The UCL Practitioner
Tuesday, April 12, 2005
Blogger amicus brief filed yesterday in Apple case
Yesterday, a group of blogger-journalists submitted an application for leave to file an amici curiae brief in O'Grady v. Apple Computer (Sixth Appellate District, case no. H028579). I decided to throw my hat in the ring, and signed on to the brief as an amicus. As I've explained in prior posts, I have very strong feelings about the free press implications of the trial court's order. I find myself in very good company, as a number of prominent blogger-journalists have also signed on. Please visit the Electronic Frontier Foundation's website for more information on the case, including a list of the amici parties with links to their blogs.

UPDATE: Shall I compare myself to Julia Roberts, who forgot to thank Erin Brockovich? My sincere thanks to Lauren Gelman of the Stanford Law School Center for Internet & Society, who worked very hard drafting the blogger brief and did an excellent job.
Soooooo . . . if I convince someone who works for you to give me the goods on a case you're working, I can publish the scoop in my blog?

How do you defend what appears to me as industrial espionage? If I worked for a competitor of Apple's I'd be clapping my hands to have so many people like derailing this and making it an issue of protected speech. It's not. It's about failure to abide with a NDA, and, as a downsteam effect of this, using information obtained illegally to create business.

If police were doing this, I can only imagine the hue and cry.

What ever happened to private business being private? We're not talking about an issue of public safety here, we're talking IP.

I'm as adamant about free speech as any other Veteran, I think; I support the right to burn the flag, much as I don't like it, because knowing that people have the *right* to burn it means that some form of freedom still exists here.

But don't call stealing protected speech.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts. The persons who stole information, and violated the non-disclosure agreement, are not the bloggers (who never signed any such agreement), but the insiders who work at Apple Computer. I do not condone what those insiders did. But if they had leaked their information to the New York Times, I seriously doubt that Apple would ever have tried to subpoena that newspaper's email provider to find out where the information came from, and I seriously doubt that any court would have issued an order compromising that paper's confidential sources. And the answer to your initial question is yes, if you were a reporter for the Daily Journal and someone in my firm leaked attorney-client privileged information to you, you could choose to publish it in your paper. If you were a blogger-journalist, the same thing would be true. The problem is with the internal controls at Apple, and with the Apple employees who elected to disclose secret information—not with the bloggers.
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