Subject: Re: SCO Drops Linux, Says Current Vendors May Be Liable (fwd)
From: "Federico Lucifredi" <flucifredi@acm.org>
Date: Sun, 18 May 2003 08:31:31 -0400

There is no money in prosecuting users.

SCO still has to prove IBM had done anything (doubtful). THEN it has to
prove that the other Linux vendors are liable (and they for how long would
they be ? Any purported IBM infringing code will be ripped out and rewritten
in no time flat) AND finally users... I do not see how they could possibly
say end users are responsible.

But if they are willing to sue the millions of end-users of Linux, perhaps
that might really be a way to accelerate a company with no revenues, no
future and no business plan's demise.

-Federico

----- Original Message -----
From: "Barak Zalstein" <Barak.Zalstein@ParthusCeva.com>
To: "Federico Lucifredi" <flucifredi@acm.org>
Cc: <fsb@crynwr.com>
Sent: Sunday, May 18, 2003 5:57
Subject: RE: SCO Drops Linux, Says Current Vendors May Be Liable (fwd)


Sometimes humor should be taken seriously.
At least after reading
http://www.sco.com/scosource/quotes_from_leaders.html
I have a slight impression that everything you type may and will be used
against you.

Barak.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Federico Lucifredi [mailto:flucifredi@acm.org]
> Sent: Saturday, May 17, 2003 6:19 AM
> To: Brian Behlendorf; Matt Asay
> Cc: fsb@crynwr.com
> Subject: Re: SCO Drops Linux, Says Current Vendors May Be Liable (fwd)
>
>
> At least someone is laughing at all this ;-)
>
> http://www.petitiononline.com/mod_perl/signed.cgi?scosueme
>
> -Federico
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Brian Behlendorf" <brian@collab.net>
> To: "Matt Asay" <masay@novell.com>
> Cc: <fsb@crynwr.com>
> Sent: Friday, May 16, 2003 9:03
> Subject: Re: SCO Drops Linux, Says Current Vendors May Be Liable (fwd)
>
>
> > On Wed, 14 May 2003, Matt Asay wrote:
> > > "Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?"
> > >
> > > By definition, one must be relevant before one can become
> irrelevant,
> > > through litigation or otherwise.  (-;
> > >
> > > There may actually be some validity to their complaint (wrt IBM
> > > abrogating trade secrets in order to beef up the Linux
> kernel).  It's in
> > > IBM's interest, but being in one's interest is not
> exactly conclusive
> > > evidence.  I guess a super-competent judge will make that
> determination.
> > >  Right.
> >
> > For as much as I think the courts make foolish judgements
> from time to
> > time, I actually trust that most of the judges out there
> can differentiate
> > between potential motive and proof of wrong-doing.  If
> there is code in
> > the Linux kernel, and SCO can show it's unmistakably like
> code from their
> > codebase, and that the contribution to Linux came from an
> IBM employee,
> > IBM's in deep doodoo.  I don't think they'll have a case as
> strong as
> > that, so even though there's a motive there's no smoking
> gun and a judge
> > wouldn't find guilt.
> >
> > > Regardless, I'm disinclined to believe that a judge is
> going to try to
> > > turn back history by finding against Linux in any way.  I
> mean, this is
> > > the court system that found Microsoft to be a monopoly
> and still refused
> > > to actually do anything about it.  What better way to
> actually enforce
> > > their antitrust judgment than by letting Linux well
> enough alone, so
> > > that it can beat up MS?
> >
> > Again, as much as I think courts make bad decisions quite
> often, I tend to
> > think the courts do not play favorites or politics like
> that.  Maybe at
> > the very top, where the Supreme Court judges have their own
> political and
> > moral biases, does that matter.  At this level, I think
> they'll rule on
> > the facts, just as they issued countless findings of facts
> and judgements
> > in favor of MS over the last ten years.
> >
> > As for SCO's RIAA-like warning to the Linux community, I
> think they'll
> > start getting heat from players claiming anticompetitive practices.
> > Again, if their claims have merit and IBM let SCO code leak
> into Linux, I
> > think the judge will find that IBM has to compensate SCO
> for the entire
> > current value of SCO's IP - but it would make it much
> harder for SCO to
> > similarly litigate anyone else in the future, as the IBM
> judgement will
> > probably have covered everyone else.
> >
> > But that's worst-case.  SCO's market cap is $30M.  Why
> doesn't IBM just
> > buy them?  That would be far less than what IBM's legal expenses
> > will be on this.  Most likely it's because for IBM there's
> a principle at
> > stake (settle with one, and everyone else will attack you
> on frivolous
> > grounds too), and perhaps they've also done enough homework
> and auditing
> > to know that SCO just does not have a case.
> >
> > > So, while SCO litigates itself into deeper and deeper irrelevance
> > > (ironically by tying itself to the one mast that the rest of the
> > > industry seems to be happily moving away from), I doubt
> that it's ever
> > > going to get much satisfaction from it all, but for a
> possible slap on
> > > IBM's wrist (if, in fact, IBM did anything wrong, which
> is by no means
> > > clear).
> >
> > If there's a clear link - code verified as being SCO IP
> that was released
> > in violation of SCO's agreement - then IBM's in trouble and
> shame on them
> > for not keeping to their IP contracts.  If it were IBM on
> the other side
> > of the table claiming IP infringement, their lawyers would
> be ruthless.
> > $1B is a small fraction of the cash they have on hand (and a small
> > fraction of the benefit they've seen from Linux, too.)
> >
> > Likewise if there are patent issues around this - patents
> that SCO owns,
> > licensed (even just mutually) to IBM, then IBM implemented
> in Linux code -
> > IBM owns so many patents that to be favorable to them when
> they violate
> > someone else's patents doesn't seem fair.  Perhaps that
> would lead to IBM
> > calling for a weakening of patent law, ironically enough.
> >
> > What's more interesting is if there's a less clear link -
> code that *looks
> > like* or *embodies some ideas from* SCO source code that
> IBM licensed -
> > then you're going to find SCO asking the court to define a
> new litmus test
> > for when software is a derivative work.  I think that will
> be very heavily
> > swayed by IBM's pro-open-source stance, and the army of
> people IBM can
> > bring in to help make that case.  I would wager that such a
> result would
> > mean that many companies out there afraid of opening their
> own code, or
> > using third-party code (open or not), will be much less
> worried about the
> > potential legal risks of doing so.  Thus, open source, & the idea of
> > sharing code, wins.
> >
> > Brian
> >
> >
>
>
>