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Steve Jobs: Apple Corps Battle Could "Drag On For A Few Years"

Steve Jobs: Apple Corps Battle Could "Drag On For A Few Years"

by , 8:00 AM EDT, September 29th, 2003

Earlier this month, we reported that The Beatles' record label had sued Apple over the iPod and the iTunes Music Store (iTMS). At issue is a long standing (dis)agreement over what Apple can and can not do when it comes to music, due to the fact that Apple Corps owns a trademark on its name. The next week, Apple CEO Steve Jobs made comments to The Independent, a UK newspaper, saying that the court case might well have to go to court. The paper also quoted him as saying that the agreement over which Apple Corps is suing was one that he inherited, but that he was having to deal with it now.

Today, The Times Online, the online branch of UK newspaper The Times, is adding a bit more to the public warning from Mr. Jobs. According to The Times Online, Mr. Jobs has let it be known that the court battle could "drag on for a few years." The short mention from the short article:

Mr Jobs told The Times that the two sides’ latest quarrel looks destined to be decided by a judge. He said: “It's really stupid. We can't reach an agreement, but the courts could drag on for a few years.”

There's additional background information on the situation in the full article.

The Mac Observer Spin:

For a few years, eh? That's quite a long time. We'd sure hate to see it just drag and drag. Think of all those court costs!

That's the sub text of Mr. Jobs statements, and we have little doubt that the comments have been made only to serve as a public warning to The Beatles (and their widows). We think that Apple would most likely prefer to get a settlement that once and for all allows the company to compete in whatever markets it wishes, with a one-time payment to the band's label. As we have said in the past, Apple can not settle for less.

This sort of public posturing is quite common. In this case, it's simply Apple drawing a line in the dirt to let Apple Corps know that the computer company is prepared to spend as much money fighting this as needed. Again, what's not being said outright, but is clear to be heard, is that Apple Corps could just help itself to that money directly, if it so chose, and be done with it.

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