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Apple Sues Over Leak [Updated x 2]

Reuters Story

On December 13th, Apple filed a civil suit against several anonymous parties, claiming that "an unidentified individual, acting alone or in concert with others, has recently misappropriated and disseminated through Web sites confidential information about an unreleased Apple product."

Current conjecture is that this is in relation to recent rumors surrounding a flash iPod, but the possibility that this is related to other recent product rumors, such as an Sirius-Apple collaboration, or Apple branded phone should not be discounted.[Update] The Mac Observer reports that the product in question is Asteroid, Apple's rumored audio interface for GarageBand, reported by AppleInsider in November and attributed to "reputable sources".[Update 2] The Mac Observer reports that on December 14 Apple received court approval to serve subpoenas on AppleInsider.com, PowerPage.org, and ThinkSecret.com, requesting "documents, images and communications" that might identify the person or persons who leaked Asteroid details.The article quotes from Apple's complaint:

To succeed, Apple must develop innovative products and bring those products to market in advance of its competitors. If Apple competitors were aware of Apple's future production information, those competitors could benefit economically from that knowledge by directing their product development or marketing to frustrate Apple's plans.

AppleInsider.com, PowerPage.org, and ThinkSecret.com themselves are not defendants in Apple's suit, but particular individuals at those sites are named as possible sources of information in finding the person(s) responsible for the leak. Apple has 60 days to identify each defendant in the lawsuit, which seeks "unspecified monetary damages in excess of US$25,000 as well as punitive damages".