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  • Gizmodo Search Warrant Gets Pulled By Authorities


    If you don't remember all the fuss about this case, you've been sleeping under a rock. This pertains to the incident of the "lost/stolen" iPhone 4 that Gizmodo had reviewed a few months back. In the slew of all this mess, editor Jason Chen of Gizmodo, had his house searched and various items seized.

    The EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) says that the San Mateo County District Attorney's office has been given the opportunity to withdrawal the uber-controversial search warrant. They state that the search was indeed illegal, and violated California code.

    As EFF repeatedly noted at the time, the warrant-backed search of Chen's home was illegal as it violated California Penal Code section 1524(g)'s prohibition against the issuance of warrants for "unpublished information obtained or prepared in gathering, receiving or processing of information for communication to the public."
    Jason will be one happy guy when he get's all of his items returned, however it's not the end of the drama. The District Attorney could easily turn around and request a subpoena, once again, giving them access to all of Chen's items. However, it's probably not likely to happen, as it seems Steve realizes this might be something to just "let it slide"

    The Wall Street Journal reports that Gizmodo has fully complied with authorities, thus making it much easier for a withdrawal of the search warrant.

    The San Mateo County judge overseeing the Gizmodo case on Friday ordered the search warrant to be withdrawn and the materials taken from Mr. Chen to be returned to him. Gawker Media Chief Operating Officer Gaby Darbyshire said Gizmodo has agreed voluntarily to give the district attorney materials that a court appointee "deems relevant to the case."

    Chris Feasel, deputy district attorney for San Mateo County, said Friday that the investigation into Gizmodo is ongoing. "Mr. Chen and Gizmodo have agreed to cooperate with our investigation," he said.

    MacRumors & Wall Street Journal
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Gizmodo Search Warrant Gets Pulled By Authorities started by nickhesson View original post
    Comments 38 Comments
    1. ssfirme's Avatar
      ssfirme -
      Well that sucks for him
    1. Nick Hesson's Avatar
      Nick Hesson -
      Quote Originally Posted by ssfirme View Post
      Well that sucks for him
      Lol, how does this suck? He's getting his stuff back.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      Jobs thought the guy test the phone and know about "Death Grip". Want to shut Gizmo mouth regarding this issue before the release and end up losing millions of sales, so had a search done on the guy and take all evidence.
      Can you imagine the loss of sales if Gizmo reported about "Death Grip" before the launch?
      Now that iPhone launch is over, everyone knows about antenna issue and apparently the guy knows nothing so he let the case go.

      Anyways I am sticking with my 3GS, no physical change to fix iPhone 4 = fail.
    1. KartRacer's Avatar
      KartRacer -
      Please. Dude reveal a trade secret to the world. He knew what he was doing, Gawker knew that they were doing. What info he had wasn't his to distribute even if hadn't done so. This guy and Gawker are trying everything they can to cover their *** for doing something monumentally stupid. You can't expect to get away scot free by unveiling a product owned by a multibillion corporation entangled in a market as competitive as the mobile phone market.
    1. c1ockwerk's Avatar
      c1ockwerk -
      Quote Originally Posted by unison999 View Post
      Jobs thought the guy test the phone and know about "Death Grip". Want to shut Gizmo mouth regarding this issue before the release and end up losing millions of sales, so had a search done on the guy and take all evidence.
      Can you imagine the loss of sales if Gizmo reported about "Death Grip" before the launch?
      Now that iPhone launch is over, everyone knows about antenna issue and apparently the guy knows nothing so he let the case go.
      lol that would have been awesome
    1. topless1967stang's Avatar
      topless1967stang -
      When he gets his stuff back he should sell it or give it to friends and family. Than he will have nothing to take.
    1. delusion950's Avatar
      delusion950 -
      id sue them since search violated Cali code. good thing hes getting his things back.
    1. mikerlx's Avatar
      mikerlx -
      Staying with my 3G I4 needs some time
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      Quote Originally Posted by c1ockwerk View Post
      lol that would have been awesome
      If he did know about and reported on "death grip" I would have thanked him and so will all these people who got duped by Apple.
      Would have saved myself some money, because I lost all the apps I bought specifically for iPhone4...
      I wonder how many people bought iphone4 and returned it, decided not to buy it again and gave up on the apps they bought for iPhone4...
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      I'm surprised it's gone on this long. Glad things are easing up for him
    1. awesomeSlayer's Avatar
      awesomeSlayer -
      He must be happy.
    1. kuhndsn's Avatar
      kuhndsn -
      Still a crook. Some news agencies will go to great lengths to get their sweeps. Regardless the law is the law. Even if it's a technicality. (not saying this was).
    1. ecd5000's Avatar
      ecd5000 -
      Hamburgler
    1. badass1469's Avatar
      badass1469 -
      Quote Originally Posted by nickhesson View Post
      Lol, how does this suck? He's getting his stuff back.
      cuz they shouldnt have taken his sh1t in the first place...
    1. javiert30's Avatar
      javiert30 -
      Whats the procedure for the people that already bought the bumper to have the refund? Somebody know or is not effective yet?
    1. DayumQuitPlayin's Avatar
      DayumQuitPlayin -
      Glad he's getting his stuff back. I dunno why ppl are so hard on Gizmodo when many of them visit their website and were following their coverage of the found phone. Hypocrites.
    1. whereswaldo's Avatar
      whereswaldo -
      Did this iPhone have a death grip?
    1. drloco149's Avatar
      drloco149 -
      i smell a lawsuit....
    1. CZroe's Avatar
      CZroe -
      Quote Originally Posted by KartRacer View Post
      Please. Dude reveal a trade secret to the world. He knew what he was doing, Gawker knew that they were doing. What info he had wasn't his to distribute even if hadn't done so. This guy and Gawker are trying everything they can to cover their *** for doing something monumentally stupid. You can't expect to get away scot free by unveiling a product owned by a multibillion corporation entangled in a market as competitive as the mobile phone market.
      "Please." Trade secrets are theirs to protect and keep secret, not ours. When they lose something like that, THEY fail to protect their trade secrets. It doesn't suddenly become the finder's and public's responsibility. The police do not exist to do Apple's bidding. You couldn't possibly be more wrong about the crime here. If it were truly stolen, there'd be an issue, but it'd be a completely different one. Also, Gizmodo really only paid for access to it with intent to return it directly to Apple. Saying they paid $5K for it is everyone else's flawed reporting.

      To even imply that the information in his head wasn't his to do with as he pleased so long as it was legally obtained is ludicrous. It's like saying that no reporter can ever report something that wasn't previously known! So much for secrets and exposés! So much for rights and whistle-blowers! You should know that this law exists SPECIFICALLY to protect reporters so that they can release such information.
    1. boxxa's Avatar
      boxxa -
      It's hard to argue the legality of it from the beginning. If the iPhone was stolen and gawker bought it to profit and promote their site I can see the issues but if some drunk newley out of college kid decides to leave it out it's perfectly fine IMO. Just a very fine line of freedom of the press and the part of profiting from stolen property.