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Apple Inc., A California Corporation v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.

September 18, 2012

APPLE INC., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION PLAINTIFF,
v.
SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS CO. LTD., A KOREAN BUSINESS ENTITY;
SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS AMERICA, INC., A NEW YORK 15 CORPORATION;
SAMSUNG TELECOMMUNICATIONS AMERICA, LLC, A DELAWARE LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Paul S. Grewal United States Magistrate Judge

United States District Court For the Northern District of California

ORDER GRANTING-IN-PART AND DENYING-IN-PART APPLE'S AND SAMSUNG'S ADMINISTRATIVE MOTIONS TO FILE DOCUMENTS UNDER SEAL (Re: Docket Nos. 602, 637, 642, 643, 707, 715, 736, 737, 754, 758, 759)

Requests for sealing continue to consume the resources of both the parties and the court.

Perhaps this is inevitable in a case of this scope and technical complexity, but the court cannot 21 again but wonder at whether there is a better way. In any event, before the court are still more 22 motions by Apple, Inc. ("Apple") and Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Samsung Electronics 23 America, Inc., and Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC (collectively "Samsung") to seal 24 various nondispositive motions and supporting exhibits. The parties have filed declarations with 25 26 each motion to support their claims that the documents should remain sealed. Because of the large number of documents designated for sealing, the court first reiterates the legal standards for sealing 28 and then summarizes, in table format, the motions, the parties' requests, and the result of each 1 2 request.

I. LEGAL STANDARD

"Historically, courts have recognized a 'general right to inspect and copy public records and 5 documents, including judicial records and documents.'"*fn1 Accordingly, when considering a sealing 6 request, "a strong presumption in favor of access is the starting point."*fn2 Parties seeking to seal 7 judicial records relating to dispositive motions bear the burden of overcoming the presumption 8 9 with "compelling reasons" that outweigh the general history of access and the public policies favoring disclosure.*fn3

United States District Court For the Northern District of California

Records attached to nondispositive motions, however, are not subject to the strong presumption of access.*fn4 Because the documents attached to nondispositive motions "are often 13 unrelated, or only tangentially related, to the underlying cause of action," parties moving to seal 14 must meet the lower "good cause" standard of Rule 26(c).*fn5 As with dispositive motions, the 15 standard applicable to nondispositive motions requires a "particularized showing"*fn6 that "specific 16 17 prejudice or harm will result" if the information is disclosed.*fn7 "[B]road allegations of harm, unsubstantiated by specific examples or articulated reasoning" will not suffice.*fn8 A protective order 19 sealing the documents during discovery may reflect the court's previous determination that good 20 cause exists to keep the documents sealed,*fn9 but a blanket protective order that allows the parties to 1 2 designate confidential documents does not provide sufficient judicial scrutiny to determine whether each particular document should remain sealed.*fn10

In addition to making particularized showings of good cause, parties moving to seal 5 documents must comply with the procedures established by Civil Local Rule 79-5. The rule allows 6 sealing orders only where the parties have "establishe[d] that the document or portions thereof is 7 privileged or protectable as a trade secret or otherwise entitled to protection under the law."*fn11 As 8 9 this court has previously pointedly noted, the rule requires parties to "narrowly tailor" their *fn12 requests only to sealable material.

II. DISCUSSION

United States District Court For the Northern District of California

The court notes at the outset that much of the information the parties want sealed has 13 become publicly available, either through presentation at trial or through the parties' commercial 14 activities. In consideration of the burden from sealing imposed on the court and, more importantly, 15 the public, the parties should keep in mind their obligation to inform the court if the information in 16 17 previously sealed materials becomes publicly available.

All of the motions to seal at issue here relate to discovery motions that were nondispositive.

Thus, the lower "good cause" standard applies. The court has considered each of the documents 20 the parties have designated for sealing and, as articulated in the table below, determined which 21 documents may remain under seal or redacted and which documents must be unsealed. 22 23 24

DN*fn13 Material Result 1

602 Confidential portions of DENIED.Apple's request is not narrowly tailored.

Samsung's Notice of Motion

and Motion to Compel Apple to Produce Documents and

Things ("Samsung's Motion to Compel"); Memorandum of

Points and Authorities in Support Thereof

Confidential portions of the DENIED. Apple's request is not narrowly tailored. The

Declaration of Diane C.

proposed redactions primarily consist of descriptions of Hutnyan ISO Samsung's Motion to Compel ("Hutnyan exhibits and names of deposed Apple employees.

Declaration")

Exhibits A, B, D, J-Z, AA-CC The requests to seal Exhibits B, J, O, P, R, V, X, Y, AA,

("Hutnyan Declaration") BB, and CC are DENIED. Apple does not maintain claims of confidentiality on these exhibits.

The requests to seal or redact portions Exhibits A, D, K, L, M, N, P, Y, Q, U, W, and Z are DENIED because they are not narrowly tailored. As noted below, the redactions proposed by Apple include information for which Apple has failed to provide a particularized showing that specific harm will result if the information is made publicly available.

 The redactions to Exhibit A contain general references to Apple's use of mechanical outlines ("MCO"), which are not confidential, and the fact of Apple's license with Nokia, which also is not confidential.

 The redactions to Exhibit D contain information about whether Apple had its products tested for 3GPP compliance as adopted by the PTCRB, which are both standard setting organizations. Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed. The redactions also include responses that Apple does not have enough information to admit or deny.

 The redactions to Exhibit K include information about models Apple rejected when it was developing its products, names of employees who worked on Apple's product development, and facts about the departments involved in Apple's product development.*fn14

Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

Exhibit L, which Apple requests to be sealed entirely, is a letter describing Apple's use of MCOs and CAD drawings in its product development. Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.  Exhibit M, which Apple requests to be sealed entirely, consists of an excerpt from an Apple employee's deposition during which he discusses graphic icons that are the subject of publicly available design patents.  The proposed redactions to Exhibit N include references to Apple's acquisition of Fingerworks, Ltd., which is publicly available information, and generalized descriptions of where Apple's designers save their designs.  The proposed redactions to Exhibits P and Y reveal that Apple investigates competitors' products.

Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

 The proposed redactions to Exhibit Q contain descriptions of documents that Samsung sought from Apple during discovery regarding Apple's advertising for its products. Most of the descriptions do not reveal Apple's proprietary or trade secret information, and Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

 Exhibit S, which Apple requests to be sealed entirely, is a deposition excerpt of an Apple employee who broadly discusses another employee's design project. Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

 Exhibit T, which Apple requests to be sealed entirely, is a deposition excerpt of an Apple employee who describes an exercise from a decade ago by Apple employees to study and replicate a competitor's product. Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

 The proposed redactions to Exhibit W includes generic search terms, such as "double tap," "enlarge*," and "expand*." Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this type of information is revealed.

The requests to seal portions of Exhibits U and Z are http://thenextweb.com/apple/2012/01/24/this-is-how-apples-top-secret-product-development-28 process-works/.

GRANTED because they are narrowly tailored to Apple's internal code names for its products.

Confidential portions of DENIED. Apple does not maintain a claim of Samsung's Renewed Motion to confidentiality on Samsung's Renewed Motion to Compel Discovery Relating to Compel. Mac OS 10.0 ("Samsung's Renewed Motion to Compel"); Memorandum of Points and 5 Authorities in Support Thereof Exhibits A-C of the Samsung's requests to seal Exhibit A and B are 6 Declaration of Diane C. DENIED. Apple does not maintain claims of Hutnyan ISO Samsung's confidentiality on these exhibits. 7 Renewed Motion to Compel The request to redact portions of Exhibit C is DENIED 8 because it is not narrowly tailored. The redactions include the fact that Apple investigates competitors' 9 products. Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

Confidential Portions of DENIED. Apple's request is not narrowly tailored. Samsung's Motion to Enforce Most of the proposed redactions describe MCOs and Various Court Orders Requiring the Production of discovery between Apple and Samsung.

Materials Relevant to Apple's Asserted Design Patents

("Samsung's Motion to Enforce"); Memorandum and

Points of Authorities in Support thereof

Exhibits C, D, F, and I of the Samsung's requests to seal Exhibits F and I are Declaration of Diane C. DENIED. Apple does not maintain claims of

Hutnyan ISO Samsung's confidentiality on these exhibits. Motion to Enforce

The request to seal Exhibit C is DENIED because it is not narrowly tailored. The exhibit includes information

about models Apple rejected when it was developing its products, names of employees who worked on Apple's

product development, and facts about the departments

involved in Apple's product development. Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this

information is revealed.

The request to seal portions of Exhibit D is DENIED because it is not narrowly tailored. The proposed

redactions contain general references to Apple's use of

mechanical outlines ("MCO"), which are not confidential, and the fact of Apple's license with Nokia,

which also is not confidential.

Confidential portions of DENIED. Apple's request is not narrowly tailored. The Samsung's Motion for proposed redactions primarily consist of descriptions, Clarification Regarding the Court's December 22, 2011 but not the contents, of accompanying exhibits. Apple Order ("Samsung's Motion for has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this Clarification") information is revealed.

Confidential portions of the DENIED. Apple's request is not narrowly tailored. The Declaration of Brett Arnold proposed redactions consist of descriptions, but not the ISO Samsung's Motion for Clarification ("Arnold contents, of accompanying exhibits. Apple has not Declaration") shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

Exhibits A-J of the Arnold Samsung's request to seal Exhibits J and I are DENIED. Declaration Apple does not maintain claims of confidentiality on these exhibits.

The requests to seal Exhibits C and G are DENIED because they are not narrowly tailored. As noted below, the exhibits include information for which Apple has failed to provide a particularized showing that specific harm will result if the information is made publicly available.

 Exhibit C describes aspirational design goals of the iPad, which has been available for retail purchase since 2010.

 Exhibit G, which consists of a declaration by a Senior Director of Industrial Design at Apple, contains information about Apple's design aspirations and design process that is publicly available.

The requests to seal or redact portions of Exhibits A, B, D, E and F are GRANTED because the requests are narrowly tailored to Apple's proprietary and trade secret information.  Exhibit A consists of emails and diagrams discussing specific product development.  Exhibit B consists of an email discussing details about product development.  Exhibit D consists of survey responses regarding the iPad's features.  Exhibit E and F consist of close up photographs of an unreleased Apple product.  The proposed redaction in Exhibit H consists of an Apple employee's written commentary about a patent.

Samsung's Notice of Motion DENIED. Apple's request is not narrowly tailored. The and Motion for a Protective proposed redactions primarily consist of descriptions, Order but not the contents, of accompanying exhibits. Apple has not shown what specific harm it would suffer if this information is revealed.

Exhibits B-K of the The requests to seal or redact portions of Exhibits B, C, Declaration of Diane C. D, and E are GRANTED because the requests are Hutnyan ISO Samsung's Motion for a Protective Order narrowly tailored to Apple's proprietary or trade secret information or to information for which Apple has provided a particularized showing that specific harm would result if revealed.  The redactions to ...


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