Apple’s Legal Team: From Defending the Little Guy to Crushing Souls

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We imagine that Apple has an extensive legal team. You have to when you’re the most valuable tech company in the world. It shows sometimes. Especially when we hear about Apple getting into legal battles or threatening to take someone to court over a matter.

In this case, we have two stories. One story is about Apple standing up for the little guy, and the other is about Apple going after the little guy. We’re not here to say which side we’re on. We’re just retelling the stories of two times we’ve heard of Apple lawyers at work.

Let’s take a look at the two recent stories we’ve heard.


Apple Defends App Developers

We heard about this one recently. A company called Lodsys sent out letters to app developers who had used in-app payment systems claiming they held the patent and that the developers were infringing. As far as we could tell, the developers were smaller companies that consisted of one person. Sadly, most of them were scared, because they knew they couldn’t take on a larger company. What’s more, most of us don’t know about all that legal stuff. A company going around bullying people is a problem here. Most of the developers had to contact Apple and cross their fingers. That’s when Apple came in and sent a letter to Lodsys and politely told them to STFU. We don’t know what’s happened since, but Apple has said that they will stand up for developers’ rights. Apple considers them all business partners and argues that under the trademark license Apple acquired from Lodsys, the developers are in the clear.

Apple Goes After Kid Peddling White iPhone 4

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Then there was the story of the long-awaited white iPhone 4. Many wanted it, but had to wait, because Apple was holding back on the manufacturing because they were having more trouble than they had anticipated with manufacturing.

One kid by the name of Fei Lam had managed to get a hold of the white iPhone 4 front and back panels. Apple didn’t approve of this, and their legal team went after him. They argued the following:

“Defendent Lam willfully and without authorization has used Apple’s trademarks in connection with the sale of his “White iPhone 4 Conversion Kits,” which among other things included white front and back panels with Apple’s logo and “iPhone” trademarks that are used in connection with the promotion and sale of Apple’s well known iPhone 4 handheld mobile digital electronic devices. Defendant at all times knew that Apple never has authorized the sale of white panels for its iPhone 4 mobile devices, and that he obtained these panels from sources that were not authorized by Apple or any of its suppliers to sell them.”

The kid sold $130,000 worth of white iPhone 4 cases. According to reports, he settled, and had to pay Apple back every bit of money he’d made from the business.


Great Protectors or…?

Apple isn’t as bad as many make them out to be. That’s why we have iPhone jailbreaks, and hacks. Sony went after the fellow who tried to crack their system. Yeah, they also served the kid who tried to sell the white iPhones, but he was profiting off it.


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