A very hush-hush legal battle between Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung is nearing its end. Apple filed its lawsuit against Samsung in April to try and keep Samsung from selling its Galaxy phones and tablets in the U.S. Apple claims Samsung has “slavishly” ripped off Apple’s iPhone and iPad designs and features.
Although the case is of worldwide interest, very little information regarding the case has been released because the court documents are sealed. Sealing court documents has become a common, but debated practice in lawsuits in which trade secrets might be disclosed during the case.
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Reuters reports that the “lack of transparency” has many troubled. Bernhard Chao, a professor at the University of Denver’s Sturm College of Law said, “For the judicial system as a whole, we want transparency so the public can have confidence in the judicial decision-making process. When things aren’t transparent, that view is undercut,” quoted Reuters.
Judges defend Judge Koh’s decision. Reuter quoted U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel, Director of the Federal Judicial Center, who said, “It comes down to: ‘how do you see the interplay between transparency and protecting the interests of the party?’ Transparency sounds so noble, so apple pie, but the interests of the parties are important, too.” It is reported that Judge Koh, who is hearing the case, is expected to make a final decision any day.
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