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Dvorak reports that the leak about Apple switching from IBM PPC chips to Intel was leaked by someone at IBM to analysts who leaked it to CNet or someone close to CNet and then somehow the Wall Street Journal got the story. He wonders whether Apple was suing bloggers in anticipation of this announcement to try to plug the leaks. Dan Gillmor wonders whether Apple is going to sue CNet.

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I'm not a lawyer at Apple, and I don't play one on the 'Net, however:

I don't think the trail of evidence is so clear for this particular case. After all, they haven't fingered who actually made the disclosure like they did with engadget.

There might be a defence that this story is a public-interest story, something that matters and something that needed to be disclosed, in a way that the engadget story was not. Who knows, Apple might not have disclosed the matter on Monday if they hadn't been put under pressure.

Another possibility is that this was leaked with Apple's knowledge and tacit approval. Reading Scoble's item on this, the responses he was getting from Apple contacts made it look a bit like an orchestrated or a tacitly approved leak. (Of course, this is merely supposition, it could be a serious matter if a listed company did something like this.)

Somewhere along the line, it appears that a law may have been broken - either by leaking information and thereby not disclosing critical information to the markets first if the information came from Apple or Intel, or else for violating a trade secret, if the information came from IBM or elsewhere.

It would be interesting if someone (preferably in California) made a complaint about the matter to their District Attorney and to the SEC.

Well if Dvorak says it then it must not be true.

It's my understanding that leaking a business deal isn't as destructive as leaking a company's product, intellectual property, etc. Not sure though, I'm not a lawyer.

Well, it depends, it's not so big an issue for trade secrets, but it has implications with market regulators. You're supposed to announce important done deals to the market first, not let it percolate out through rumours. (This has to do with the efficient markets hypothesis.)

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