FEB 2 – Malaysia has filed a suit against Apple for infringing patents after its recent launch of the iPad, its latest “what-the-hell-is-it” device.
The joint suit by the Federal government and the Penang state administration is related to ideas that were first registered by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng respectively.
Putrajaya and Komtar are claiming that the iPad, due to its position as a product in between the iPhone and the MacBook, is mimicking the 1 Malaysia and Middle Malaysia concepts, respectively.
This compounds Apple’s already tarnished image as being “copycats” after Nokia had in October filed a suit worth up to RM3.5 billion for patent infringements related to the all-conquering iPhone.
A statement from the Prime Minister’s Office said that, “Malaysia was the first and is unique in trying to put forward this idea of unity, that all you need is one, plain, dull, boring ol’ thing that combines all the best elements of Malaysia into one streamlined slogan.”
When reached for comment, Information and Culture Minister insisted that “this is Malaysian culture and we cannot allow others to steal it, just like how Indonesia stole our batik and Singapore, our Ampang Yong Tau Fu.”
Meanwhile, in a press conference a few minutes ago, Lim insisted that “we have painstakingly worked with lawyers and marketing firms to come up with an idea that was original and convincing, and now Apple has simply come in and stolen it.”
He added that disallowing Apple from using his idea was not acting like a “dictator, chauvinist or communist” but that Apple CEO Steve Jobs was “burning bridges” with the people of Penang and Malaysia, implying that Penang’s relationship with one of its most important foreign investors Intel, who are also Apple’s main chip producer, may have been jeopardised.
He also issued a statement explaining that Middle Malaysia “is about moderate, non-extremist Malaysians. They are not too big, not too small, not too hard, not too soft, not too hot, not too cold, but just nice for people like Goldilocks.”
This comes on the back of criticism that “nobody knows what the hell Malaysian slogans are about since Malaysia Boleh anyway.”
However, it is uncertain if such definitions will be enough to convince the courts in Delaware, where Nokia, whose handphone manuals make up 90 per cent of all Finnish literature, has also filed its suit.
As such, both the Attorney-General and state legal adviser have compiled reams of documents concerning the usage of 1 Malaysia and Middle Malaysia. As with most of these legal documents, they are so thorough and meandering that a Garmin could get lost in them.
Technology expert iVan eNg believes that if Malaysia wins the suit, it could be worth RM2 billion as “despite its obviously stupid, menstrually-linked name, we all know that people will still buy something from Apple even if it is Steve Jobs’ shit in a bag, so long as Apple puts an ‘i’ in front of it or ‘book’ at the end of it.”
And in fact, law experts in Malaysia are confident of victory and are already looking discussing how the award will be split between Putrajaya and Komtar.
“We know that the Federal government has been slow to release funds to Penang. But in this case, I guess they will insist Penang has no right to the cash as the suit is not within Penang’s territory or its state waters. So they will only offer it some ‘wang ehsan’ I believe,” said Bar Council president Left Right N. Centre.
Already, the spate of suits against Apple is drawing flak from previously hardcore Apple supporters such as celebrities like Bono of U2 and Kanye West.
“You know, this is like piracy and piracy is ruining the world. If there was no piracy in the world, then I would have enough money to single-handedly Drop The Debt and cure AIDS,” Bono said.
When quizzed about how Apple was in fact making tons of money from this “piracy”, he simply said, “Hello, hello, I’m at a place called Vertigo,” implying that this suggestion was as nonsensical as his lyrics.
West said that “I’m really happy for Malaysia, and I’ma let them finish. But Nike had one of the best slogans of all time!”
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