An epic rant about Apple patents


blog Another day always brings another Apple rumour, but not every day do you get as epic a rant in reaction as we saw last week from MacTalk founder Anthony Agius. Agius might have just sold his site for a tidy sum and started his own iOS conference in Melbourne, but that doesn’t mean he’s out of the game. His target? A article discussing a new patent that could reportedly see iPhone owners prevented from filming rock concerts and sporting events. Writes Agius:

“Apple has not had this patent approved. Apple has no functioning (that we’re aware of) prototype of this system. Apple is not selling this system. Chances are, some engineer at Apple thought of it and if an engineer at Apple (or any tech company) thinks of anything out loud, it’s patented, so a competitor can’t do it. No record company or venue/event operator has said they wish to use this technology, or devised it with Apple.

Those are the facts of the story. Nothing really exciting, perhaps for a few nerds that dig infra-ray light. However, have extrapolated this relatively benign patent application into an evil plot by greedy Apple and greedy event organisers to ruin the fun of event attendees and pillage their vulnerable wallets.”

There’s more … so much glorious more, and I encourage you to go forthwith and read it. We need more rants like this — they help wake us up for the week on a Monday morning ;)

Image credit: J Miller, royalty free


  1. If you don’t like the patent fiasco, then it’s best to avoid both iPhone and Microsoft’s Windows Phone.

    Microsoft has been running around more than anyone, trying to sue smaller phone companies with frivolous patent suits.

    Google has been the most restrained on the patent front. So if you don’t like those patent suits, it would be better to get an open-source OS like Android, or MeeGo (if it ever comes out).

    The same applies to restrictions, such as only being able to use one app store (like iPhone and Windows Phone), or having your phone automatically switch off in a concert.

    Once again, go with an open-source OS like Android or MeeGo.

  2. Brilliant stuff. A perfectly justified rant too. Apple patent hundreds of new things every year. Only a tiny portion of them make their way into real products.

    Personally I’d love to see the glow of mobile phones from rock concerts vanish. Rock concerts should be about beer, music and getting trampled on. Now all you see are people standing still with their phones filming. #imgettingold

    • “Apple patent hundreds of new things every year. Only a tiny portion of them make their way into real products.”

      +1 to this, and also +1 to people not filming stuff at concerts. Well, I guess I would have an opinion on that if I was still young enough to be going to concerts ;)

      • +1 to this, and also +1 to people not filming stuff at concerts. Well, I guess I would have an opinion on that if I was still young enough to be going to concerts ;)

        I don’t get why people do this, the video/audio quality you pull off an iPhone is rubbish at this sort of event, it’s not worth watching afterwards.

        It’s like when we went to Walking with Dinosaurs a few weeks back, there was a guy a few rows in front with a pocket camera (annoying glow for the rest of us) taking photos, and I can see from where I was the picture quality was blurry and rubbish.

        Just buy the DVD people !!!

        • Exactly! (to all of the above!) .Regardless of whether your phone touts 720p or 1080p recording, its low light performance and crappy auto-focus will deliver a shitty, blurry, shaky, grainy picture with no detail, and distorted mono sound! Plus if you’re watching a concert through a viewfinder, why bother even going? That’s hardly experiencing the concert. Not to mention getting your phone out at any concert is just asking for some clown to grab it or spill vodka on it and destroy your precious gadget!

          Lastly if you like the band, you should support them properly by not bootlegging their concert, and buying their music and videos through proper outlets at a later time (if the concert was any good anyway :) )

          Is that enough of a rant against mobile phone recording of concerts? or should I keep going? ;)

          • I don’t think you’re wrong, Simon, but I do think that people should have the choice. In a very short time, human technology is going to get to the point where some people will be carrying around devices which auto-record *everything*. Why should we have to switch them off because the manufacturer/movie companies say so?

            But all this is beside the point … currently, as Anthony points out, this technology does not exist ;)

          • Yeah, agreed for the most part. I’m a bit in the middle on this one as I’m all for openness and freedom to record what you want in general (providing its legal). However I also think these artists have a right to be able to be perform without having their concert bootlegged by a million crappy mobile phones.

            I’ve read from artists that it’s actually a blinding and horrible site playing a big gig now. What once used to be cigarette lighters held in the air, has been replaced by a sea of non stop flashes which can’t be nice on the eyes! Not to mention a thousand fans are standing still holding their arms out like zombies, rather than jumping up and down and having fun :)

            I do however think anti-recording measures are going too far, and that such technology would be cracked and bypassed easily anyway (I imagine it would be rather easy to jailbreak and add an app that disables the chip.). And as you say this is all conjecture anyway as the technology doesn’t exist and probably never will.

            If every patent that Apple submits went into production, we’d literally have a strange new iProduct being released every day :)

  3. I thought the whole thing was kinda surreal, actually. I mean, the whole point of a patent is to stop your competitors from stealing your IP, so you would only patent an idea if you don’t want other manufacturers to implement it.

    So for a concert-goer (ignoring the whole “you’re not enjoying the show if you’re recording it” thing), then this would be a reason not to buy an iPhone, and given that other phone manufacturers couldn’t – even if they wanted to – implement it, then Apple would be pretty dumb to actually put it in a phone.

    But hey, whatever sells papers…

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