Saw this on /..

I heartily agree with the premise. The idea is put up, or, well … ya know …

Unfortunately, Microsoft is quite likely to ignore this. Give it no notice.

Which is a shame.

If they have a claim worth litigating, it is likely that they would be asked if they tried other remedies first, such as asking to have the offending code removed. Here you have a large group of people basically saying “wheres the beef … er … code”? Any bets on what a judge would do if confronted with a request for relief, and evidence that the “offenders” want to help provide that relief?

Scare quotes on offenders.

Note that this “liability” (notice those scare quotes again, sheesh) argument sounds, oddly, just like SCOs original arguments. Which since then have, I dunno, unraveled a bit? Is it fair to say that?

On a related and tangential note, I spent some time working at IBM T.J. Watson lab some (oh my gosh) twenty-ish years ago, after finishing undergraduate studies. On the poster boards in the stairwells were announcements, menus (the IBM cafeteria was pretty good in those days), and the occasional legal notice. One time I saw that they had posted what happened to a team of people who had worked at IBM, gone elsewhere, and pissed off IBM by possibly taking things they shouldn’t have. I don’t know the facts of the case, remember their names. What struck me, and was burned into my memory was the complete and utter dismemberment of this organization, and the peoples lives by the IBM legal team.

The take home message was a not so subtle, don’t mess with IBM legal.

SCO should have done its homework. I suspect that Novell will be pissed off at IBM after IBM finishes off SCO, as SCO will have used up all the money that appears to be due Novell. That money from Microsoft and Sun. Both organizations vehemently and loudly competing with, and FUDding Linux.

I feel sorry for the (few) innocent investors in SCO, who could not stop their little company becoming a pawn in the proxy war between larger organizations. I still think that IBM is not to be trifled with. Microsoft’s legal seems to like to delay till the other folks cry uncle. IBMs legal goes for (and often gets) the jugular.

Microsoft can’t easily litigate against Linux: precisely who will they sue? They could go after IBM, but that wouldn’t be a wise idea. They could go after the little guys, and get lots of really bad press. So their only real hope is FUD. Or, if they do in fact, have a real cause for concern, they can show the code which gives cause, and point to the relevant patent, or indicate that the source provenance is questionable.

I am not sure if they grasp it, but if they do show that there is a real problem, it will be fixed. If there is no real problem to fix, then they cannot show one. And all that is left, is FUD.


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