Isn't that the whole point?

Lost iPhone prototype spurs police probe (tip o’ the antlers to Daring Fireball)

Any prosecution would be complicated because of the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of the press: the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2001 that confidential information leaked to a news organization could be legally broadcast, although that case did not deal with physical property and the radio station did not pay its source.

The Macalope’s no lawyer (YOU’VE BEEN WARNED), but isn’t that what makes it complete uncomplicated? There’s no damage to the public good by publishing the information — indeed, the public good is often served in exactly this way by whistleblowers. But there is damage to the public good by making a market for stolen proprietary information. At least in the Macalope’s opinion. The law may state otherwise.

Comments
  • I must agree with you. If the Mac punditry thing doesn’t work out for you, you should consider a career in law punditry.

  • Jim:

    “First Amendment” is a red herring. They received stolen property. (see daringfireball.net for the CA statutes). Paying $5000 for the phone made it a felony, oops!

  • Heyyyyyyyy Macalope listen I left my Kin phone or whatever that is on that stool right there and I’m just gonna turn around and talk to some ladies and if it disappears and ends up on Gizmordo then I got a whole big pile of em in my trunk be right back I’ll get some!

    -Winny

    POP POP

  • This whole affair reminds me of the years that it took for IBM to realize that the things that were legal for them to do before they had a monopoly were suddenly illegal once their market share crossed a certain threshold.

    Gizmodo doesn’t seem to get that finding a lost item is legal but selling a lost item when you know who the owner is (both specifically the name of engineer and more generally Apple Inc) makes it stolen property on both sides of the transaction. Because they knew it belonged go somebody else when they paid for it, they broke the law.

  • Exactly, Jema. Gizmodo doesn’t seem to understand the difference between posting leaked documents, and purchasing, possessing, opening, and breaking stolen property.

    If someone “found” your car in a parking lot, took it home, sold it to someone who took it apart, and then FINALLY gave it back, broken, would you be happy?

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