Apple, The Weather Channel, and Pandora sued for location tracking

Wed, May 11, 2011

Legal, News

By John Hiesler:

With billions in the bank, Apple remains an attractive target for patent trolls and, more broadly speaking, litigious citizenry trying to sue Apple on trumped up claims in an effort to eek out some sort of cash settlement.

In the latest example of said behavior, Lymaris M. Rivera Diaz filed a suit against Apple, The Weather Channel, and Pandora Media in the US District Court for the District of Puerto Rico. The suit alleges that the defendants have been purposefully intercepting personally identifying information.

More specifically, Diaz alleges that Apple is harnessing the location data from a particular device ID and then supplying that information to third-party advertisers. Diaz accuses Apple of fraud, abuse, unfair trade practices, along with 3 additional charges. Shockingly, the lawsuit seeks out monetary damages.

Now this of course is a whole load of bull, and we’ll hopefully see this case dismissed on Summary Judgment.

Apple of course has addressed ad nauseum all issues pertaining to its involvement, or lack thereof, with respect to location tracking.

Just yesterday, Apple sent senior executive Guy Tribble to DC to testify before a congressional hearing on mobile privacy. Echoing statements already made by Steve Jobs and encapsulated in a press release, Tribble explained that Apple does not, nor will it ever, track the location of individual users. For the umpteenth time, the location data stored on each iOS device running iOS 4 contains geographical coordinates for Cell phone towers and wi-fi hotspots as a means to expedite the time it takes to determine a user’s location. Again, none of this information can be traced back to a particular device or a particular user.

Back in late April, some other fools sued Apple claiming, again incorrectly, that Apple was busying itself tracking the precise location of iPhone owners. Attorney/clown Aaron Mayer told Bloomberg at the time, “We take issue specifically with the notion that Apple is now basically tracking people everywhere they go. If you are a federal marshal, you have to have a warrant to do this kind of thing, and Apple is doing it without one.”

And we take issue specifically with people filing reflexive lawsuits within minutes of an alleged controversy involving Apple.

via The Loop



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