumors 6502
Feb 23, 2005
400
0
Sun Baked said:
He didn't think that he was doing anything wrong before, and was ignoring Apple at his own peril.

Now that he finally has a lawyer that has convinced him that he's not doing anything wrong, he launched an offensive against Apple.

Generally lawyers will tell people to cease all activities relating to a lawsuit, if it at all feasible.

Taunting Apple and continuing in a brash manner will do nothing but did him a deeper hole with respect to Apple and the judge, especially lines like today's "internal documents recently obtained by Think Secret."

I look forward to reading more because this is going to make for some rather interesting legal entertainment for us in the future.
Seriously. He's playing with fire, and frankly I have no sympathy for when he gets burned. If he'd ceased what he was doing and played for sympathy he mgiht have won this, but he's been brash, and downright dumb. And several news outlets are starting to question the validity of his claims to be a "press" member. He's a college kid who thinks he's invincible, nothing more.
 

zac4mac

macrumors 6502
Jun 18, 2002
306
2
near Boulder, CO. USA
Personally, I think Nick stepped over a line last Fall when he posted the info in question. Previous posts of upcoming hardware or software had a sense of uncertainty, aka a rumor. Last Fall Nick posted info including descriptions, prices and internal Apple part numbers. It actually pissed me off by taking ALL the surprise away. Absolutely nothing left to conjecture. That was the most boring keynote I've watched yet, because all the beans were spilled. Not even a "One more thing".

It's just like some ****** spilling the ending of a mystery movie you've been anticipating for months, halfway thru the movie. Way to go Nick. Too bad it won't cost the spoilt rich kid anything.

Z
 

fixyourthinking

macrumors 6502a
Oct 24, 2002
665
0
Greenville SC
For every motion that requires a reponse...

For every letter Apple has to send for cease and desist, for every motion they have to answer, for every court proceeding they have to file ... adds a few pennies more to each and every Mac.

Shame on Nick Ciarelli - although I believe this is his and the "reseller lawuit filers" intent all along.
 

Eniregnat

macrumors 68000
Jan 22, 2003
1,841
0
In your head.
It comes down to this. The individuals who violate a NDA are culpable. A portal (a new site) isn’t liable for publishing information volunteered by others with out remuneration. If a portal offers money or seeks information with malicious intent (i.e publishing financial information so that Apple , then they should be held liable. What is interesting is that rumor sites have become very selective as to what they deem “worthy”. Who ever furnished the information, if under an NDA, should be held liable for their actions. If the rumors were provided by people who just happened across the information, like looking onto an open truck, or overhearing a conversation, then they shouldn’t be head liable.

Loose lips sink ships.- Companies should be able to defend themselves against information loss, but they shouldn’t have the ability to control peoples personal lives. They should be able to defend themselves against those with malicious intent, i.e. corporate espionage, but they shouldn’t be able to have control over the press. The press should act with due diligence.

I think that Apple is grasping straws, less the need to know sources. ThinkSecret should publish new worthy information, much of which they publish turns out to be false- hence rumors. If the sources were truly anonymous , less some sort of identifying code, then ThinkSecret should have nothing to fear. If the sources were not sending in anonymous information, for instance if they were Apple employees, then they have to deal with the consequences.

One of two terrible presidents could be set with this case.
If Apple Wins1.) Nobody can ever publish any information if it could be considered a trade secret.

If rumor sites win 2.) Anybody can violate an NDA by going to some sort of information portal and having their information posted through proxy.

Either extreme is not beneficial to society as a whole.
 

bosrs1

macrumors 6502
Feb 23, 2005
400
0
Eniregnat said:
It comes down to this. The individuals who violate a NDA are culpable. A portal (a new site) isn’t liable for publishing information volunteered by others with out remuneration. If a portal offers money or seeks information with malicious intent (i.e publishing financial information so that Apple , then they should be held liable. What is interesting is that rumor sites have become very selective as to what they deem “worthy”. Who ever furnished the information, if under an NDA, should be held liable for their actions. If the rumors were provided by people who just happened across the information, like looking onto an open truck, or overhearing a conversation, then they shouldn’t be head liable.

Loose lips sink ships.- Companies should be able to defend themselves against information loss, but they shouldn’t have the ability to control peoples personal lives. They should be able to defend themselves against those with malicious intent, i.e. corporate espionage, but they shouldn’t be able to have control over the press. The press should act with due diligence.

I think that Apple is grasping straws, less the need to know sources. ThinkSecret should publish new worthy information, much of which they publish turns out to be false- hence rumors. If the sources were truly anonymous , less some sort of identifying code, then ThinkSecret should have nothing to fear. If the sources were not sending in anonymous information, for instance if they were Apple employees, then they have to deal with the consequences.

One of two terrible presidents could be set with this case.
If Apple Wins1.) Nobody can ever publish any information if it could be considered a trade secret.

If rumor sites win 2.) Anybody can violate an NDA by going to some sort of information portal and having their information posted through proxy.

Either extreme is not beneficial to society as a whole.
Well frankly I'd rather have option 1 then option 2. Apple is well within it's rights to demand that TS give up the people violating their NDA. Frankly I don't know why TS didn't give them up immediately. He is under no compulsion to protect people who by right should be stopped.
 

martman

macrumors member
Mar 15, 2004
51
0
Toronto
I think all this litigation is disgusting. Jobbs is on an ego trip here and it is sad. The only thing more sad is all the fan boys lined up to suport EVERYTHING Jobbs does no matter how wrong it is. Nick's life should not be ruined because he spoiled Apple's "surprise".
Before you insist that what Jobbs is doing is right because it is legal remember not all laws are right.

Long live the EFF!
Apple: end the lawsuits, they don't suit you. Leave this **** for the likes of SCO and MS.

Think different! (remember?)
:mad:
 

bosrs1

macrumors 6502
Feb 23, 2005
400
0
martman said:
I think all this litigation is disgusting. Jobbs is on an ego trip here and it is sad. The only thing more sad is all the fan boys lined up to suport EVERYTHING Jobbs does no matter how wrong it is. Nick's life should not be ruined because he spoiled Apple's "surprise".
Before you insist that what Jobbs is doing is right because it is legal remember not all laws are right.

Long live the EFF!
Apple: end the lawsuits, they don't suit you. Leave this **** for the likes of SCO and MS.

Think different! (remember?)
:mad:
These lawsuits are definitely right. This kid is involved in corporate espionage. He needs to be stopped.
 

martman

macrumors member
Mar 15, 2004
51
0
Toronto
Nick is not. He runs a rumour site nothing more. It is amazing to see such hard asses in a different rumour site saying these things. If this was really a case of industrial espionage the EFF wouldn't have taken this case on.

This is about revenge not about what is right.

Apple is losing customers over this and those of you who have stock should be pissed.

I own a Dual G5 1.8, a Molar Mac, an iPod 4G, iMac 266, B&W G3 400 and an Apple Studio Display 23" CRT Monitor. If these various lawsuits against mac fans don't end my purchases will and I'm not the only one.

This litigation is BS and it is time for it to stop. Jobbs has made his point. :mad:
 

bosrs1

macrumors 6502
Feb 23, 2005
400
0
martman said:
Nick is not. He runs a rumour site nothing more. It is amazing to see such hard asses in a different rumour site saying these things. If this was really a case of industrial espionage the EFF wouldn't have taken this case on.

This is about revenge not about what is right.

Apple is losing customers over this and those of you who have stock should be pissed.

I own a Dual G5 1.8, a Molar Mac, an iPod 4G, iMac 266, B&W G3 400 and an Apple Studio Display 23" CRT Monitor. If these various lawsuits against mac fans don't end my purchases will and I'm not the only one.

This litigation is BS and it is time for it to stop. Jobbs has made his point. :mad:
Well I'm the opposite. I find this hardens my resolve to buy mac stuff. I know they're losing customers because of the infomation he's leaking so I want them to knock him out to stop that bleeding. And as a stock holder I'm more worried about their secrets getting out then about some college student.

Frankly if you let what happens to this kid color your views of Apple then you know nothing of business and are delusion in thinking that Apple is anything but a company.
 

elo

macrumors regular
Feb 6, 2003
140
0
Nothing BS about it. Corporations have a right to keep secrets, just as you or I have the same right. If I tell you my secret and have you sign a binding NDA, then you must follow the terms of the contract you signed unless they are otherwise illegal. It doesn't matter whether you decide the secret was worth keeping or not--you are bound.

The law may also required third parties to respect the keeping of such secrets, as it does in the case of corporations. Here, if a third party solicits you to break your contract, then he is liable as if he has broken it himself. He also may not feel the secret is worth protecting. But he has still broken the law. In his case, however, the law has a state of mind requirement. He must mean to get the prohibited information, or must not care that it is illegal. That is an issue of fact.

Apple feels that its interests are best served by keeping upcoming products secret. To me, this seems obvious, given the rest of the industry's usual race to copy Apple's most exciting products. Even if you disagree, however, the law protects the *ability* to keep secrets and the contracts willfully entered into by those who would work there. Take away that principle and a company couldn't keep *any* secrets.

Apple has to enforce its rights or it will lose them. If it sits idly by this time, then it could be estopped from raising these issues in a future case. Jobs also owes a fiduciary duty to Apple shareholders that could be breached by failing to prosecute a valid cause of action (at the cost of millions to Apple). That's no small issue, as Apple's stock fell considerably after the Macworld announcement, arguably because its secrets had been compromised.

Apple may or may not be right about ThinkSecret, but it is absolutely correct to vigorously defend its rights.


martman said:
Nick is not. He runs a rumour site nothing more. It is amazing to see such hard asses in a different rumour site saying these things. If this was really a case of industrial espionage the EFF wouldn't have taken this case on.

This is about revenge not about what is right.

Apple is losing customers over this and those of you who have stock should be pissed.

I own a Dual G5 1.8, a Molar Mac, an iPod 4G, iMac 266, B&W G3 400 and an Apple Studio Display 23" CRT Monitor. If these various lawsuits against mac fans don't end my purchases will and I'm not the only one.

This litigation is BS and it is time for it to stop. Jobbs has made his point. :mad:
 

gwangung

macrumors 65816
Apr 9, 2003
1,106
19
martman said:
Nick is not. He runs a rumour site nothing more. It is amazing to see such hard asses in a different rumour site saying these things. If this was really a case of industrial espionage the EFF wouldn't have taken this case on.
What makes you think this ISN'T a case of industrial espionage? With Nick being made the fall guy?
 

Sayhey

macrumors 68000
May 22, 2003
1,690
2
San Francisco
Doctor Q said:
Where is the money for ThinkSecret's lawyers coming from?
My understanding is the lawyers are donating their services, or most of the cost of their services, because of the importance of the case. I know he made a plea for help because he did not have the financial resources to fight the case. The result was the legal team he has now. I've made a very small donation to the Electronic Frontier Foundation to help with the legal costs in the broader case involving more than just ThinkSecret. I would encourage others to do so.

I would also encourage those that think Apple has overstepped the bounds on this case to write to them and tell them so.
 

Sayhey

macrumors 68000
May 22, 2003
1,690
2
San Francisco
gwangung said:
What makes you think this ISN'T a case of industrial espionage? With Nick being made the fall guy?
If it is then those folks need to be pursued by Apple, not the reporters they leaked their information to.