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News item: Daily Variety , the Hollywood trade newspaper, recently reported rumors of a pending settlement of a lawsuit brought by the Beatles’ Apple Corps company against Apple Computer. The suit, filed in London, claims that the California computer company, by creating its wildly popular iPod digital music player and iTunes online music service, breached a 1991 trademark-related agreement with the Beatles that prevented Apple Computer from moving into the music business. “People are expecting this to be the biggest settlement anywhere in legal history, outside of a class action suit,” one lawyer told the entertainment newspaper � which led us to imagine: This Settlement Agreement is entered into this 1st of January, 2005, by and among Steven Jobs and Apple Computer Inc. (“Apple”) and Apple Corps (“The Beatles”). This Agreement ends all disputes between Apple Computer and The Beatles regarding Apple Computer’s use of the “Apple” trademark and its right to sell music-related products. 1. While both parties to the Settlement Agreement concur that all you need is love, they also are in accordance that cold hard cash is a fair and accurate expression of love. The parties stipulate that the parties involved include a rock band that has not played a note in the more than 35 years that have passed since its 1970 breakup and an ex-hippie entrepreneur who still considers said band a meaningful cultural force. 2. With respect to this Agreement, both parties initially acknowledge that, as charming and popular as he is, Ringo Starr will not play drums or any other percussion instrument on a music project conceived of or involving Steven Jobs either here, there, everywhere or anywhere else for that matter. Both parties also agree unconditionally that Starr really did write “Octopus’ Garden” despite scant evidence that he has any songwriting ability. 3. Insofar as Steven Jobs is a Settling Defendant in this case, he reserves sole rights in perpetuity to perform “Get Back” at backyard barbecues, midnight company brainstorming sessions or workday corporate jam sessions. However, he must limit himself to playing air guitar. 4. Settling Defendant also shall have the right to terminate this agreement in the event that Paul McCartney (“The Cute But ‘Just Give Me Money’ Beatle”) or Yoko Ono (“The Woman Who Broke Up The Beatles”) dredges up some muddy recording of the late John Lennon singing in the shower and tries to pass it off as a “lost recording.” 5. In lieu of a large cash payment by Apple Computer, the company agrees to remove the Apple logo from all future iterations of its iPod music player and/or its iTunes online music service. Mr. Jobs also consents to remove all digitized versions of the original Beatles albums from his own personal iPod since they are not, and will never be, available commercially — at least so long as McCartney, a vegetarian who won’t own a computer until one runs on alfalfa sprouts, can help it. 6. Settling Defendant Jobs warrants and represents that (i) I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together; (ii) the Walrus, putatively and in actuality, was Paul; and (iii) Goo goo g’joob. 7. Insofar as the late George Harrison (“The Quiet Beatle”) first learned about Apple Computer by spotting a magazine advertisement for the company a few years after its founding in 1976 and immediately wondered whether his trademark had been infringed, the surviving Beatles agree to no longer subscribe to or peruse computer-themed periodicals or any periodical construed to contain computer-themed advertising. 8. Apple Computer agrees, after exchanging many non-sequiturs and a few artful-sounding screeches with Yoko Ono, to stop referring to the design of its iPod as “avant-garde.” It also agrees to acknowledge Ono as the sole inventor of the avant-garde and an artist in her own regard. 9. Within 30 days of this Settlement, and in light of the fact that Apple Computer paid The Beatles $80,000 in 1981 for the right to use the name Apple on its computers and $26.5 million in 1991 to allow its computers to have the ability to record music, The Beatles agree to state that while Paul is not dead, the ’60s certainly are, making the legitimacy of future lawsuits regarding the Apple trademark tenuous at best. Alec Foege is a freelance writer in New York City who has contributed to various ALM publications.

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