Aug 20, 2017

Judge in Uber suit orders Waymo to disclose its own acquisition practices

AP

A magistrate judge has ruled that Waymo (and its parent company, Alphabet) must disclose certain information about how it conducts acquisitions in order to give the jury context about Uber's own process, according to a new court document.

Why it matters: In a lawsuit filed in February, Waymo accused Uber of stealing and using its self-driving car trade secrets when it acquired a startup founded by a former Waymo employee, Anthony Levandowski. So far in the case, Waymo has sought to paint certain steps Uber took as part of the acquisition process as unusual and suspicious, and plans to ask the jury to look negatively on these procedures.

A trial is scheduled for October.

More from last week:

  • The judge presiding over the case denied Uber's attempt to use a key argument (the "bonus theory") to explain why Levandowski downloaded files prior to leaving his job at Waymo, as Axios previously reported.
  • In a new document, Uber notified the court that although it's not conceding it infringed on Waymo's patents or trade secrets, it plans to redesign "Fuji," one of the of the two LiDAR sensors at the center of the case. Uber says that the redesigns are easy and help narrow the scope of the issues.
  • During a hearing, the judge warned that he may tell the jury about Uber's lawyers not "coming clean" about their possession of certain key documents and the law firm's role in the saga.

Go deeper

DOJ to treat antifa involvement in protests as domestic terrorism

Barr and Trump. Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images

Attorney General Bill Barr said in a statement Sunday that the Justice Department will use its network of 56 regional FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces to identify the "criminal organizers and instigators" of violence during the George Floyd protests, including antifa and similar groups.

Why it matters: Barr, President Trump and other members of the administration have pinned the blame for riots and looting over the past few days of protests against police brutality on antifa, a loosely defined far-left movement that uses violence and direct-action protest tactics.

2 hours ago - Technology

Trump and Zuckerberg share phone call amid social media furor

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

In the week that President Trump took on social media, Axios has learned that he had a call Friday with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg that was described by both sides as productive.

Why it matters: With the White House and Twitter at war, Facebook has managed to keep diplomatic relations with the world's most powerful social-media devotee.

Twitter, Google lead chorus of brands backing George Floyd protests

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Twitter and Google are among the dozens of brands over the past 24 hours that have taken public stances in favor of Americans protesting racial equality. Some companies have changed their logos in solidarity with the movement, while others have pledged money in support of efforts to address social injustice.

Why it matters: The pressure that companies feel to speak out on issues has increased during the Trump era, as businesses have sought to fill a trust void left by the government. Now, some of the biggest companies are quickly taking a public stand on the protests, pressuring all other brands to do the same.