John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Apple Happy to Redact Numbers From HTC Deal Just for Samsung [Updated]

Samsung’s request to see a full copy of Apple’s 10-year patent licensing settlement with HTC is moot because the South Korean company already agreed to accept a redacted version of the agreement.

That’s the gist of Apple’s response to Samsung’s motion to compel Apple to provide it with a copy of the HTC deal. Evidently, Samsung’s legal department told Apple it was happy to accept a redacted version of the document, and the iPhone maker has the emails to prove it.

“HTC has advised the parties that it is willing to acquiesce to Apple’s production of the agreement on two conditions: (1) the Agreement must be marked Highly Confidential – Attorneys’ Eyes Only under the protective order; and (2) the consideration amount must be redacted,” Apple said in a new court filing. “Samsung has agreed to both conditions.”

Samsung will almost certainly contest this, but in the meantime it will have to make do with a redacted version of the agreement, with licensing fees explicitly excluded.

Update: Samsung has indeed contested Apple’s motion, arguing it didn’t moot its request for an unredacted version of the HTC licensing agreement simply because it also agreed see a redacted copy of it. And Wednesday afternoon magistrate judge Paul Grewal held an emergency hearing on the issue, ultimately ruling that Samsung’s legal team — but not its executives, or anyone else — should be allowed to see the entire agreement including license fees.

“Although the court is more than a little skeptical of Samsung’s arguments regarding the financial terms, Rule 26 supplies a broad standard of relevance,” Grewal wrote in his order. “Many third parties to this case have had their licensing agreements disclosed – without any redaction of financial terms – subject to an Attorneys-Eyes-Only designation because the confidential financial terms were clearly relevant to the dispute between Apple and Samsung. HTC is not entitled to special treatment, especially when it has recognized the general sufficiency of the protective order and the integrity of Samsung’s outside counsel. Accordingly, Samsung’s motion to compel production of an unredacted version of the settlement agreement is GRANTED. Apple shall produce the unredacted document without delay subject to an Attorneys-Eyes-Only designation under the protective order already in place in this case.”

Errata: An early version of this post incorrectly stated that the redacted version of the Apple-HTC settlement agreement included just 33 words.

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