Epic Games, Inc. v. Google LLC et al

Filing 491

PRETRIAL ORDER. Signed by Judge James Donato on 10/20/2023. (jdlc2, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 10/20/2023)

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Case 3:20-cv-05671-JD Document 491 Filed 10/20/23 Page 1 of 7 1 2 3 4 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 5 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 6 7 IN RE GOOGLE PLAY STORE ANTITRUST LITIGATION MDL Case No. 21-md-02981-JD Member Case Nos. 20-cv-05671-JD, 22-cv-02746-JD 8 9 PRETRIAL ORDER FOR EPIC AND MATCH TRIAL 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 As discussed at the final pretrial conference on October 19, 2023, this order governs the 13 jury trial to be held in Epic Games, Inc. v. Google LLC, Case No. 20-cv-05671-JD, and Match 14 Group, LLC v. Google LLC, Case No. 22-cv-02746-JD. 15 I. SUMMARY JUDGMENT 16 1. The Court stated on the hearing record the disposition of the remaining arguments in 17 Google’s motion for partial summary judgment, Dkt. No. 483. In pertinent summary: 18 a. Summary judgment is granted for Google on “plaintiffs’ claims that Google 19 unlawfully prohibits the distribution of other app stores on Google Play.” Id. at 6. 20 Plaintiffs may reference § 4.5 of the Developer Distribution Agreement by way of 21 background and context, but they may not argue or suggest that § 4.5 is unlawful 22 either on its own or in combination with other alleged practices. See Verizon 23 Communications v. Trinko, 540 U.S. 398 (2004). 24 b. Summary judgment is deferred on the question of a per se or rule of reason 25 standard for plaintiffs’ Section 1 claims re Google’s Games Velocity Program 26 agreements with Riot, Activision, and Supercell. Material facts are in dispute with 27 respect to the applicable standard. The Court will decide the question before final 28 jury instructions. Case 3:20-cv-05671-JD Document 491 Filed 10/20/23 Page 2 of 7 1 c. Summary judgment on plaintiffs’ tying claims is denied. Google’s primary case, 2 Rick-Mik Enterprises Inc. v. Equilon Enterprises, LLC, 532 F.3d 963 (9th Cir. 3 2008), is inapposite, and there are genuine disputes of material fact on the issue of 4 coercion. 5 6 Dkt. No. 486, are precluded by numerous disputed questions of material fact. Fed. R. 7 Civ. P. 56(a). The motion is denied in its entirety. There will be no mention of 8 punitive damages at trial until expressly authorized by the Court. 9 10 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 2. The Match Group’s requests for partial summary judgment on Google’s counterclaims, 12 13 14 II. PLAINTIFFS’ MOTIONS IN LIMINE 1. MIL No. 1: GRANTED to exclude argument and evidence re the outcome of the Epic v. Apple litigation. FRE 402/403. 2. MIL No. 2: GRANTED to exclude argument and evidence re other litigation, investigations, and settlements involving plaintiffs. FRE 402/403. 3. MIL No. 3: GRANTED IN PART to exclude argument and evidence re Tencent 15 Holding Ltd.’s domicile. Google may ask a witness once about Tencent’s domicile. 16 Additional references are excluded. FRE 402/403. 17 18 III. GOOGLE’S MOTIONS IN LIMINE 1. MIL No. 1: Google’s request to preclude Epic from offering evidence or argument 19 that the Apple App Store and Google Play Store are in separate markets “because Epic 20 lost that issue” in its antitrust suit against Apple is DENIED for multiple reasons. 21 Google’s collateral estoppel argument should have been raised in a summary judgment 22 motion; it is not properly a motion in limine. The contention was raised very late in the 23 case without good cause excusing the delay. Google did not adequately establish each 24 of the elements of estoppel. 25 2. MIL No. 2: Google’s request to exclude evidence or argument re privilege issues is 26 DENIED, except that plaintiffs may not comment on privilege designations that appear 27 on documents produced in discovery. 28 2 Case 3:20-cv-05671-JD Document 491 Filed 10/20/23 Page 3 of 7 1 3. MIL No. 3: Google’s request to exclude evidence re its 2019 negotiations with 2 Samsung for Samsung’s Galaxy Store (Project Banyan) is DENIED. FRE 402. 3 4 settlements in this MDL, except that the parties are free to offer any evidence excluded 5 by this order if the other side opens the door. If the plaintiffs wish to offer this 6 evidence without Google opening the door, they may file a proffer on the docket, two 7 court days in advance, to seek the Court’s prior approval. 8 9 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 4. MIL No. 4: GRANTED to exclude evidence or argument re other lawsuits or 5. MIL No. 5 re Google employees’ compensation, stock holdings, or net worth: RESOLVED by the parties’ agreement, as read into the record. 6. MIL No. 6: GRANTED to exclude evidence or argument re federal government 11 reports. FRE 402/403. Testifying experts may rely on the underlying facts in these 12 reports so long as they do not mention the reports in their testimony. 13 7. MIL No. 7: GRANTED to exclude evidence or argument re foreign proceedings and 14 investigations. FRE 402/403. Again, testifying experts may rely on the underlying 15 facts in these reports and decisions so long as they do not mention the reports and 16 decisions in their testimony. 17 18 IV. REMEDY FOR DESTRUCTION OF CHATS EVIDENCE 1. After an evidentiary hearing and other proceedings, the Court concluded that Google 19 failed to preserve relevant evidence from its Chat message system, and that the failure 20 to preserve was intentional and prejudicial to plaintiffs. Dkt. No. 469. 21 2. Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e)(2), a permissive adverse inference 22 jury instruction is a reasonable and proportionate remedy to Google’s intentional 23 failure to preserve relevant evidence. 24 3. Based on proof adduced at trial, the permissive adverse inference instruction may make 25 specific reference to one or more of eight evidence categories that plaintiffs say were 26 affected by Google’s default: RSAs with OEMs; MADAs with OEMs; Google’s 27 efforts to pay Samsung not to compete; Project Hug; Google’s arguments not to 28 3 Case 3:20-cv-05671-JD Document 491 Filed 10/20/23 Page 4 of 7 1 compete with ABK, Riot, and Supercell; September 2020 changes to Google Play’s 2 business model; Project Runway; and Google’s relationship with Apple. 3 4 preservation. 5 5. The Court will give the permissive adverse inference instruction at the end of the case. 6 6. Plaintiffs may not mention the adverse inference instruction in their opening statement, 7 8 United States District Court Northern District of California 4. Plaintiffs may ask witnesses questions about their Chats practice re retention and but may mention the underlying Chats issues. V. SCHEDULE AND TIME LIMITS 9 1. Each side will have up to 45 hours of trial time, excluding openings and closings. The 10 parties are free to meet and confer and jointly propose a reduction. As stated in the 11 Court’s civil trial standing order, the Courtroom Deputy, Ms. Lisa Clark, will have the 12 final word on the time count. 13 2. Each side will have up to 45 minutes for opening statements. Duplicative statements 14 by co-parties will not be allowed. The parties are directed to meet and confer on a 15 deadline for exchanging demonstratives to be used in each side’s opening statements. 16 3. Each side will have up to 1 hour for closing arguments. 17 4. Trial days are Monday through Thursday. Fridays are generally reserved for the 18 Court’s other matters, but may be used here if the case is ready for closings, the jury is 19 deliberating, or the parties and the Court otherwise agree. 20 5. There will be no trial held on November 22 - November 24, 2023, and December 4 - 21 11, 2023, in light of the Thanksgiving holidays and the Court’s unavailability. 22 6. Trial will be held each trial day from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., with two 15-minute 23 breaks. As previously agreed, the parties may jointly provide snacks to the jury, with 24 the cost to be shared equally among the parties. 25 VI. VOIR DIRE, JURY SELECTION AND MINI-OPENINGS 26 1. The Court will likely seat 10 jurors for the trial. 27 28 4 Case 3:20-cv-05671-JD Document 491 Filed 10/20/23 Page 5 of 7 2. The parties will give “mini-openings” to the venire as an introduction to the case. Each 1 2 side will give a 3-minute statement that provides a high-level, non-argumentative 3 overview of the case. 3. After the mini-openings, the Court will conduct the voir dire based on the questions 4 proposed by the parties and the Court’s own questions and practices. 5 4. The parties will have three peremptory challenges per side, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 6 § 1870. 7 5. The Court will use the “strike and replace” method for jury selection. A prospective 8 juror not excused after a round of challenges will be deemed a member of the jury and 9 may not subsequently be challenged. 10 6. Jury selection will be held on November 2, 2023, and trial will begin on November 6, United States District Court Northern District of California 11 2023. 12 13 14 VII. JURY MATERIALS AND OTHER TRIAL PROCEDURES 1. Jury notebooks. Jurors will be permitted to take notes. The parties will prepare jury 15 notebooks and bring 12 copies on the first day of trial. The notebooks should be in the 16 form of 2” 3-ring binders that have a plastic cover sleeve with a caption page (stating 17 the case name and number), and must include these materials: 18 a. A glossary of relevant terms and abbreviations, to be prepared jointly by the 19 parties. 20 b. 100 pages of blank, college-lined paper. 21 c. A tab for witness photos. The jury will be provided with a color photo (a headshot) 22 of each witness just before that witness takes the stand. The party calling the 23 witness is responsible for providing the Courtroom Deputy with 12 three-hole 24 punched, letter-sized copies of each photo. The Courtroom Deputy will distribute 25 the photos to the jury. The witness must appear exactly the same in the photo as 26 they will appear on the witness stand (e.g., same clothing, hairstyle, eyewear). The 27 photo will include the witness’s name, but no other information. 28 d. Tabs for the preliminary and final jury instructions, which the Court will distribute. 5 Case 3:20-cv-05671-JD Document 491 Filed 10/20/23 Page 6 of 7 United States District Court Northern District of California 1 2. Jury questions. The Court will allow the jurors to ask questions during the trial. 2 Questions will be in writing and submitted to the Court before the witness is excused. 3 The Court will screen the questions, and may confer with the parties in a sidebar, 4 before posing a jury question to a witness. 5 3. Sidebars. There will be no attorney-initiated sidebars during trial. 6 4. Motions. No motions may be filed during trial without prior leave of the Court. 7 5. Objections. Counsel must stand to state any objections, and should do so by simply 8 stating the rule that forms the basis of the objection. No arguments or elaborations 9 should be made unless called for by the Court. 10 6. Witness Call. Each party must have its witnesses for the trial day available in the 11 courthouse and ready to testify. Failure to have the next witness ready or to be 12 prepared to proceed with the evidence will usually constitute resting. 13 7. Witness Disclosure. Unless the parties agree otherwise, a party must disclose the 14 identity of the witnesses it plans to call -- as well as the exhibits to be used during the 15 direct examination of any witness -- 48 hours in advance of calling the witness to the 16 stand. Any party that has an objection must alert the Court as soon as possible, and the 17 Court will take up the objection outside the presence of the jury. 18 8. Witnesses Excluded from Courtroom. At the joint request of the parties and 19 pursuant to FRE 615, the Court orders all witnesses excluded from the courtroom so 20 that they cannot hear other witnesses’ testimony. This exclusion order does not apply 21 to party corporate representatives. FRE 615(b). 22 9. Presentation of Witnesses. Witnesses will be put on the witness stand only once. For 23 example, if plaintiffs call a witness whom Google also intends to call, Google’s direct 24 examination of the witness will follow the plaintiffs’ examination of the witness. 25 Google may not put the witness on again for the presentation of its case to the jury. 26 27 10. Expert Witnesses. The parties will discuss a proposal for consolidating the presentation of expert witnesses to the jury. 28 6 Case 3:20-cv-05671-JD Document 491 Filed 10/20/23 Page 7 of 7 1 2 basis. The parties are directed to prepare witness binders that include those exhibits 3 that will be offered during that witness’s testimony and which the party will move for 4 admission into evidence. Three copies of each witness binder should be handed to 5 Ms. Clark at the start of each witness’s testimony. No other copies of trial exhibits 6 need be prepared or submitted to the Court. 7 12. Evidence at trial. The parties may offer evidence via an Elmo projector or in the form 8 of large poster boards, but the Court advises the parties that all admitted trial exhibits 9 will be made available to the jury in electronic format for their deliberations. 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11. Exhibits and Witness Binders. Exhibits should be prepared on a witness-by-witness VIII. JURY INSTRUCTIONS 11 1. The parties are directed to file by October 25, 2023, a set of proposed preliminary jury 12 instructions. The parties should follow the format and instructions given in Avnet, 13 Case No. 17-cv-07046-JD, Dkt. No. 353. 14 15 IX. OTHER 1. Realtime. The parties may request a live, remote Realtime feed for their trial team 16 members who cannot be present in the courtroom. See Transcripts / Court Reporters | 17 United States District Court, Northern District of California (uscourts.gov). 18 2. Newer lawyers. The Court encourages both sides to give as many substantive 19 opportunities to junior lawyers as is possible during the trial. 20 3. Number of relevant markets. For the parties’ dispute about the number of relevant 21 markets that plaintiffs’ experts may testify about, the Court orders that plaintiffs may 22 present all three of their relevant markets to the jury, if they wish. 23 24 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: October 20, 2023 25 26 JAMES DONATO United States District Judge 27 28 7

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