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Caldera Operating Systems Software Unix

SCO Gives Friday Deadline To IBM 914

Posted by simoniker
from the friday-the-thirteenth-indeed dept.
bcisys writes "Reuters is reporting that SCO is planning to revoke IBM's license to Unix this Friday unless IBM settles SCO's claim that parts of its Unix code are being used in Linux. 'If we don't have a resolution by midnight on Friday the 13th, the AIX world will be a different place', SCO President and Chief Executive Darl McBride told Reuters News. 'We've basically mapped out what we will do. People will be running AIX without a valid license.'"
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SCO Gives Friday Deadline To IBM

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  • Stop!! (Score:5, Funny)

    by craenor (623901) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:32PM (#6176979) Homepage
    ...Or I'll say Stop again!

    I mean it this time too, pal.
    • DO NOT (Score:5, Funny)

      by poptones (653660) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:47PM (#6177128) Journal
      ...make me point at the sign...
      • Re:DO NOT (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Jeremiah Cornelius (137) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:30PM (#6177493) Homepage Journal
        HA!

        It is to laugh!

        I wonder if all the script-kid 1337 unabombers out there will manage to obliterate SCO's presence from the Inet on Friday. Their whole corp website was unavailable in the recent past...

        I don't think SCO understands that some of Linux's biggest fans are guys who 'make the wires work'.

        • by ironman_one (520863) on Thursday June 12, 2003 @02:49AM (#6179220) Homepage
          Dont try to hack the SCO website as a revenge. Do something thar realy hurts instead. Like loss of development support. Stop porting applications to sco-unix and sco will die a paifull death. Does Apache, Bind, GCC, Mysql or Perl run om sco-unix today? Does the next verson have to? Who want to by a system without programs?
    • Re:Stop!! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Goldberg's Pants (139800) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:50PM (#6177155) Journal
      I think I speak for all of us when I say that everyone at SCO who is involved with this nonsense, the world would be better off if they just upped and left the planet (voluntarily or by force, not picky).

      I say let this thing go to court, then SCO will have to prove it, which they can't, because it's all lies. That'll be fun:)
    • Re:Stop!! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by zeruch (547271) <zeruch AT deviantart DOT com> on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:51PM (#6177160) Homepage
      the whole scenario seems strikingly Pythonesque. SCO (Stupid Crappy Operation) seems to have become the DPRK of tech, a seemingly isolated, insular fringe player on the scene that is in a steep decline and has resorted to a twisted form of brinkmanship to keep in play, leaving the rest of the players somewhere between arggravated and bemused.
    • by Z0mb1eman (629653) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:15PM (#6177370) Homepage
      Or to paraphrase Apu,

      "Hey, hey! I have asked you rudely not to mangle my copyrights. You leave me no choice but to ask you rudely again."
    • by Pieroxy (222434) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:25PM (#6177447) Homepage
      IBM has done something about that already...

      We always talk about SCO, SCO, SCO but I realized I have no clue about what IBM's response is...

      Anyone ?

      • by Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:45PM (#6177590) Homepage
        I'm hoping for...

        "Wipe them out...

        ALL of them..."

        This time I'd be rooting for Palpatine...
      • by debrain (29228) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:00PM (#6177698) Journal
        I think one of Lou's contributions to the IBM culture is act of being more tight lipped in public. He openly referred to the IT industry as a media "circus", and I think one of his large cultural biases and influences, coming from American Express, was saying nothing until something needs to be said. Particularly in cases of legal importance.

        In any other segment of the economy, I suspect, this is followed more as a tenet of the industry rather than an exception. IBM's response has been, I strongly suspect, reassuring the most important audience: their customers, shareholders, management team, and employees. Rather then entering into a childish public-affairs fiasco with SCO, I believe IBM has taken the high road, and deferred judgement to the courts, where it matters.

        We shall see, in any case.
        • by rifftide (679288) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:32PM (#6177917)
          In retrospect it seems IBM took the right approach by muzzling their executives and PR folks about the case, though it has disappointed some who hoped to see SCO put in its place. Had they seized on Novell's challenge, for example, IBM would have looked bad after SCO "found" an amendment to the original contract. And the press would've loved to cover a "he said, she said" mud wrestling match between the two companies. Instead, I can picture IBM calmly and carefully setting up its artillery pieces, lying in wait for the approach of the SCO army.

          Meanwhile McBride has been hyping the lawsuit, trying to pump up SCO's stock price to maximize the payoff in the buyout scenario. But he forgot that sending out those 1500 letters and threatening Torvalds made him look ridiculous to the people who will make decisions about what actions to take as the litigation proceeds.

      • by wideBlueSkies (618979) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:00PM (#6177705) Journal
        >>We always talk about SCO, SCO, SCO but I realized I have no clue about what IBM's response is...

        Some possibilities:

        Shoo fly.

        Shut up and sit down.

        Surely you're not talking to me like that. YOU couldn't possibly be THAT dumb right?

        You got a problem? Wanna take it outside little man?

        I thought I heard something like a threat. But it was probably just the wind.

      • by RedWizzard (192002) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:14PM (#6177794)
        From the article, IBM's response:

        "IBM believes that our contract with regard to AIX is irrevocable and perpetual and there is nothing further to discuss".

      • by jarrod.smith (580058) * on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:23PM (#6177848)
        We always talk about SCO, SCO, SCO but I realized I have no clue about what IBM's response is...

        This was addressed in the recent salon.com article [salon.com] called "Lawyers against Linux". I think it's a MUST READ - at least click-through to get a day pass for this article.

        To quote the bit about IBM's response:

        An IBM spokesman declined to comment on the SCO case. The company's legal response to SCO, however, leaves little doubt about IBM's feelings: The filing is an almost comically terse list denying all but the most indisputable claims that SCO makes. For example, one line reads that IBM "denies the averments of paragraph 19, except admits that IBM markets a Unix software product under the trade name 'AIX.'" IBM also candidly admits that its principal place of business is in New York, that it maintains an office in Salt Lake City, and that some of its microchips are more powerful than chips made by Intel. It gives no more ground than that, however.

        In a nutshell, they aren't really taking it seriously - at least not in their initial response to SCO's allegations...

      • IBM is staying cool (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Nice2Cats (557310) on Thursday June 12, 2003 @01:32AM (#6178850)
        The German online magazine Heise put it best [heise.de]: IBM is looking forward to a trial with groÃYer Gelassenheit, or "great sereneness". Given that the American legal system works by the rule that the guy with the most money wins (proven by Microsoft and O.J., among others), that is probably the correct attitude whatever the facts are.

        The other quote that I can't get out of my head is from Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon, where the Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto explains his reservations about attacking Pearl Harbor as ordered by the military junta: ...it was hard to tell them that their plan was full of shit and that the Americans were just going to get really pissed off and annihilate them. Substitute "IBM" for "Americans", and you have my feelings exactly.

        God, I love that book.

    • Re:Stop!! (Score:5, Funny)

      by Guppy06 (410832) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:09PM (#6177762)
      In other news, IBM's public relations department issued a very large yawn, immediately followed with "I'm sorry, did you say something?"
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:33PM (#6176997)
    SCO is sounding more and more like the meglomaniacal villian from an 80's movie.
    • by Mohammed Al-Sahaf (665285) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:24PM (#6177437)
      We will slaughter them all, the International gang of bastard pirates! They are retreating on all fronts. Their legal effort is a subject of laughter throughout the world. In a few days, you will all witness something that can only be considered very beautiful against IBM. That, I assure you. We feed them death and hell!

      Mohammed al-Sahaf (now SCO press spokesman)

      • by wideBlueSkies (618979) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:08PM (#6177757) Journal
        IBM employees are commiting suicide at the walls of Santa Cruz. There are no IBM employees anywhere despite what the infidel media tells you (big blue tank rolls by). Darl is alive an well and is vowing revenge on the infidels. Even now the infidel pirates are pinned down while our brave sons and lawyers vigorously fight for our Intellectual Property. (in the distance we see raged SCO employees who haven't been paid for months hugging and kissing the IBM lawyers)......

  • by banal avenger (585337) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:33PM (#6176999)
    At least that'll make everyone elses' lisences invalid just like mine.
    • by Citizen of Earth (569446) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:55PM (#6177207)
      At least that'll make everyone elses' lisences invalid just like mine.

      On the plus side, now IBM will be well positioned to counter-sue SCO for breach of the 'perpetual and irrevocable' contract. Maybe this is what IBM has been waiting for.
  • so... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:33PM (#6177001)
    So they either have to remove code they don't know about, or pay up ... not much of a choice SCO leaves them.
    • Re:so... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by MrLint (519792) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:19PM (#6177398) Journal
      Well assuming they havent showed IBM the code (which is likely because then thath 'alleged' infringing would be known to everyone so it could get pulled), SCO is making demands in bad-faith. I think IBM should be able to get an injunction out of a court. Assuming they care.
  • by wfrp01 (82831) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:34PM (#6177012) Journal
    Friday the 13th?! Is this a really bad movie, or what?
  • by sbszine (633428) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:35PM (#6177016) Homepage Journal
    Perhaps April 1st would be a better deadline.
  • is this extortion? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jeffy124 (453342) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:35PM (#6177022) Homepage Journal
    i mean, SCO hasn't even gotten IBM into a courtroom yet.
    • by asifyoucare (302582) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:41PM (#6177081)
      SCO is on crack.

      Unless IBM's license agreement specifically allows SCO to revoke it (and can you imagine IBM signing that?), they don't have a leg to stand on.

      I predict a SCO share price of $0.00 this year. Creditors get first crack at any money in SCO, and shareholders get what's left. I think they'll have a very large bill to pay IBM.

      It'll be nice to see those stock options become worthless - Hopefully the SCO execs have use them as security for their houses.

      • by BrynM (217883) * on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:27PM (#6177469) Homepage Journal
        Unless IBM's license agreement specifically allows SCO to revoke it
        Even if it did, the users who have already purchased licenses will still have valid licenses. They may not be able to renew it if SCO wins, but this bull about "People will be running AIX without a valid license" simply would not be. They have paid for there licenses. SCO has their portion of that money. It would be like an attorney, who has gotten half way through your case, quitting and telling you that you can't use the evidence he/she has gathered for your case because he/she isn't involved anymore. It's still your evidence!

        In fact, if you are running AIX, please note that some of your license money would go and has gone to SCO. You might want to ask IBM about a Linux install. I understand that they DO know the meaning of customer loyalty.

        Further, if SCO looses this, I doubt Big Blue would continue buying licenses from them. Imagine what losing an IBM contract would do to their stock price. Customer loyalty is especially important if that customer is a Fortune 500 company.

      • by mec (14700) <mec@shout.net> on Thursday June 12, 2003 @01:12AM (#6178757) Journal
        Why don't y'all read the contract for yourself?

        SCO lawsuit against IBM [sco.com]

        Read Exhibit A, Exhibit B, and Exhibit C, in particular.

        SCO can revoke the license for breach of contract. The procedure for doing this is not at all clear.

        My question is: what is SCO going to ask a court to do? Is SCO going to ask for a preliminary injunction, or what?

        The test for a preliminary injunction is: (1) the moving party's chances of success on the merits of their case and (2) the "balance of harm": how much harm that SCO suffers if they do not get a preliminary injunction, and how much harm IBM suffers if SCO does get a preliminary injunction.

        On part (1), it's anyone's guess.

        On part (2), the "balance of harm" strongly favors IBM.

        SCO does not claim that IBM's distribution of AIX has harmed SCO in any way whatsoever. Thus, stopping the distribution of AIX will have zero effect on SCO's alleged suffering. In contrast, stopping the distribution of AIX will have an immediate, large, irreparable effect on IBM in the marketplace. It is grossly unfair to subject IBM to such a penalty without a trial on the merits first.

        If not a preliminary injunction, what else could SCO do after Friday the 13th?

        Disclaimer: IANAL
        Disclosure: I am short SCOX

        ('disclaimer' and 'disclosure' mean subtly different things ... I always wanted to use them both in the same post!)
    • by jridley (9305) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:46PM (#6177120)
      Yes, and they don't want it to go to court. That's why the extortion. I'm assuming they know they don't actually have a choice, they're just trying to scare IBM. I don't think they have a chance, and I don't think IBM is going to scare.
    • by Zeinfeld (263942) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:00PM (#6177255) Homepage
      No, it isn't extortion, it is barratry.

      This is the type of ridiculous stunt that only damages SCO's credibility. It is very unlikely that IBM signed an agreement with AT&T all those years ago that allowed AT&T to yank the license at a future date.

      SCO should be very careful about the claims it is making.

      • by hondo77 (324058) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:56PM (#6178072) Homepage

        No, it isn't extortion, it is barratry.

        How about tortious interference [lectlaw.com]? IBM says it has a license in perpetuity and that's that. Okay, so why is SCO giving press releases about this bogus deadline instead of suing IBM? IBM could argue that SCO is intentionally trying to damage IBM's business, since (presumably) SCO is wrong about IBM's license.

  • by 73939133 (676561) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:36PM (#6177029)
  • Arr Laddy! (Score:4, Funny)

    by jellomizer (103300) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:36PM (#6177034)
    We be the pirates of SCO! we tell you to pay up or face the consequences! Of us putting our blade threw the gully of Unix license. Arr you cant threaton us with the fact that you are 100 times larger then me, wont spare our bearly leagal clames to owning Unix! For we are pirates and arr above the law! now fork over your treasure!
  • Yeah, yeah, whatever (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Fished (574624) * <amphigory@gmaCOMMAil.com minus punct> on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:36PM (#6177036)
    IANAL.

    It's pretty clear that SCO is trying to get IBM customers to pressure IBM to settle this. However, it frankly seems pretty absurd. The bottom line is that, as a customer, I am not responsible for IBM's alleged failure to maintain a proper license for UNIX. IBM's license is a license to *copy* UNIX software, and copying is the only activity that could possibly be prophibited. Given that IBM's customers already HAVE copies of AIX, unless IBM's license from SCO has some very odd language in it it seems extremely improbable that customers could lose the license they already have.

    • by pcwhalen (230935) <pcwhalen@nospaM.gmail.com> on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:25PM (#6177448) Journal
      I am a lawyer and I don't get it.

      SCO claims part of its' code is being used illegally. It won't tell anyone which code, but it makes ultimatums about that code and threatens IBM. Why IBM hasn't filed an Article 78 proceeding / TRO /order to show cause to stop SCO's baloney is beyond me.

      On to licences....

      I cannot legally sell something I do not own. SCO's contention is that IBM did not have the right to sell licences because it did not fully own them. Decent threat, if real.

      IBM should tell SCO in court to put up or shut up. Then, if SCO pulls the "unsubstantiated code" BS, IBM can get $$$ sanctions from a judge.
  • Changes? (Score:5, Funny)

    by jeffkjo1 (663413) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:36PM (#6177038) Homepage
    What does this really change though?

    This seems like nothing more than a sneaky attempt by SCO to force IBM to settle.... Did SCO not check into IBM's operating profits before this announcement? This isn't a David and Goliath situation, this is a David VS. 4 Goliaths with Lasers.

    And I want Goliath to win too.

    Stupid SCO.
  • If I live the rest of my life and never hear the name of SCO again, that will be fine by me.

  • by eigenkarma (312062) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:41PM (#6177077)
    It's viral: parts of SCO code in AIX make the whole AIX a subject of SCO whims.
    If the license of a subcomponent is revoked the whole thing may be in trouble. What if one of M$ subcontractor get in dispute with M$? Windows user is suddenly in license violations.
  • BFD. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BJH (11355) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:41PM (#6177079)
    IBM will guarantee its customers protection from any indemnity, and they'll keep on running AIX. Come Friday, everybody will be happily running unlicensed copies of AIX in the knowledge that IT WON'T MAKE ANY DIFFERENCE.

    Sorry, SCO, you lose.
  • by hbo (62590) * on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:43PM (#6177092) Homepage
    After Friday, we'll have a pretty good idea what IBM really thinks about SCO's suit. If they make no attempt to settle, it will be clear they really don't think SCO can prevail.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:44PM (#6177102)
    An SCO koan.

    And the apprentice asked of the Master, "But the end user is not the infringing party. Why are they to be invalidated?"

    The Master replied, "Are the children at fault if their father steals a loaf of bread to feed them?"

    "No."

    "Yet the baker sees the children eating, the produce of his ingredients" says the master.

    The apprentice points out "The father owns the bakery. The baker stole the recipes, which were developed by the father's kin. Who owns the bread now?"

    The Master became enlightened.

  • Chill over Unix (Score:5, Interesting)

    by smallpaul (65919) <paul&prescod,net> on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:45PM (#6177107)
    The interesting thing is that SCO is now punishing people for buying Unix/AIX (TM) not Linux. The media spin has been that Linux is under a haze of doubt but for now at least Red Hat customers seem to be in a better position than AIX customers even though IBM has paid for a Unix license and Red Hat has not. Weird.
    • by Daimaou (97573) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:23PM (#6177426)
      This ongoing story is riddled with absurdity, however, my favorite quote of the day has to be McBride's remark in Reuters' article.

      Quoted from Reuters, "McBride said SCO's Unix intellectual property had been previously under-utilized by the company: 'We've spent the last couple of quarters waking the sleeping giant.'"

      Yeah, I guess you could call suing IBM for a billion dollars "waking the sleeping giant."
      • Re:Chill over Unix (Score:4, Insightful)

        by lspd (566786) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:53PM (#6177650) Homepage Journal
        Personally, I think this line takes the award for shoddy reporting.

        Linux ... is a version of Unix that can be copied and modified freely.

        This presupposes that SCO is correct. Sort of like saying "Abbie Normal was charged with the murder of 12 infants today. Abbie is a 28 year old mother of 3, homemaker and serial killer."

        I was under the obviously mistaken impression that Reuters did more than regurgitate press releases.
  • by attobyte (20206) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:45PM (#6177116)
    All I can say is that I did not license my AIX boxes through SCO. I licensed them through IBM and the only person that can revoke that is IBM!! The courts my not see it that way but I have no contract with SCO so how does SCO think that everyone running AIX will be illegal?

    Mike
  • by Kris_J (10111) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:47PM (#6177125) Journal
    People will be running AIX without a valid license.
    You mean it's possible to run software without a license? Anyone got a web page with instructions on how to do this?
  • by seldolivaw (179178) * <me@NOSPAM.seldo.com> on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:51PM (#6177170) Homepage
    Spreading FUD about Linux is one thing -- you have a real chance of scaring away some potential Linux users that way. But AIX? It's old-school, like prehistoric. It's firmly entrenched into the legacy systems of some of the biggest corporations in the world, and they not only don't want to get rid of it, they are in fact be completely unable to do so without hugely expensive redevelopment and massive disruption. It is far cheaper for the AIX users of the world to pour money into the defence of UNIX than attempt to abandon the platform. SCO is just waving a red flag in front of one hell of a bull, and they are going to get seriously trampled.
  • by nacturation (646836) <[nacturation] [at] [gmail.com]> on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:54PM (#6177196) Journal
    ... is that it doesn't matter if IBM renews its license with SCO or not. Assuming you purchased AIX, you already have a valid license from SCO, purchased through IBM. Unless the license terms state that your license from SCO needs to be renewed and/or can be revoked at any time, SCO choosing to withdraw their licensing arrangement with IBM has no effect whatsoever on the legality of your copy of AIX. Naturally, if you purchase AIX *after* SCO revokes the license, then it will be an illegal copy.

    Anyone here a lawyer? This could fall into several categories, namely extortion/racketeering, and potentially breach of contract. I can't see IBM agreeing to a clause in the contract which states that SCO is able to revoke the license upon 1 week's notice. That's just absurd.
  • Please... (Score:5, Funny)

    by powerlinekid (442532) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @08:56PM (#6177219)
    Hey editors and who ever submits these stories:

    Can we do this OJ style? For example:

    Trial of the Millenia: Day 47
    It is now day 47 in the trial that rocked the geek world as SCO prepares to offer 5 more lines of evidence. Opinions have been mixed, has SCO now is suing IBM for mental anguish while Linus Torvalds has responded "[Expletive Deleted] SCO and their [Expletive Deleted] code". Defending lawyers are believed to try and have the case thrown out on the grounds of insanity on SCOs part. Stay tuned for more minute by minute coverage after these commercials.

    Something like that? Come on lets add some day time television drama to this.
  • by Graabein (96715) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:01PM (#6177267) Homepage Journal
    Imagine how this would look if DRM a la Palladium was commonplace and implemented on all commercial hardware and in operating systems.

    Wham, come Saturday June 14 thousands of boxes with AIX all over the world would suddenly shut down.

    Now tell me why DRM is a good idea and explain how it will never be misused or abused.

    • or... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by DreadSpoon (653424) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @11:06PM (#6178133) Journal
      You could bother actually reading about Trusted Computing* and DRM and realize that the above probably wouldn't even be possible. If it _was_, almost no one would buy it - what company would trust that? What government would ever buy that hardware/software? And so on. That kind of feature doesn't help business any, especially in the gov't market, where it would _NEVER_ be purchased.

      *Note I'm talking Trusted Computing, not Palladium - Palladium is Microsoft's version of TCPA that will run on Windows - it's a moot point for things like AIX and Linux and such, since it's a Windows technology. TCPA on the other hand is platform neutral. Palladium may well have the "external control of systems" feature, but I don't know - Palladium isn't my problem, since I don't run MS systems. ~,^ On the other hand, I _look forward to_ TCPA, since it actually does offer the ability to increase security, and doesn't have any features to make me worry, especially not on an Open Source platform. :P Likewise, TCPA would be a cool feature to have in AIX, Solaris, and so on as well. The OS determines if its used for DRM - my OS (any that I would use) would only use TCPA for security.
  • by smack_attack (171144) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:03PM (#6177281) Homepage
    In recent months, some corporations have been doing their part. They have delivered public and private monies urging a settlement to leave with SCO, so that licensince can proceed peacefully. IBM has thus far refused. All the decades of deceit and cruelty have now reached an end. IBM and it's board of directors must leave IBM headquarters within 48 hours. Their refusal to do so will result in military conflict, commenced at a time of our choosing. For their own safety, all foreign workers -- including contractors and temporary employees -- should leave IBM immediately.

    Many IBM employees can hear me tonight in a translated radio broadcast, and I have a message for them. If we must begin a military campaign, it will be directed against the lawless men who rule your company and not against you. As our lawyers take away their power, we will deliver the employment and medical benefits you need. We will tear down the apparatus of AIX and we will help you to build a new IBM that is prosperous and free. In a free IBM, there will be no more wars of aggression against UNIX, no more antiquated mainframes, no more skipped lunches, no more broken copier machines and TPS reports. The board of directors will soon be gone. The day of your liberation is near. /tongue planted firmly in cheek
  • by Lumpy (12016) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:08PM (#6177320) Homepage
    A recent auction at the former soviet union insiders mentioned that several representatives of Internation Business Machines (IBM) were present and buying lots of hardware.

    They were questioned about the use? possibly for research for their military contracts with the US government?"

    the reply was not what was expected....

    "No, we are gearing up for negotiations with a rival company that has been knocking on our door with insane claims for a while. the CEO last night in a fit of rage mentioned that he would love to see SCO just dissappear... so we decided to follow his orders... we figure these 75,000 pounds of conventional bombs will do the job, and suprisingly enough the US govt said that they would be glad to "drop ship" them for us."

    we figure that the whole thing will settle within a few days...

    No further comments were made, but one of the IBM representatives was overhead asking if it was going to be really loud, and can they swing by Redmond Washington if they have any leftovers...

    Richard Head, UPN News...
  • by Kjella (173770) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:17PM (#6177387) Homepage
    Really, I could understand the issue as long as they were talking of suing distributions, Linux users, Linus himself. But IBM's contract relations and IBM's customers?

    If IBM thought SCO had a case, they'd slam them with a countersuit of a kazillion patents SCO violates and offer to settle. End of story. The fact that IBM is letting SCO buzz around like they do tells me that SCO has no case.

    And I sure as hell don't think that IBM's lawyers were so stupid that the revocation of the licence from SCO would create any problem with current AIX licences (maybe with issuing new, but that's another story). My conclusion: More FUD, but let IBM debunk this and get back to something more nerdish.

    Kjella
  • by Loki_1929 (550940) * on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:19PM (#6177404) Journal
    In other news, IBM spokesperson John Ashton responded to SCO's reported Friday dealine by simply saying, "Blow me."

  • by wiresquire (457486) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:20PM (#6177406) Journal
    I'm a bit slow, but I just worked out what had been freaking me out.

    Usually, if someone is breaching a license, you would go to them, point it out and ask for a chunk of money. It's not just to help them protect their good name. It's also to protect your own good name as a trusted partner to do business with.

    If SCO's business is really about trying to license Unix, then they should pay attention to this. Imagine what their other customers are thinking. "These guys are feral. We should look for a way out of this". And prospective customers would be thinking "Err, no. That's not the type of supplier I want to do business with".Well, unless you are Microsoft. I will leave you to draw your own conclusions on that.

    Clearly this is a sad death spiral.
  • by N8F8 (4562) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:24PM (#6177432)
    I'm not sure about IBM, but most large corporations tend to structure their businesses to insulate risk. I wouldn't be suprised to find that the part of IBM that licensed AIX and the part of IBM that sells Linux and the part that develops Linux are all insulated from each other.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:25PM (#6177442)
    ...and I don't mean IBM. SCO just rattled the cages of everybody that uses AIX. I work at a .gov that shall remain nameless, and without bragging, we have at least one of everything - and we run AIX in all kinds of funky places. Tell me I can't run AIX? Come and get me. But make sure the SCO flunky you send is expendable, they WILL shoot you nowadays.

    But forget about the guard force using SCO interns for target practice, you just threatened almost every Fortune 500 company with a datacenter to speak of. THEIR lawyers using your ass for target practice is much more scary. Telling folks with THAT kind of power to turn off their line-of-business systems will get SCO slapped around like a red-headed stepchild.
  • by lysium (644252) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:42PM (#6177570)
    From the article:
    SCO also won a license from Microsoft, which agreed to pay SCO to ensure that it would not violate intellectual property rights when developing software that works with Unix. But Microsoft's move was widely seen as an attempt to lend weight to SCO's attack on Linux, which Microsoft views as a threat to its Windows franchise.

    This rather strong anti-Microsoft comment is coming off Reuters. Not Slashdot. This tells me that, despite what the Windows apologists may say, the public view of Microsoft closely mirrors some of the more cynical posts here. Such widely-held disdain spells doom for a corporation. Cash reserves and ruthless schemes will only go so far against it....

    -----------

  • by pergamon (4359) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:54PM (#6177658) Homepage
    At 11:30PM on Friday the CEO of IBM should fax SCO a Xerox of his butt. That seems an appropriate response.
  • by RealBeanDip (26604) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:55PM (#6177665)
    IBM?
  • by antis0c (133550) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @09:58PM (#6177691)
    Its called Extortion. If they do this, they're going to screw themselves in the ass in the long term. They've already filed suit against IBM, they can't start making demands like this ahead of the suit. They can't just revoke the contract for no reason either, and even if they claim it's because they violated the contract, they've yet to offer proof!

    I don't know who they think they are, but they're an ant to IBM. If they pissed off IBM enough, IBM is gonna squash them. Hey, maybe that what will happen.
  • by Usagi_yo (648836) on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:07PM (#6177749)
    This is too funny. SCO does not know what it is doing. Here I'm going assume my hat as "barracks lawyer".

    1. It is not SCO that is going to determine the pace of this case. Upon trying to unilateraly cancel IBM's license a judge will step in and maintain the "status quo" until the dispute is settled.

    2. If you bought AIX prior to SCO's accusations, then you still have a valid license. SCO cannot retroactivly cancell prior licenses on it's own whim. Can you imagine the havok that would cause in the business world as a whole if it were so? Can you imagine Novell announcing tomorrow that they are cancelling whatever agreement they had with SCO?

    3. The mere fact that SCO is dragging IBM customers into this tells me that this is more a political manuever then a valid legal manuever. They are trying to get IBM customers to pressure IBM to resolve this fast, and fast means caving to SCO.

    4. SCO has yet to prove harm. 80 lines of code copied exactly word for word, punctuation for punctuation means nothing without harm. The actual code has to do something particular that is germain to SCO and that the loss (or unlawfull distribution) has harmed SCO.

    5. So not only does SCO have to reveal the offending code, it has to say when it discovered it and when it notified IBM and prove what type of harm was done. I find that hard to believe that 80 lines of code out of a code base of a million plus lines is going to fly just on its own.

    6. There is no doubt that IBM is insured for all errors and ommissions on their part, that will protect their customers. As long as everybody was acting in good faith ... IBM believed they were in compliance, the Customers believed they were in compliance, the only damages that SCO will be entitled to are actual damages.

    7. Actual damages will be a whole 'nother lawsuit and court proceedings. Probably take years to sort this out. But then, who doubts this is SCO's intent. To hold LINUX hostage for years.

    8. If it turns out that SCO discovered this a while ago, and didn't immediately notify IBM, they themselves may have given up alot of rights in the remedy. I.E You just can't discover it and hold back a few years, then come forward and try and correct or remedy it.

    Predictions ... When IBM makes its legal move, watch how fast SCO shuts up (gag order, restraining order. If IBM sees no need to capitulate, they will slap SCO silly with gag orders and restraining orders enjoining them from frightening IBM's customers.

    I have a feeling it's not going to be pretty for SCO

  • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Wednesday June 11, 2003 @10:34PM (#6177935) Homepage Journal
    Their management is obviously intent on running a once proud company into the ground. One thing nobody seems to talk about is the state of SCO employee morale during all of this chicanery. It's one thing to lose your job to average, run-of-the mill dot-bomb management stupidity, but SCO used to "get it."

    I hope that the criminal stupidity of SCO management doesn't result in out of work SCO employees, but I strongly suspect that sooner or later the pigeons will come to roost, and guess who will get shit on?

  • by borgheron (172546) on Thursday June 12, 2003 @12:36AM (#6178603) Homepage Journal
    All,

    Several thoughts have come to my mind concerning this issue.

    Please keep in mind that IBM:

    1) backs Linux on a large number of it servers
    2) believes that it's license with SCO is perpetual.
    3) has spent billions hyping Linux.

    IBM will likely take action on Friday or perhaps sooner in a pro-Linux fashion, given the above facts.

    Suppose it is shown that in the completion of LKP (Linux Kernel Personality) that SCO did incorporate GPL'd code into it's kernel (as suggested by an article on linuxtoday.com) and it is shown that, according to Eben Moglen, that "SCO gave up rights to the code when the released their version of Linux".

    If SCO licensed any of this code to third parties for inclusion in their products, it is possible that *all* of those products will be *required* to be released as Free Software under the terms of the GPL.

    This is perhaps why SCO is being so loud about this. Is this the fact that they want to hide under all of this legal rangling? Also, don't forget that Microsoft made a public showing of buying a license from SCO, which according to the recent news from Novell, ONLY covers the copyrights which, if the above is shown, would be subject to the GPL.

    The implication here is very clear. Many companies which have incorporated the disputed code would need to release their code under the GPL.

    Could the GPL set the industry on it's head?

    I, for one, hope so. I am not a lawyer, just an engineer.

    Later, GJC
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 12, 2003 @01:01AM (#6178709)
    I've been watching this whole fiasco unfold and I've been fascinated. The reason is because I was a Caldera employee up until just over a year ago. I worked in IT, and IT at SCO is still made up of some of my best friends. So, I have the unique opportunity of getting the inside scoop on their feelings of what's going on, and the feelings of the company in general. I also have an interesting internal battle with where exactly I stand on the issue. Being that I learned about the things that matter most there (Linux), I can tell you that the early days of Caldera (right when it went public) were EXTREMELY exciting! We were all going to make money doing stuff that was cool and fun, PLAYING WITH LINUX!

    Something happened though. The /. community rejected Caldera. "You can't make money with Linux, you leeching bastards!" was pretty much the common attitude from /. users. We tried, we really did. But not only did no-one think they had to PAY for anything, they bashed and made fun of Caldera. Keep in mind that most of us WERE LINUX GEEKS and we LOVED LINUX. Our job was more than money, we wanted to be part of the OS community. People made fun of the logo, the company, the products, and it hurt. I wondered many times what we possibly did to deserve the scorn that was thrown at us CONSTANTLY.

    I was laid off about a year ago, and I've since moved on to much better things. Ransom was replaced, and the name was changed back to SCO because OBVIOUSLY there was no value left in the Caldera name after you guys were finished with it.

    I've been using Red Hat ever since I was laid off, as Caldera's Linux distro pretty much fell by the wayside. I look back on those days with fondness and wish it could have turned out differently. I am horrified by SCO's actions as of late, at the same time I can't help but think that you guys kinda created this fiasco in the first place. You guys have been poking this dog into a corner for the last several years and now, when it turns around and starts fighting for its life, you seem to be amazed at how angry and irritated and frusterated SCO is. "Will they stop at nothing?!" you all ask in amazement? Of course not, cause they are going the ONLY ROUTE THEY HAVE LEFT. You all seem to be proud of yourselves for boycotting their products... sheesh, that's a rediculous notion since you had all boycotted them WAY before the lawsuit ever happened. I'll quote my friend who still works there when I asked him about how he felt about /. persecution since the lawsuit: "Well, there's deffinately no love lost between SCO and the OS community. Things are no different now than they were before the lawsuit."

    I'm rooting for IBM. I think SCO are going way too far. It makes me angry that they have become such a mindlessly self-centered company. SCO is not at all what Caldera used to stand for.

    But when you think about it, they really don't have anything to lose and a whole possible pile of cash and revenge to gain if this thing pans out for them.

    And the ironic thing is that you are all, to some degree, the ones that helped cause this. You can bet that if they do prevail, they are going to make you suffer as MUCH AS THEY CAN with no remorse, since you all have had no remorse for them in the past.

    This is not meant to be a troll. I only wanted to present a unique viewpoint of the whole situation.
    • by dvdeug (5033) <dvdeug@noSPam.email.ro> on Thursday June 12, 2003 @04:27AM (#6179650)
      you guys kinda created this fiasco in the first place.

      "You guys" are your customers. If you can't keep your customers happy, you go under. If your customers are unreasonable and you can't reach a point where they can be satisfied, there may not be a market. You can't say that it's the customer's fault if you can't sell your product - it's the business's fault for not understanding the market. RedHat chose to play it 100% open source; Caldera didn't. That was apparently a bad business choice, to which they have no one but themselves to blame.
  • by Martigan80 (305400) on Thursday June 12, 2003 @01:04AM (#6178728) Journal
    SCO IS the Black Knight!

    I'm not dead yet....really I'm not dead.
    You can't kill me...I'm invincible...
    (Youâ(TM)re a loony)
    Hack-Hack-Thump...
    Alright we'll call it a draw.
  • by stygar (539704) on Thursday June 12, 2003 @03:16AM (#6179357)
    Case #1:

    #include<stdio.h>
    #include<stdlib.h>
    #inc lude<math.h>
    #include<limits.h>
    #include<time.h>

    More cases of flagrant copyright infrigement of System V source code by Linux kernal hackers is to come!
  • by damas (469487) on Thursday June 12, 2003 @04:23AM (#6179623)
    April 1, 2004: Today The SCO Group(formerly known as SCO/Caldera) sued 27 of its Linux customers for breaching SCO's IP rights on UNIX (tm).

    Darl McBride, SCO's CEO has made the following statement:
    "This move was made in the light of the fact that, like, you know, our case with IBM was thrown out of court on account that we were misleading the court in our complaint and like, you know, were trying to confuse the court on the issues of trade secrets and copyrights and like, you know, we didn't do anything to minimize our losses until we were waaaay down the drain."

    Also, SCO's CEO declared that the company was strapped for cash, depriving the board of certain commodities: "Lately, there seems to be a crackdown of some kind ... weed prices are going through the roof man ... and we're like, you know in UTAH for god's sake ..."

    SCO's lawers declared that the grounds for the lawsuits are rock solid: "Well, it's obvious they stole it from us. Yes, we sold it to them, but we didn't know it was stolen from us. And even when we knew, we kept selling it for a couple of month, but look ... this is Chewbacca ..."

    Good luck, SCO, you're gonna need it.

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