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Caldera IBM Software Linux

SCO Calls IBM Countersuit "Unsubstantiated Allegations" 972

Posted by michael
from the kettle-is-black-black-black dept.
dacarr writes "Yahoo currently hosts a press release from SCO that basically calls for IBM to "move away from the GPL"." Lycoris tries to dodge the flood of idiocy from Utah. Another non-programmer has seen SCO's presentation, and without attempting to verify the facts through his own research, reported on it. One reader buys a SCO license. SCO justifies their continuing illegal distribution of the Linux kernel.
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SCO Calls IBM Countersuit "Unsubstantiated Allegations"

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  • -1 troll (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sanity (1431) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:21PM (#6646300) Homepage Journal
    If I didn't know better I would say that this entire press release is a troll - and a pretty unconvincing troll at that:
    We view IBM's counterclaim filing today as an effort to distract attention from its flawed Linux business model.
    Flawed business model? Relative to what - SCO's ingenious strategy of using rediculous claims of IP infringement to pump and dump their shares while refusing to publicly disclose what the IP infringement actually is? Yup - SCO knows all about flawed business models.
    If IBM were serious about addressing the real problems with Linux, it would offer full customer indemnification and move away from the GPL license.
    Guh?! Since when is the GPL license the problem - even if SCO's claims did prove to be true? And how exactly does IBM "move away" from the software license under which their primary operating system is distributed?
    As the stakes continue to rise in the Linux battles, it becomes increasingly clear that the core issue is bigger than SCO (Nasdaq: SCOX - News), Red Hat, or even IBM
    What - that a company can get away with lying about Linux in order to pump up their share price? Yeah, that is a problem that is bigger than SCO, Red Hat, and IBM, but perhaps [kuro5hin.org] they won't get away with it after all.
    The core issue is about the value of intellectual property in an Internet age.
    Would this be the same Internet that largely relies on Free Software?
    In a strange alliance, IBM and the Free Software Foundation have lined up on the same side of this argument in support of the GPL.
    Normally when different groups line up on the same side of an issue it suggests that there is something to it.
    SCO has shipped these products for many years, in some cases for nearly two decades, and this is the first time that IBM has ever raised an issue about patent infringement in these products.
    And how long was SCO shipping Linux without raising an issue about IP infringement?

    These guys have some serious nerve - I hope they get put behind bars for this crap.

    • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Interesting)

      by andrewl6097 (633663) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:24PM (#6646361)
      Flawed business model? Relative to what - SCO's ingenious strategy of using rediculous claims of IP infringement to pump and dump their shares while refusing to publicly disclose what the IP infringement actually is? Yup - SCO knows all about flawed business models.
      By definition, this isn't a flawed business model. SCO is making incredible amounts of cash. It's unethical, but since when did big businessmen care about ethics when they have a money printing press like this?
      • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:31PM (#6646451)
        By definition, a business model that destroys the business is flawed. It may be a successful get-rich-quick scheme for the key decision makers, but it is not a successful business model.

        For a primer on the distinction, go talk to some former Enron employees. (Not senior management. Employees.)
        • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Interesting)

          by danila (69889) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:27PM (#6647224) Homepage
          The goal of almost any business is to maximes shareholders' value, not provide job security or anything else.
          • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Insightful)

            by spun (1352) <loverevolutionar ... m ['hoo' in gap]> on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:47PM (#6647508) Journal
            And the way to maximize shareholder value is to artificially pump up the stock price, then bail out before the whole house of cards collapses? Funny, I thought maximizing shareholder value entailed long term business planning.
          • Shareholders value (Score:4, Informative)

            by Bodrius (191265) on Friday August 08, 2003 @02:35PM (#6648105) Homepage
            Yes, but since you cannot assume that the shareholders will all sell at a particular time you should maximize the shareholders' value in the long term (under the assumption they keep the stock).

            The biggest problem with Enron (as a business) was not that the employees lost their jobs, but that the shareholders lost their money, and the company went down (so they won't be getting their money back).

            The biggest problem with the SCO business model is that it depends on flimsy claims of IP infringement, outrageous compensatory demands that have not been backed yet by evidence, and the hope someone will buy them out. It doesn't depend on any of their ACTUAL PRODUCTS, and it actually kills some of their product lines (the Linux side), antagonizes their users and the developer community, and not a few business partners.

          • by Valdrax (32670) on Friday August 08, 2003 @05:27PM (#6650160)
            Welcome to the Principal-Agent Problem. This problem is the conflict of interest between the owner of a an organization, the Principal, and the executor of the organization's goals, the Agent. In business, the Principals are the stockholders, and the Agents are management. In democracy, the Principals are the voters and the Agents are management. The Principal-Agent problem occurs because of each group trying act in its own rational self-interest, which often results in differing goals.

            Maximizing the shareholders' value is the the nominal goal of any publicly traded company. For the larger body of shareholders, this means producing reliably increasing returns as this provides them with safely growing assets. Ignoring the dot-com IPO craze, most shareholders are into a company for a long time, hoping that it will provide them with sensible return at at least the market average for the life of their time invested. This is the "will of the voters" for a company.

            The problem comes in companies like Enron or SCO when the management has investments in the company, is thoroughly unethical (*cough* rationally-self-interested *cough*), and has made a series of mistakes that they and their stock holdings will eventually be held accountable for. Their goal becomes to deceive the market and the other stockholders to try to maximize the price of the stock in the short term and give themselves a window of opportunity to cash out before that shareholders' value come crash down on them. The executives of Enron, the Principals, damn well were charged with keeping their company running by the shareholders, the Agents, who invested their money in the company in hopes of it staying afloat. This little thing of keeping the company alive that you brush off as just "job security" was their job. Instead of properly owning up to what was wrong with their company, they participated in a "pump and dump" scam that made them filthy rich right before dropping the bomb that ruined the asset value of millions of shareholders, including other employees in the company and many retirement funds around the nation. Shareholders lost big. If they had known over the long term what kind of problems Enron had had for years, they could've shored up for the loss or pulled out safely. Instead, their shareholder value was destroyed through deceptive business practices that made Enron falsely seem far more valuable than it actually was.

            SCO is essentially doing the same thing. Their business model has been an utter failure. Even as Caldera, they were outcompeted by better and cheaper Linux distros, so Caldera management bought SCO and decided to bet the company on a outside shot. I seriously disbelieve thanks to their own public comments that SCO's management think that they can win. They're bluffing, and the stock trading actions of SCO's executives seems to indicate that they're participating in a very loud and aggressive "pump and dump" scam. They're cashing out while the stock value is currently about 15 times what it was last year. Here's the best part. It doesn't matter if they cash out if they win. Considering that the company has very low overhead beyond its legal department, I'm sure that if they do win, SCO management will grant themselves quite a huge salary bonus from that windfall (with stock options to boot) with the blessing of all the new stockholders which have started flooding in since the change in company strategy. It's a win-win situation for management!

            However, it's an extremely risky gamble for shareholders -- one which the entire company's future is leveraged on. If they lose the IBM case, or if they win against IBM but lose the battle to actually enforce fees on the Linux community, their business model is utterly empty of any future revenue sources on the level that the current stock price reflects. You see, SCOX has a dangerously high price to earnings ratio right now. Any stock analyst will tell you that companies with a high P/E are risky. Usually, a
      • the flaws (Score:4, Interesting)

        by poptones (653660) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:52PM (#6646748) Journal
        It is not a sustainable business. There is no room for growth here, only short term gain. And when the FTC investigation begins they may well find themselves libel for damages as well as (dare we hope) a bit of jail time for select executives. I dunno about you, but I would say that's a supremely flawed business model.
    • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Interesting)

      by acroyear (5882) <jws-slashdot@javaclientcookbook.net> on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:41PM (#6646596) Homepage Journal
      SCO: If IBM were serious about addressing the real problems with Linux, it would offer full customer indemnification and move away from the GPL license.

      Sanity: Guh?! Since when is the GPL license the problem - even if SCO's claims did prove to be true? And how exactly does IBM "move away" from the software license under which their primary operating system is distributed?

      I don't think IBM considers linux their "primary" operating system at this point. At any rate, "move away" in SCO's terms I think really means to move away from Linux entirely and go back to solely distributing products based in AIX, to which IBM would have to continue to pay SCO for. Its a statement that's certainly not in IBMs best interests, but certainly is in SCO's.
      • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Interesting)

        by mekkab (133181) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:16PM (#6647071) Homepage Journal
        I don't think IBM considers linux their "primary" operating system at this point.

        You sure about that? Considering AIX is being moved towards linux (the "L" in AIX 5L stands for Linux!), what else do they have left?
        • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Informative)

          by Arker (91948) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:51PM (#6647558) Homepage

          You sure about that? Considering AIX is being moved towards linux (the "L" in AIX 5L stands for Linux!), what else do they have left?

          Umm AIX is being moved toward working better with Linux over the network, but it's not being phased out anytime soon. There are two other OS IBM won't be abandoning anytime soon either - z/OS and OS/390. That's the big iron stuff. AIX is mostly for the minis these days. Linux is for the micros.

          They are putting a lot of work into making sure everything plays nicely together, but they are certainly NOT going towards using Linux exclusively.

      • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Funny)

        by zerocool^ (112121) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:36PM (#6647361) Homepage Journal
        At any rate, "move away" in SCO's terms I think really means to move away from Linux entirely...

        Which is funny in light of this:

        "The name change to SCO from Caldera builds on a strong market position which we will extend as we reinvent the SCO brand," said Darl McBride, president and CEO, SCO. "For more than two decades, the SCO name has been synonymous with reliability, stability and cost efficiency. Now, the coexistence and collaboration of UNIX and Linux systems from a single source offers our customers and channel partners a powerful choice of solutions, backed by a name that powers millions of servers around the world - SCO."


        Heh. My favorite Darl Mcbride quote.

        By the way, I found the quote when I was compiling the SCO news archive [pinkfairies.org] on PinkFairies.Org [pinkfairies.org] - We're calling shenanigans on SCO.

        Or, mabey we're all just pissed that they figured out step 2.

        ~Will

    • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Etriaph (16235) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:41PM (#6646600) Homepage
      What I'd like to know is if Caldera is going to charge it's own users the fee for Caldera Linux? If they do, they cut off a huge source of revenue (not to mention potentially putting themselves in the arena for legal action from their own customer base who now have to pay twice for a product) and if they don't is it antitrust time?
    • Re:-1 troll (Score:3, Informative)

      by tomhudson (43916)
      poster wrote:
      If I didn't know better I would say that this entire press release is a troll - and a pretty unconvincing troll at that:

      You should know better :-). SCO's announcements ARE trolling - trolling for more pump-and-dump breathing space.

      It's just getting more obvious to the rest of the world.

      SCO is learning the hard way that "you can fool some of the people some of the time ... ", etc.

    • Re:-1 troll (Score:5, Funny)

      by wren337 (182018) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:03PM (#6646895) Homepage
      I keep hearing Norm McDonald's voice saying something like:

      "You know whats funny, how sometimes when you do stuff, and then, then you say other people are doing that same stuff to you. Now thats funny."

  • SCO vs OJ (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:22PM (#6646307)
    This has really became the Nerd version of the OJ trial.
    • Re:SCO vs OJ (Score:5, Informative)

      by Hrothgar The Great (36761) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:32PM (#6646472) Journal
      This has really became the Nerd version of the OJ trial.

      I see this guy has already been modded Flamebait, but he is so right about this. What's really messed up though, is how ONLY people who read slashdot seem to know anything about it. I'm serious - I've tried to bring up SCO's situation a couple of times and no one knows what the hell I'm talking about. Even other programmers where I work have no clue that anything has happened at all.

      This shit is trouble, mark my words. The guys at the top of companies don't read slashdot either - keep that in mind. I guarantee you that large companies that use Linux are pissing their fucking pants over this thing right now, considering the fact that the execs are going to have no fundamental grasp of the reality of the situation.
      • Re:SCO vs OJ (Score:5, Interesting)

        by cptgrudge (177113) <cptgrudge@NOSpaM.gmail.com> on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:20PM (#6647126) Journal
        What's really messed up though, is how ONLY people who read slashdot seem to know anything about it.

        That's why we have an obligation to spread the word. I've already told my non-geek friends about it. Granted, I don't include the gritty details, but they get pissed when I tell them it could affect the price of their Tivo or shiny new PDA.

        The way I explain it is this. It's like trying to charge a licensing fee for certain hamburgers. SCO is trying to say that their IP is lettuce, which has been freely available for a long time. So they now want to charge fees for any restaurant that serves California burgers. Plus, they have designs on salads as well. Their suit against IBM is like they just sued McDonald's.

        Details are, of course, omitted, but they get the gist of it.

        • Re:SCO vs OJ (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Feztaa (633745) on Friday August 08, 2003 @02:08PM (#6647770) Homepage
          So they now want to charge fees for any restaurant that serves California burgers.

          No, I would explain it more this way:

          SCO has claimed IP rights to lettuce, so they are now threatening to sue anybody who has ever eaten a hamburger, regardless of whether that hamburger had lettuce in it or not (and it's likely that no hamburgers have ever had lettuce in them, but then the analogy breaks down). They're suing McDonalds (IBM), and Burger King (RedHat) is suing them.
      • by DrCode (95839) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:43PM (#6647456)
        What scares me is the thought of a jury made up of the usual non-techie types who don't even have a clue of what an operating system is. I wouldn't be surprised if SCO's lawyers filter out any potential jurors who've used Linux or done any professional programming.
    • This new SCO press release was written by Al-Sahhaf [64.39.15.171] in his first job outside Iraq.

      --
      SCO sucks [scosucks.com]
  • *chuckle* (Score:3, Funny)

    by mao che minh (611166) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:22PM (#6646312) Journal
    SCO Calls IBM Countersuit "Unsubstantiated Allegations"?

    Oh boy. Monty Python couldn't keep you in stitches longer then McBride. This guy is one of the world's greatest comedians.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:32PM (#6646470)
      per dictionary.com [reference.com]:

      unsubstantiated allegation adj: 1. unsupported by evidence; 2. a claim made by a Republican U.S. Senator or by a UNIX vendor by the name of SCO, characterized by detailed fantasy, delusions and self-importance absent material foundation [syn: uncorroborated nonsense].

  • by babbage (61057) <cdevers.cis@usouthal@edu> on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:22PM (#6646318) Homepage Journal
    Darl McBride's "surprise" at RedHat's suit is almost like a scene out of Dr Strangelove [imdb.com]...

    [The President calls the RedHat Premier.]

    President Darl McBride: [to RedHat] Hello? ... Ah ... I can't hear too well. Do you suppose you could turn the music down just a little? ... Oh-ho, that's much better. ... yeah ... huh ... yes ... Fine, I can hear you now, Dmitri. ... Clear and plain and coming through fine. ... I'm coming through fine, too, eh? ... Good, then ... well, then, as you say, we're both coming through fine. ... Good. ... Well, it's good that you're fine and ... and I'm fine. ... I agree with you, it's great to be fine. ... a-ha-ha-ha-ha ... Now then, Dmitri, you know how we've always talked about the possibility of something going wrong with the Suit. ... The Suit, Dmitri. ... The legal suit! ... Well now, what happened is ... ah ... one of our legal staff, he had a sort of ... well, he went a little funny in the head ... you know ... just a little ... funny. And, ah ... he went and did a silly thing. ... Well, I'll tell you what he did. He ordered his staff ... to attack your industry... Ah... Well, let me finish, Dmitri. ... Let me finish, Dmitri. ... Well listen, how do you think I feel about it?! ... Can you imagine how I feel about it, Dmitri? ... Why do you think I'm calling you? Just to say hello? ... Of course I like to speak to you! ... Of course I like to say hello! ... Not now, but anytime, Dmitri. I'm just calling up to tell you something terrible has happened... It's a friendly call. Of course it's a friendly call. ... Listen, if it wasn't friendly ... you probably wouldn't have even got it. ... They will not reach their courts for at least another year. ... I am ... I am positive, Dmitri. ... Listen, I've been all over this with your legal representative. It is not a trick. ... Well, I'll tell you. We'd like to give your legal staff a complete run-down on the complaints, the allegations, and the insinuations in the lawsuits. ... Yes! I mean i-i-i-if we're unable to recall the suits, then ... I'd say that, ah ... well, ah ... we're just gonna have to help you destroy them, Dmitri. ... I know they're our boys. ... All right, well listen now. Who should we call? ... Who should we call, Dmitri? The ... wha-whe, the People... you, sorry, you faded away there. ... The People's Free Software Foundation. ... Where is that, Dmitri? ... In Boston. ... Right. ... Yes. ... Oh, you'll call them first, will you? ... Uh-huh ... Listen, do you happen to have the phone number on you, Dmitri? ... Whe-ah, what? I see, just ask for Boston information. ... Ah-ah-eh-uhm-hm ... I'm surprised, too, Dmitri. ... I'm very surprised. ... All right, you're more surprised than I am, but I am as surprised as well. ... I

    • by babbage (61057) <cdevers.cis@usouthal@edu> on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:41PM (#6646593) Homepage Journal
      I was looking over more Dr Strangelove quotes [asunderpress.com], and I'm pretty sure that with only minor editing (five or ten percent of the dialogue), the story could cleanly be reworked to be about this lawsuit between SCO & the Linux world.

      Of course, it doesn't hurt that one of Peter Sellars' characters is already named Mandrake [amazon.com] :-)

      • by babbage (61057) <cdevers.cis@usouthal@edu> on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:58PM (#6646827) Homepage Journal

        Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: Erm, what about the suits, sir? Surely we must issue the recall code immediately.

        General Darl "Jack D. Ripper" McBride: Group Captain, the suits are not gonna be recalled. My attack orders have been issued, and the orders stand.

        Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: Well, if you'll excuse me saying so, sir, that would be, to my way of thinking, rather-- well, rather an odd way of looking at it. You see, if we actually had a leg to stand on, we would certainly not be such a laughingstock right now.

        General Darl "Jack D. Ripper" McBride: Are you certain of that, Mandrake?

        Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: Oh, I'm absolutely positive about it.

        General Darl "Jack D. Ripper" McBride: And what if it is true?

        Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: Well, I'm afraid I'm still not with you, sir, because, I mean, if our legal claims are in fact baseless, then your use of Plan R -- in fact, your order to the entire Company... Oh. I would say, sir, that there were something dreadfully wrong somewhere.

        General Darl "Jack D. Ripper" McBride: Now why don't you just take it easy, Group Captain, and please make me a drink of grain alcohol and rainwater, and help yourself to whatever you'd like. [Mandrake snaps to attention and salutes]

        Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: General Ripper, Sir, as an officer in Her Majesty's Slashdot, it is my clear duty, under the present circumstances, to issue the recall code, upon my own authority, and bring back the Wing. If you'll excuse me, sir. [He finds the doors locked.] I'm afraid, sir, I must ask you for the key, and the recall code. Have you got them handy, sir?

        General Darl "Jack D. Ripper" McBride: Mandrake, do you recall what Kubrick once said about war?

        Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: No, I don't think I do, sir, no.

        General Darl "Jack D. Ripper" McBride: He said war was too important to be left to the politicians & generals. When he said that, 30 years ago, he might have been right. But today, war is too important to be left to politicians & generals. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought. I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious fluidy source code.

    • *** *** ***

      Major T. J. "King" Kong: Survival kit contents check. In them you'll find: one legal brief; two boxes of legal memoranda; four days' concentrated emergency affadavits; one drug issue containing antibiotics, morphine, vitamin pills, pep pills, sleeping pills, tranquilizer pills; one miniature combination "Jargon File" phrase book and Bible; one hundred dollars in rubles; one hundred dollars in stock options; nine packs of Mountain Dew; one issue of prophylactics (expected to be returned unopene

    • by QuantumRiff (120817) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:22PM (#6647163)
      Couldn't resist another Kubrick movie, Full metal Jacket. Its amazing how well these fit. Not the same movie, but hey, they are both Kubrick movies! Some slighlty Modified quotes:

      [IBM] Who filed that? Who the fuck filed that? Who's the slimy little communist shit, tinkle-toed cocksucker down here who just filed his own death warrant? Nobody, huh?! The fairy fucking godmother filed the lawsuit! Out-fucking-standing! [SCO]I Filed that lawsuit sir! [IBM]Well, what have we got here? A fucking comedian, private SCO? Hell, I like you, you can come over and fuck my sister! {punches SCO in Gut, SCO drops to floor} [IBM]I've got your name! I've got your ass! You will not laugh, you will not cry, you will learn by the Courts, I will Countersue You!

      the drill sargeant can be used for IBM with many other modified quotes:

      [IBM]Sco, you had best unfuck yourself and start shitting me Tiffany cufflinks or I will definitely fuck you up!

      [IBM]Private SCO, I'm gonna give you three seconds, exactly three fuckin' seconds, to wipe that stupid lookin' lawsuit off your face or I will gouge out your eyeballs and skull fuck you!

  • by grahamkg (5290) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:23PM (#6646328)
    pot.kettle(black)
  • by Tsu Dho Nimh (663417) <abacaxi@hotmail . c om> on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:23PM (#6646329)
    Normally I don't repost, but I wrote this too late in the last posting cycle and I want a +5 Funny rating.

    Money For Nothing

    Now look at them SCO-yo's that's not the way to do it
    They say we're infringing on their IP.
    It ain't workin' the way they try to do it
    They're getting nowhere, lawsuits ain't free.
    No it ain't workin', not the way they do it
    Lemme tell ya them guys are dumb
    They gots a lawsuit from them RedHat people
    And a 'nuther from that IBM.

    You gotta buy their UNIX license
    Or else they gonna sue you guys
    They gotta keep that FUD stream flowing
    They gotta keep that stock price high.

    See little Darl with the options and delusions
    He's got no braincells under his hair
    That little Darl wants his own jet airplane
    Little Darl wants to be a millionaire

    You gotta buy their UNIX license
    Or else they gonna sue you guys
    They gotta keep the FUD stream flowing
    They gotta keep that stock price high.

    I shoulda learned to play the market
    I shoulda learned to pump and dump
    Look at them, they got all those profits
    Man I could have some fun
    Darl's up there in Utah making lawyer noises
    Bangin' out lawsuits like a chimpanzee
    It ain't workin' the way they try to do it
    They're getting nowhere, lawsuits ain't free.

  • Wha??? (Score:5, Funny)

    by DaveHowe (51510) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:23PM (#6646333)
    SCO is accusing someone else of filing a lawsuit containing Unsubstantiated Allegations? This is from the Onion isn't it?
  • My thoughts... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by garcia (6573) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:23PM (#6646341) Homepage
    SCO has shipped these products for many years, in some cases for nearly two decades, and this is the first time that IBM has ever raised an issue about patent infringement in these products.

    And SCO has been supporting Linux for quite a number of years, and still has the 2.4.13 kernel sources available on their site. Amazingly enough, they haven't removed that from their site, allowing for Linux to be used free of SCO prior to and including version 2.4.13.

    If IBM wants customers to accept the GPL risk...

    It is now even more obvious that SCO feels that the GPL is too weak to stand up in court. I think that IBM has already planned for this and is prepared to prove that the GPL will hold up. I just find it extremely interesting that SCO supported the GPL up until 2.4.13 and no FANTASTIC strides have been made since that point in the code that *we think* they are trying to claim is their IP.

    I guess that SCO is basically screwed unless they can some how force the GPL to break-down in court.

    Just my worthless .02
    • Try again... (Score:5, Informative)

      by Surak (18578) * <surak.mailblocks@com> on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:37PM (#6646541) Homepage Journal
      2.4.19. They're claiming 2.4.18 and later is infringeing.


      NcFTP 3.1.5 (Oct 13, 2002) by Mike Gleason (ncftp@ncftp.com).
      ncftp> o ftp.sco.com
      Connecting to 216.250.140.126...
      ftp.caldera.com Ready.
      Logging in...
      Welcome to SCO's FTP site!

      This site hosts UNIX software patches, device drivers and supplements
      from SCO.

      To access Skunkware and Supplemental Open Source Packages, please
      connect to ftp2.caldera.com.

      ** Please read the following export notice **
      Please note that the electronic transfer of this data to a destination
      outside of the United States constitutes an export (as defined by the
      U.S. Bureau of Export Administration) and is authorized ONLY to the end
      user. Any subsequent re-exportation of this data requires that the end
      user obtain an additional export license. Also note that it is illegal
      to re-route Caldera product to Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea,
      Sudan or Syria and that you must file a special license if you intend
      to re-route goods to the embargoed regions of Serbia or the Taliban
      controlled areas of Afghanistan. Placement of this order constitutes
      an agreement to comply with these stipulations.
      Anonymous access granted, restrictions apply.
      Logged in to ftp.sco.com.
      ncftp / > cd /pub/scolinux/server/4.0/updates/SRPMS/
      ncftp ...rver/4.0/updates/SRPMS > ls kern*
      kernel-source-2.4.19.SuSE-106.nosrc.rpm
      ke rnel-source-2.4.19.SuSE-133.nosrc.rpm
      kernel-sour ce-2.4.19.SuSE-152.nosrc.rpm
      kernel-source-2.4.19 .SuSE-82.nosrc.rpm
      ncftp ...rver/4.0/updates/SRPMS >


      Which means that regardless of whether or not "SCO feels that the GPL is too weak to stand up in court," is moot. They have accepted and continue to accept it's terms by having this Linux kernel source code on their FTP server.

      Any code in kernel 2.4.19 that is 'infringing' is actuall not, because SCO knows about so-called 'infringing' code in there, yet they continue to distribute it, meaning they have effectively GPLed whatever code is in there, regardless of who actually put it in there (most likely, according to various sources, a Caldera employee!)
      • Re:Try again... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Rob Riggs (6418)
        kernel-source-2.4.19.SuSE-106.nosrc.rpm
        kernel-source-2.4.19.SuSE-133.nosrc.rpm
        kernel-source-2.4.19.SuSE-152.nosrc.rpm
        kernel-source-2.4.19.SuSE-82.nosrc.rpm
        ...
        They have accepted and continue to accept [th GPL's] terms by having this Linux kernel source code on their FTP server.

        Please look at that listing again, and if you don't believe the "nosrc" part, unpack the SRPMS and see for yourself.

      • Re:Try again... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by aallan (68633)

        They're claiming 2.4.18 and later is infringeing...

        Cool, we just all go back to RH7.2 then...

        Al.
    • Re:My thoughts... (Score:5, Informative)

      by SanLouBlues (245548) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:38PM (#6646558) Journal
      Even if they do show that the GPL is unenforcable and their code is in the kernel, that would mean that they have no rights to any of Linux except their code. Everything else would go back to "all rights reserved" and they would not be able to license the whole shebang. Just their lines.
      • Re:My thoughts... (Score:3, Informative)

        by Gaijin42 (317411)
        Thats the point. They arent licensing Linux.

        They are saying go get linux somewhere, they are giving the code away. Then, buy this license so you can use our proprietary code in your copy of linux.

        They are not trying to license all of linux.

        A simmilar situation would be, if Linux has no infringing code, but SCO does offer something you want to use, you can go get linux for free, license some stuff from SCO, and integrate it into your copy of linux. You are not allowed to redistribute this tho, because
    • by nuggz (69912) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:55PM (#6646784) Homepage
      I guess that SCO is basically screwed unless they can some how force the GPL to break-down in court

      Not a problem if the GPL is ruled invalid, then SCO is committing a copyright violation for commercial gain.
      If they are selling someone elses work, for financial gain, knowing they do not have a license to do so they could be in a LOT of trouble.
      Isn't that actually criminal copyright infringement? Do you think the SCO execs would rather go to jail then lose a lawsuit?
  • Unsubstantiated? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jmkaza (173878) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:24PM (#6646348)
    SCO's accussing IBM of making unsubstantiated claims? Did I wake up in Bizarro world this morning. At least IBM told them what code they were suing them for.
  • by thrillbert (146343) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:24PM (#6646349) Homepage
    In other news, the pot today called the kettle black. Steming from a futile attempt by the pot to pass off as a kettle, and the kettle reaffirming it's own existance, the pot, for reasons yet unknown, called the kettle black in front of fellow kitchenware.

    "It was just an unwarranted attack" said the Roast Pot. "We all know the truth here, and for the pot to be so stupid and call the kettle black, while itself is black, is just ridiculous.

    The pot refused to answer any of our questions claiming temporary insanity due to undue financial stress. The kettle however smiled at our cameras and stated "now we realize who is living in the fantasy world!". We will bring you more of this developing story as it becomes available. For Koo-Koo kitchen News, this is Tea Spooner.

    ---
    A tautology is a thing which is tautological.
  • by CrayzyJ (222675) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:25PM (#6646371) Homepage Journal
    "Regarding Patent Accusations

    SCO has shipped these products for many years, in some cases for nearly two decades, and this is the first time that IBM has ever raised an issue about patent infringement in these products."

    IANAPA (Patent attorney), but as I understand it, the holder of patent can choose when to enfornce the patent. "Because we have been" is NOT a legal argument.

  • GPL (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dtfinch (661405) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:25PM (#6646375) Journal
    As someone pointed out earlier, SCO is STILL distributing the disputed kernel with source. By continuing to distribute it mixed with their own GPL-incompliant source code, they are violating the intellectual property rights of everyone who ever contributed to the linux kernel. Without agreeing to the GPL they have no right to distrubute GPL'd software, because nothing else but the GPL gives them that right.
  • by mopslik (688435) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:26PM (#6646389)

    Deutsche Bank Securities analyst Brian Skiba...

    The guy likely uses a computer, so obviously he's an expert on kernel design.

    In other news, St. Mary's Hospital caterer Edna Pratt reviewed the conditions of several patients, and declared them free of cancer.

  • by BFKrew (650321) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:27PM (#6646392)
    This case is threatening to be one in which only the lawyers come out of it with anything.

    For all the predictably negative comments made by the Linux community, no one it seems, is preparing to challenge SCO and get this resolved. I will guarantee there are an endless stream of SCO jibes on this page now but not a single one of those jibes is something proactive or reactive to this seemingly large problem.

    As far as I am aware, this has been ongoing for several months now and is including some very big companies that PHB's have heard of. Now, if a PHB knows that SCO is taking IBM to court and threatening Novell it would seem to suggest that using Linux in any form is likely to have implications at some time in the future, and therefore hold back Linux in the workplace.

    Whilst this cloud is hanging over Linux, managers are going to be wary about rolling out Linux solutions and therefore other solutions such as MS ones are going to look increasingly safe choices, particularly with the new legal benefits.
    • "no one it seems, is preparing to challenge SCO and get this resolved."

      Apparently you haven't been reading the news this week (or, for that matter, TFA). Both Red Hat and IBM have "challenged" SCO in the form of lawsuits, and many companies have publicly stated their objections to SCO's tactics, including SuSE and Novell.
  • by mj01nir (153067) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:27PM (#6646405)
    Grocklaw has an overview of the IBM countersuit. [weblogs.com] And for added fun, the whole 46 page filing is available in multipage TIFF [crn.com] or pdf. [idealcorp.com]

    The patents are at:
    http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PT O1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=/netahtml/srchnum.htm &r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=4,814,746.WKU.&OS=PN/4,814,746&RS =PN/4,814,746 [uspto.gov]
    http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PT O1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=/netahtml/srchnum.htm &r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=4,821,211.WKU.&OS=PN/4,821,211&RS =PN/4,821,211 [uspto.gov]
    http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PT O1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=/netahtml/srchnum.htm &r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=4,953,209.WKU.&OS=PN/4,953,209&RS =PN/4,953,209 [uspto.gov]
    http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PT O1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=/netahtml/srchnum.htm &r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=5,805,785.WKU.&OS=PN/5,805,785&RS =PN/5,805,785 [uspto.gov]

    After reading the actual countersuit filing, it looks like an even bigger, more comprehensive smackdown than even was speculated yesterday. IBM is fully ready to press SCO's GPL transgressions, talks at length about the failure of SCO's business, makes clear in several locactions the difference between Old SCO (Tarantella) and Caldera/New SCO, they even mention that some of SCO's claims have exceeded the statute of limitations. IBM has clearly been tracking SCO FUD and mentions specific quotes from SCO execs that are damaging. They also reiterate that IBM's UNIX license is perpetual and irrevokable, but they also say that even if that wern't the case SCO still can't revoke IBM's license because SCO has not followed the agreement on the procedure to revoke the license. SMACK, SMACK, SMACK!
    • by Lord_Dweomer (648696) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:03PM (#6646888) Homepage
      " IBM has clearly been tracking SCO FUD and mentions specific quotes from SCO execs that are damaging."

      Which is exactly why IBM has been silent this whole time. Saying anything during a suit can be damaging or give your opponent an advantage. What I'd really like to see would be the faces of IBMs legal department when they first got wind of this whole SCO joke. I'll bet in the history of law a lawyer has never contorted his face so much whilst laughing.

  • by American AC in Paris (230456) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:29PM (#6646429) Homepage
    "Why, good afternoon, Mr. McBride! Me and Tiny here, we's here as goodwill representatives of our esteemed employer, IBM. We'd likes ta take a minute of your valuable time and substantiate our employer's claims against your organization. Would youse mind steppin' into dis darkened alleyway with us?"
  • by 73939133 (676561) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:30PM (#6646434)
    All Lycoris Desktop/LX users are unaffected by this new licensing program and are immune to any further changes in the SCO licensing structure due to the perpetuity of the prior agreement.

    Unless Lycoris is referring to the GPL when they are talking about the "prior agreement", it is impossible for them to have another agreement with SCO: the GPL simply does not permit redistribution of code under side-agreements. Either everybody can redistribute or nobody can. That clause is in there precisely to keep companies from doing what SCO is doing.
  • by joeldg (518249) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:33PM (#6646485) Homepage
    buying an SCO license with monopoly money..

    *gaaah* I almost fell out of my chair..

    That just killed me.. I gotta buy one with some monopoly money.. :)

    thought, I only have the simpson version and might need that money later for the "save the SCO" foundation for when they declare bankruptcy
    • buying an SCO license with monopoly money..

      Kidding aside, Microsoft did but an SCO license with 'monopoly' money just a few weeks ago.

      And now SCO is attacking the GPL.

      Now isen't that interesting.

  • Interesting... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TheRealFixer (552803) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:34PM (#6646493)
    If IBM were serious about addressing the real problems with Linux, it would offer full customer indemnification and move away from the GPL license.

    Now, I think, we get down to the heart of the matter. This isn't an attack on Linux per se. It isn't about IP or patents or copyrights. This is about trying to destroy the GPL. I think this statement, more than anything else, shows that MS really is behind this whole thing. What interest would SCO, a puny company who once distrubuted a Linux kernel in the GPL, have in invalidating the GPL? I just can't see why they would make themselves look like complete idiots to do that. On the other hand, who would jump for joy at the prospect of companies turning away from the GPL? Microsoft would be first and foremost on that list.
  • by dR.fuZZo (187666) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:37PM (#6646548)
    SCO responded to the countersuit on Thursday, calling IBM's complaint an effort to distract attention from flaws in its own business model and criticizing the GPL.

    Clearly, IBM's business model is broken and they're trying to hide that fact. I mean, selling products and services is so 20th Century. Litigation is the way to make money these days. The countersuit just smacks of "me too"ism.
  • by Feathers McGraw (180980) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:38PM (#6646561)
    ARMONK, NY - Aug. 8, 2003 -- "Dodge this."
  • The MS link (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pubjames (468013) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:44PM (#6646634)
    I don't know why people are so cagey about pointing to Microsoft as being behind all this. For me, it's not a conspiracy theory, it is obvious.

    Why? Because if you look at SCOs actions and what they say, they are doing things to attack Linux and the GLP that don't really have anything to do with their legal battles or trying to boost their share price. For instance, in their response to IBM, they say

    If IBM were serious about addressing the real problems with Linux, it would offer full customer indemnification and move away from the GPL license.

    Why this wording? This seems to be a general attack on Linux and the GPL. In what way does this wording favor SCO or its case?

    I think it is clear that Microsoft has done a shady deal with SCO, and that SCO will just continue to do anything it can to damage the GPL and Linux even if it is detrimental to SCOs business or share price. In the last "halloween" document MS identified legal attacks as being the only effective way to fight Linux, and now this is happening. Coincidence? I think not.

    SCO said:

    As the stakes continue to rise in the Linux battles, it becomes increasingly clear that the core issue is bigger than SCO, Red Hat, or even IBM. The core issue is about the value of intellectual property in an Internet age.

    Doesn't this ring as being a strange statement to anyone else? Is this really SCO talking, or is it really MS?

    What the community should be doing is trying to find evidence of the deal between SCO and MS. I believe that is where the meat of this fiasco really lies, and if it could be found then MS could get in serious legal trouble too.

    There must be employees within SCO that are unhappy about what is happening and have access to "interesting" information. The OSS community should set up a mechanism by which SCO employees can anonymously submit information, and we should be encoraging them to do so. A web site should be set up with contact details of SCO employees (Work contact details - email addresses, direct phone numbers) so we can contact them. If nothing else, if a concerted effort was made to do these things it would really f**k up SCO internally - imagine the paranoia if the SCO management know that there is a concerted effort to get SCO employees to snich.

    I bl**dy hate SCO now, and I don't think people are being creative enough in thinking of ways that their life can be made difficult.
  • by MImeKillEr (445828) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:45PM (#6646645) Homepage Journal
    .. In an apparent attempt to distract IBM, SCO's CEO told it that he could 'hear its momma calling'. IBM, confused, turned away from the blacktop at which point Mr. McDumbass picked up IBM's ball and attempted to leave the playground with it.

    IBM soon realized what was going on, chased Mr. McDumbass to the monkey bars and beat the shit out of him.
  • by panurge (573432) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:49PM (#6646700)
    In an office down in Utah lived a firm called SCO
    Though they tweaked their business model, yet the bastard wouldn't go

    Oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing Darl McBride
    He'll be lost and gone for ever when the SEC comes for the ride.

    So they fed the fire with lawsuits, fear uncertainty and doubt
    Tried to set the stock a-pumping, hoped to dump and then move out

    Oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing Darl McBride
    He'll be floating down the river when the SEC gets into stride

    Who would buy this stock for money? Not a broker with a brain
    But God oft gives stacks of greenbacks to the certified insane

    Oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing Darl McBride,
    When the shit impacts the fanblades, you can run but you can't hide.

    SCO is not an Enron, not a congressman will care
    When the monster from East Fishfill has you dangling in the air

    Oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing, oh my Darl-ing SCO,
    For a while the joke was funny, but it's really time to go.

  • by MosesJones (55544) on Friday August 08, 2003 @12:52PM (#6646737) Homepage

    Yahoo's SCO Page [yahoo.com] has the money SCO execs have made by pumping the share price and setting automatic sell limits. When you consider how low the stock was its amazing that they put limits of $12 or more for a sell.
  • by mrjohnston (696443) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:01PM (#6646874)
    Everyone is pissed at SCO. I am wondering if it would work to just have thousand/tens of thousands of people go and almost simultaneously file small claims court case against them. The amount (199-699) is perfect for small claims and we can all allege fraud and extortion, and sue for court cost (or maybe add on the attempted license fee too). In the suit we can say there is no proof to substantiate the license. If they show up you don't have much to lose and they have to show prrof so we would find out and remove the proof. If they don't you should be immune to further prosecution on that computer and they get stuck with many bills. If enough users file there is no way they could respond to this. Maybe this is far fetched, but I don't see why it wouldn't work. It would ultimately force SCO to quit this as we bleed them dry and they end up with almost no end users to try and charge without finally revealing their code and having it removed anyway.
    • Excellent Idea (Score:5, Interesting)

      by bstadil (7110) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:35PM (#6647347) Homepage
      Maybe we could get a lawyer to make a Template / model on what to file.

      My suggestion would be to buy a boxed RH distribution and use that to force SCO to reveal code or get a "clean bill of health" from a US court, even a small court carries weight since it will be the first "ruling" on this issue.

      Let's say 500 different claims get's filed SCO is pretty much unable to respond.

  • by -tji (139690) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:09PM (#6646972) Journal
    Isn't it obvious that SCOX is trying to whip up as much controversy as possible? They take their irrelevant little failed company, and thrust it into center stage based on all of their wild claims.

    This drives up their stock price, increases the FUD in the business community, and makes their claims seem more legitimage than they are.

    Whenever someone pushes back, they either make even wilder claims, or reverse the allegation back on the claimant.. SCOX: "Your claims that our case is unsubstatiated FUD is a blatantly unsubstantiated claim."

    The only effective measure for the Linux community is to IGNORE THESE MORONS.
  • Duh (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mkweise (629582) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:16PM (#6647068)
    SCO has shipped these products for many years, in some cases for nearly two decades, and this is the first time that IBM has ever raised an issue about patent infringement in these products.

    Gee officer, you've been standing there with your gun all this time, but you didn't point it at me until I started snatching old ladies' purses...
  • by TrentC (11023) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:35PM (#6647350) Homepage
    A quote from one of the articles:

    Stowell admitted that his company was still providing Linux source code and security patches on its Web site in order to fulfill support contracts with customers, but he disputed Kuhn's claim. "If our IP [intellectual property] is being found in Linux and that's being done without our say, then I don't think that the GPL can force us not to collect license fees from someone who may be using our intellectual property," he said.

    Um, yes it can. The GPL explicitly says so.

    7. If, as a consequence of a court judgment or allegation of patent infringement or for any other reason (not limited to patent issues),
    conditions are imposed on you (whether by court order, agreement or otherwise) that contradict the conditions of this License, they do not excuse you from the conditions of this License. If you cannot distribute so as to satisfy simultaneously your obligations under this License and any other pertinent obligations, then as a consequence you may not distribute the Program at all. For example, if a patent license would not permit royalty-free redistribution of the Program by all those who receive copies directly or indirectly through you, then the only way you could satisfy both it and this License would be to refrain entirely from distribution of the Program.


    Jay (=

    (Who is to say that Caldera-now-SCO didn't authorize it? Wasn't Ransom Love and his whole crew basically forced out in favor of the current Chief Sleazebag Officer and his ilk? I wonder what Love has to say about all of this; I smell an interview opportunity...)
  • by MichaelCrawford (610140) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:42PM (#6647429) Homepage Journal
    Please copy my article "Let's Put SCO Behind Bars" to your own website. I released it under a Creative Commons license. I designed the page to be very easy to copy, with only very simple, valid markup, and no external dependencies like images or stylesheets. It even looks good in lynx!

    Here's the introduction:

    While the lawsuits being defended by IBM [sco.com] and filed by Red Hat [redhat.com] are likely to put an end to The SCO Group's [sco.com] menace to the Free Software community, I don't think simply putting the company out of business is likely to prevent us from being threatened this way again by other companies who are enemies to our community. I feel we need to send a stronger message.

    If we all work together, we can put the executives [sco.com] of the SCO Group in prison where they belong.

    If you live in the U.S., please write a letter to your state Attorney General [naag.org]. If you live elsewhere, please write your national or provincial law enforcement authorities. Please ask that the SCO Group be prosecuted for criminal fraud and extortion.

    Thanks for your help.

  • by p3d0 (42270) on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:48PM (#6647530)
    No wait, hear me out!

    The only explanation I can find for SCO's lunacy is that they are setting themselves up to lose a court case against the GPL. Isn't this what we always wanted--a "test case" to set a precedent for the GPL?

    Darl McBride is a hero, and I think we should all stop...

    Damn, I nearly got through that with a straight face.

  • by sphealey (2855) * on Friday August 08, 2003 @01:49PM (#6647535)
    Over the last few years Richard Stallman has grown increasingly [precise | pedantic | annoying] in his insistance that all software that falls under his umbrella must be "free", and in exorcising packages and projects that he considered insufficiently free from the canon.

    Up to this point, MHO was that while Mr. Stallman had a lot of good ideas, he was being a bit too fanatical in implementation, which I think was a fairly common opinion.

    I must say that events of this week are causing me to reconsider that opinion. SCO's direct assult on the GPL seems to justify both Mr. Stallman's position on free vs. non-free software and also his fanaticism in keeping free software "pure".

    sPh

  • by gelfling (6534) on Friday August 08, 2003 @02:44PM (#6648202) Homepage Journal
    SCO today counter counter sued IBM claiming "You're just a bunch a weenies".

    IBM responded with yet more pointless stupid eServer commericals. The new initiative has a SCO exec bent over an eServer while an attractive and trendy eServer flack takes him from behind.

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