According to a new report from Reuters, Apple’s decision to publicly address controversy over its warranty policies in China yesterday has already resulted in a positive reaction from the state-controlled media outlets that originally organized the smear campaign.
With its rare apology, Apple Inc went from pariah to praiseworthy in the eyes of China’s state-controlled media, a lesson for other foreign firms not to underestimate the speed and power of the government press… The Chinese newspapers that threw brickbats at Apple a few days ago have since changed their tune.
Apple attempted to appease government in China yesterday by issuing a letter from CEO Tim Cook to announce changes to its warranty policies in the country. The move followed a campaign by state-run media outlets that bashed Apple over its warranty policies compared to other countries and provided first-hand accounts from disgruntled customers. Apple initially stood its ground after the first critical reports as far back as July, but yesterday’s “rare” apology from Cook appears to be already having a positive impact in the country.
One of the media outlets that has now changed its tune is tabloid the Global Times, a newspaper published by the Communist Party’s People’s Daily, while government officials are also praising Apple for its decision:
The company’s apology letter has eased the situation, softening the tense relationship between Apple and the Chinese market … Its reaction is worth respect compared with other American companies,” wrote popular tabloid the Global Times
The Foreign Ministry praised Apple for “conscientiously” responding to consumers’ demands.
“We approve of what Apple said,” spokesman Hong Lei told a daily news briefing on Tuesday.
Apple decision to relatively quickly address the problems and change its warranty policies to reflect the concerns of customers in China is seen by many as proactive approach to combatting negative, state-controlled press in one of its most important markets—and it appears to be working.
According to a report from The Hollywood Reporter, Apple is objecting to a discovery request in a class action case against Universal Music Group that seeks the release of trial exhibits, expert reports, and depositions from former CEO Steve Jobs and Vice President of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue.
The depositions were originally given in a case between F.B.T. Productions, producers of Eminem records, and Universal Music group division Aftermath Records. That case is about to go to trial, but Apple is filing an objection to the discovery request from the class action that would alter an existing protective order, claiming the depositions and documents are “highly confidential and proprietary trade secrets.”
In its objection, Apple apparently referenced the fact that most involved in the case were sent out of the room during the depositions and claimed if released it could lead to “competitive harm”:
In support, Apple points to the fact that when the depositions were taken, many individuals, including UMG employees, were sent out of the room. And that when Jobs’ deposition was played before the jury, the judge closed the courtroom, ordered many people to leave, and had the transcripts from the trial sessions filed under seal.
The report explained that in the case between F.B.T and Aftermath, the courts previously ruled the “plaintiff was correct in asserting that a contract between the parties should be read as treating digital music as ‘licenses’ rather than ‘sales.’” The case will go to trial in the near future to determine how much that ruling is worth. Meanwhile, the judge in the class action is urging parties to request changes to a protective order on the depositions and documents they are seeking from the F.B.T case.
The class action case against UMG was brought by a number of musicians, including Rob Zombie and the Rick James’ estate, and is seeking revenues from music downloads.
The US Navy has published photos of the aftermath of the F/A-18D crash
. They clearly show the damage on the apartments that got hit, along with the foam-covered grounds. It's amazing how lucky the residents and the pilots were. More »