back to article British judge: Say you're sorry Apple... this time like you MEAN it

Apple was told to apologise properly to Samsung by three British judges at the UK Court of Appeals this morning. Judge Robin Jacob reprimanded Apple for putting up an "incorrect" and "non-compliant" statement about the patent lawsuit and said it had 48 hours to publish a better one. In line with a court order from July, Apple …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

    and went off to sulk in the corner...

    1. Luther Blissett

      Re: Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

      I’m at a loss that a company such as Apple would do this.

      1. jai

        Re: Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

        Apple actually spoke to El Reg? The sky is truly falling!!

      2. dogged
        Meh

        "I’m at a loss that a company such as Apple would do this."

        I'm not.

    2. Psyx
      Facepalm

      Re: Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

      The thing that gets me is that they wanted to try to blag two weeks without having ANY notice up there.

      I think the judges were pretty reasonable and patient in their comments. In their shoes, I'd have had the court officer's hold the lawyer's mouth open while I relieved myself into it.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

        I would have imprisoned the CEO of Apple for contempt of court....

        1. pepper
          Joke

          Re: Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

          I dont think the US is as lenient with their extradition policy to crown-controlled territory.

          1. Vic

            Re: Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

            > crown-controlled territory.

            It must be a Friday. I initially read that as "clown-controlled". Harsh, but fair...

            vic.

        2. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: Apple told us it had no comment on the matter

          given this wee gem: http://thenextweb.com/apple/2012/11/03/apple-hides-samsung-apology-on-its-uk-site-so-it-cant-be-seen-without-scrolling/?fromcat=all

          I suspect that senior staff in Apple UK will find themselves in hot water on Monday morning.

  2. EddieD

    Good.

    Ahem, HAHAHAHA!

    Although it has to be said, many of my fellow commentators here predicted it - I'm surprised the judge didn't.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Good.

      The judge probably thought that as Apple can clearly afford to spend unimaginable amounts of money filling his courtroom with legal representation, that those legal representatives would have said "Don't do that, it's not a good idea."

      1. P. Lee Silver badge

        Re: Good.

        What those legal representatives would have said to Apple is, "see what you can get away with, it is unlikely to hurt."

        "Make it hurt", I say. Contempt of court.

    2. James O'Brien
      Pint

      Re: Good.

      Holy Hell this judge deserves a pint. And quite honestly crApple deserved this for what they ended up trying to pull off.

      To the judge: sir if you ever find yourself in the state of NY ill buy you a beer. Good man.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Good.

        Actually, the judges are pompous self righteous fuckwits. They are modifying their original judgement without due process, and their original order was verging on ultra vires in the first place. Rather to full of their own importance.

        1. jonathanb Silver badge

          Re: Good.

          They are not modifying the original judgment. The original judgement told them to put what they put as paragraphs 1 and 5 of their 6 paragraph ramble. They added another 4 paragraphs that contradicted it, which is a clear violation of the judgement.

        2. paulll

          Re: Good.

          No, people who don't know the difference between, "to," and, "too," are fuckwits.

        3. Handle This
          Meh

          Re: Good.

          "Actually, the judges are pompous self righteous fuckwits. They are modifying their original judgement without due process, and their original order was verging on ultra vires in the first place. Rather to full of their own importance." - AC, at 1940 GMT.

          I have not appeared in an English courtroom, but as an American lawyer (put that sharp object down, sir!), I tend to agree with the general sentiment of the first sentence here in application to the judiciary universally. I can tell you that as to the second sentence you have no idea what you are talking about. The third sentence is considered as informative as "water is wet" where I practice. I'd say overall your comment is pretty much what could be expected from an ill-informed corporate apologist.

          There really is no doubt the judge(s) had the power and authority to do what they did, and under the fact presented it is not surprising that they exercised that power and authority.

          By the way: Tossup between "Judge Jacob said: I’m at a loss that a company such as Apple would do this," and "Apple's original statement was not considered to be robust" for biggest LOL.

        4. Psyx
          FAIL

          Re: Good.

          "They are modifying their original judgement without due process."

          You don't seem to understand how our legal system works.

        5. Chris Parsons

          Re: Good.

          ...but probably able to distinguish between 'to' and 'too'.

      2. MrXavia
        Pint

        Re: Good.

        If those Judges ever darken the doors of my local I would be glad to get a couple of rounds in!

        Apple were stupid and infantile, so they treated them as such.

      3. Tom 13
        Pint

        Re: if you ever find yourself in the state of NY

        Dittos from Maryland. I'll even see if I can make sure it is one that is supposed to be served warm if you like.

        And I'm not a beer drinker.

        1. Richard Cranium

          Re: if you ever find yourself in the state of NY

          Maybe a bit off topic but you started it. Americans seem to have a problem with British beer.

          It's not served "warm" it served like red wine, as a wine buff would say chambré.

          Do you stick your vintage Chateau Lafite in the fridge before serving too?

          When I was in the Yukon last Feb our server apologised that she'd not got a chilled Bottle of Yukon Brewing's "Lead Dog" - and do you know, it was as good as a British craft brewery beer. When it's minus 20 outside I really don't want my stomach reduced to the same temperature. I have to say that having taken a purely academic interest in sampling US micro brewery products this year their only fault is US obesession with chilling everything. That is necessary with your mass market beers, the low temperature helps conceal the unpleasant taste but I urge you to try your own craft beers unchilled, they are great. A have had to revise my opinion that all american beer is garbage, there are some US micro breweries producing truly excellent brews.

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Pretty much what everyone expected after reading the original "apology".

    I'm looking forward to their new one.

    1. Steve Evans

      I was expecting a little more in the shape of a contempt of court charge. Maybe they decided to give them one last chance to get it right before hitting them with that.

      1. Psyx

        "I was expecting a little more in the shape of a contempt of court charge. Maybe they decided to give them one last chance to get it right before hitting them with that."

        Courts are busy places that have better things to do than mess around with time-wasting Apple antics. They aimed for a simple solution, rather than hit Apple with something that they'd undoubtedly appeal/contest/whine about.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          > They aimed for a simple solution, rather than hit Apple with something that they'd undoubtedly appeal/contest/whine about

          And yet Apple still appealed, contested and whined about it. The original judgement was in July and it was only a couple of weeks ago that their appeal was rejected.

        2. Tom 13

          Re: Courts are busy places...

          Simples, this is Apple's last chance to get it right. If they screw it up again:

          1. Find them in Contempt of Court.

          2. As part of that Contempt of Court finding, they must pay Samsung's legal fees (if they aren't already required to do so), and any costs to the court for any appeals taken after this last directive including but not limited to, paperwork costs, court recorder, bailiff, and presiding judge salaries.

          3. Interest on said costs to be calculated at standard American Credit Card rates, beginning 24 hours after this order was issued.

    2. Lars Silver badge

      Yes, lets see how many iterations of "apology" we will have. With too many, Apple is stepping on thin ice.

      On the other hand more and more people will know about this.

      1. Psyx

        "Yes, lets see how many iterations of "apology" we will have."

        They don't even have to apologise: All the Judge requested was a clear statement.

  4. Jediben
    Thumb Up

    They should count their lucky stars

    That they get a second bite of the Apple.

    Now can they swallow their pride soon enough to get the new apology uploaded to their site in time?

  5. Professor Falken
    Thumb Down

    If only it was easier to find on their homepage....

    ...instead of a 9pt link squeezed into the footer...

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: If only it was easier to find on their homepage....

      Which would have been great if they'd written it properly. Sure Samsung could have linked to it, but basically no-one would have noticed. However, now they've dicked about like this, not only do they look bloody stupid, but they've also made front-page news, looking bloody stupid...

      That's what's called a legal and PR Ooops! And because of the way Apple normally behave, enormously amusing.

      1. Tom 13
        Joke

        Re: That's what's called a legal and PR Ooops!

        Apple must have hired a Hollywood PR flack. You know, the kind who think the only bad PR is no PR...

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    From the the BBC:

    Lord Justice Longmore told Mr Beloff: "We are just amazed that you cannot put the right notice up at the same time as you take the other one down."

    Sir Robin Jacob added: "I would like to see the head of Apple [Tim Cook] make an affidavit about why that is such a technical difficulty for the Apple company."

    1. Brian Morrison
      Happy

      Well.....

      ....Tim Cook could just give him a five minute tour of the Apple Maps app and explain that it took a lot more than 14 days for them to bugger that up.

    2. Alex C

      Would have love to have been able to make that statement

      Though I'd have altered it somewhat:

      "I suggest that if you're having difficulty posting a notice within 24 hours, that you draw on the expertise of your army of 'geniuses'. If their collective power is insufficient to answer it in that time frame I suggest we meet up here again next week under the auspices of the trade descriptions act. Also if you're unable to draft a response in that timeframe I'll be happy to create it for you."

  7. Steve Evans

    14 days?

    So Apple can't edit a simple website page in under 14 days?

    Maybe Samsung should think about using that their next laptop ad...

    "Why take 14 days to edit your website, the new Intel i7 powered Samsung XYZ can do it in minutes"

    1. bolccg
      FAIL

      Re: 14 days?

      If I were the judge I'd have been tempted to hold them and their lawyer in contempt right there. That's just insulting to the intelligence.

      1. Chet Mannly

        Re: 14 days?

        "If I were the judge I'd have been tempted to hold them and their lawyer in contempt right there."

        Apple couldn't have been far away from contempt. I reckon if they try a similar stunt the second time they'd definitly cop a contempt charge.

        The 14 day thing is hilarious - Apple, the biggest tech company in the world (by $$$), leader in innovation are so crap at websites they can't put something on their website in 14 days???

        What an insult to the judges intelligence - its like they are begging for a contempt charge.

        1. Handle This

          Re: 14 days?

          "What an insult to the judges intelligence - its like they are begging for a contempt charge." - Chet Mannly @ 20:43

          I feel you there, but what really surprised me was that the judges were aware that such a change COULD be made within one day. I know a lot of judges that would have simply accepted Apple's representation because they didn't know any better.

        2. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: 14 days?

          "Apple couldn't have been far away from contempt. I reckon if they try a similar stunt the second time they'd definitly cop a contempt charge."

          They have (javascript to make the apology only appear when scrolling to the absolute bottom of the page, no matter which browser is in use) and they will.

          The only question is how hard the judge will come down on them. How exactly does one go about punishing a Body Corporate which is in contempt of court?

      2. Mike Flex

        Re: 14 days?

        > If I were the judge I'd have been tempted to hold them and their lawyer in contempt right there.

        Quite. They should have thrown the Apple rep into a cell for contempt and left him there until Apple changed their notice. I expect Apple would have found that they could edit a webpage in 14 minutes, rather than 14 days.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: 14 days?

          And a huge fine. Make the worms pay.

          1. Dr. Mouse Silver badge

            Re: 14 days?

            There are two logical possibilities I can see with the 14 day request.

            The first is that Apple want to have their legal department find another, more subtle way to word the statement without admitting they were wrong, working through legalities to push the order to it's limits. This could quite easily take their legal team 14 days, whereas 48 hours will force them to just comply with the order (or risk another trip back to court).

            The second is that the bureaucracy within Apple requires so many checks and sign-offs that it really does take that long to comply if they follow company procedure.

            I think the first is most likely.

          2. Psyx
            Joke

            Re: 14 days?

            "And a huge fine. Make the worms pay."

            The worms are already paying: Their kids want iPad Minis for Xmas.

        2. Psyx

          Re: 14 days?

          "They should have thrown the Apple rep into a cell for contempt and left him there until Apple changed their notice. I expect Apple would have found that they could edit a webpage in 14 minutes, rather than 14 days."

          I hate to break this, but it's worth far more to Apple for them to have no statement on their site for 14 days than it costs to pay a lawyer to sit in jail for that amount of time. They'd have been delighted at being offered such an option.

          1. PatientOne

            Re: 14 days?

            "I hate to break this, but it's worth far more to Apple for them to have no statement on their site for 14 days than it costs to pay a lawyer to sit in jail for that amount of time. They'd have been delighted at being offered such an option."

            I think it would be fitting if Apple's senior exec were held at Her Majesty's pleasure for the time it takes to put up the correct notice. That might focus Apple's minds a little.

            Or not: It would also put the future of said execs in the hands of their workers...

          2. Mike Flex

            Re: 14 days?

            "I hate to break this, but it's worth far more to Apple for them to have no statement on their site for 14 days than it costs to pay a lawyer to sit in jail for that amount of time. They'd have been delighted at being offered such an option."

            Ah, by Apple rep I meant whichever Apple staffer got sent along for the day. I'm sure m'learned friends know how to keep themselves out of the cells.

            If Apple are planning to turn up to the next hearing with an excuse rather than a compliant web page and a fulsome apology it would be refreshing for the court to require it to be presented in person by the senior Apple UK exec. Who should pack a toothbrush.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: 14 days?

          reps are highly replaceable, they'd fire him for gross misconduct, and let him rot in jail ;)

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