August 19, 2022
Did Gizmodo Break the Law?

Did Gizmodo Break the Law?

Posted April 21, 2010 at 11:49am by iClarified · 7993 views
A look at the legal issues Gizmodo faces with regards to trade secrets law, lost property law, and theft and stolen property has been posted by Technovia. Gizmodo recently purchased and published information and photos of an unreleased, supposedly lost, iPhone 4G prototype.

Interestingly, while violating trade secrets laws seems like the most obvious concern, it actually does not apply.

So, in my view, neither Gizmodo nor the finder of the phone have a trade secrets case to answer. By testing the phone in public, even under a disguise, Apple lost its trade secret protection.

Rather, Technovia believes Gizmodo could potentially be found guilty of receiving stolen goods.

A year inside for Messers Denton and Chen, and a big enough set of damages to bankrupt the company may ensue. Or it may not. In fact, I think the odds are that Apple will make no attempt to get criminal charges pressed (and it’s pretty unlikely the police would pick it up otherwise), and will take no civil action against the finder of the phone.

You can read the full explanation at the link below...

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Did Gizmodo Break the Law?
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Noman
Noman - April 21, 2010 at 4:34pm
Apple wouldn't sue someone they paid to do PR-Stunt! This was planned trick to get the hype and buzz on - Apple is so clever adverising its products in so many unknown ways.
anon
anon - April 21, 2010 at 4:38pm
if it's such a transparent stunt (and yes it is) is it really that clever?
Noman
Noman - April 22, 2010 at 5:45am
I think anything that geberates Buzz of this scale is more than clever - we are talking closer to 10milj hit on Gizmodo.com alone! Add twitter, Fb and all that... Everyone is now waiting for the release of the next iPhone. That bloody brilliant PR-stunt!
David
David - April 21, 2010 at 12:57pm
According to California law, all that matters is that Gizmodo knew the phone was Apple's when they bought it. The fact that they paid $5K-$10K for it pretty much establishes this. If you chose to take possession of a lost item, you become custodian for the item and must make reasonable attempts to return it. The bar owner says no one turned it into the bar's lost and found, the obvious choice, and that the Apple employee called frantically for days looking for it. Further, the phone was disassembled after knowing it was Apple's.
Jay
Jay - April 21, 2010 at 12:31pm
Even if it was stolen, Gizmodo was told it was lost and then found. The only way that would hold up in court is if the kid that lost it came forward and said someone jumped him or was robbed, his facebook page doesn't exactly support the fact it was stolen though.
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