Apple wants courtroom cleared while secret Steve Jobs deposition plays in music lawsuit

“Aftermath Records, a division of Universal Music Group, is about to go to trial in a case that will determine what money is owed over digital music to producers of many hit Eminem records [F.B.T. Productions],” Eriq Gardner reports for The Hollywood Reporter. “Meanwhile, in another case — a class action against UMG brought by many musicians including Rob Zombie, the estate of Rick James, and others — the plaintiffs are demanding to see trial exhibits, expert reports, depositions and other documents from the Eminem case.”
“The discovery request has brought a strong objection from Apple Inc., which is trying to shield these documents from coming out,” Gardner reports. “Among the evidence being sought is a deposition of Steve Jobs, which when it was first produced, led to the extraordinary move by the judge of ordering most everyone out of the courtroom, including UMG’s employees.”

Gardner reports, “On the eve of the F.B.T. case, almost all documents in the case have gone into lockdown… The musicians in the class action want to pierce the veil, but Apple contends that depositions given by Jobs and senior vp Eddy Cue, as well as other documents related to Apple’s business relationships with UMG and other record labels, are ‘highly confidential and proprietary trade secrets.’ In support, Apple points to the fact that when the depositions were taken, many individuals, including UMG employees, were sent out of the room. When Jobs’ deposition was played before the jury, the judge also closed the courtroom, ordered many people to leave and had the transcripts from the trial sessions filed under seal.”

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