Hackintosh company Psystar agrees to pay Apple nearly $2.7 million in damages and legal fees for selling PCs with Mac OS X Leopard preloaded onto them--but the legal drama isn't over yet.
Psystar, the Doral, Fla.,
company sued by computer
for selling "Open Computers"-PCs with Mac OS X Leopard preloaded
onto them-has agreed to pay Apple $2.7 million in damages and legal fees to
partially settle a dispute over the sale of such computers. The company's Website
currently lists all Mac-loaded computers as "out of stock," but the legal
wrangle will continue as Psystar continues its countersuit alleging Apple's
suit does not cover its operating system, Snow Leopard.
"Psystar has agreed on certain amounts to be awarded as statutory damages on
Apple's copyright claims in exchange for Apple's agreement not to execute on
these awards until all appeals in this matter have been concluded," the company
announced, which was posted
on legal blog
Groklaw. "Moreover, Apple has agreed to voluntarily dismiss all its trademark,
trade-dress, and state-law claims. This partial settlement eliminates the need
for a trial and reduces the issues before this Court to the scope of any
permanent injunction on Apple's copyright claims."
Psystar's chief attorney K.A.D. Camera of the Houston-based law firm Camera
& Sibley LLP told
Computer World the battle is
not over, and said he believed the summary judgment from federal Judge William
Alsup was incorrect. "We will take this case up with the Ninth
Circuit," he said.
In mid-November Alsup ruled Apple's copyright infringement claim was valid
and rejected the basis of Psystar's countersuit: that Apple was misusing its
copyright claims. The full ruling was posted on Groklaw. "We've agreed
that Apple will not collect these damages until all appeals have been
heard," Camera said. "Until then, we have no liability."
Apple claimed Psystar violated three of its exclusive rights in Mac OS X: Its
reproduction right, its distribution right and its right to create derivative
works. In November 2008, Psystar's countersuit, claiming monopolistic practices
and copyright misuse, was dismissed. However, in December of 2008 Psystar
charged Apple was prohibited from bringing action against Psystar due to a
failure to register certain copyrights, and claimed their actions did not
amount to creating a derivative work because of modifications made to the
source code and kernel extensions.
Psystar is now hoping for a more favorable outcome in a pending parallel
case in Florida, where the
company will argue that any injunction from the court should not extend to
Rebel EFI, a Psystar product that has not been litigated in the previous case.
A hearing on remedies has been set for Dec. 14 in California.
"If this Court were to grant an injunction broad enough to cover Mac OS X
Snow Leopard, it would be undoing its earlier decision not to allow Apple to
introduce Snow Leopard into this case after maintaining that discovery about
Snow Leopard was irrelevant," documents filed by the company's legal team
argue. "Indeed, Apple asks this Court to go one step further and enjoin not
only Psystar computers running Mac OS X Snow Leopard, but also an entirely new
software-only product, Rebel EFI, that has not been the subject of any
discovery at all in this action."