SCO suit

Frank Shute frank at
Tue Jun 24 13:14:32 BST 2003

On Tue, Jun 24, 2003 at 12:26:41PM +0100, Paul Richards wrote:
> On Tue, Jun 24, 2003 at 11:05:46AM +0100, Sam Pikesley wrote:
> > Except that then the lawyers who now appear to be in
> > sole charge of the S**t Creek Organization say things
> > like this:
> > 
> >
> > 
> > which is a load of FUD, of course, and I doubt this
> > guy knows System V from a hole in the ground, but FUD
> > tends to stick...
> Well, actually Chris Sontag is a SCO Senior VP and not a lawyer.
> Notice that SCO is talking about contracts, not copyrights,
> intellectual property or licenses, but contracts (at least in the
> main).

The overwhelming impression given by SCO is that it's about IP, IP
related to a contract maybe but the headlines are "Stolen Code in

It seems to be a rather broad-based (scattergun) approach. They
talked about code being copied from AIX to Linux, they then sort of
hinted that pretty much all unices had ripped them off except those
that held licences to Unix(tm). Torvalds is negligent. They then start
slinging more mud (whilst protesting that it's a joke):

Their campaign (whatever it may be) just doesn't seem to be very
tightly focused....unless the focus was to get themselves hated by all
& sundry ;)

> I've no idea what the original AT&T contracts said, or what the
> AT&T/Berkeley settlement said or what SCOs contract with IBM says.
> There's therefore no way of knowing whether SCO has a case or not
> for breach of contract, but given that David Boies has been appointed
> I'd be surprised if there was no meat to the accusations at all.

I think he's seen a slice of ham and now he's after the whole pig.

> I'm also not surprised that IBM thinks that SCO doesn't have a
> case, that's often the situation when two parties disagree over
> the meaning of a contract, and ultimately the interpretation will
> probably be decided by a judge.

IBM have got the resources to tie this up in court for years and I'm
sure their patent lawyers are presently rifling through their back
catalogue to see what they can hit SCO with.

Although IBM make a fair bit from licensing their IP, one of it's main
purposes is to act as a defensive `stockpile' to beat off anybody who
comes armed with lawsuits.

If SCO had the resources that IBM do and IBM had the resources that
SCO has, then SCO would win the case. But as things stand I can't see
them hitting any sort of jackpot as there doesn't seem to be anything
of any real substance, unlike the DR-DOS business.

My expectation is a countersuit from IBM saying "SCO stole some of our
IP". IBM have to show to the world that stolen IP/code hassles don't
just apply to the Linux world, if they're going to protect their Linux

<Obligatory bad joke>

A horse goes into a bar and the barman says "Why the long face?"

BTW, did anybody take any pics whilst in Cardiff?



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