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Apple argues "even a moron" can spot company difference

post #1 of 107
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Giving opening arguments on Thursday, lawyers for Apple Computer asserted the company's right to distribute music through its iTunes music store, rejecting claims by The Beatles' Apple Corps Ltd. that doing so violated a 1991 trademark agreement.

According to the Associated Press, Apple lawyer Anthony Grabiner said the "distribution of digital entertainment content" was permitted under the agreement, in which the two companies promised not to interfere with the other's business.

Grabiner said "even a moron in a hurry" could distinguish between the computer company's online music business and a record label like Apple Corps.

"Data transmission is within our field of use. That's what [the agreement] says and it is inescapable," he said.

In his own opening arguments on Wednesday, Apple Corps' lawyer Geoffrey Vos said Apple Computer's music distribution business "was flatly contradictory to the provisions of the agreement."

Vos argued that while Apple Computer is perfectly entitled to produce programs like iTunes, it should stay out of the music business if it uses the logo, a cartoonish apple with a neat bite out of its side, the AP reported.
post #2 of 107
Is Apple Corps. short of money! No! Exactly!
There are people dying in the world! And this record company is giving out because apple is using apple's own logo in iTunes!
Give it a rest you idiots!

I wonder if Paul McCartney had anything to do with this!!
After all didn't he recently rewrite the credits to some of John Lennon's songs to his name! Great respect for the dead, idiot!!
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post #3 of 107
So you know how iTunes delivers condensed, commerical-free programs of the Superbowl & NCAA games? I would so purchase the video of this courtroom battle if it was presented in the same form! I think we might be able to pull quotes of the decade out of this.
post #4 of 107
Quote:
Apple Computer lawyer Anthony Grabiner said the 'distribution of digital entertainment content' was permitted under the agreement, in which the two companies promised not to tread on the other's sphere of business. Grabiner said 'even a moron in a hurry' could distinguish between the computer company's online music business and a record label like Apple Corps.

Exactly. People know who the Beatles (and Apple Corps) are, and people know who Apple Computer is. There is no criminal or anticontractual intent here. It is possible for either company to operate in its own space.
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post #5 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by crees!
I think we might be able to pull quotes of the decade out of this.

Quote of the decade: "The Beatles suck."

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post #6 of 107
I just think it's hillarious that a lawyer used the phrase "even a moron in a hurry" in a British court. Nice to see use good old common sense as an argument in court. That being said ... maybe this looks a hell of a lot like this and I'm just not seeing it. Notice the Green Apple Corps of New York City uses exactly the same logo as Apple Corps in Engalnd. You don't see them getting sued for it. If you look through google images for Apple Logo you'll see nothing but Apple computer for a long, long time. Hell, even the Turkey Knob Apple Logo comes up on page 3 or 4. You finally come across a lone Apple Corps logo at the top of page 6 ... <sigh>

At least it'll make for another rousing court battle. In any case, Apple should demand at the end of everything that the Beatles catalogue be made available on iTMS and immunity from further litigation brought forth by Apple Corps concerning the use of the AAPL logo.
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post #7 of 107
Apple Computer does not record or produce music, just distribute it. That said...
The retail operation is called iTunes Music Store, not Apple Music Store.
The mp3 player is the Apple iPod, not Apple Music Player.

The most confusing part is someone might look at the name "Apple Records" and think it's a subsidiary or partner with "Apple Computer." That confusion, however, has likely existed since well before the iTunes Music Store came on the scene. So nothing has changed.

Case closed.
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post #8 of 107
The only thing I know for sure is that I won't be buying any Beetles music anytime soon, not that I ever did anyways.

I think I will stick to Hendrix and Clapton unless Eric decides to sue someone for some random reason to get money, although since he isn't British maybe he isn't out to screw American companies out of money, maybe he will sue a British one.
post #9 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by drakethegreat
The only thing I know for sure is that I won't be buying any Beetles music anytime soon, not that I ever did anyways.

That's probably due to the fact that you can't spell it properly.

Quote:
I think I will stick to Hendrix and Clapton unless Eric decides to sue someone for some random reason to get money, although since he isn't British maybe he isn't out to screw American companies out of money, maybe he will sue a British one.

You're on a roll.

Eric Clapton is British.

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post #10 of 107
heh
post #11 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by CosmoNut
Apple Computer does not record or produce music, just distribute it.

I'm not entirely sure if I'm right but isn't this the same as apple corps ie. Record labels distribute music and don't record or produce it - that's the artist's job...
post #12 of 107
Quote:
Vos argued that while Apple Computer is perfectly entitled to produce programs like iTunes, it should stay out of the music business if it uses the logo

So, if they stop using the logo, and come up with an iTunes logo, the Beatles will disappear and the lawsuit is over?

Considering the logos don't look alike (the computer company has a bite taken out and a big leaf), I'm not even sure you could call that logo an apple in a generic sense. Because I have never seen an apple that has that big a "leaf" on top, or that has a perfectly taken "bite" out of it (who has teeth like that?).

In fact, the Apple store and iPod commercials just show this logo, that might resemble an apple, but if you were to put it beside a real live apple, you would see a huge difference.

What? Artistic license and common sense would have me know better? Hmmm... Maybe the courtroom needs some of that!
post #13 of 107
The 1991 agreement between the two companies stipulated the realms in which they could use their trademarks.

Apple Computer got: software, hardware, blah blah blah, *AND* 'data transmission' across networks.

Apple Corps got: music creation, musical works, blah blah blah, *AND* 'intangible music communication'. At the time, I'm sure they meant radio.

Problem is, iTMS can be defined as both 'data transmission' *AND* 'intangible music communication', depending on how you want to look at it. That's the crux of the suit, and the point on which it will hinge.

As has been pointed out though, Apple could remove Apple's logo and name from the iTMS even more - they still plainly hold the rights to use the logo on the software (iTunes window border), and on music playback devices (iPod). Yup, they got that last one in the 1991 agreement.

Basically, this comes down to how tied the Apple name and logo are with iTMS, and iTMS alone. If you note, when you visit the iTMS the name and logo are already conspicuously absent, except for the copyright notice at the bottom. The logo at the top in the equalizer window is part of the software iTunes, not iTMS.

Worst case scenario, IMO: iTMS has to be broken out into a subsidiary, so that the Apple name can be stripped completely from the iTMS while retaining proper copyright notices.
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post #14 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by audiopollution
Eric Clapton is British.

Pssh, he just has a really good fake accent. Even better than Madonna's.
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post #15 of 107
Apple Corps on Wikipedia

What has Apple Corps done in the past three decades? I like the second part of this exceprt from Wikipedia...

"After the dismissal of Magic Alex in 1969 (during Allen Klein's "housecleaning" of Apple Corps), Apple Electronics fell victim to the same forces that troubled the company as a whole, including the impending Beatles breakup.

While it never made a dent in the marketplace, Apple Electronics was still considered a viable business entity years later, when Apple Corps sued Apple Computer over trademarking, for selling music players and other non-computer devices under the Apple brand name."


I guess a "viable business" is one that exists solely to sue others. Anyone remember the various Imatec lawsuits?

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post #16 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Kickaha
The 1991 agreement between the two companies stipulated the realms in which they could use their trademarks.

Apple Computer got: software, hardware, blah blah blah, *AND* 'data transmission' across networks.

Apple Corps got: music creation, musical works, blah blah blah, *AND* 'intangible music communication'. At the time, I'm sure they meant radio.

Problem is, iTMS can be defined as both 'data transmission' *AND* 'intangible music communication', depending on how you want to look at it. That's the crux of the suit, and the point on which it will hinge.

Interesting. It seems a "plain reading" here would favor Apple (Computer).

Quote:
Originally posted by Kickaha
Basically, this comes down to how tied the Apple name and logo are with iTMS, and iTMS alone.

Possibly. Apple (Computer) might not care that much.

Quote:
Originally posted by Kickaha
Worst case scenario, IMO: iTMS has to be broken out into a subsidiary, so that the Apple name can be stripped completely from the iTMS while retaining proper copyright notices.

I think this is probably right. Given what you have said, I think it would be unlikely for the judge to find in favor of Apple (Corps.) AND require punitive payments of any substance.

May require some fine-tuning and clarification of the wording of the contract.
post #17 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Kickaha
The 1991 agreement between the two companies stipulated the realms in which they could use their trademarks.

Apple Computer got: software, hardware, blah blah blah, *AND* 'data transmission' across networks.

Apple Corps got: music creation, musical works, blah blah blah, *AND* 'intangible music communication'. At the time, I'm sure they meant radio.

If it comes down to that, I really cant see any of the corps taking hold of it to them selfes. Basically, then Apple (Our) is in it good rights to distribute music through iTunes.

No one knows how the future develops, but I guess this case is going to be a good landmark..
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post #18 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Ireland
Is Apple Corps. short of money! No! Exactly!
There are people dying in the world! And this record company is giving out because apple is using apple's own logo in iTunes!
Give it a rest you idiots!

I wonder if Paul McCartney had anything to do with this!!
After all didn't he recently rewrite the credits to some of John Lennon's songs to his name! Great respect for the dead, idiot!!

Yeah!!

You have a great point!!

If a company has money, they shouldn't be allowed to sue another company for breach of contract!!

Everyone's an idiot but you!!
post #19 of 107
And here I was thinking that it was the Beatles' record company that made the iPod... doh!

Why doesn't Apple Computer just buy Apple Corps once and for all and end this whole discussion. Surely the valuation of the company is less than a settlement?

Oh, and then Apple Computer would own a record company and be able to sign bands directly via a button in iTunes, and power would return to the people, right on!
post #20 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by wilco
Yeah!!

You have a great point!!

If a company has money, they shouldn't be allowed to sue another company for breach of contract!!

Everyone's an idiot but you!!

Post of the week

Apple Corps Ltd. is doing exactly what Apple would do themselves. The courts is there to decide conflicts like this. Let this work itself out. I doubt either of the involved are so passionate about this as the majority here.
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post #21 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Ireland I wonder if Paul McCartney had anything to do with this!!
After all didn't he recently rewrite the credits to some of John Lennon's songs to his name! Great respect for the dead, idiot!! [/B]

WRONG, WRONG, WRONG.

These are songs that Paul McCartney wrote by himself but due to an agreement early on the two of them signed an agreement to give credit to both John and Paul for any song that John or Paul wrote even if one of them wrote it all by himself.

The issue I have with it is that he isn't asking Yoko to change all the songs John wrote by himself to show that only John wrote it. Basically Paul is trying to make himself look better and, oh by the way, get all the royalties for those songs for himself. I'm not against the latter if it wasn't for the former. John and Paul have a signed agreement and he should have thought about this before John died and talked to him. Obviously that is too late now.
post #22 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by drakethegreat
The only thing I know for sure is that I won't be buying any Beetles music anytime soon, not that I ever did anyways.

I think I will stick to Hendrix and Clapton unless Eric decides to sue someone for some random reason to get money, although since he isn't British maybe he isn't out to screw American companies out of money, maybe he will sue a British one.

Beatles is spell Beatles because they were making a reference to the Beat music scene, which is what the "Liverpool sound" was being called at the time. Yes for a very, very short time they considered Beetles then liked the idea of beat music being part of their name and changed it to Beatles. Actually Silver Beatles first then just Beatles.
post #23 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Kickaha Apple Corps got: music creation, musical works, blah blah blah, * AND* 'intangible music communication'. At the time, I'm sure they meant radio.

This maybe the very reason why there has been an Apple branded radio tuner add-on. Just thowing that out there.
post #24 of 107
So let's compare them!


______________________________


They totally look the same!!

"How'd ya like them apples"!!
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post #25 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by rdas7
And here I was thinking that it was the Beatles' record company that made the iPod... doh!

Why doesn't Apple Computer just buy Apple Corps once and for all and end this whole discussion. Surely the valuation of the company is less than a settlement?

Oh, and then Apple Computer would own a record company and be able to sign bands directly via a button in iTunes, and power would return to the people, right on!

That's a very good point.
Somehow I don't think it will happen, though wouldn't it be nice?

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post #26 of 107
Is the logo disputed? Did Corp claim they stole the logo?

PS: Look at the font. Its pretty close to the old Apple font.
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post #27 of 107
I'm about to take out a trademark on exclamation points and excessive use of smiley faces.

I will litigate.
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post #28 of 107
You know the funny thing is maybe Jobs used to like the Beatles, I wouldn't be surprised if that's where the original name and logo for Apple Computer Inc. came from because he was a Beatles fan-boy.
Wouldn't that be interesting to know.
Otherwise it's just an strange coincidence with no real meaning at all, which is far less-interesting.. Meh.

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post #29 of 107
Im a Beatles and Mac fan and agree that this dispute is f!@#ing rediculous! There is no way someone can compair the two logos and get confused with them, they are totally different! Apple Corps should give up already.... sweet fancy moses!
post #30 of 107
This suit has nothing to do with whether Apple Corps and Apple Computer are both distributing music. It also has nothing to do with whether the logos' can be distinguished from each other. That may be the arguing points, but it isn't the reason why there is a suit TODAY.

It has to do with the fact that Apple didn't properly fight the very first suit. Once they gave in to Apple Corps, and handed over that $80,000, the die was cast for the future.

Once an agreement like that is made, both parties have to agree to change it. Like it or not, it becomes a contract. One party is not allowed to break, or change, the terms of a contract. Apple Corps is insisting that that is exactly what happened.

So, while it's pretty obvious that the logo's are different, it doesn't matter.

Even Apple Corps lawyer has said that if Apple Computer stopped using the logo in iTunes, everything would be fine.

But, if the court rules that using the logo goes against the agreement, then the second part of the trial comes into play, and that's the penalty phase. If Apple had to pay $26 million last time, there is no reason to believe that the court wouldn't think that there is value this time.

While none of us here are happy about this thought, that doesn't mean that it won't come true.

The publishing phrase is complex. It has been applied to web sites before. One of the ways the courts here, and abroad, have decided, is whether or not the web site changed, in any way, the information posted.

So, if Google removed offensive posts, or edits out the offensive portions, then it is considered to be a publisher. If it doesn't touch, or even check them, then it is not.

The point that Apple Corp is making is also in that same vein. Apple decides what music to sell on their site. They also decide what compilations to make, etc. That's considered to be "publishing".

From what is going on in the trial, Apple seems not to be saying (so far) that electronic digital publication is not covered by the agreement, which is where I thought they would be taking this, but rather that the digital transmission and payment for the music doesn't constitute publication at all.

I'm not so sure that this is the best route to take. My wife, who is a lawyer with CitiGroup, and who deals with copyright, trademark, and patent issues all the time for the company, also thinks that this isn't the best choice of defense.

While they might win anyway, it seems that few lawyers who deal with these issues, agree that what Apple, and other companies, are doing on line with music, is anything other than publishing.

The revelation that Apple Computer offered Apple Corps $1 million for the rights to the name "Apple", shows that they were concerned about this issue being a problem again. What I don't understand, is why they didn't go into negotiations much earlier before iTunes became such a hot property.

Even at that time, Apple had $5 billion in the bank. They could have offered a realistic amount. $1 million is a rather paltry sum, considering the money on both sides.
post #31 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Jimzip
You know the funny thing is maybe Jobs used to like the Beatles, I wouldn't be surprised if that's where the original name and logo for Apple Computer Inc. came from because he was a Beatles fan-boy.
Wouldn't that be interesting to know.
Otherwise it's just an strange coincidence with no real meaning at all, which is far less-interesting.. Meh.

Jimzip

That's pretty well known. Jobs said that from the beginning, when Apple first started. It's been in the press a lot lately.

That's the ironic part, isn't it?

But money comes first.
post #32 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by hypoluxa
There is no way someone can compair the two logos and get confused with them, they are totally different!

The suit has nothing to do with the logos, but with the names.
post #33 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by audiopollution
I'm about to take out a trademark on exclamation points and excessive use of smiley faces.

I will litigate.

post #34 of 107
How is it that Apple Computers and Apple Corps are at each others throats in court when Michael Jackson is in some middle eastern country getting pampered while he preys on their pre-pubescent boys and still makes money everytime a beatles song is played or sold.

Just doesn't seem right.

Paul and Yoko should just give it up and allow Apple Comp. to sell Beatles songs on iTMS. I'm sure that Jobs would be more than happy to financially stroke their "egos" if they let Apple be the first to offer digital Beatles downloads. Hell overcharge for them and have them all be at 320kbps for anyone cares. I think Apple Corp. would be pleasantly surprised with the amount of people that would be willing to pay for downloads of their catalog.

Selling the Beatles catalog on any other music download site would only seem to cheapen their legacy, unless they sold them directly from Beatles.com in a lossless format.
post #35 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by JohnnySmith
Paul and Yoko should just give it up and allow Apple Comp. to sell Beatles songs on iTMS. I'm sure that Jobs would be more than happy to financially stroke their "egos" if they let Apple be the first to offer digital Beatles downloads. Hell overcharge for them and have them all be at 320kbps for anyone cares. I think Apple Corp. would be pleasantly surprised with the amount of people that would be willing to pay for downloads of their catalog.

Selling the Beatles catalog on any other music download site would only seem to cheapen their legacy, unless they sold them directly from Beatles.com in a lossless format.

As much as some people would like that, the Beatles and Apple Records no longer hold the rights to most of the Beatles catalog. The Beatles sold their rights in 1963 to Northern, who sold it in 1969 to ATV who sold it in 1985 to Michael Jackson. In 1995, Jackson and Sony/ATV merged their publishing business and now jointly own most of the catalog. I think McCartney has the rights to a few of the really old songs now, but stuff people would care about is retained jointly by Michael Jackson and Sony, so that's who the deal would have to be worked out with if I'm not mistaken, since the rights cover publication of the music.

Of course, last year with Jackson's trial, a lot of people thought he might have to sell his share of the catalog to pay his legal bills. He did put it up as collateral for a loan, but has stated again and again that the catalog is not for sale.
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post #36 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Kickaha
Apple Computer got: software, hardware, blah blah blah, *AND* 'data transmission' across networks.

Apple Corps got: music creation, musical works, blah blah blah, *AND* 'intangible music communication'. At the time, I'm sure they meant radio.

Problem is, iTMS can be defined as both 'data transmission' *AND* 'intangible music communication', depending on how you want to look at it. That's the crux of the suit, and the point on which it will hinge.

If you are correct on this statement, I find it very interesting. However, if it IS true, wouldn't Apple Computer be infringing on Apple Corps rights through music creation via Garageband? True, the user is in fact the one creating the music (with the exception of the loops), but it DOES fall into the music creation category. Although, it's not as popular as the iTMS, so maybe it's not getting as much attention. Maybe that's what Apple Corps will concentrate on next time.
post #37 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by Chucker
The suit has nothing to do with the logos, but with the names.

The lawyer for Apple Corp specifically mentioned the logo as an area of contention.

Second paragraph.

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/30/te...=1&oref=slogin
post #38 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by AgNuke1707
As much as some people would like that, the Beatles and Apple Records no longer hold the rights to most of the Beatles catalog. The Beatles sold their rights in 1963 to Northern, who sold it in 1969 to ATV who sold it in 1985 to Michael Jackson. In 1995, Jackson and Sony/ATV merged their publishing business and now jointly own most of the catalog. I think McCartney has the rights to a few of the really old songs now, but stuff people would care about is retained jointly by Michael Jackson and Sony, so that's who the deal would have to be worked out with if I'm not mistaken, since the rights cover publication of the music.

Of course, last year with Jackson's trial, a lot of people thought he might have to sell his share of the catalog to pay his legal bills. He did put it up as collateral for a loan, but has stated again and again that the catalog is not for sale.

As a matter of fact, Jackson accused those charging him of crimes of working with those who wanted to get their hands on his catalog. but, he has already sold a large chunk of it to pay for his bills, which come out to over a $100 million a year.
post #39 of 107
Quote:
Originally posted by krankerz
If you are correct on this statement, I find it very interesting. However, if it IS true, wouldn't Apple Computer be infringing on Apple Corps rights through music creation via Garageband? True, the user is in fact the one creating the music (with the exception of the loops), but it DOES fall into the music creation category. Although, it's not as popular as the iTMS, so maybe it's not getting as much attention. Maybe that's what Apple Corps will concentrate on next time.

Apple is allowed to sell software for that purpose, but they can't produce music themselves.
post #40 of 107
uhh i flatly have to agree with the apple lawyer. i definately know the difference between apple comps/itunes and apple corps.

heres the difference i know,

i know what apple computers is,
i dont know (or care) what apple corps is.

therefore their business is not hurt. Go home and take your petty squabble with you.
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