That’s a preposterous idea, right? But what if I could make a compelling story about how much emotional damage the photos caused me, and a clever lawyer could convince a jury that Apple was fully responsible for my health issues caused by the iPhone’s camera, wouldn’t it be worth a try?
After all, Apple has tens of billions of dollars in the bank and if we could just settle out of court for a few million, give a big chunk to the lawyers, and I’d take the rest of the payout and call it a career. Good idea, right?
No. But that kind of thing happens all the time and this time it happened to Apple.
A few years ago the Modisette family was driving on an interstate in Dallas, TX and another car slammed into their car. 5-year old Moriah Modisette died. The family sued Apple, Inc.
Why? The driver of the other car, the one that slammed into the Modisette family’s car, was using FaceTime on his iPhone. Apple’s fault, right? Apple should have installed a function that would not allow using FaceTime while driving.
Of course, the same thing occurs all over the world when people text while driving, talk on the phone while driving, smoke while driving, even talk to passengers while driving– and they get into accidents (a term I hate to use because someone usually is at fault, making it not so much an accident as carelessness or negligence, but you get the idea, right?).
Who is to blame? The automobile maker? The smartphone maker? If someone is sipping coffee while driving and spills it onto their lap and that causes them to lose control and that causes an accident is McDonald’s to blame for the crash? Maybe ambulance chaser lawyers should sue the parents of a terrorist or mass-murderer because they should have known what their child was up to. Or, should have raised them better.
I feel for the parents who lost a child to obvious negligence, and I understand why an ambulance chasing lawyer would like to cash in on the situation. It’s sad. It’s tragic. It’s also a trend.
In this case part of the suit alleges neglect by Apple thanks to a patent from 2008.
Defendant Apple Inc. has had the technology to prevent these events, and the Modisettes’ injuries, specifically since at least Dec. 12, 2008, when it filed an application with the U.S. Patent Office for a ‘driver handheld computing device lock-out’.”
Where does one draw the line here?
General Motors has the capability to build a car whereby the occupants cannot be injured during an accident. It’s called a tank. Maybe if we all drove armored military vehicles we would not have so many traffic fatalities. Of course, the price of a vehicle would become so prohibitive that few of use could afford to drive, so there’s that side of the fatality equation to think about.
This tragedy is not Apple’s fault and Apple is not responsible. But $200-billion in the bank brings out the sharks and negative publicity can be a strong motivator to settle. I don’t want to diminish the family’s pain, but this is wrong.
Meanwhile, the family has a donation fund with Go Fund Me.
I was looking through some of the photos on my iPhone and a few of them made me sad, and sadness is equated to personal tragedy, so I plan to open up a Go Fund Me account to help reduce my photo-induced misery with a cruise ship through the Mediterranean. Oh, and I’m looking for a lawyer who might be interested in reducing Apple’s pile of cash on my behalf.