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Posts Tagged ‘Jury’

WikiLeaks says US grand jury requests supporter Twitter data

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 at 12:01 pm

WikiLeaks said Saturday the Twitter accounts of four supporters had been subpoenaed in connection with an espionage investigation into the whistleblowing website led by a secret US grand jury.


WikiLeaks, which began releasing 251,287 US diplomatic cables in November, added it had reason to believe Facebook and Google had also received court orders requesting details on users.


“Today, the existence of a secret US government grand jury espionage investigation into Wikileaks was confirmed for the first time as a subpoena was brought into the public domain,” WikiLeaks said in a statement.


WikiLeaks said legal action taken by micro-blogging website Twitter “revealed that the US State Department has requested the private messages, contact information, IP addresses, and personal details of Julian Assange and three other individuals associated with WikiLeaks, in addition to WikiLeaks’ own account, which has 634,071 followers”.


It did not name the three other people, but Icelandic lawmaker Birgitta Jonsdottir said on her Twitter feed on Saturday US authorities had asked Twitter to submit her account details and personal information.


“Just got this: Twitter has received legal process requesting information regarding your Twitter account in (relation to wikileaks),” the media freedom champion posted overnight.


“The request for my tweet information is from the US department of justice.” “The request for information from twitter is also for my personal information not just tweets,” she said.


Jonsdottir — a close associate of WikiLeaks who in September suggested Julian Assange step aside as the site’s spokesperson because of rape allegations against him — said she discussed the request with Iceland’s justice minister.


“He is looking into the case of demands of DoJ (department of justice) wanting my twitter details,” she posted shortly after 1100 GMT Saturday.


She explained she had 10 days to stop the legal process and stressed the US Department of Justice, not Twitter, was to blame.


WikiLeaks said Saturday it was “opposing the subpoena order and is currently taking action to instruct US lawyers”.


It urged Twitter to protect its users’ private information and stressed that other than Assange, the three people whose accounts had been subpoenaed had never worked for the site.


“Two were instrumental in helping WikiLeaks bring the Collateral Murder video — which showed a US helicopter crew celebrating as they gunned down civilians — into the public domain,” WikiLeaks said.


The April 2010 release of the classified video, which shows a US Apache helicopter strike in Baghdad that killed several people in 2007, helped push WikiLeaks into the global spotlight.


The site has since angered the Pentagon by posting in July 2010 secret documents on the war in Afghanistan, followed in October by a massive leak of so-called “Iraq war logs”.


Its November release of US diplomatic cables has embarrassed governments worldwide and prompted many calls for WikiLeaks to face legal action.


The site has also faced financial pressure when credit card giants Visa and Mastercard said they would stop facilitating donations to the website.


“Having tried to silence WikiLeaks by pressuring Paypal, Visa and Mastercard to cut off funds, the US government is now intruding into the private lives of some of WikiLeaks most high-profile supporters,” WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange said Saturday.


Assange, the 39-year-old Australian who is the public face of WikiLeaks, is currently on bail in Britain facing extradition proceedings to Sweden on charges of sexual assault.


 

Source: SGGP

Jury orders SAP to pay Oracle 1.3 billion dollars

In Uncategorized on November 24, 2010 at 6:50 am

A US jury has ordered German business software giant SAP to pay US rival Oracle 1.3 billion dollars in damages in a record-setting copyright infringement award.


“We’re ecstatic,” said Geoffrey Howard, a partner with the Bingham McCutchen law firm, a member of the Oracle trial team. “The jury recognized the value of the intellectual property stolen by SAP.”


Oracle attorneys called the copyright damages award the highest ever and hailed the verdict as a resounding warning that stealing intellectual property from technology companies will not be tolerated.


SAP subsidiary TomorrowNow recovered and copied massive amounts of Oracle software and confidential data by posing as clients, according to court documents.


A customized software tool dubbed “Titan” was allegedly used to plunder Oracle’s website of patches, updates, fixes and other programs crafted for Oracle’s paying customers.


SAP admitted to the copyright infringement in legal “stipulations” that cleared the way for a jury trial regarding how much should be paid to Oracle in damages.


“SAP wanted to take responsibility,” Oracle attorney David Boies said after the jury revealed its decision. “They now have the opportunity to do that and move on.”


During closing arguments in the case being held in a federal court here, SAP attorney Robert Mittelstaedt conceded the copyright infringement by SAP and focused on minimizing any damage award.


“I’m not proud of this and SAP is not proud of this,” Mittelstaedt said.


SAP will study its legal options before deciding whether to appeal the verdict or petition the judge to reduce the amount, a company spokesman told AFP in the courtroom.


SAP was interested in putting the unflattering case behind it, he added.


“We are, of course, disappointed by this verdict and will pursue all available options, including post-trial motions and appeal if necessary,” head of SAP Americas media relations Jim Dever said in an emailed statement.


“This will unfortunately be a prolonged process and we continue to hope that the matter can be resolved appropriately without more years of litigation.”


SAP could negotiate with Oracle to agree on a reduced settlement payout in exchange for not appealing the verdict.


Jurors interviewed after the verdict said that deliberations focused on how much SAP might have had to pay if it began licensing Oracle’s copyrighted technology in 2005 instead of swiping it.


Award amounts discussed by the jury ranged from 519 million dollars to three billion dollars, according to the jury foreman, who declined to give his name.


“You have something and someone takes it and uses it, they’ve got to pay,” said juror Joe Bangay, a 57-year-old auto body worker.


Jurors were convinced that top SAP executives were aware of what was taking place “every step of the way,” according to the foreman.

He doubted that testimony by former SAP chief executive Leo Apotheker would have changed the outcome of deliberations.

Apotheker avoided efforts by Oracle’s trial team to serve him a subpoena that would have compelled him to testify at trial.

Apotheker was recently hired by US computer giant Hewlett-Packard (HP) to replace Mark Hurd as chief executive, but HP refused to help track the former SAP boss down for the trial.

Apotheker was on the SAP board that unanimously approved a deal to buy US technology firm TomorrowNow, which copied massive amounts of Oracle software and confidential data by posing as clients.

No matter what amount SAP winds up paying Oracle, the case threatens to cost the German firm its reputation as a trusted vendor of business software.

“This will cost SAP moving forward,” said analyst Rebecca Wettemann of Nucleus Research. “Oracle is going to be asking whether you want to buy from an innovator or someone who is stealing others’ innovations.”

Source: SGGP

Social network or waste of time: Jury still out on Facebook

In Vietnam Lifestyle on September 18, 2009 at 4:15 pm

After the closure of Yahoo! 360 on September 19, the Vietnamese blogger community was in a rush to find a new home and scoured sites like Yahoo!Plus, Multiply, Facebook, ZingMe, Info, Blogger, and others.








Facebook lures users with its plethora of games like Farm Ville, Farm Land and Bard Buddy,and funny quizzes.

They zeroed in on Facebook, which has now become one of the most popular blogging sites, attracting millions of users.


“I have used Facebook for more than two months. I am surprised to see many friends from primary school to university on it,” a user said.


Facebook is a social utility that helps people communicate more efficiently with their friends, family and coworkers.


By searching email IDs, users can locate old friends and colleagues and easily make friends with many others.


In addition, it also lures users with its plethora of games like Farm Ville, Farm Land, and Barn Buddy and funny quizzes.


People have begun to spend a lot of time sitting in front of their computers, absorbed in tests to find out their aptitudes or taking care of their virtual farms and gardens, fertilizing, watering, preventing crops from being stolen, and harvesting.


The founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, announced September 16 that the website has more than 350 million active users worldwide.

More than 6 billion minutes are reportedly spent on Facebook each day and over 40 million statuses updated. A user spends 5 hours, 12 minutes on average daily.Around 70 percent of users are outside the US.

Facebook is also listed in the Top 20 Time Wasting Sites.


 


Source: SGGP