Judge Grants Apple’s Summary Judgement, Denies Psystar [Updated]

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Friday the 13th was an unlucky day for Psystar and its Mac clone business because Judge Alsup denied its motion for summary judgement and granted Apple's. The two companies have been fighting in court over whether or not the PC maker can build and sell Mac clones without Apple's permission.

Apple filed a lawsuit against Psystar in Northern California several months ago claiming the small PC maker was violating the Mac OS X end user license agreement, and that it was violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act with the steps it used to install the Mac operating system on PCs. Psystar claimed that it should be allowed to build and sell PCs with Mac OS X pre-installed and that Apple is overstepping its bounds by blocking companies from selling Mac clones.

In its motion for Summary Judgement, Apple argued that the licensing agreement for Mac OS X states that the end user owns the disc the software ships on, but only licenses the use of the operating system. Since Mac OS X is licensed instead of owned, users are bound by Apple's terms that prohibit installing and running the software on non-Apple hardware.

In its Summary Judgement filing, Psystar claimed that because users own the media Mac OS X ships on, they own the operating system as well. Owning the OS gives them the right to use it as they see fit, and in this case that includes installing it on Mac clones.

Psystar also filed its own suit in Florida claiming that Leopard and Snow Leopard are distinctly different products, and that the California case only addresses Mac OS X 10.5, not the newer Mac OS X 10.6.

Psystar, however, wasn't able to present a compelling enough argument, leading Judge William Alsup to deny its motion only a day after the the summary judgement hearing in U.S. District Court in Northern California.

"Judge Alsup found that Psystar's defenses were unavailing, because they had no basis in either law or fact or both," The Mac Observer's legal contact said.

The day went much better for Apple since Judge Alsup granted its motion. Based on Judge Alsup's ruling, Psystar infringed on Apple's copyrights when it sold PCs with Mac OS X installed, and it violated the DMCA by circumventing Apple's code that binds Mac OS X to Apple hardware.

"Winning of the copyright infringement would have been sufficient to win the day for Apple, but Judge Alsup also found that Psystar illegally circumvented the technical measures that Apple uses to protect OS X and trafficked in illegal circumvention technology," commented TMO's legal contact.

"According to Apple, Psystar has violated its exclusive right to copy Mac OS X. Psystar admits that it has made copies of Mac OS X and installed those copies on non-Apple computers," Judge Alsup said in his ruling. "In addition, when Psystar turns on its computers running Mac OS X, another copy of the software is made to the random access memory. Psystar has thus infringed Apple's reproduction right."

Judge Alsup added "Psystar argues that Apple misused its copyrights by continuing to prosecute allegedly 'invalid' copyright infringement and DMCA claims against Psystar. This argument is unavailing. This order finds that Apple's claims are valid and has granted summary judgment in favor of Apple on those claims."

In other words, the court ruled that Apple didn't misuse its Mac OS X copyrights and that Psystar had no grounds for invalidating those copyrights.

Despite Judge Alsup's strong ruling, this case isn't over yet. Apple's relief in the case hasn't been determined yet, and an injunction preventing Psystar from selling Mac clones hasn't been issued yet. Judge Alsup hasn't indicated whether or not Leopard and Snow Leopard would be included in any injunction, either.

Should the California court grant an injunction blocking Psystar from selling Mac clones that's broad enough to include all versions of Mac OS X, and also award Apple statutory damages, the PC maker could be ordered to surrender all of the profits it made from selling computers with Leopard and Snow Leopard pre-installed.

Judge Alsup's ruling also set the stage for the pending trial scheduled for January 2010. "Because neither party raised or fully addressed the contract, trademark, trade dress, and unfair competition issues, Judge Alsup reserved those issues for trial," TMO's legal contact said.

Now Psystar will have to try to convince the court that its parallel case in Florida should be allowed to move forward independently of Judge Alsup's summary judgement ruling -- a job that might be difficult for Psystar to manage.

"I think that the logic of Judge Alsup's opinion extends to cover all of Psystar's conduct in making Mac clones with either Leopard or Snow Leopard," TMO's legal contact said. "But we shall see."

A new hearing has been set for December 14, and Apple has until November 23 to file its formal briefing for relief.

[This article has been updated with additional information about Judge Alsup's ruling.]

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190 Comments Leave Your Own

Jeff Gamet

This is a pretty big blow for Psystar because Judge Alsup is saying that the evidence against the company is so strong that the ruling against it is simply a matter of law. I’m assuming that the Judge will issue an injunction that covers all versions of Mac OS X, too. At this point, Psystar should probably kick its damage control efforts into high gear.

John Molloy

So probably Psystar will file for chapter 11 again to keep their options open…

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Sigh-*. Take the result as it is and step back 10 feet. Does it bother any of you that Apple is relying on a low-level procedural mechanism of the CPU copying the software into RAM to claim a copyright violation through license infringement? Here we are in 2009 when the default for anything new and interesting (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) is “please copy and share” and Apple is in court with a “do not copy what you’ve purchased from us to something we don’t approve of” argument.

Some days I wish I had $50 million to burn. I’d create a free to download and copy operating system that didn’t suck and was simple and elegant. I’d acquire a few nice applications, port them and make them exclusive to Bosco (the name of the OS, hey it’s my $50m, I’ll name it after my dog if I like). And my operating motto would simply be “don’t be a dick”.

Joe Anonymous

“low level procedural issue”? Are you on drugs?

The court slammed Psystar 6 ways from Sunday. EVERY Psystar argument was negated.

I wondered how the mindless Apple bashers would respond and I guess that’s it: “Psystar didn’t do anything wrong-Apple only won on a technicality”.

Amazing how delusional people can get when it gives them the chance to bash Apple.

demjones

Bosco, it’s called Ubuntu Linux.

UrbanBard

Bosco, Apple is stating that it owns Mac OSX and has the right to control it in any way possible. Therefore, any mechanism attempting to skirt the law ant Apple’s rights are illegitimate.

If other prople choose to promote “please copy and share” that is their business.

This is all about Apple’s rights to control the conditions under which Mac OSX can be copied and used. Buying the installation DVD does not confer full and complete rights to modify or use Apple’s software.

It should be clear from this ruling that Psystar has no rights.

Even if you had $50 million, this does not indicate that you are competent to create an acceptable and efficient Operating System. This is very hard to achieve as NeXT Corporation proved. They had the world’s most advanced Operating system and they could not get enough users and developers to make it a commercial success.

There are hopes that Google will make the Chrome OS into such as success, but we won’t know about that for over six months. Google has spent far more than $50 million on the project and it could be for nothing. Microsoft spent $6 billion on the Longhorn OS and it had to throw away the code.

What this decision says is that when you do have a working Operating System, such as Mac OSX, then you must protect it from anyone who would misuse it.

You are acting as though Mac OSX is two diametrically opposed things: it is worth enough to steal but not worth enough to pay for. This says very little about Apple and a great deal about your morality.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@Joe… “low level procedural issue” is not “legal technicality”. It refers to something that 99% of Apple’s customers couldn’t begin to explain and probably couldn’t hope to begin to understand, mainly how software gets from a disk and onto the screen. And yet said customers are binding themselves to a shrink-wrap EULA and have no option to negotiate a contract they could be reasonably expected to understand. I’m not saying that people are stupid, but that most people have more important things to worry about than how a von Neuman architecture works. I know the political makeup of Mac users leans heavily left-Democratic. Most of you who fall into that are appalled at, for example, complicated mortgage contracts, to the point where you support a government that would step in and force lenders to renegotiate. And yet you sit idly by when a EULA is (in its context) far more restrictive and less understandable because it’s your beloved Apple who wrote the contract. Seems weird to me.

@demjones… Where should I begin with Ubuntu? How about the installation process of 9.10? If you, as a new user, read every word they put on the screen during that process, you’ll have read the equivalent of two months worth of the New York Times. That’s just one example of how Ubuntu pretends to be friendly and polished despite the fact that friendliness and ease of use got left out of its gene pool.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@UrbanBard… What you’re talking about are essentially moral rights in copyright as opposed to economic rights. The United States has a strong tradition of preserving economic rights, but moral rights really only come into play in our law in a very narrow realm of film. Moral rights are more of the French and German tradition. The economic right is the English and American tradition. It says that creators should get paid for copies. It says we creators have an exclusive right based in our right to make money to determine distribution. We don’t have a right to tell end-users they can’t deface our work or display it in a way that we might find objectionable.

Under copyright law, Apple does not control the conditions under which its software is copied! That is under its EULA, a contract. I am not, nor have I ever, advocated that anyone willfully violate either our copyright law or break contracts they have entered into. But I am saying that many contracts we all enter into are by their nature unenforceable without a heavy hand of a court and/or not in our collective interest to enforce. When courts are given opportunities to find such contracts invalid, I hope they will step up and do it. Because I hope that people and companies who use contract to assert rights they just don’t have (such as moral copyright) get slapped around occasionally. You’ve heard of domain squatters and patent trolls, right? There are contract trolls too. And they have left a huge stench in their wake in the computer industry.

The slap on my morality was silly. Maybe I should just go with Greg Gurfeld’s standard disclaimer: ...and if you disagree with me, you sir are worse than Hitler. There, we’re even. grin

farmboy

Bosco, you’re being deliberately obtuse. Any purchaser of the Apple OS X disk can simply return the disk to Apple for a complete refund if they choose not to accept the terms of the EULA, which is actually written in fairly basic language (yes, I’ve read it). Psystar got slammed, and it was no “low level procedural issue”, whatever you think that is. Not all contracts are negotiable, some are simply take it or leave it. So what? You can’t negotiate your electric bill either

And I like the gratuitous political slant (simultaneously irrelevant and essentially bogus). Did you know John McCain and Rush Limbaush are Apple users? I’m not aware of a political litmus test to buy the machines. Maybe on the planet where you live.

And please enlighten us as to how a software EULA, costing almost nothing and for which there are numerous alternatives, compares to long, complex document using many Latin phrases and unknown acronyms, controlling the most expensive item people will ever buy? Yeah, where’s our outrage over a EULA…crickets…crickets…

farmboy

“many contacts…are unenforceable without the heavy hand of a court”? What? “Moral Copyrights”? Contract Trolls? That’s just bizarre.

Really, you are not a lawyer (obviously), or even especially informed as to contracts, copyrights, or even the legal traditions of other countries. So it would be best for you to not make such statements. It might be better to let people assume you are a fool than to simply remove all doubt, so to speak.

Nemo

Dear Bosco:  Just law allows a person to acquire property rights in his work.  Apple spent the resources to make OS X, and so the Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. ?? 101 et seq., grants in authors certain exclusive rights so that they can benefit from their work, and society benefits, because people produce creative and useful work because they know that they can profit from their work.  Now, the law does not require you to charge for your work.  You can be like Linus Torvalds and Richard Stallman and benefit by giving your work away or licensing it under a very liberal license, such as the GPL.  The law also protects your right to do that.  But, if you are like most people, who want a return for their work and who won’t do much work without the promise of fair return, the law protects your right to claim your work as your own, gives you the right to negotiate with others to use your work, and enforces the terms of that negotiation.  To most of us, that seems just right.

But you, Bosco, want to give away Apple’s work, not your work, as if Apple had no rights in its own work.  But it must or should be obvious that your approach is self defeating, for either the law will grant people property rights in their works of authorship and useful invention or the vast majority of people won’t author or invent creative and useful works.  And that would be a terrible loss for society.  So, from the point of view of public policy, it is that simple:  We either create and protect proprietary rights in authors and inventors, or we don’t get very many creative and useful works.  From the point of view of simple just, it is also clear that any just system must grant to a person the exclusive rights to control, use, and dispose of product of his effort and resources.  Apple isn’t asking for anything more than that, and Judge Alsup’s judgment for Apple does nothing more than affirm the policy, justice, and rights accorded to Apple and to each of us under the Copyright Act and the Constitution Of The United States.

If, Bosco, you demand a regime where you can expropriate another’s work for no other reason than you think that you or your designee should have it, I, for one, am glad that Judge Alsup said no to you.

UrbanBard

All law comes back to morality. Only a Socialist says that economic rights are not personal and moral rights. They say this based on the assumption that “all property is theft.”  They exempt the property that they steal from others through governmental actions, of course. This is because they think that everyone is the property of the government.

I suggest you look up English common laws, rather than German or French.

The first position is that a person owns themselves and what they create. Copy right law states that what a person creates during their lifetime remain theirs to sell or display. They can choose not to display or publish their works. If another steals their works and publishes it, economic damages can accrue, because the act of publishing cannot be taken back.

Thus, when Psystar copies and publishes Apple property in their computers, then Apple can ask the court to stop Psystar from continuing to steal their property and to assign damages.

The point is that the copy write holder have rights to tell end users how they may use their intellectual property. The problem is how practical it is to enforce the copy holder’s rights.

Since, so many people these days are amoral, then it will be necessary for Apple to introduce DRM to protect their right. This is a ticklish proposition, because Apple’s legitimate users have rights which Apple may not abuse.

Psystar was never a legitimate user. The courts will be nailing this proposition down.

In any disputation, the first person, who so devoid of logic and evidence to bring up Hitler, loses the argument.

Also, if you dislike the contract under which an article is sold, then don’t purchase the item. If you purchase a product with the intention of ignoring the conditions under which it is sold, then you become a scofflaw.

The best way of dealing with scofflaws is to refuse to sell to them again. And to publish their disrespect of other peoples rights.

When people lived in villages this was quite easy to do, since everyone knew everyone else’s business dealings. The event of the internet is making it cheap enough to return to this practice. Scofflaws will be held up as bad examples. There will be a price to be paid for violating other people’s rights.

John Molloy

It refers to something that 99% of Apple?s customers couldn?t begin to explain and probably couldn?t hope to begin to understand, mainly how software gets from a disk and onto the screen.

I am Mr high and mighty and I live in a alternate reality. Really Bosco drop it. Go troll on the Google boards or somewhere that might give a damn.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@Nemo. I do not want to give away Apple’s work. I want for Apple to be reasonable in how it enforces its rights. Look, let me try this again. What Apple wants to be able to do is ship hardware that is basically the same as commodity hardware with nothing special (and thus more costly to ship) that their OS installer might recognize and inform users that they are straying from the license. They want to ship software which admittedly (if you go by Mossberg’s column on Snow Leopard) does nothing to enforce or inform the user about whether they have complied with Apple’s wishes on upgrading. It may sound like arguing bridge bidding conventions, but I’d be much more comfortable if Apple relied on provisions of the DMCA to protect its software than on a contract that nobody reads.

I guess another thing that frosts my ass about what Apple is able to get away with is that smaller players can’t. There have been some recent discussions on REALbasic lists about software like REALbasic that phones home for license tracking. I’m fine with that and I’ve built a couple such systems. They definitely increase the ratio of legitimate users to pirates, and we assume that means that they increase revenue. And they would have the force of the DMCA behind them in court, although realistically, the companies involved are too small to spend their days in court. REAL Software was getting a lot of blowback from its own customers about the phone home protection. And I’ve experienced blow back over the same thing. The blow back is a cost of playing this software game. It’s a cost that Apple doesn’t have to pay, and in not paying it, they set a customer expectation that makes the cost higher for the rest of us. Call it jealousy if you will. I just think big companies shouldn’t enjoy market advantage from what amount to special legal privileges.

OK, I’m done. Enjoy your victory parade. grin

robinson

Where’s the evidence for the claim that “I know the political makeup of Mac users leans heavily left-Democratic. “

Glad the judge is batting this distracting fly away!

James

So, Bosco, basically you just used a whole lot of words to reiterate what you’ve already said before. You want to ride on Apple’s coattails. You think they should be lax in protecting their IP for your benefit. Ludicrous. You just don’t make sense.

Little guys? What do you think Apple was when they first started in the garage and their machines had wooden parts? What were they becoming before Steve returned? If you have a good product of your own you won’t be a little guy for long. When did we decide there was something wrong with accountability? And how would you feel about it if you did develop something with all of your heart and resources over a period of decades that was a tremendous success and someone else decided that they could waltz in and take it because you’d gotten too big? IP is not a moral issue. Thank Zeus our good Judge agreed with that statement.

UrbanBard

Bosco, you want to define what is reasonable to Apple? Apple is not allowed to define that for itself? Who died and made you King?

“They want to ship software which admittedly (if you go by Mossberg?s column on Snow Leopard) does nothing to enforce or inform the user about whether they have complied with Apple?s wishes on upgrading. “

Apparently, you have never installed Mac OSX. There is a specific place in the installer where you agree to the conditions or the installer will not proceed.

“I guess another thing that frosts my ass about what Apple is able to get away with is that smaller players can?t. “

That is irrational.  You are saying at Apple’s rights depend on someone else’s rights, not the law. An injustice to the owners of REALBasic allows an injustice to Apple? What kind of moral relativism are you trying to pull?

The problem of piracy is because of the lack of justice. If the pirates were hunted down and sued, then there would be less theft.

I-agree-with_notYOU

There is a much larger ethical issue for all you out there who/that can’t handle the word “moral” in this discussion.

up until recently the California Air Resources Board was considering legislation that would make it illegal for you to sell someone a kit to plug in their prius… recently, they backed off.
okay… anyone who thinks that the CARB should NOT have backed off, stand up… you should start to see some parallels between this and the psystar issue…

we’re basicallly talking about buying music CD’s and CARS with
DRM, or AnalogRM (teehee).... do you want that? Do you want someone to say you CAN’T REUPHOLSTER YOUR CAR, or put a seat-cover on it? I want to be able to make this many copies of a music CD that I purchase at my local “little guy”: 1 backup to be archived, 1 copy that goes in my cd binder that I use to rip/listen to/take with me; then I don’t know… myabe 1 each for every device I own that can handle a CD? If anyone who doesn’t want their digital OR physical information backed up anywhere, and the trust a single HD and nature’s (or whoever’s… ) weather patterns not to fail or cause too much moisture in their environment… also, please stand up…

also, can we have something more intelligent than just getting in on the fun and criticizing Bosco’s opinion, and even name calling, etc… please, please, add to the discussion… Nemo I think added to the discussion.

and speaking for socialists urbanbard, when you’re obviously not one of them, I would have to say you’re just being naive if you think that people own what they create…
but, to be sure anyone who thinks Obama = Hitler has lost the argument in my book. what were we talking about again?

love from me,
+)    (<—that’s a smiley over there on the left)

UrbanBard

Governments are, by their nature, amoral. That is, that their leaders believe that they can define what is moral and thus what is good and right.

The problem is that bad consequences follow from bad (or immoral)  laws. Governments tend to use their control of the printing presses and educational establishments to blame everyone, but themselves, for the consequences. Million die, but it is never their fault, because their motives are pure.

Depressions just happen, they say. It can’t be the result of manipulating the money supply or ruinous taxes and regulations. Nor can it be from squandering the society’s wealth on bad public policy.

Periodically, the electorate must relearn that governmental actions have a high moral and economic price. And that the least government is the best government; that is the government which allows the population the most freedom.

But, Socialists are opposed to freedom and private property.

If people do not own what they create, then no one owns anything, not even themselves. If we own nothing there is no reason for us to create anything. This is why Socialist, Communist and Fascist societies impoverish themselves.

No, Obama doesn’t equal Hitler. Obama doesn’t have Hitler’s guts. Obama equals Jimmy Carter.

Ref Librarian

“I would have to say you’re just being naive if you think that people own what they create…”

Has anyone here heard of fan fiction? In that genre of fiction, they take characters and a world that someone else created and they write there own stories using them. Copyright owners don’t usually go after the little people who enjoy doing this and sharing what they wrote with a group….

Unless that person/persons start using their world and characters for profit. At that point the person who holds the copyright has no option but to go after the person and protect their copyright.

I don’t see Apple doing anything different that that.

I-agree-with_notYOU

I see your point Ref Librarian. Indeed it is not only possible, but happens all the time that ownership of a work doesn’t shift from the creator. But not only are there myriad counter-examples, but also the question of original ownership! You speak of fan fiction… so, in a university some guy has an idea, and then 5 other people spend several years implementing it… who is the creator? we give nary a glance to those five, known as graduate students, but all the credit goes to ‘some guy’, a professor… is the Professor the actual creator? At University of California, the following day a corporation owns the research, and is either not sharing with humanity or any relevant industry, unless they pay up, and not a single penny ever goes to any of those graduate students OR the state! Because the University is a profit making institution, even though it’s supposedly public, and all the profit goes into the pockets of the most highly ranked chancellors, and board members, merely a handful of people… are THEY the creators? who is responsible? Certainly tax-payers should get a rebate every time this happens… right? it’s a public university? they provided some funding support of the many decades.

UrbanBard

Fan Fiction is a sort of a compliment.

Of course, the polite thing to do is to ask permission.

Marion Zimmer Bradley has published a whole series of fan stories set in her “Darkover” universe. That universe was too Lesbian to appeal to me. Everything was about Power, adolescent anxiety and coming to age.

Eric Flint has had a delightful series of fan short stories in The Grantville Gazette based in his “1632” universe.

The problem that Apple is having with hackers and its EULA is that some of the people in the FOSS community have a decided socialist bent. They are anti-business. They want to place Apple and Microsoft in the same boat. The problem is that they aren’t producing much of value for anyone but themselves. I don’t see Linux Desktop going anywhere. This is because the FOSS community want to keep it hard to use.

UrbanBard

You are not being clear,  I-agree-with_notYOU. A University has the right to hire a professor to work part time to research a topic and to sell the research to whom ever they please. The professor gets the credit and the reputation while the persons, the University sells the research to, get the rights.

Humanity paid for nothing, nor did the relevant industry. So, why should they benefit?

Who is responsible? Why not let be the people who paid for the research, be responsible?

Then your problem is with Tax Funded universities? Usually, the laws are quite clear about this. If the University wants to take a profit, it must not commingle private and public funds.

But, any private institution can do research. Are you against that? The University can own a corporation that it does its commercial research.

How do you know that the chancellors are doing anything illegal?

dave00

To say that when you buy an Apple OS CD you only buy the plastic is absurd. You’re buying an OS, obviously. And to say that *using* an OS is a breach of copyright is also absurd.

I presume the article is only mentioning Apple’s more extreme arguments and that there are other more mainstream ones. Otherwise it just seems like another case of Apple’s legal bullying.

Ref Librarian

The question is not who does the work, it is who owns the copyright (or patent). They have the right to protect what they own. You may call someone who legally protects what they own a bully. I think they are smart, not to mention within their rights.

dave00

But Ref L, it’s not about protecting what they own, because when someone buys the OS CD Apple receives their full asking price. What they are actually protecting is their right to say: ‘OK you legitimately bought our CD but you can’t use it! Oh well, since you complain so much, we will let you use it, as long as you now buy one of our brand new computers as well!

UrbanBard

No, Dave, You buy the plastic disk along with the rights to use the intellectual property on the disk under certain conditions. Those conditions are that you will use that upgrade on only Apple hardware. You have to agree to those conditions before the installer loads the software now.

If you were buying the rights to modify the OS or the conditions, then Apple would be charging you much more than it is.

One way that Apple could nip the Hackintoshes in the bud is to charge a thousand dollars for the upgrade disk. Then when you register your Apple hardware you get a rebate for the difference between $1000 and $129. What that does is say, “If you want to create a hackintosh, okay, but the price for doing so is $1000.” The Hackers are so cheap that it wouldn’t be worth their while.

Ref Librarian

But Ref L, it?s not about protecting what they own, because when someone buys the OS CD Apple receives their full asking price. What they are actually protecting is their right to say: ?OK you legitimately bought our CD but you can?t use it! Oh well, since you complain so much, we will let you use it, as long as you now buy one of our brand new computers as well!

It is all about protecting what they own. Just like the copyright holders of books and fan fiction writers, Apple does not care if an individual jerry rigs something that will use their software for their own personal use, without making any money off of it. Just as soon as a person starts trying to make money (as Pystar is trying to do) off it, then they will move to protect what they own.

dave00

Urban:

I would be extremely surprised if Apple had the right to tell a PC user to unload a legit Mac OS on the grounds they only bought some plastic. IMHO they would have to sell you a legal agreement and be absolutely clear that you were buying a legal agreement and that you were *not* buying an OS.

Ref L:

They don’t *own* the right to say their software can only be used on a Mac. They own computer designs and software.

John Molloy

ok freetards, bog off. This is not Nam there are rules.

Ref Librarian

They do own the right to say that their software can only be used on a Mac. Anyone who buys the software agrees to it. If you don’t want to agree, don’t buy it. If you do buy, then you agree to their terms of use. You might resent the H out of it, but that is what you are doing.

Apple’s reputation is what it is because they control the Apple experience. i work daily with Microsoft software running on HPs and Dells and who knows what. It is a terrible experience. All the things we want to work together, do it very poorly. The reason that I own Macs at home is because I don’t want to struggle with my computer at home, too, as I might well have to do if Apple didn’t tell me that I must run their software on their machine. Do you know how many people buy Macs for the same reason I do? That is one thing that Apple is protecting.

And this is from a person who bought a German Apple clone in 1983! It was replaced within two years. The experience was not satisfactory, to say the least.

UrbanBard

Dave, Apple doesn’t have to tell anyone, it’s what the buyer agreed to. The conditions are on the box. It’s also what the user agreed to when they installed the software on the system.

Apple is just assuming that you are honest. And that you know what Intellectual Property is. You can’t be as dumb as you appear. You sound like you have never bought anything more complicated than a coke or a BIg Mac before.

When you purchase a car, you buy it under condition regarding the warranty. If you don’t live up to your maintenance schedule, then the dealer won’t fix the car when it breaks. Contracts bind both you and another party.

The DVD box is only an upgrade license for use on Genuine Apple hardware. If you use it on anything else, you are violating Apple’s rights. You might get away with it, since Apple isn’t actively looking for violators, but I believe that Apple will eventually get around to closing this loop hole.

Apple, with Mac OS X 10.6.2, recently bricked Hackintoshes with the Atom processor inside. The Hackers will get around this upgrade, but Apple has thrown down the gauntlet. This is just Apple’s opening moves.

Apple had every legal right to refuse to upgrade the software on computers it does not make. If you really owned the DVD and the Intellectual Property then you could sue Apple for bricking your PC. You would be laughed out of court.

Jim

Some days I wish I had $50 million to burn. I?d create a free to download and copy operating system that didn?t suck and was simple and elegant. I?d acquire a few nice applications, port them and make them exclusive to Bosco (the name of the OS, hey it?s my $50m, I?ll name it after my dog if I like). And my operating motto would simply be ?don?t be a dick?.


And you’d burn through more than $50 million and have squat to show for it.
You’d have to continue to dump in money(or make revenue somehow) for NOTHING is PERFECT! Nor would be your Bosco…and yo’d have to support it.

IOW, a very flawed scenario.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

And you?d burn through more than $50 million and have squat to show for it.

But it would be my $50 million and I’d smoke some fine Cuban cigars while I did it! FWIW, Be, Inc. made it to an IPO on less than $50 million.

You might get away with it, since Apple isn?t actively looking for violators, but I believe that Apple will eventually get around to closing this loop hole.

One day it will hit you what Bosco was saying and you’ll slap yourself upside the head for taking so long to get it. Apple will not close the loopholes, because closing the loopholes will make things difficult for its customers who comply with Apple’s wishes. Apple wants this both ways. It wants everything easy, it wants to ship (cheap) commodity hardware. It doesn’t want to implement protection. And then it wants to sue a customer who purchases licenses because the customer doesn’t comply with all the license terms.

James

Ugh. Just to beat the dead horse a little more, copyright (which is different than patent, as has been pointed out), or sole ownership, which s legally binding, always automatically goes to the creator of a work; with most works, registration isn’t even a requirement. In this case that would be the entity “Apple” (there are too many details to go into regarding that here).

The weak arguments against IP and copyright only leads me to believe that many of those shouting the loudest have never created anything and therefore never investigated the laws concerning it from that perspective. Someone like Linus chose to pursue a different model for Linux from the very beginning. And no offense intended, I do think it’s a remarkable accomplishment, but to play Devil’s Advocate here: how long has Linux been in development now with no genuinely easily usable distro for the non-geek?

Anyway, I’m just happy that it’s all coming to a close and ended the way it did.

I-agree-with_notYOU

I think I’m done trying to participate in macobserver discussions, not because ‘freetards’ is too resemblant of a youtube discussion, not because dave can speak up a little bit more without me, and not even because it’s oblique, but because… well… 3 times the page has ‘autoreloaded’ and once upon the submit button: i have lost all that i’ve typed…

so to those of all viewpoints, goodnite, and goodluck.

UrbanBard

Bosco said:
“One day it will hit you what Bosco was saying and you?ll slap yourself upside the head for taking so long to get it. Apple will not close the loopholes, because closing the loopholes will make things difficult for its customers who comply with Apple?s wishes. “

Keeping the customers satisfied is partly why Apple has not been more stringent in protecting its rights. But, when the hardware changed to Intel processors, this necessitated that Apple’s software change, too. Major adjustments lie ahead, but Apple has no reason to clue you in.

“Apple wants this both ways. It wants everything easy, it wants to ship (cheap) commodity hardware. It doesn?t want to implement protection. “

It’s more complicated than that. Apple never had this problem 4 years ago, when it used PowerPC processors. It was the move to Intel processors which opened up the Hackintosh or clone threat.

Now, Apple is moving to the 64 bit kernel over the next year. 90% of Mac applications will be recompiled in 64 bit code in six to nine months. Apple, in 10.6.3 or .4, will boot into the 64 bit kernel by default and some impressive security enhancements will kick in: DEP, ASLR, and sand boxing.

I believe that Apple will use 64 bit Security to shut this issue down. Apple will sell it as a security enhancement for lost or stolen laptops, but it will freeze out the Hackintoshes too. Apple has had five years to plan for this move to Intel. I seriously doubt that they have neglected anything. There simply was no reason to say anything until all the parts of their security system was in place.

“And then it wants to sue a customer who purchases licenses because the customer doesn?t comply with all the license terms.”

Apple is not going to sue customers. It will simply refuse to install the OS on anything but Genuine Apple hardware.

The Snow Leopard DVD changed its procedures recently. It now installs the software into a virtual space before it starts asking questions. Why shouldn’t Apple start verifying that you have permission and authorization to install the OS? Why shouldn’t it verify that the hardware is genuine Apple? We genuine Apple users will have no problem complying with Apple’s increased security. After all, we are honest.

UrbanBard

“Someone like Linus chose to pursue a different model for Linux from the very beginning.”

Linus Torvalds said that if he knew that BSD was viable, then he would not have bothered to convert the Minix kernel into Linux. It was just that UNIX was up in the air because Berkeley University was in a law suit with AT&T at the time.

“And no offense intended, I do think it?s a remarkable accomplishment, but to play Devil?s Advocate here: how long has Linux been in development now with no genuinely easily usable distro for the non-geek?”

I have hopes for Google Chrome OS, myself. Google has every reason to make Chrome into a general purpose, secure, HTML 5 based Operating System for the casual user. The reason Google is writing Chrome is to prevent being sabotaged by Microsoft, but the Chrome OS would customize Linux for Web use. That alone would prevent Chrome from being geeky.

Google’s intent is to start with NetBooks and move up toward Apple’s upper half of the consumer marketplace. The goal is for Apple and Google to split the market between them. Microsoft would be frozen out, because both Chrome and the Mac are essentially malware proof. The same could not be said of Windows.

“Anyway, I?m just happy that it?s all coming to a close and ended the way it did.”

It’s good when the rule of law prevails, rather than politics or corruption.

B9robot

It all comes down to the UELA that clearly states every time you run the installer that OSX should only be used on Apple’s own products.
Bosco you don’t need 50 million dollars to develop an OS.
OSX is ready to run now! Buy a Mac!
It’s a lot cheaper than 50 million dollars too!

Bryan Chaffin

I think I?m done trying to participate in macobserver discussions, not because ?freetards? is too resemblant of a youtube discussion, not because dave can speak up a little bit more without me, and not even because it?s oblique, but because? well? 3 times the page has ?autoreloaded? and once upon the submit button: i have lost all that i?ve typed?


Sorry about the hassle. The auto-reload is not supposed to be on any page other than the home page, but it crept back in during a recent back-end update.  Stephen has it fixed for the next back-end update, which is coming shortly!

daemon

I’m concerned that the EULA has been upheld. The wording of these default contracts are obtuse and often require the end user to sacrifice many rights they would normally have otherwise with no corresponding benefit granted for these loss of rights.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I?m concerned that the EULA has been upheld. The wording of these default contracts are obtuse and often require the end user to sacrifice many rights they would normally have otherwise with no corresponding benefit granted for these loss of rights.

I’m surprised nobody has answered this concern yet. We’re talking about Apple here. They would never use a long, confusing EULA to make users sacrifice their rights. This is the company that took tough stands against shaking babies and bobblehead politicians when morally bankrupt developers tried to corrupt the public mind with their applications. If this were Microsoft (hiss! boo!) it would be a different story. But Apple is looking out for us.

UrbanBard

Don’t you understand, Daemon? You think that you have rights which are nothing more than vapor. You believe that you own the intellectual property which comes on a DVD. Therefore, you may modify it at will and install it on any computer which you own.

This is not true; these are merely the lies which members of the FOSS community tell each other.

You only have the rights which have been granted to you. The rights, which you have, are based on the price which you paid. The problem with the hackers are that they are cheap bastards who have no respect for anyone else. They rely on the fact that they are few in numbers and it is very difficult for the copy right holder to find and punish them.

Psystar took your FOSS opinions into the marketplace and the court room where they lost. The EULA says what it means and the courts will back it up.

The only fig leaf you have now is your anonymity and that will not last forever. Apple threw down the gauntlet when it blocked Snow leopard from running on the Atom based NetBooks. The hackers will respond to the challenge and will be shot down again. Eventually, the hackers will run out of cover.

geoduck

I?m surprised nobody has answered this concern yet. We?re talking about Apple here. ...snip… But Apple is looking out for us.

Wow such deep sarcasm for such an early Sunday morning.
The fact is Apple is a Company. Companies are Organisms, not people. As such Apple has no moral dimension. Apple does what it does because it’s good for business. The same as MS, or GE, or Burt’s Taco Palace. Apple yanked the shaking baby app not because of any morel revulsion, but once they realized what it was they concluded it might cost sales. Apple in the PsyStar case is defending it’s IP against this, and whomever is bankrolling them, because they have concluded that if cloning were allowed to go unchecked it would cost them sales. No More, No Less. Apple has put some of the software it has developed out as FOSS. They did so not because of some altruistic hope. They did so because they have concluded that eventually it will add to the bottom line.

Corporations have no moral dimension. Zilch, nada, none whatsoever. It’s all about profit and loss. In fact let’s assume for a moment that Apple had let people build their own clones commercially. Steve Jobs and the Board of Directors would likely have been sued and possibly been brought up on SEC charges for mismanaging the company and endangering the stockholders investments. Apple had no choice it HAD to defend its IP against Psystar and anyone else that would use it without permission. That’s business and business is not about being nice or right or wrong or morality. It’s about the letter of the law. Technicalities if you will, but that’s the rules of the game.

UrbanBard

“I?m surprised nobody has answered this concern yet. We?re talking about Apple here. They would never use a long, confusing EULA to make users sacrifice their rights. “

A EULA is in legalese. It must be so, if it is to stand up in court. But, there is plenty of plain spoken English in the EULA. It clearly states that the Intellectual property on the DVD is to be used ONLY for the purpose of upgrading genuine Apple hardware. It lists the Apple hardware on which it will not be authorized. These limitations are on the Box you buy. It is on the paperwork inside. It is on the program which you agreed to before the software would install. Only someone who does not read would miss it.

“This is the company that took tough stands against shaking babies and bobblehead politicians when morally bankrupt developers tried to corrupt the public mind with their applications. If this were Microsoft (hiss! boo!) it would be a different story. But Apple is looking out for us.”

Apple is protecting itself and its legal rights, but that benefits Mac users, too. It costs money to pay for the research and development for Mac OSX. That money comes from hardware sales. Anyone who misuses the upgrade DVD is stealing money from Apple. Why is this so hard to recognize?

Ref Librarian

Apple is defending my investment in their company. If they didn’t, I wouldn’t be an investor long.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

A EULA is in legalese. It must be so, if it is to stand up in court.

Bullshit. I have actually paid for legal advice from real lawyers who were more than comfortable writing a simple, easy to read EULA in English that they would be more than comfortable taking to court, or more likely, more than comfortable writing a friendly letter to an infringer telling them to stop an activity. EULAs are much less a strictly legal issue these days and much more a customer support and relations issue.

Think about this for a moment… What happens if 1000 Psystars pop up? Just 1000 not terribly bright entrepreneurs who think they’ve found another loophole and realize that Apple can’t fight the war on 1000 fronts; no conspiracy needed. Say it’s 1000 Mac developers who go the XBMC/Boxee route of seemingly legally installing their software on the Apple TV. Or what if iPhone jailbreaking goes mainstream and an install exploit is found that just happens to not be covered or anticipated by the EULA. Is Apple’s defense of its market scalable? Curious what you all think.

Ref Librarian

I’m glad that you paid real lawyers rather than the fake kind. I’m sure that the Apple company is doing the same and they are smart enough to take the advice they are given.

I don’t think any of those other things will happen since Apple is defending itself so rigorously now. If it did not then people would believe that it wouldn’t defend itself and try to take advantage of it.

UrbanBard

Geoduck said:
“The fact is Apple is a Company. Companies are Organisms, not people. As such Apple has no moral dimension. “

You have some really weird beliefs. Companies are composed of human beings. Companies have their interests and their legal rights, but it’s employees can get their panties in a twist. A company may act as a whole, but the people inside those companies know that their jobs are on the line.

There is a moral dimension in that Apple has contracts with their customers, employees and vendors. If Apple neglects their side of a contract, those people will howl.

“Apple does what it does because it?s good for business. The same as MS, or GE, or Burt?s Taco Palace. Apple yanked the shaking baby app not because of any morel revulsion, but once they realized what it was they concluded it might cost sales. “

Apple has a reputation which it tries to maintain. How it acts is no different from a Mom and Pop Store. Apple has a responsibility to protect its customers from trash. When Apple makes a mistake, then it is morally and legally obligated to correct it. This is honest and good for business. It maintains the trust that people have in Apple. Why do you try to besmirch this?

Steve Jobs has been known to get perturbed at lower employee’s actions. Steve takes these things personally. He is quite persnickety about the products which Apple sells.

“Apple in the PsyStar case is defending it?s IP against this, and whomever is bankrolling them, because they have concluded that if cloning were allowed to go unchecked it would cost them sales. No More, No Less. “

The legal rules are clear. If a company does not protects its property, then it no longer owns it. Just like a country which refuses to defend its borders eventually stops being a country.

“Apple has put some of the software it has developed out as FOSS. They did so not because of some altruistic hope. They did so because they have concluded that eventually it will add to the bottom line.”

Your statement is partly true, but it has a derogatory, leftist spin. Are profits a dirty concept to you?

NeXT Corporation purchased a license to use BSD UNIX from Berkeley University in 1986, long before Linux was developed and the Free and Open Source community was ever dreamed up. NeXT created the NeXTstep Operating System in 1989 with Unix as its foundations. Even then, NeXT volunteered code back to Berkeley University. It did so for both selfish and unselfish reasons. It wanted what it developed to become a standard. More often than not, what it developed was ignored.

When Apple bought NeXT Corp in 1997, it tried to get Apple developers and users to adopt NeXTstep but the developers refused. Apple was forced, over the next five years, to create a hybrid between NeXTstep and the old MacOS.

In the process, it developed UNIX code which it returned to BSD organizations—FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD. Apple has adoped Open Source code. It has returned code based on the license of the source. The largest writer of Open Source code in the world is Apple Corp, just as it is the largest UNIX operating system. Apple, thus, need not apologize to anyone in the FOSS community, because is receives very little of its code from Linux.

“Corporations have no moral dimension. Zilch, nada, none whatsoever. It?s all about profit and loss. “

You have no understanding about Apple and what motivates its management. What other corporation talks about “Changing the World” but Apple?

“In fact let?s assume for a moment that Apple had let people build their own clones commercially. Steve Jobs and the Board of Directors would likely have been sued and possibly been brought up on SEC charges for mismanaging the company and endangering the stockholders investments.”

Apple would be sued by its stockholders, not an agency of the government. The Board of Directors and the upper management would be replaced at the next stock holder meeting. The Obama administration has no legal means to oust Apple’s management.

“Apple had no choice it HAD to defend its IP against Psystar and anyone else that would use it without permission. That?s business and business is not about being nice or right or wrong or morality. It?s about the letter of the law. Technicalities if you will, but that?s the rules of the game.”

It’s both about what is legally right and moral. Cloners and Hackers have no moral right to misuse someone else’s intellectual property.

The FOSS community are often repeating concepts which are factually and legally untrue. This court case with Psystar will put these concepts to rest. We do not yet know who the backers of Psystar are. If Apple had lost, many more companies would have jumped into creating clones.

UrbanBard

Bosco, Apple needed to defend itself against Psystar in court or it would cease having any rights.

Nothing that Psystar or the hackers have done should been a surprise to Apple. This is the logical outcome of Apple’s move to Intel processors, three years ago. Apple, likely, started working on this problem before it considered moving to Intel.

This is security loophole which Apple is bound to close. It is an old process from when the Mac was a stand alone system. Whoever was at the keyboard, and had an installer disk in hand, had total control. Apple has already started changing that process, but it will move slowly.

I do not believe that Apple had the technical means to defend itself from the Hackers so long as it was in the 32 bit kernel. I’m guessing at what the 64 bit kernel can do, since Apple isn’t talking much about it. But, between DEP, ASLR, sand boxing and encryption, I think that Apple can do quite a lot to shut down the hackers and cloners.

The problem is that Apple needs to be careful not to abuse the rights of its legitimate customers.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Bosco, Apple needed to defend itself against Psystar in court or it would cease having any rights.

If you are talking legal rights, more bullshit. You are confusing copyright and trademark. If you are speaking in terms of practicality—i.e. that the 10% or 20% of users that do pay will remain willing to pay—you’re also way off base. See Chris Anderson’s discussion of how Microsoft dealt with Chinese piracy in Anderson’s excellent book, Free (which, btw, is “free” from the iTunes Store as a podcast).

If you’re confused about who went to court first, it was Apple that brought Psystar into court. Apple was defending a countersuit which would not have been filed without Apple going to court first.

Ref Librarian

Yes, they did go to court because they felt that they needed to stop Pystar, ie. defend what it owns. That’s usually the way these things work. What is your point? That a company has to play by the rules of the country it is selling it’s products in and adjust what it does accordingly?

geoduck

You have some really weird beliefs. Companies are composed of human beings. Companies have their interests and their legal rights, but it?s employees can get their panties in a twist. A company may act as a whole, but the people inside those companies know that their jobs are on the line.

On the contrary. This is why governments have had to act to protect Whistleblowers. Slap-suits and other company actions have been used to shut up troublemakers that threaten the bottom line.  In my experience in both large and small corporations and government jobs,  people mostly will grumble about ‘the man’ but do nothing that would threaten their job, their income, or their retirement. Protecting the public requires a ‘cop on the beat’.

[quote}There is a moral dimension in that Apple has contracts with their customers, employees and vendors. If Apple neglects their side of a contract, those people will howl.

This is a legal obligation that Apple honours for business reasons. Morality has nothing to do with it.

Apple has a reputation which it tries to maintain. How it acts is no different from a Mom and Pop Store. Apple has a responsibility to protect its customers from trash. When Apple makes a mistake, then it is morally and legally obligated to correct it. This is honest and good for business. It maintains the trust that people have in Apple. Why do you try to besmirch this?

Because it is a myth. Apple has a company reputation that causes customers to consider their products. Target donates to charities because it gives it good standing so customers visit it’s stores. Wallmart kept up unethical behaviour until it got caught and it began to impact the bottom line. Now they are trying to clean their reputation, without changing the behaviour. Nestle’ kept selling infant formula in third world countries causing many health problems and simply ignored the public outcry. Enron knew they were stealing and the employees laughed about it. Corporations have a business model. If the appearance of morality is part of the profit model then they act ethically. If they can make money by trading with Iran or selling weapons to Saddam then that’s what they do. To correlate this to an earlier point, people will gravitate to a company that matches their personal ethics. This reduces the incidence of someone ‘getting their panties in a twist’.

Your statement is partly true, but it has a derogatory, leftist spin. Are profits a dirty concept to you?

There is nothing wrong with profit. It’s the basis of the western economy. But don’t confuse profit and accountancy with ethics.

You have no understanding about Apple and what motivates its management. What other corporation talks about ?Changing the World? but Apple?

Changing the World is a great slogan but that’s a goal, not how a business is run.

Apple would be sued by its stockholders, not an agency of the government. The Board of Directors and the upper management would be replaced at the next stock holder meeting.

However given that level of corporate malfeasance I an very confident that the SEC (not the Obama administration) would look into the actions. They already looked into the backdating issue a few years back. Failing to protect the assets of Apple resulting in significant loss to shareholders would be a far more severe issue. I really feel that there would be inditements

It?s both about what is legally right and moral. Cloners and Hackers have no moral right to misuse someone else?s intellectual property.

I agree completely. I’m a writer and so have a natural bias toward the owners of IP, whether books, music, or software. (However I think the RIAA is a bunch of money grubbing Luddites).

The FOSS community are often repeating concepts which are factually and legally untrue. This court case with Psystar will put these concepts to rest. We do not yet know who the backers of Psystar are. If Apple had lost, many more companies would have jumped into creating clones.

Exactly and that’s why I’m thrilled at Alsop’s ruling.

UrbanBard

I’m not the one confused here, Bosco. Psystar abused both Apple’s copy rights and trademarks.

The EULA is a statement of Apple’s preexisting rights. Apple gained the copy right on the creation of its code. The EULA merely puts people on notice of where their rights end and the conditions under which Apple is allowing them to use their code. It creates a contract whereby the user agrees to abide with Apple’s rights. It is designed to avoid any moral or legal confusion, but some people are blind that other people have any rights.

“If you are speaking in terms of practicality?i.e. that the 10% or 20% of users that do pay will remain willing to pay?you?re also way off base. “

The percentage does not matter to the law. It is illegal to steal software. It may be impractical to prevent it. Bowing to the theft does not excuse it.

“If you?re confused about who went to court first, it was Apple that brought Psystar into court. Apple was defending a countersuit which would not have been filed without Apple going to court first.”

But it was Apple’s rights which Psystar was abusing, so I would expect that Apple took them to court.

When another company is stealing from you, that is what you do to stop it.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

When another company is stealing from you, that is what you do to stop it.

I’m just curious UrbanBand… Have you ever dealt with licensing your own software product? Or dealt with piracy? Or perhaps dealt with a school district a thousand times larger than Psystar the company that was misusing your software? Or maybe one where the tech support guy threatened to work around access to your license server? This kind of stuff happens more often than you’d ever believe, even when your EULA is clear, concise English. Some of these people, you can convert into customers. Some of them, you can’t. At the end of the day, business is about making money, not waving your disk at everyone in court. Again, read Anderson on how Microsoft dealt with the issue in China. It’s great instruction on thinking for the long term.

You do not lose your copyrights because you don’t notify or sue every infringer. You can legally lose a trademark (even a registered trademark) to dilution if you do not take recognized steps to defend it from misappropriation. Your post above where you say “Apple needed to defend itself against Psystar in court or it would cease having any rights” is incorrect as a matter of law. That is my point.

UrbanBard

What has Whistleblowers to do with this case? This is a clear case of Psystar stealing Apple intellectual property. What illegal act is Apple accused of?

” Protecting the public requires a ?cop on the beat?.

True, but the cop must enforce the law. It is Psystar, not Apple, who is the felon.

“This is a legal obligation that Apple honours for business reasons. Morality has nothing to do with it.”

You are assuming that morality, ethics and good business practices do not intertwine. Good ethics are good Public Relations. If a company acts abusively toward other people, they deservedly get a black eye.

The Kelo v New London, Connecticut was a bad black eye for Pfizer Corporation where they conspired with city officials to use eminent domain to steal poor people’s houses. Bad ethics and politics combined with bad business practices.

” Why do you try to besmirch this?

Because it is a myth. Apple has a company reputation that causes customers to consider their products. “

A good reputation may be false or true. If it is true, then it is not a myth. It takes great effort and cost to maintain a good reputation.

Ultimately, a company takes its methods of operation from its founders. If its founders are moral, then the company will continue to be so long after the founders have left. It took Hewlett Packard Corp 15 years to lose their way ethically, so the founders were forced to come out of retirement to set it right. The problem was that too many MBA’s rose to power.

If you want to generally indict American businesses then it is due to the rise of the MBA’s in them. These people know about nothing but money. Often, they have the ethics of varmints. Their worse problem is a very short time perspective. All they can see is boosting up the next quarter to keep the stock price high. The Federal tax code tends to force this perspective, though.

Apple does not act this way. Steve Jobs is unconcerned about market share. He believes that if Apple produces great products, then good will result from that. It has worked out

“If the appearance of morality is part of the profit model then they act ethically. “

What you are saying is that leaders may be unethical, dishonest or propagandistic. How is this different from any other human action? Why do you neglect that there are many corporations which act ethically? Why do you automatically assume the worst case?

Our political leaders are often unethical, dishonest or propagandistic. Do you hold the leaders of corporations to a higher standard?

“To correlate this to an earlier point, people will gravitate to a company that matches their personal ethics.”

This is true of politics. I suggest that you read “The Road to Serfdom” by F.A. Hayek. Many decent people were attracted to the NAZI movement, but they dropped out as it became increasingly unethical. Soon, only hateful people remained in the NAZI movement.

This holds true of Communism and the rise of the New Left in the US Democrat Party.

“There is nothing wrong with profit. ... But don?t confuse profit and accountancy with ethics.”

I don’t confuse anything, but there are honest ways of making a profit. The most common way is to deliver value to your customers and to keep the promises you make. It is moral to do that.

“Changing the World is a great slogan but that?s a goal, not how a business is run.”

Steve Jobs believes in both, so did Bill Hewlett and David Packard. Many authoritarians in companies do not. Perhaps, that is the only leaders that you have met. You, thus, expose your ignorance or bias.

“They already looked into the backdating issue a few years back. Failing to protect the assets of Apple resulting in significant loss to shareholders would be a far more severe issue. “

The issue was a failure to disclose information. You can back date employee options if you tell everyone about it. It looked as though the comptroller was stealing from Apple and she might well have been. No wonder she was fired.

There was, also, some question whether the Board of Directors had voted on Steve jobs employment package. This again goes to disclosure, since board meetings are public. This could be intentional or a mistake. It looked like great confusion. The Board Secretary and the Comptroller should have forced proper legal procedure and did not.

“The FOSS community are often repeating concepts which are factually and legally untrue. This court case with Psystar will put these concepts to rest.

Exactly and that?s why I?m thrilled at Alsop?s ruling.”

I’m glad that we can end on an agreement.

Ref Librarian

It seems to me that your point is that Apple shouldn’t have sued Psystar and should allow anyone who wishes to rip them off. I am, as a stockholder, pleased that Apple did sue Psystar and hope that they continue to protect what the company owns. If your hopes are dashed of turning a quick buck by ripping Apple off, so be it.

UrbanBard

“I?m just curious UrbanBand? Have you ever dealt with licensing your own software product? Or dealt with piracy? Or perhaps dealt with a school district a thousand times larger than Psystar the company that was misusing your software? “

No, I’m a writer. I’m approaching it from that angle. Companies may use different tactics to protect their rights. The courts are merely one.

” Some of these people, you can convert into customers. “

It’s hard to convert people who say that you have no rights. It’s like with shop lifters. The stores tried to ignore the problem until it got out of hand; it became a teenaged dare. The stores found that the only way to moderate it was to arrest and prosecute.

“You do not lose your copyrights because you don?t notify or sue every infringer. “

Apple is not suing every infringer, just Psystar. It has not been going after the Hackintoshes, but that may be under way. Blocking Atom based Netbooks is just a first step.

“You can legally lose a trademark (even a registered trademark) to dilution if you do not take recognized steps to defend it from misappropriation. “

Yes, I know all about Xerox and Kleenex. But, Psystar is violate both of Apple’s intellectual property.

“Your post above where you say ?Apple needed to defend itself against Psystar in court or it would cease having any rights? is incorrect as a matter of law. That is my point.”

If Apple hadn’t sued, how many more companies would have jumped in? There is PearC in Germany. Sometimes, a company must bark at offenders even if there is little that they can do.

As I said, I’m expecting Apple to apply a technical solution. The howls won’t be far off from that.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

It?s hard to convert people who say that you have no rights. It?s like with shop lifters. The stores tried to ignore the problem until it got out of hand; it became a teenaged dare. The stores found that the only way to moderate it was to arrest and prosecute.

Piracy of bits is nothing like shoplifting. Pay attention: I’m not making a freetard argument here that it is much less serious. But they are so dissimilar that to analogize misses the root problems and solutions that work. When you sell software, you are selling something that a lot of people could make available to your customers for free at very little cost and practically no risk to themselves. This is called reality. Laws and courts and 64 bit kernels are not going to do anything to change reality.

You can deal with that reality like a jerk or you can deal with it constructively. There are harsh economic consequences when your brand becomes synonymous with being a heavy handed jerk.

Nemo

For those who doubt that Apple had to move against Psystar, know that the law of intellectual property requires, inter alia, that holder of the right must take reasonable measure to police and enforce its rights or the law shall deemed those rights waived.  While the doctrine does not require Apple to respond to every minor trespass on its rights, where, as is the case with Psystar, a person infringes on one’s IP rights in a manner that is public and of sufficient scale to significantly impair the economic value of the IP rights at issue, the owner of the IP rights must seek to enforce his/its rights in court or risks that the court will deem those rights waived.

As for those who would try to overwhelm Apple with a strategy of letting a thousand Psystar’s bloom, know that willful infringement of a copyright is a federal felony when done for the purpose of personal financial gain, when a person produces one or more infringing copies that have a value greater than $1,000.00, or when you infringe on a work intended for commercial distribution by uploading the infringing work on a computer network.  17 U.S.C ? 506.

xmattingly

The default for anything new and interesting (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) is ?please copy and share? and Apple is in court with a ?do not copy what you?ve purchased from us to something we don?t approve of? argument.

Attempting to draw an analogy between social networking/viral marketing to commercially copyrighted IP? Jesus, son… here’s another analogy for you: if brains were computers, you should trade in your cheap-ass Dell for something more reliable, ‘cause your motherboard is fried.

The economic right is the English and American tradition. It says that creators should get paid for copies.

So you kinda sorta understand why Apple is vigorously defending its IP, but you’ll turn a blind eye to that and bitch about the Evil Empire to everyone within earshot anyway. And by the way, that’s not the whole picture. It’s not merely about getting paid for copies, it about ascertaining limits of use within a licensed provision.

We don?t have a right to tell end-users they can?t deface our work or display it in a way that we might find objectionable.

Huge, glaring difference between an individual cracking Apple’s OS and toying with it and a couple of thugs doing the same, then selling their wares on the open market for profit.

I?d be much more comfortable if Apple relied on provisions of the DMCA to protect its software than on a contract that nobody reads.

Alsup ruled in Apple’s favor on BOTH counts. Perhaps you’d have been more comfortable, had you not read the ruling while standing on your head.

I just think big companies shouldn?t enjoy market advantage from what amount to special legal privileges.

Not special privileges. Law.

I know the political makeup of Mac users leans heavily left-Democratic.

As IF political leaning has one iota of relevance to your platform of choice, but I’ll bite: I use Macs exclusively, and I’m Libertarian. No wonder your complaint stems from blatant theorizing of copyright law, suggestion of conspiracy between big corp. and the U.S. court system, and self-contradiction. You might name your $50 million vaporware the Brainless Equation.

UrbanBard

“Bosco said:

UrbanBard said: It?s hard to convert people who say that you have no rights. It?s like with shop lifters. The stores tried to ignore the problem until it got out of hand; it became a teenaged dare. The stores found that the only way to moderate it was to arrest and prosecute.

Piracy of bits is nothing like shoplifting. “

Of course it is. In both cases, it is petty theft from people who are scofflaws.

Pick pocketing a little pretty and disobeying a EULA bears little risk. It became a fad. It was only when the risk and penalties increased that young people stopped doing it so much. I expect Apple will start laying on the risks and penalties soon. It will do so without losing its cool. It will simply shut you down.

“Pay attention:...they are so dissimilar that to analogize misses the root problems and solutions that work.”

No, You are just not smart enough to see the similarities. Or you are blind enough to avoid them.

“When you sell software, you are selling something that a lot of people could make available to your customers for free at very little cost and practically no risk to themselves. “

This is my point. The only reason it is becoming a fad is that there is so little risk. But, I expect that to change.

“This is called reality. Laws and courts and 64 bit kernels are not going to do anything to change reality.”

We will find out, shortly, who has a better grasp on reality.

Apple has thrown down the gauntlet to the hacker community—that is reality. Apple didn’t have to do that. It wouldn’t have done so unless it was ready to pounce.

“You can deal with that reality like a jerk or you can deal with it constructively. “

Apple is unlikely to take any business lessons from Microsoft.

“There are harsh economic consequences when your brand becomes synonymous with being a heavy handed jerk.”

Apple is not becoming any more heavy handed than it did with the iTunes Music store. Apple asked people to stop stealing music and then gave them a convenient way to buy music.

The point where we differ is that I think most people want to be honest. They don’t want to either steal music or software.

The problem is that there is a group at the FOSS community who have persuaded themselves that it is okay to steal Apple’s OS. I don’t believe Apple will cooperate with that.

UrbanBard

Thank you, Nemo, for laying down the law.

UrbanBard

Thanks for your input, xmattingly. I couldn’t agree more.

I would add only one thing. Apple’s traditional market niches have been in the Graphics, Design and the Education markets. These markets tended to lean left politically. So, Bosco was correct in his assertions fifteen years ago.

But, with the introduction of the iMac, Apple started appealing to the upper half of the consumer market. These are young, middle class, professionals who routinely vote independent or Libertarian. Apple sells 92 percent of the laptops costing more than a thousand bucks. And 75% of its computers sold are now laptops. This alone would make Apple centrist.

Apple has been making a major move to capture the Small to Medium sized Business markets. These people tend to be center right like most of the country.

So, what constitutes Apple’s customer base has changed over time and has been slowly moving toward the right.

At best, you could say that Bosco is way behind the times.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

For those who doubt that Apple had to move against Psystar, know that the law of intellectual property requires, inter alia, that holder of the right must take reasonable measure to police and enforce its rights or the law shall deemed those rights waived.?

Bullshit Nemo. You are talking about trademark law. You do not lose your copyright because you don’t take reasonable measures to police or enforce. All you need to do is stick a notice on your goods. With digital goods, the DMCA gives you additional standing and avenues of recourse if you add explicit protection mechanisms (aka “locks”).

You know guys, if you’re gonna call me stupid, please have your facts straight. You too UrbanBard. It is so frigging laughable that somebody who doesn’t know thing one about writing or selling software is calling me stupid in the same breath as saying there will be technological solutions to prevent illicit copying.

UrbanBard

You need to take a class in business law, Bosco. You are speaking from a lack of knowledge.

You can lose physical property if you do not protect it.  The courts have taken the position that if you allow someone to violate your property rights long enough to set up an expectation, then you cannot change your mind later.

I don’t believe you are stupid, Bosco, nor did I say so. You are merely bigoted and ignorant.

xmattingly

I wouldn’t exactly call pointing out Bosco’s inconsistencies and flawed logic a genius move, but I thought it was worth pointing out.

On the other hand, any perceived political correlation with the majority of Apple’s market segment is completely absurd. It has far less to do with income level or career (neither of which is a determinant, generalized or otherwise, for political affiliation), than with what type of product a person or business is willing to pay for.

Obama owns a gas guzzler. Warren Buffett drives a fairly cheap car. Consumerism is a mixed bag.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

You can lose physical property if you do not protect it.? The courts have taken the position that if you allow someone to violate your property rights long enough to set up an expectation, then you cannot change your mind later.

Cool. Now that Ted Landau owns the iPhone OS, maybe he can license it to the rest of us! Collect your fanboy pin. I’ll remember not to bother with you anymore.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

The point where we differ is that I think most people want to be honest. They don?t want to either steal music or software.

OK, I’ll bite one more time. The “insider number” on the average number of times songs from the paid music services get shared with people who didn’t purchase is 10. There de facto business model of these services is just to sell enough copies to be profitable. When Apple started its iTMS, I welcomed the DRM as a way to have a large catalog available conveniently and safely. The proprietors of this site, Bryan in particular, were adamantly hostile to the DRM regimes that popped up. The online music industry has realized that the copies are not the value proposition, that copyright is just a component of why customers will buy the digital goods. And so you’ve seen the end of DRM on music. A similar evolution is happening with video, to the point where the first Blueray disk I purchased a couple weeks ago has a special disk with a digital copy I can put on my iPhone.

Software is going the same way. Developers are already giving away a lot of the bits, whether they intend to or not. There is no technical fix. As a developer, you have two options. Sit and whine and sue or move up the value chain and stay in business. New question fanboys… If Apple has to sue Psystar, what does that say about Apple’s value proposition that it could be undercut so drastically as to supposedly threaten one of its core businesses?

John Molloy

OK, I?m done. Enjoy your victory parade.

Er why are you still here?

gslusher

Sigh-*. Take the result as it is and step back 10 feet. Does it bother any of you that Apple is relying on a low-level procedural mechanism of the CPU copying the software into RAM to claim a copyright violation through license infringement? Here we are in 2009 when the default for anything new and interesting (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) is ?please copy and share? and Apple is in court with a ?do not copy what you?ve purchased from us to something we don?t approve of? argument.

Bosco:

That is NOT what the judge said. I don’t know if you’ve read the judgment, but here’s a bit of it, essentially as quoted in the TMO article:

“According to Apple, Psystar has violated its exclusive right to copy Mac OS X. Psystar admits that it has made copies of Mac OS X and installed those copies on non-Apple computers. In addition, when Psystar turns on its computers running Mac OS X, another copy of the software is made to the random access memory.  Psystar has thus infringed Apple?s reproduction right.”

[Emphasis added]

Not the “in addition.” That refers the “reproduction right.” It’s only part of the argument. You act like it was the sole argument.

As I expect that you are an attorney (like me and, probably, most of the posters here), it might be wise to listen to the one poster here whom we know IS an attorney (Nemo). It might also be prudent to actually read the entire judgment. It’s only 16 pages (double-spaced). You can get it at DocStoc. It’s free to read online. You can download it free by registering. (I use a yahoo.com email account for such sites, to avoid pestering emails.)

gslusher

As I expect that you are an attorney

Old age and typing too fast—that should, of course, be “As I expect that your are NOT an attorney…” Wish we could edit, again.

Nemo

Dear Bosco:  If I meant to limit my statement that the law requires the owner of a copyright to reasonably police and enforce that copyright, I would have said so.  The obligation to reasonably police and enforce one’s rights under the circumstances applies to copyright, patent, and/or marks.  The principle that one can waive one’s rights is common ideal in the common law.  For example, under the doctrine of adverse possession of realty, if the owner of the real property does not move to evict an open and notorious squatter within a period of time, 15 to 20 years in most jurisdiction, then owner’s title shall be deemed waived and shall be vested in the squatter.  The idea is that the law does not permit a person to sit on his rights and then unfairly spring them on an unsuspecting person.  See Nimmer on Copyright. 

The copyright mark merely puts the world on notice that the expression set forth in the tangible medium is copyrighted and subjects the infringer to all the penalties of the Copyright Act.  It, however, does not void the venerable doctrine that sitting on one’s rights risks losing those rights under the equitable doctrine of waiver.

Bosco, I am going to start charging you and Daemon for law school.  After all it cost me nearly $80,000.00 nearly twenty years ago for law school, and I think that I should get some return, unless you take the view that my work, like Apple’s, should also be available for free.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Like Happy Birthday, right Nemo? In the world of software, where products—even operating systems—move exceedingly fast and have very short lifetimes by traditional copyright standards, you would never, ever, ever be subject to any abandonment argument. Please cite a case for us which applies here. I’ve just given you an opposite example.

UrbanBard

“UrbanBard said:... The courts have taken the position that if you allow someone to violate your property rights long enough to set up an expectation, then you cannot change your mind later.

Cool. Now that Ted Landau owns the iPhone OS, “

Apple is protecting the iPhone; that is why each iPhone update wipes out jail breaking and downloaded apps. The courts don’t say that you have to be efficient at protecting your property, but you have to try to do so.

UrbanBard

“UrbanBard said: The point where we differ is that I think most people want to be honest. They don?t want to either steal music or software.
OK, I?ll bite one more time. The ?insider number? on the average number of times songs from the paid music services get shared with people who didn?t purchase is 10. “

I said that people WANT to be honest. I never said that they succeed.

Besides, there are other legal way to get music on an ipod. The most common way is to buy CD’s.

” A similar evolution is happening with video, to the point where the first Blueray disk I purchased a couple weeks ago has a special disk with a digital copy I can put on my iPhone.”

Blueray is almost dead and Video downloads is not yet common and will be.

“Software is going the same way. “

No, Apple is going to change the game, but it has some logistical problems to clear up, first. No Hurry..

” If Apple has to sue Psystar, what does that say about Apple?s value proposition that it could be undercut so drastically as to supposedly threaten one of its core businesses?”

What core business is that? Why are you so obtuse? Why can’t you make a case rather than hurl vague assertions?

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I said that people WANT to be honest. I never said that they succeed.

I really don’t care what you think you said. All evidence indicates that you’re clueless when it comes to piracy. You’re clueless on the prevalence. You’re clueless on technical measures, really clueless, like stay away from the KoolAid clueless. You’re also clueless on legal requirements to protect copyright. You’re clueless on Blueray. Maybe Psystar wanted to be honest too, but the EULA restrictions were too onerous. Did you ever consider that? And weren’t you the guy who said you can’t sell to people who cheat you? Wrong. Do you even know what you think?

I can guaranfreakingtee that if you ran a software company, you would have a stroke the first day from seeing that all your wishes and assumptions about customers are pure fantasy. Even when you make it simple and obvious, lots of people will ignore your wishes and many will walk right up to you and skirt around the edges. In that environment, you have a couple of options. (1) You can make sure Nemo gets a return on investment for his education or (2) you can figure out how to make money anyway.

And since you can’t think through the inconsistencies of your whole Apple fanboy position, let me spell it out for you. Psystar was not a threat because they dared to challenge the EULA and Apple had to defend the honor of its one sided shrink wrap “contract”. Psystar was a threat because their offerings and price points point out that Apple’s machines are overspec’d and too expensive for a very significant portion of the market. If Apple wanted to make Psystar and Hackintoshers go away, it could ship a $50 Mac OS X Lite. Make it work on only one core. Problem solved. Goodwill of the community and the marketplace restored.

UrbanBard

Bosco, it is clear that you will listen to no one. The courts are against you, the law is against you, morality and ethics are against you. You have the soul of a weasel.

At best, you can say that the world is full of thieves and villains. I agree with that. The world is, also, full of sophists who provide false arguments which justify theft. Are you in training for a position with the Obama administration?

You say that there is no technical fix to hacking. I say that this position merely indicates your vast ignorance. It was a technical issue which opened Apple up to Hacking and Cloning. So long as Apple stayed with PowerPC processors, it was safe from your ilk.

Apple has had four plus years to work on this problem. Neither of us know what moves it will make.

Apple is starting its moves against the hackers. It has won against Psystar, but so long as it is easy and risk free to violate Apple’s rights, then some people will attempt to do so. Others, like yourself, will give them moral excuses.

I do not know what technical fix Apple is likely to use. It will place hackers in the same category as malware writers. What beefs up Apple security against the malware writers can be used against the hackers, too.

I can see the weak points which Apple is likely to fix. DVD’s will need to go, as will installers which allow the person at the keyboard total control. The same is true of software downloads which don’t verify the authority and permissions of the user. Signed certificates will be a part of this, but those protections could take many guises. Anonymity is bound to vanish; we will be forced to prove who we are—what authority and permissions we have.

The Mac grew from being a stand alone system where the user had total control. That is pass?. We have computers, before us, which are more powerful than a Cray computer from ten years ago. It is time that we give our computers the same security which a Cray would have. It is too bad that this will cause legitimate Macintosh users inconvenience.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

It is too bad that this will cause legitimate Macintosh users inconvenience.

OK, I get the joke now. Glad I could play the straight man. And I’m glad the coffee that just went through my nose wipes up nicely from my MBP screen. Nicely done UB!

brett_x

Bosco - I’m not sure I follow you completely on this, though I do tend to agree with most of your assertions (the parts that I understand, anyway). How would you feel if Apple tied installation of Mac OS X to a hardware key/chip on the computer? Would that be better than leaving it open and easy to install on non-authorized computers and fighting it out in court?

UrbanBard

“Psystar was a threat because their offerings and price points point out that Apple?s machines are over spec?d and too expensive for a very significant portion of the market.”

Apple’s marketing plan positions itself to satisfy people who value quality, durability, panache and ease of use. This places the Macintosh in the creative markets, the upper half of the consumer market and the SMB market. Apple chooses to leave the lower half of the consumer market, Government and Big Business markets alone because each niche has special problems which cost more than they are worth.

Apple would besmirch its trade name if it compromised its quality. Apple would rapidly become as shoddy as the rest of the computer marketplace; it is making excellent profits in a down economy by refusing to follow your advise.

You want to steal Mac OS X for use on PC’s. Cannot you see that Apple created a “Good” OS by not following Wintel toward the cheapest possible price? And that if Apple followed your advise then there would be no more improvements to Mac OS X. You would kill the goose that laid the golden eggs.

“If Apple wanted to make Psystar and Hackintoshers go away, it could ship a $50 Mac OS X Lite. Make it work on only one core. Problem solved. Goodwill of the community and the marketplace restored.”

I expect Google’s Chrome OS to satisfy this function. It will be more secure than Windows and good enough for light duty web use. It won’t compete with Apple, because it will be overloaded with Advertisements.

Anyone who wants to do serious computing will buy a Mac. Microsoft will be forced back into its Government and Big business niche, because they will have IT professionals who can keep Windows from imploding from the malware.

Terrin

I am unsure if this is true. Regardless, this case wasn’t about that. Apple does own the right to say who can profit from the software. Keep in mind, Apple isn’t suing a person who installed it’s OS on a hackintosh. Apple is suing a company who is trying to make money on Apple’s work in direct competition to Apple without compsensating Apple [paying for the OS doesn’t count, as that is an upgrade price).

Further, Apple isn’t like Microsoft in the sense that it sells both upgrade and full install versions of it’s OS to which it charges appropraitely. Apple only sells upgrade versions of it’s OS. So when people buy OSX and install it on a PC, for that to arguablly be legal they’d have to already own a Mac with a full install version of the CD (e.g. one that came with the Mac), Otherwise, a person doesn’t own anything then a upgrade right.

They don?t *own* the right to say their software can only be used on a Mac. They own computer designs and software.

UrbanBard

Actions have consequences, Brett_x.

The actions of sophists like Bosco are pushing Apple toward solutions which may offend legitimate Mac users.

The hope is that Apple will proceed carefully in this. I don’t mind if Apple has a central data base to periodically verify that I am a genuine Apple buyer, but I want Apple to do this in a way which inconveniences me as little as possible.

If I don’t know where my computer is, then I want to track it via GPS. Perhaps, I forgot that I loaned it to a friend while I was drunk. If so, I can go there to pick it up. If the computer is lost or stolen, then I want its location to be relayed to the police so they can arrest the felon.

If I am a Small Business owner who laptop is missing, I want any private company data to be encrypted until it is back in my possession. I don’t want some felon to be able to over write my software. Nor do I want my employee to install software without my permission.

This level of control has been missing from the macintosh, but many Small business owners will appreciate its security. This same security system would also disable any Hackintoshes.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@brett_x: If that’s what Apple has to do technically to protect the Mac OS X, and legally to make things slam dunk DMCA circumvention device infringements, then yeah. It raises Apple’s costs—proprietary hardware, what to do about open source Darwin, etc.

I think Apple wants all the benefits of low cost multi-sourced commodity hardware (Intel x86) and open source software and process (Darwin). At the same time, it wants to ignore the reality of a tremendous amount of distributed expertise, which rightly or wrongly, like it or not, may not have its interests aligned with Apple’s. Prices of everything, while perhaps not headed to absolute zero, are headed below what any of us could have imagined 5, 10, 15, 20 years ago. The rest of we software developers are evaluating the entire value chain so we can profit in this environment. There are freemium models, service models, all sorts of models that marginalize illicit use without treating paying customers like criminals or chumps. Apple is being heavy handed and non-responsive to market pressures, relying on the courts to have its way. The RIAA did this too.

UrbanBard

“At the same time, it wants to ignore the reality of a tremendous amount of distributed expertise, which rightly or wrongly, like it or not, may not have its interests aligned with Apple?s.”

Apple probably expects that there are people like you in this world. It has merely not had the means to address the problem yet. It must act judiciously to avoid offending its customer’s rights.

“The rest of we software developers are evaluating the entire value chain so we can profit in this environment. There are freemium models, service models, all sorts of models that marginalize illicit use without treating paying customers like criminals or chumps. “

How you, in the FOSS community, act is none of Apple’s business unless you violate Apple’s rights. Apple will respond in legal ways. The people who violate Apple’s EULA are not customers or chumps. You are criminals, but you continue to lie to yourself about that. Apple can do nothing about the deluded.

Nor is Apple being heavy handed or unresponsive to market pressures. Apple does not want you as a customer. It wants you to go away. Apple does not want people who will steal from it.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Nor is Apple being heavy handed or unresponsive to market pressures. Apple does not want you as a customer. It wants you to go away. Apple does not want people who will steal from it.

1997. Apple entered a deal with Microsoft where MS invested $150m in non-voting Apple stock. This settled a case where Apple had the goods on Microsoft using a software contractor previously used by Apple to steal Quicktime code. This is called business, not a prescription drug induced Rush Limbaugh morality play.

Furthermore, I do not steal from Apple. I don’t condone it. I have purchased thousands of dollars of music, movies, and apps from iTunes. I have never burned a CD for anyone outside my immediate family. I do not misuse Apple Software Licenses. Even when an Apple Store employee gave me the store disk and activation code for iWork for a project I was doing with him as part of his job, I bought my own copy. Nor am I an open sourcer. Far from it. But I am keenly aware of trends that affect my ability to sell software and services to customers. These trends present challenges, but the proposed “solutions” are invariably much more problematic.

At the same time, I am not a fan of, for example, Apple shipping the exact same installer for Snow Leopard on the $29 Leopard upgrade disk that it does on the $159 Box Set disk and suggesting that using the $29 for a Tiger upgrade is a license violation. I am not a fan of Apple not issuing any kind of correction to Mossberg’s column that pointed this capability out if Apple truly believes it is doing anything but implementing a frigging $100 tip jar. My Mom, who at 60+ is still very smart, has better things to do than keep up with the arcane marketing and licensing practices of computer companies, would quite reasonably see this like two shovels at the hardware store, one for soft dirt and one for hard dirt. If the soft dirt shovel works on her hard dirt, then it was just a god damned shovel, ferchrissakes. Yet she, and I’m sure tons of other people end up being technical EULA violators (and potentially criminal violators) because Apple wants customers to self-select into the correct price group based on a EULA and a salesman or web page pushing them to cough up $100 more. I won’t go so far as to call it an unethical business model, but it is probably untenable among the general public. And if Apple self-righteously thinks it’s anything more than a voluntary tip jar, it deserves to smacked upside the head by the hoards.

ctopher

So now we’re at the crux of Bosco’s argument.

Apple should do MORE work to make an upgrade from Leopard to Snow Leopard only work when Leopard is installed.

But Apple decided that if someone changed a hard drive, or wiped their disk, they’d still let them use the Snow Leopard upgrade.

Further, they decided that making someone go get their Leopard disk and present it to the Snow Leopard installer was too onerous.

What this means is that the Snow Leopard disk can really be used to install the operating system on any Macintosh that will support it.

But legally, if someone had Tiger and jumped to Snow Leopard, they’re supposed to purchase the Box Set.

What does this have to do with Psystar? Why it’s clear that Apple is deceiving it’s customers by offering an upgrade that will in fact do more than the license allows! Wait, that’s not what Psystar did…

Oh yea, by suing Psystar, they are putting a chill on all those mac users who purchased the $29 upgrade when they didn’t have Leopard and should have purchased the Box Set and now they’re all fearful of prosecution. Wait, that’s not what Psystar did….

OK, it’s that by treating Psystar so harshly, when this could have happened to any other unsuspecting customer like Bosco’s Mother that Apple is showing how they really feel about their customers. It’s an outrage!

But is Bosco’s mother going to sell Hackintoshes with $29 Snow Leopard upgrades when they didn’t start with Tiger? Maybe she’ll get swatted down by Apple for selling her old MacBook that had Tiger, but she upgraded to Snow Leopard with the $29 installer because heck it’s sure cheaper that that boxed set and looks the same, and the type that says it’s an upgrade for Leopard is too small to read and heck it just worked and now they want to throw her in jail? All because Bosoc’s sainted mother ran an installer when she shouldn’t have and it just worked and now she’s broken the law, but she didn’t know it and now she’ll have to pay?

And this has WHAT to do with Psystar?

Psystar used a known hack that would circumvent Apple’s check on the hardware. This check wasn’t particularly complicated, but it was put there to, as my father used to say “Keep honest people honest.”

Well, Psystar wasn’t honest. They circumvented the check.

Bosco seems to understand this as he writes software and sells it. He also develops hardware/software solutions and sells those so he understands the difference between honest people and morally reprehensible people who threaten to go around his attempts at “keeping honest people honest”. He knows that there are lots of dishonest people out there, ripping off people’s work. He knows this and he tried to do what he can to stop it, but when Apple tries to stop it he’s unhappy?

It appears that Bosco is unhappy because Apple makes it so damn easy for people to rip them off. Shoot they’re asking for it by not including licensing checks and making people just through hoops. As a small business Bosco cannot make it so easy. Bosco HAS to include license checks and he does not have the money to sue people who steal his software because he’s small. But Apple? They make all this money because they’ve invested millions in development making their products easy to use and to top it off, they make it easy to install! Too easy.

So Bosco is happy that Apple looks like a heavy handed a**hole by suing poor little Psystar. Shoot Psystar isn’t taking anything away from Apple because Psystar customers wouldn’t pay Apple prices for Apple hardware even though Apple hardware is unique in styling and packaging because even though it’s a fancy aluminum package it’s still over the counter PC components that are available for much less (without the fancy packaging) from other sources.

So why should this fancy packaging, which does not have a technical impact on the functioning of their OS, allow them to limit what someone does with their OS? If the OS doesn’t NEED their fancy packaging, why should they enjoy the monopoly of that OS operating ONLY on their fancy packaging? It’s as if the OS and the fancy packaging constitute an Apple product. If that’s so, why do they sell the OS separately? What’s wrong with Apple! Can’t they see the error in their ways?

I believe this is what has Bosco’s panties in a twist.

UrbanBard

This is about your morality, Bosco, not Apple’s. If Apple does something that you disagree with, this does not permit you to violate Apple’s rights.

This is about you providing moral cover for someone else to steal Apple’s property. This is wrong on your part.

If Apple has unwise or duplicitous marketing, then you have every right to knock Apple for that. Don’t confuse a flaw on Apple’s part, with a belief that you can take the law into your own hands.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Take the moral cover thing up with Walt Mossberg. He has a far bigger audience than I. Surely, Apple will deny him credentials to future media events for spilling the beans.

The tide is turning on Apple. It’s a shame, because they do some very nice, unique things with their products. But those things don’t justify the comparatively high prices or the strict control for many applications. I was looking at Android SDK docs today. It seems like those people would love it if I made an app where bobbleheaded politicians shake babies and get serviced by interns. They might not want it in the Android marketplace, but they have no problem with me sharing such a beast with people who would appreciate it. Only the existence of Apple’s App Store would make me think that’s pretty damned cool of the Android folks!

UrbanBard

“Take the moral cover thing up with Walt Mossberg.”

It is not immoral to give people more than they were told to expect. Who was hurt when Apple gave to Leopard OS users a full DVD for $29, instead of an upgrade disk? I appreciated that Apple did that.

I had an upgrade disk for Leopard 10.5 and it sucked.

Were the Tiger users harmed when they were told to purchase the boxed set which also had iLife and iWorks 2009? Did Apple lie to anyone about this or did they allow Mac pundits to assume erroneously?

“The tide is turning on Apple… But those things don?t justify the comparatively high prices or the strict control for many applications.”

If you don’t want what Apple has to offer, then don’t buy. Apple will do without your purchases. Apple has been growing at 30% a year when the computer market place has been flat. They don’t need you.

Nor are the Mac’s over priced when you compare them to a comparably equipped Dell or HP. Wintel pundits, too often, compare the Mac to White box or inferior computers. If you want junk, then buy Wintel.

I tend to keep my Mac for four years. I never have any breakdowns. My friends who own PC’s are constantly having hardware problems. Then, they have malware problems, too. I have none of that.

It’s still to soon to know what the response to System Seven will be. The Vista users have every reason to upgrade. The IT department in enterprise market will hold off for better times. The Windows 2000 and XP users are a toss up. Well over half of them will need new hardware. The people I know who run XP, see nothing very attractive about System Seven.

“I was looking at Android SDK docs today.”

Android will not affect iPhone sales; It has a poor business plan. Nor will its apps compete with the App store. There are a host of reasons why.

http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/09/11/10/inside_googles_android_and_apples_iphone_os_as_business_models.html

zewazir

But those things don?t justify the comparatively high prices or the strict control for many applications.

If you do not believe their products are worth the price, don’t buy them.  It’s that simple.  However, as is evidenced by Apple’s continued growth even in the midst of an economic, there are many people who are of the opinion that the features of Apple’s products are worth the extra investment.

The belief that Apple products are overprices does not give one the right to violate their rights in order to undercut their prices.

The tide is turning on Apple.

The latest sales figures do not agree with you. If you do not like the prices, buy something else. Defending the right to steal Apple’s OS and make a profit from it just shows a complete lack of respect for property rights.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

The belief that Apple products are overprices does not give one the right to violate their rights in order to undercut their prices.

Good one Mr. Obvious. Of course it doesn’t give anyone the right to do that. And I totally appreciate how you were outspoken when the music industry experienced the same thing. You and Lars from Metallica, wiping your arses with Benjamins and telling the world how copying would make you starve. You’re the guy with the “I love Hillary Rosen” sticker on his Ford F-150. Never mind that she probably doesn’t love you back. And I think I saw you at the “RIAA Community Copy Cops” get-together. What a fun time that was, especially when we showed the YouTube (with properly licensed music, of course) of that little emo teenager getting pummeled by one of the enforcement volunteers for having a mix CD with an illicit copy of Marilyn Manson on it. Good times!!

Get this through your head. I am not providing justification of theft. It’s business reality. You cannot begin to stop people from copying your digital goods without imposing Draconian measures that will make your product undesirable to use. Even what seem like the most robust protection schemes are but a speedbump and a welcome challenge to those who would crack them. If you take enough things to court or issue threatening letters left and right, you may be legally right, but you will lose social acceptability. Apple already has a nasty rep for that kind of behavior. Ultimately, Apple is selling “cool”, not Mac OS X software, not iPhones, not music. They really are “up the value chain” on that. But they distract from their message and their inimitable “cool factor” by getting into this garbage like with Psystar and playing cat/mouse with jailbreakers and hackintoshers. Open things up a little and the problems will self-marginalize.

geoduck

Ultimately, Apple is selling ?cool?, not Mac OS X software, not iPhones, not music. They really are ?up the value chain? on that.

OK wait just a cotton picking minute.
I buy Apple products because for my needs they work the best. I get paid to fix nasty chronic Windows problems. I work with Windows, I know Windows. Windows hardware and software. I’ve worked with it all the way back to Win3.11. I buy Apple products because of the quality, not some ‘cool’ factor. I find it very insulting that you’d suggest otherwise. This 47 year old son of a Norwegian mechanic doesn’t give a s*** about ‘cool’.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

This 47 year old son of a Norwegian mechanic doesn?t give a s*** about ?cool?.

Sure you do. Mac OS X runs just fine for running FrontRow on very low end PC hardware. It’s called the Apple TV and it’s $225, including wireless-n and HDMI out. If you do email, music, movies, and web, it has more than enough horsepower for you. It smokes most Macs from early in the decade before the Intel switch. Who really knows why Apple won’t allow a full install of Mac OS X on the device. But it might have something to do with their lowest priced overspec’d for most people’s needs hardware starting at $599. Of course you care about being cool!

geoduck

Actually I have a MacBook because it was the least expensive laptop that ran OS-X. As far as it being overspeced, It might be now but it won’t be in half a decade. I keep my computers for a long time, My G4 Powerbook was about 6 years old and then I only replaced it because it wouldn’t run the software I want to. I have a MDD G4 Tower that has to be nearly 8 years old. As long as it does what I want I’ll keep it running. That’s the economy of Macs. They last a lot longer than PCs.

The trouble is that you keep looking for the cheapest solution. There is always a cheeper way to do something than the Mac. Some jobs take a Mercedes and some a Kia. You need to get your head around this and stop whining about how Mercedes won’t sell you something for the price of a Kia. Stop insisting that Mercedes sell an engine and transmission for your Kia. They don’t have to do that and that’s their right and they are not doing ANYTHING wrong by refusing. They are not doing ANYTHING wrong by going after those that would steal the OS they spent so much time and money developing.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Here’s your Apple hardware quality, slightly above average according to a firm that sells extended warranties across the industry. I’m not surprised to see Asus at the top. They have to compete on quality. They can’t just sue another manufacturer for shipping a form factor or a price point not in their lineup.

UrbanBard

I think my use of pick pockets, here, is instructive. A pick pocket values an item, but not enough to pay for it. The hackers value Mac OS X but won’t pay for it by buying Apple’s hardware. Every rationale that the hackers use disguises their essential dishonesty.

But, we can blame part of this fiasco on the insanity of the computer market place. Wintel was always highly competitive on the hardware side, but buying into it forced you into accept a lousy Operating System. Microsoft Windows is structurally flawed and showing its age. It has a glib surface appearance because it has stolen so much from Apple, but it is awkward and unsafe to use.

Linux was developed as a defense to Microsoft Windows, but it is geeky beyond belief and is of little use for the ordinary non technical user.  The Mac OS is the only one which is modern, efficient and easy to use, but it requires that its R&D be paid for by hardware sales.

It is mostly the FOSS community who want to cut legal and moral corners to combine the Mac OS with Wintel hardware to save a few bucks.

If the FOSS community could ever get the Linux Desktop to work properly then they wouldn’t feel the need to steal Apple’s OS. It their own arrogance and pride which prevents them from developing a Linux Desktop for the non technical user. It is absurd to ever expect your mother to use Linux.

This is why I place my hopes on Google’s Chrome OS. Google needs copy Apple, by hiding all the geekiness in Linux, to make the Chrome OS a success. The world needs an object oriented operating system which is safe to use on the Web. That is the only way to break up Microsoft’s monopoly.

Apple cannot create a Macintosh lite without harming its reputation for quality. So, some third party must do the job.

Microsoft is running into diminishing rate of returns; the Windows OS has been stretched as far as its underlying foundations will take it. Windows needs to be re-written as an object oriented OS, but if Microsoft does this it will break all the Windows applications. There goes its vaunted market share.

When Apple has converted, later this year, to 64 bit code with Grand Central Dispatch and OpenCL enabled, then the Mac will take off in ways now unexpected. There will be impressive speed enhancements, because Intel will finally have an OS which can fully utilize its hardware.

But, more than that, is the flexibility which XCode 3.2 will allow the new developers who will be coming from creating iPhone apps. A lot of innovative applications will be developed for the Mac and they will be sold through the App store.

Many changes lie ahead; many people have their heads in the sand, though. Meanwhile, Apple is saying little, because this will catch people by surprise. Some people need to be shocked out of their complacency.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

It is mostly the FOSS community who want to cut legal and moral corners to combine the Mac OS with Wintel hardware to save a few bucks.
...
Apple cannot create a Macintosh lite without harming its reputation for quality. So, some third party must do the job.

The FOSS community was not mostly responsible for combining the Mac OS with Wintel hardware to save a few bucks. Where have you been? That was (wait for it…) Apple that did that! That was the whole point of the x86 transition, in case you missed it. To leverage the continuing aggressive lowering of the price/performance ratio for PCs. Jobs said exactly that in his Keynote announcing the transition and announcing initial Intel products.

Apple did create a very high quality Macintosh Lite, if you will. It’s the $229 Apple TV. Curiously, it’s the only thing that runs the Mac OS that has HDMI out. But you make a broader point which is correct. Microtrends in form factors and price points emerge very quickly in the PC market. Apple can’t cover them, and usually can’t even anticipate them. Apple fans think Apple might set the next trend with a tablet. Perhaps, but some other manufacturer will add some little doo-dad we never imagined and it will take Apple a year to even think about catching up.

Consider… Why doesn’t the iPod Touch have HD video out? When does anyone think that might happen, if ever? Creative is shipping Zii EGGs to developers right now that share the same underlying ARM architecture, and they’ve managed to do it. They’ll even OEM or ODM the device for other companies. Apple is so insulated from what the market wants. They make some cool things, and they have a (bit inflated) reputation for “quality”, but their platforms are weaker for not being responsive to the market.

UrbanBard

“zewazir said: The belief that Apple products are overprices does not give one the right to violate their rights in order to undercut their prices.

Good one Mr. Obvious. Of course it doesn?t give anyone the right to do that. And I totally appreciate how you were outspoken when the music industry experienced the same thing. “

You are using moral relativism to equate two dissimilar things. Did your mother not tell you, “Two wrongs don’t make a right?”

What RIAA does has nothing to do with Apple’s rights, other than both involve intellectual property. Your use of the RIAA argument says that you want to destroy intellectual property rights.

“Get this through your head. I am not providing justification of theft. “

Yes, you are justifying theft. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be using moral relativism against Apple. You wouldn’t imply that Apple has no moral rights.

“It?s business reality. You cannot begin to stop people from copying your digital goods without imposing Draconian measures that will make your product undesirable to use. “

No, It is merely your lack of imagination which conflates the two. You are repeating illogical talking points from dishonest people.

” If you take enough things to court or issue threatening letters left and right, you may be legally right, but you will lose social acceptability. “

Social acceptability with whom? Apple customers don’t want to steal from Apple. If the customers are allowed a convenient way of purchasing music they will choose that. This is why Apple has a near monopoly in music downloads.

“Apple already has a nasty rep for that kind of behavior. “

A nasty rep from the people who steal from Apple? LOL

“Ultimately, Apple is selling ?cool?, not Mac OS X software, not iPhones, not music. They really are ?up the value chain? on that. But they distract from their message and their inimitable ?cool factor? by getting into this garbage like with Psystar and playing cat/mouse with jailbreakers and hackintoshers.
Open things up a little and the problems will self-marginalize.”

Apple has plans which you know nothing of. It will be presenting solutions to the piracy problem. Naturally, the pirates will disapprove of that. You will be on the sidelines giving the pirates moral justifications for their thefts.

UrbanBard

Bosco, I think it rather strange that you are contradicting people about WHY they bought a product. When did you learn how to read minds?

You are projecting your biases on them. That is rude, arrogant and bigoted. Talk about heavy handed.

This conceit of yours explains much about your presumptions about Apple. When did you become a petty despot?

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