Judge Cote Expresses an Early Opinion on Apple E-Book Case

Wow, talk about a surprise in my Feedly this morning. From Reuters:

In an unusual move before a trial, a federal judge expressed a tentative view that the U.S. Justice Department will be able to show evidence that Apple Inc engaged in a conspiracy with publishers to increase e-book prices.

I know what my personal opinions are on the case, based on what I’ve read in the media so far, and so, yeah, I agree with Judge Cote, but my opinion doesn’t matter at all, and I’m thinking this could come back to bite us later.

She did go on to say it wasn’t a final decision and that she hadn’t yet read all the evidence.

So then why’d she say it in the first place? It seems premature at best and irresponsible at worst. I’ll be interesting to see what she finally rules at the trial on June 3.

Anyone with more legal knowledge than me care to comment? Could Apple use this to their advantage in an appeal?

2 Comments on Judge Cote Expresses an Early Opinion on Apple E-Book Case

  1. It could certainly provide the basis of an appeal if the conclusion doesn’t suit Apple. The judge now has to avoid any appearance of acting to fulfill that prophesy. She’s essentially tied one hand behind her back. Not a good career move for a judge.

  2. Based on my long-ago days as an attorney, I suspect that Apple has been intransigent in terms of trying to settle this case and Cote is trying to make them be more flexible. I’ve seen this tactic both work and backfire. I suspect in this case, it will backfire.

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