It’s a sad night for HTC fans in France and across the globe as HTC France has taken legal action against HTC-Hub (currently the largest HTC blog on the web) for releasing an unboxing video of the HTC One S. The handset, which Bruno obtained through a confidential source, has also been seized by French authorities.
At this point, we’re not sure what legal charges have been brought against HTC-Hub, but it looks like everything has stemmed from a lack of communication from Hopscotch, HTC’s PR agency in France. Bruno approached Hopscotch a few weeks after Mobile World Congress to inquire about HTC One demo units. While HTC typically sends out demo units to members of the press several days before the actual launch with an embargo agreement (an agreement to not publish any information about the phone before a specific date or time), Hopscotch informed Bruno that demo units would not be available in France until the launch of the HTC One next week.
Members of HTC-Hub decided to take the matter into their own hands and were able to secure the HTC One S without help from HTC or its PR company, meaning there were no legal restrictions as to when they could share images, videos or information about the device. We know that quite a few bloggers in Europe have been using the HTC One S and HTC One X for a few days already, but no major site has given any hands-on account of the devices due to the embargo which they all agreed to.
We don’t know how things will progress with Bruno and the rest of his team at HTC-Hub. From the personal communication we have had with Bruno, it’s obvious that this whole situation could have been resolved without legal action. We don’t want to point fingers at HTC and say that they are in the wrong since we are not directly involved and may be missing some key details, but we’ll be monitoring the situation and let you know if there are any interesting updates.
What are your thoughts on the situation? If HTC-Hub managed to obtain a demo unit of the HTC One S from a different source should they be legally required to abide by an embargo that they never agreed to?