Chicago (IL) – Apple is preparing the big guns in its case against Mac clone maker Psystar. After a complaint that Psystar has violated the DMCA, the company now claims that there are individuals and corporations that helped Psystar to crack Mac OS X. An amended complaint also expands previous DMCA copyright violation charges and indicates that the company’s own investigation has led a conspiracy theory.
Groklaw’s Erwan Hamon recently pointed to a complaint filed by Apple, which builds on top an original complaint that accused Psystar of violating the DMCA with new allegations. Apple now says that Psystar has been deliberately pushing its customers into a copyright infringement practice by offering “restore disk”, as well as instructions and the technical support that allowed customers to install Mac OS X on non-Apple hardware by themselves.
The amended complaint adds that Psystar violated Apple’s SuperDrive trademark by using it on its website and marketing materials and also mentions that Psystar’s Xserve clone dubbed OpenServ 800 and OpenPro “seemingly named after Apple’s MacPro.” Interestingly, Apple noted that “for the OpenPro, online commentators have stated that the OpenPro’s ‘internal hardware design is only average compared with that of a Mac Pro,” adding that Psystar may have “failed to properly connect the graphics card” in some cases.
The most striking part of the amended complaint is paragraph 18 that mentions ten John Does that allegedly helped Psystar to hack Mac OS X. Apple specifically stated that these John Does represent either individuals or corporations, based on its “information and belief”:
From the filing:
“On information and belief, persons other than Psystar are involved in Psystar’s unlawful and improper activities described in this Amended Complaint. The true names or capacities, whether individual, corporate, or otherwise, of these persons are unknown to Apple. Consequently they are referred to herein as John Does 1 through 10 (collectively the “John Doe Defendants”). On information and belief, the John Doe Defendants are various individuals and/or corporations who have infringed Apple’s intellectual property rights, breached or induced the breach of Apple’s license agreements and violated state and common law unfair competition laws. Apple will seek leave to amend this complaint to show the unknown John Doe Defendants’ true names and capacities when they are ascertained.”
This claim basically alleges that a larger plot may be behind the apparently small computer maker. A seemingly calm Psystar and its behavior are certainly unusual for a small company hit with a series of accusations by one of world’s largest corporations and may add some credibility to the conspiracy theory. Groklaw’s Erwan Hamon echoed this by wondering “why a major law firm would take on what seems like a fly-by-night’s case,” especially when Psystar has been “so bold in continuing to sell its products.”