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FIA asks Renault to explain new 'spy' charges

Discussion in 'F1' started by kraftwerk, Nov 8, 2007.

  1. kraftwerk

    kraftwerk Two Time F1 World Champ

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    Thursday, 08, November, 2007, 13:38


    The FIA has summoned representatives of the Renault F1 team to answer charges of possessing confidential McLaren information.

    The governing body has called a meeting of the World Motor Sport Council on December 6, so that Renault can explain allegations that it has been in unauthorised possession of McLaren material for more than a year.

    "Representatives of the Renault F1 Team have been requested to appear before a hearing of the FIA World Motor Sport Council in Monaco on Thursday, December 6, 2007," read an FIA statement.


    It goes on all the time like I said :( another £50 mil :rolleyes:
     
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  3. Chaos

    Chaos Formula 3

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    tbh its neither unexpected nor unfair.


    just a shame its yet more dirty washing being aired in public for F1 though :(
     
  4. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Interesting. Remember Flavio threatened just before the 2nd FIA hearing that he would sue anybody who would claim Renault did anything wrong?

    I think there is a crucial difference between people transferring from one team to another taking their knowledge with them (can't stop that, part of life) and stealing from another team. I don't know what the details of this case are, but if it is a knowledge transfer that came down to a personell transfer, I don't have an issue with it.
     
  5. Chaos

    Chaos Formula 3

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    personally i think theres a crucial difference between being given something and stealing it.
    McL didnt steal anything - they were given the data.
    the FIA decided that it was wrong of them to use it - and THAT is the important point

    bottom line here is that your not allowed to use someone elses IP.
    how you get it seems not to matter - begged, borrowed or stolen


    Andreas im a little confused here.
    you seem to be saying that its not ok for a team member to give away IP to a rival team
    but it is ok to transfer team and take your old employers IP with you and give that to your new team
    they seem to be virtually the same crime to me - both involve actual data eg not just whats in your head.
     
  6. Tifoso1

    Tifoso1 F1 Rookie

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    Agreed and well stated.
     
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  8. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Not quite: If you read the transcript of the 2nd hearing you realize that McLaren was actively pursuing information. Dela Pink and Alonso were asking for more details about the brake system. It went even so far, that Stepney delivered 3D CAD renderings to Coughlan on how the brake system works. The initial 750 page document was just the beginning and the tip of the iceberg.


    It is not ok that people take away their knowledge to the new team when they move on, but you cannot prevent this from happening. They shouldn't be taking data (papers, discs, PCs etc) with them of course. But "just" what is in their heads is often enough and you can't prosecute that.
     
  9. 355

    355 F1 Rookie
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    well said
     
  10. hg

    hg Formula Junior
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    I agree that there is a difference between the action of stealing and the action of receiving stolen goods but both are considered criminal offenses.

    Again it is presumed that the transferring (departing) employee will have an some sort of employment agreement relating to intellectual property and /or other contract clauses in effect restricting his knowledge. Notwithstanding the above, this does not prevent him to implement ideas that he acquired at the previous team and, anyway, this is legally very hard to prove. But transferring tangible property is a criminal offense.
     
  11. kraftwerk

    kraftwerk Two Time F1 World Champ

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    Yes to quote: McLaren lawyers informed the FIA that Renault had the information during the September 'Spygate' hearings, but Flavio Briatore publicly denied his team had done anything wrong.

    “First, if somebody tells me it’s the same [as McLaren's situation], I sue somebody, quickly,” he said in the FIA press conference during the Belgian Grand Prix.
     
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  13. Lexdiamonnyc

    Lexdiamonnyc Formula Junior

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    $10 says nothing happens to Renault........assuming they're guilty of possesing McLaren info, no matter if it was stolen or given.........


    Max has a hard on for Ron Dennis, and now he got what he wanted............what's the point in punishing Renault?....Everyone does what they did, spy, try and steal as much info from competitors as possible and see if the info can be used to gain an advantage............but, they're not McLaren and Ron Dennis doesn't work there, so no need to punish anyone.....
     
  14. PhilNotHill

    PhilNotHill Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Until we see the details and know all the facts it's hard to say what should be done.

    Based on the philosophy of F1 "cutting the baby in half", it's pretty safe to say no one will be happy with what they decide to do. ;)
     
  15. wetpet

    wetpet F1 World Champ
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    you may not but the courts may. most employees that are in a position to see proprietary information must sign a non-disclosure agreement. this agreement can vary, but i guarantee transferring to another team and revealing proprietary info is breaking the agreement and you can be sued.
     
  16. wetpet

    wetpet F1 World Champ
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    usually left out of these discussions, but so true.
     
  17. 1_can_dream

    1_can_dream F1 Veteran

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    My thoughts exactly. No team can stop their personnel from taking information that is in their head with them to a new team, and it shouldn't be something that can be policed or punished. When you get into the act of taking anything other than intellectual information stored in your brain with you then the FIA needs to step in and handle the problem.
     
  18. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    You might be right in more way than one.
     
  19. kraftwerk

    kraftwerk Two Time F1 World Champ

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    Following the notification of the FIA for the ING Renault F1 Team representatives to appear in front of the World Council, the team wishes to clarify the situation.

    On the 6th September 2007 it came to our attention that an engineer (Mr Phil Mackereth) who joined the team from McLaren in Sept 2006 had brought with him some information that was considered to be proprietary to McLaren. This information was contained on old style floppy discs and included copies of some McLaren engineering drawings and some technical spreadsheets. This information was loaded at the request of Mr Mackereth onto his personal directory on the Renault F1 Team file system. This was done without the knowledge of anyone in authority in the team. As soon as the situation was brought to the attention of the team's technical management, the following actions were taken:

    • The information was completely cleansed from the team's computer systems and a formal investigation was started.

    • We promptly informed McLaren of the situation and immediately after the FIA.

    • Since then we have constantly and regularly kept McLaren and the FIA informed on all relevant findings.

    • Mr Mackereth was immediately suspended from his position.

    • The original floppy discs were impounded and sent to our solicitors for return to McLaren.

    Our formal investigation showed that early in his employment with Renault Mr Mackereth made some of our engineers aware of parts of this information in the form of a few reduced scale engineering drawings. These drawings covered four basic systems as used by McLaren and were: the internal layout of the fuel tank, the basic layout of the gear clusters, a tuned mass damper and a suspension damper. Subsequent witness statements from the engineers involved have categorically stated that having been briefly shown these drawings, none of this information was used to influence design decisions relating to the Renault car. In the particular case of the tuned mass damper, these had already been deemed illegal by the FIA and therefore the drawing was of no value. The suspension damper drawing hinted that the McLaren design might be similarly considered illegal and a subsequent clarification from the FIA confirmed this based upon our crude interpretation of the concept.

    ING Renault F1 Team have co-operated fully with McLaren and the FIA in this matter to the extent that the team has invited McLaren's independent experts to come and assess the team's computer systems and inspect the cars and the design records, to demonstrate that this unfortunate incident has not in anyway influenced the design of the cars.

    ING Renault F1 Team have acted with complete transparency towards McLaren and the FIA, being proactive in solving this matter and we are fully confident in the judgment of the World Council
     
  20. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    None of which was done by McLaren in Stepneygate. Sounds to me, that Renault is off the hook.

    Anybody else found the term "floppy discs" hilarious, particularly in connection with state of the art F1 engineers? Don't they use USB over at McLaren? My machine doesn't even have a floppy drive anymore. :)
     
  21. James_Woods

    James_Woods F1 World Champ

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    Probably the REAL FLOPPY 8" kind from the time before Sony showed us the way with the plastic package. WHIIIIRRRRR -
     
  22. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    chopchopchopchopchopchop

    On the C=64 you could stamp another hole into the floppy and thereby double the capacity. 128 kB! Yupppiie.
     
  23. kraftwerk

    kraftwerk Two Time F1 World Champ

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    LOL

    The team admits that the McLaren engineering drawings and technical spreadsheets, contained on 'old-style floppy disks', were uploaded onto Mackereth's computer but that it was done without the knowledge of senior management.

    "Our formal investigation showed that early in his employment with Renault Mr Mackereth made some of our engineers aware of parts of this information in the form of a few reduced scale engineering drawings," added the statement.

    "These drawings covered four basic systems as used by McLaren and were: the internal layout of the fuel tank, the basic layout of the gear clusters, a tuned mass damper and a suspension damper.

    Like you say it sounds like they played fair. .. But who Knows..
     
  24. James_Woods

    James_Woods F1 World Champ

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    Everybody has gotten to be honest fair boys now that Max has laid down the law.

    However, wonder if they would have been so forthcoming if the prior events had not been made public?

    Can't get over the "floppy disk" thing, though - wonder if they also contained such gems as the formula for Meade, the secrets of how Stonehenge was transported, or perhaps the real words to Louie, Louie?
     
  25. kraftwerk

    kraftwerk Two Time F1 World Champ

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    My Mobile phones got a 8 gig card in it :confused:
     
  26. James_Woods

    James_Woods F1 World Champ

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    I know - I know; but you have to admit an old fasioned floppy is a step up from the 780 page paper phonebook-sized dossier that the MCL guy dragged into Kinko's for a quick scan...maybe that is how he got caught; hunting all over the offices for system on the network that still had a drive.

    If you really want to be scared by ancient computer technology limping along into the new century, check out the Space Shuttle onboard computer rig sometime! I am serious.
     
  27. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    The ultimate in that regard is the firing sequencing computer at launch control. That behemoth looks like a washing machine and goes right back to the Apollo days. They tied modern displays and software into the data stream, but the unit itself and its software is an unmolested dinosaur.
     
  28. James_Woods

    James_Woods F1 World Champ

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    #25 James_Woods, Nov 9, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    Kind of like this? (my first from 1975)
    Image Unavailable, Please Login
     

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