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  • Apple Officially Claims Jailbreaking Illegal
    After a year and a half and many millions of iPhones Jailbroken Apple has finally decided to publicly state that they believe jailbreaking is illegal. Here at MMi we do not believe Jailbreaking is illegal for many reasons. While I could list them all Fred von Lohmann of the Electronic Frontier Foundation which confronts cutting-edge issues defending free speech, privacy, innovation, and consumer rights says it best with his statment:

    "Jailbreaking an iPhone constitutes copyright infringement and a DMCA violation, says Apple in comments filed with the Copyright Office as part of the 2009 DMCA triennial rulemaking. This marks the first formal public statement by Apple about its legal stance on iPhone jailbreaking.
    Apple's iPhone, now the best-selling cellular phone in the U.S., has been designed with restrictions that prevent owners from running applications obtained from sources other than Apple's own iTunes App Store. "Jailbreaking" is the term used for removing these restrictions, thereby liberating your phone from Apple's software "jail." Estimates put the number of iPhone owners who have jailbroken their phones in the hundreds of thousands.

    As part of the 2009 DMCA rulemaking, EFF has asked the Copyright Office to recognize an exemption to the DMCA to permit jailbreaking in order to allow iPhone owners to use their phones with applications that are not available from Apple's store (e.g., turn-by-turn directions, using the iPhone camera for video, laptop tethering).

    Apple's copyright infringement claim starts with the observation that jailbroken iPhones depend on modified versions of Apple's bootloader and operating system software. True enough -- we said as much in our technical white paper describing the jailbreak process. But the courts have long recognized that copying software while reverse engineering is a fair use when done for purposes of fostering interoperability with independently created software, a body of law that Apple conveniently fails to mention.

    As for the DMCA violation, Apple casts its lot with the likes of laser printer makers and garage door opener companies who argue that the DMCA entitles them to block interoperability with anything that hasn't been approved in advance. Apple justifies this by claiming that opening the iPhone to independently created applications will compromise safety, security, reliability, and swing the doors wide for those who want to run pirated software.

    If this sounds like FUD, that's because it is. One need only transpose Apple's arguments to the world of automobiles to recognize their absurdity. Sure, GM might tell us that, for our own safety, all servicing should be done by an authorized GM dealer using only genuine GM parts. Toyota might say that swapping your engine could reduce the reliability of your car. And Mazda could say that those who throw a supercharger on their Miatas frequently exceed the legal speed limit.

    But we'd never accept this corporate paternalism as a justification for welding every car hood shut and imposing legal liability on car buffs tinkering in their garages. After all, the culture of tinkering (or hacking, if you prefer) is an important part of our innovation economy.

    Of course, many iPhone owners will be happy to choose solely from the applications that Apple is willing to approve, just like many Ford owners are happy relying exclusively on their local Ford dealer. But if you want to pop the hood, the DMCA surely shouldn't stand in your way."
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Apple Officially Claims Jailbreaking Illegal started by Cody Overcash View original post
    Comments 298 Comments
    1. swedes_hack_iphones's Avatar
      swedes_hack_iphones -
      How the hell can they find out if you jailbreak? and what are they gonna do???
    1. Channan's Avatar
      Channan -
      Quote Originally Posted by swedes_hack_iphones View Post
      How the hell can they find out if you jailbreak? and what are they gonna do???
      That's what I wanted to know. Ok, so Apple succeeds and gets jailbreaking to become illegal. Unless you're an idiot and bring your jailbroken phone into at&t or the Apple store, how are they going to find out? And when they do find out, what are they going to do about it? Force me to pay a fine or something? How greedy can you be?

      Apple, how can you possibly treat your customers and, dare I say, fans this way? I love your products, but I hate you!
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      Apple trying to DESTROY it customer base in a recession. Well done APPLE see you in bankruptcy
    1. boe_dye's Avatar
      boe_dye -
      Quote Originally Posted by Eurisko View Post
      People are making a scene, because last I checked, MMi doesn't support illegal activities. And if this holds up, MMi becomes a pirate site or says bye bye.
      or just move the server to another country...

      one where america laws don't apply...

      like China for example.

      Hell, do what isohunt did, and move the server to Canada.

      Quote Originally Posted by confucious View Post
      But that's also why most people DO have Windows or a MAC. freeware does not work in the mass market. How many years has Linux been going? How many years have we heard 'this is the year of Linux'?
      You are a (presumably) a programmer. Most of us aren't. Linux will IMHO never gain mass market appeal unless it's in OSX or some other form pushed by a mega corp to give it the sales it needs.

      Much as we love to hate MicroSoft and Apple, if it wasn't for them I don't believe the computer would be as ubiquitous as it is now.

      Just my 2d's worth.
      absolutely correct. Every so often there is a new linux push, and every so often people get all hot and bothered over it thinking that linux is going to topple the market.

      The last one was when Ubuntu became wildly popular. It just so happened that it happened was when I was getting back into computers, and like every other geek out there at one time or another, I wanted to try linux to see if it really would kill MS or Apple.

      And sure enough, it does alot of cool things on hardware older then dirt. Cool things that you still can't do on a PC or Mac, but you can't do the things that everyone else does like sync your iPhone.

      Yes, I know there is WINE, and no it doesn't like iTunes 8, and yes I do play with Sabayon Linux, none of that Ubuntu Crap which is what I started with, and the end result is that the average normal computer user is too lazy to figure out how Windows works. Do you honestly think they feel like figuring out "apt-get" or "entropy"?

      Linux is fun for us who have made windows do everthing that we want, and are too damn cheap or poor to play with OS X.

      Quote Originally Posted by s4mb4 View Post
      apple is upset. i would be too. jailbreaking means apps not in the app store. apple gets a percentage of app store sales. they are entitled to be upset. would you like it if your paycheck was reduced because some other employee was secretly doing some of your work?
      everyone gets so offended when big business complains, but they are entitled to $$ just like anyone else. nothing is free.
      Im gonna call BS on that one.

      1) A good chunk of the developers that are in the appstore started out with free apps on Cydia and Installer.

      2) When you have new articles telling us that some developers have made 6 figures in a year with an app, I find it very hard to believe that anyone is struggling for funding.

      Another iPhone app developer making some serious cash

      (great game btw)

      3) Apple is already making 160 dollars more with the 3g iPhone because they pulled a Kansas City Shuffle with the numbers and made the initial cost cheaper, but the data plan higher.

      IPhone 3G: iPhone 3G's True Price Compared

      So I'm not offended because of any of these reasons, I am offended because a company that during the 1983 Super Bowl said that 1984 wouldn't be like 1984 if you bought their product, and here it is 20 some odd years later, and they are acting just like the "Big Blue" that they fought so hard against.

      Quote Originally Posted by Eurisko View Post
      That's an over simplification. If you buy an iPhone, try to jailbreak it and in the process end up killing the phone; or do something to kill the phone because it was jailbroken. Who do you think should foot the bill to replace it? Apple? You wouldn't think twice about trying to screw them out of the cost would you...

      Apple is not only trying to protect its revenue, it's trying to protect it's assets. And they have every right to.
      Okay fine, i'll go along with that, however...

      Jailbreaking voids your warranty anyways, therefore what they should do instead of blindly handing out a new/refurbed iPhone to every single person who comes back crying the blues that their phone is bricked because they did something stupid, is that they should keep better tabs and records, and not honor the broken warrenty to those that broke it.

      It really wouldn't even be that hard either. Doing a factory restore, or a recovery does NOT fully wipe away certain modifications. Certain things like if you change the carrier logo, stay with the phone.

      So all they would need to do is plug the phone into their own version of an ODB2 and run a diagnostic. Fill out some paperwork, and then hand over a new phone.

      If it's legit, then give them a new phone. If it's not, have them pay a 40 dollar service charge.
    1. guillenzone's Avatar
      guillenzone -
      it s my iphone and I use it how i want to, use it how i want to, use it how i want to
      you would have to if.
    1. boe_dye's Avatar
      boe_dye -
      Quote Originally Posted by Real_Iphonecrazy View Post
      I can half see your point but on the other hand if I buy a PC and change the operating system or install some software not made by the manufactures of the PC/PC components and the graphics card, memory, motherboard failed I'd still expect the warranty to be valid, I should be able to run whatever software I want on my PC or iPhone I paid for it. And the components of both should be covered by there warrantys.
      Not true.

      If you purchase a PC for anywhere that whether it be Dell, or HP, or eMachine, anytime you crack open the case you automatically void the warranty.

      That's why they have that shiny little sticker on the seam of the case and the cover.

      You can load up whatever software you want, they expect that, but because the normal consumer isn't intelligent enough to know the difference between RAM and a CPU, they figure it's just best to say "take it to an authorized repair center".

      Remember building your own, and buying your own is a separate issue

      ...And because of that we have the saying "hardware hacking, how to have Phun while VOIDING your warranty".

      Quote Originally Posted by swedes_hack_iphones View Post
      How the hell can they find out if you jailbreak? and what are they gonna do???
      act like the RIAA.

      Sue old woman, and children and printers and corpses...

      Go "Woe is me, I'm a poor little rich kid".

      As far as finding out? That's not hard. Update to the latest iTunes, send out an update to your device in the update that sends information back to them. Kind of like windows OBE registration.

      It really wouldn't be all that hard. Same way how they embedded Safari as part of their update package and how many people updated not knowing fully well what they were getting into.

      You gotta remember, how many people just jailbreak their phone cause it's the cool hip thing to do. There are thousands of people who really have no clue, and don't think about reading anything as far as TuTs or forums, or whatever.

      They just blindly point and click, and do whatever the happy trustworthy box tells them to do.

      Quote Originally Posted by dsg View Post
      Apple trying to DESTROY it customer base in a recession. Well done APPLE see you in bankruptcy
      doubtful.

      Not when you can substantiate a company by selling what they would consider a low end laptop for 2000 dollars.

      Besides, the whole illegal jailbreaking only affects people like you and me and Steve Wozniak.

      Steve Jobs isn't going to lose sleep over a few hackers and crackers compared to the multimillions he's made on the normal population.

      Remember, there was no Jailbreaking when iPhone launched. No appstore, no cydia, no anything. It was just the iPhone and the Apple brand name, and lines of people eagerly awaiting outside of stores the nite before launch.

      Quote Originally Posted by Eurisko View Post
      Except for that pesky little 5 year contract they have with AT&T.
      i missed that one, what 5 year contract are you referring too?
    1. confucious's Avatar
      confucious -
      Quote Originally Posted by boe_dye View Post
      i missed that one, what 5 year contract are you referring too?
      AT&T has exclusive U.S. distribution rights for five years - according to AT&T eager to wield its iWeapon - USATODAY.com
    1. boe_dye's Avatar
      boe_dye -
      Quote Originally Posted by confucious View Post
      AT&T has exclusive U.S. distribution rights for five years - according to AT&T eager to wield its iWeapon - USATODAY.com
      Clever Clever.

      i did not know that.

      So basically from a sales perspective they essentially made it super desireable to everyone else, and when that five years is up they can create a monopoly on it.

      interesting.
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by boe_dye View Post
      Clever Clever.

      i did not know that.

      So basically from a sales perspective they essentially made it super desireable to everyone else, and when that five years is up they can create a monopoly on it.

      interesting.
      I am sure they will sign on with another company later too... a cut of all of the monthly contract fees is nicer than just selling units at a flat price. Exclusivity also makes these phone companies more willing to hand over a larger percentage of their monthly income too.
    1. radiomean's Avatar
      radiomean -
      Just my 2P worth..
      Jailbreak breaks the Apple T & Cs..
      That tho does not make it unlawful (illegal is a sick bird ;-))

      In OZ and NZ I belive the iPhone can't be locked to one network because that breaks local competition laws....

      And in Eu I don't know even thought I live there. But seriously, unless you take your device in for service (or accidentally 'UPGRADE' haha) by iTunes WTF can they do..

      Apple and Micro$oft are as bad as each other.
      Apple do make really cool devices but then screw up by locking it down (like the bluetooth etc.. which is being worked on also..)

      Oh well..
    1. MetallicaFan1991's Avatar
      MetallicaFan1991 -
      Why are people getting so angry over Apple claiming that jailbreaking is illegal, it was illegal a year ago aswell, if anybody read the iPhone software agreements, they would have realized. Like I said in the beginning of this thread,the only reason Apple has brought this up now is because of the amount of crackers and people using cracked apps. Mainly due to Cr*ckul**s and Inst*l***s!!! I use them sometimes, if it weren't for Inst*l***s, I wouldn't have bought some of the apps of App Store anyway.

      I blame Apple for making the apps soooo easy to crack, even I figured out how to crack them before Cra**ul**s were released. Since jailbreaking is the key to installing crack apps, Apple must be really angry!
    1. tarekkkkk's Avatar
      tarekkkkk -
      bring it on i say ^^ , i dont live in the us and i have 2.2.1 jailbroken iphone and we dont have an apple center in our country but we do have a law every phone must be unlocked because we pay every month for the service (Lebanon ^^)
    1. cmwade77's Avatar
      cmwade77 -
      Actually, Jaibreaking is not in and of it's self illegal, now it MAY void you warranty; however, I think there could be a legitimate case made that it doesn't. Again, back to the car analogy, if you change the radio in your car and your transmission goes out, the dealer can't say that the warranty is invalid because you changed the radio, they can say that the radio is no longer under their warranty (unless they did the work of course).

      The same with Jailbreaking, I think it would be up to Apple to prove that the Jailbreaking was the source of the problem before denying warranty service.

      With Jailbreaking, you are not illegally copying anything (you are using Firmware Downloads, which are freely available from Apple directly for free). All you are doing is modifying firmware, which resides on your computer with software, which has also been made freely available by the Dev Team or other sources.

      Now downloading of Firmware that has already been modified may be questionable, as that is firmware that you didn't modify on your own computer.
    1. eg6motion's Avatar
      eg6motion -
      Quote Originally Posted by €hr!$ View Post
      i love your products, but i hate you!
      qft
    1. Sullivan0930's Avatar
      Sullivan0930 -
      cool now i get a rush every time i turn my screen on in public.
    1. Eurisko's Avatar
      Eurisko -
      Quote Originally Posted by boe_dye View Post
      i missed that one, what 5 year contract are you referring too?
      Apple & AT&T signed a 5 year deal for AT&T to be the exclusive carrier of the iPhone [in the US], and Apple in return gets kickbacks on the data charges.
    1. boe_dye's Avatar
      boe_dye -
      Quote Originally Posted by Eurisko View Post
      Apple & AT&T signed a 5 year deal for AT&T to be the exclusive carrier of the iPhone [in the US], and Apple in return gets kickbacks on the data charges.
      I knew about the kickback with the data plan, however I never knew that there was any type of time period contract with that.

      Quote Originally Posted by sullivan0930 View Post
      cool now i get a rush every time i turn my screen on in public.
      lmao!
    1. NaplesBill's Avatar
      NaplesBill -
      I just want to add one additional point. Saying something is prohibited in the T&C does not make enforceable. It's no different than signing a homeowners agreement in a gated community. There are a ton of things in those agreements that are not enforceable in court. There only purpose is to curb behavior. I honestly think Apple knows that they will have a hard fight and would possibly lose the battle over jailbreaking. This is likely the reason they have turned a cheek to it for so long.
    1. IPhone_Man4u's Avatar
      IPhone_Man4u -
      All Apple can do is Take away the App Store, that’s fine with me makes for more underground apps to play anyway even though some are starting to charge as well, so either way we get screwed when it come to apps, but as far as me customizing my phone to look and feel the way I want is totally preposterous. As many have said before the Apps in the App store, most of them are overpriced and are not good Apps at all. Apple just wants to have a Monopoly over everything, like Microsoft does, don’t they realize if they stop trying to restrict things there would be no reason for people to hack their phones and software? I mean its common sense lol.
    1. confucious's Avatar
      confucious -
      Quote Originally Posted by IPhone_Man4u View Post
      makes for more underground apps to play anyway even though some are starting to charge as well, so either way we get screwed when it come to apps,
      So you think people charging for Apps is wrong?
      Grow up!