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Forbes Examines SCO Subpoenas 416

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the what-does-it-all-mean dept.
z4ce writes "It seems that Daniel Lyons of Forbes just wrote yet another article on the IBM vs. SCO law suit. Now, Daniel seems to seeing SCO for the liars they are. One of the choice quotes include, "What's the point of hassling people who make chips and set-top boxes? Don't ask SCO's top execs. They don't know anything about this stuff, remember?""
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Forbes Examines SCO Subpoenas

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  • Because... (Score:4, Funny)

    by eurleif (613257) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:43PM (#7468483)
    They clearly stole the idea of chips from SCO! Unix ran on chips before Linux!
  • Argh! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by FortKnox (169099) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:43PM (#7468487) Homepage Journal
    Man, this SCO crap is getting as bad as when Napster first went under attack. How about we just hear about it once a day until either its settled, one of the parties backs out, or the trial starts.

    Enough speculation, lets quit getting our panties in a bunch until the real meat of the lawsuit comes to life.
    • Re:Argh! (Score:5, Informative)

      by bahamat (187909) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:23PM (#7468949) Homepage
      How about we just hear about it once a day until either its settled

      I must have missed it, and it's not showing up in the search either. Could you please post a link to today's previous SCO story? No? How about the two from yesterday then? The two from the previous day? Any stories from the 3 days before that? In fact, there have only been 7 stories in the past 14 days. That would be (averaged) one every two days. Are you proposing more SCO stories?

      Have you never looked at your preferences [slashdot.org] Mr. FortKnox [slashdot.org]? Do you see that big section entitled "Exclude Stories from the Homepage"? Click Caldera and you'll never have to bother with it again. That's what that feature is for: so you don't have to hear about subjects you don't want and we don't have to hear you complain.
      • There were two yesterday, and more the day before.

        It's been all about these subpoenas lately.
        • There were two yesterday, and more the day before.

          You haven't been paying attention. Look closely at the dates [slashdot.org].

          The first one this month was on the 6th.
          Two on the 7th
          One on the 8th
          None on the 9th or 10th.
          One on each of the 11th, 12th, and 13th.

          For the month of October, there were 18 SCO stories, and none twice in one day.

          There has been only one double up in the past six weeks. Please learn to count. Like I said earlier, if you can find more, please post the link because I'd like to read them.
        • Re:Argh! (Score:3, Funny)

          by Geek of Tech (678002)
          >>> It's been all about these subpoenas lately.

          Slashdot. News for Nerdy Lawyers.

      • Re:Argh! (Score:3, Funny)

        by GreyWolf3000 (468618)
        Click Caldera and you'll never have to bother with it again.

        Umm, hello...FK didn't say he wanted to stop hearing about SCO. He said he wainted one story per day until something happens. That won't solve his problems at all.

        • Umm, hello...FK didn't say he wanted to stop hearing about SCO. He said he wainted one story per day until something happens. That won't solve his problems at all.

          I guess this should be to the original post... but it seems to me, if he only wants to hear about SCO once a day, he could,
          1. Quit hitting refresh every few minutes, or
          2. Don't read more than one article about SCO per day!!!
          Jumpin' Jiminy, that's why there is a list of articles with (good or bad) summaries. If you don't want to hear about so
    • Because the owners of Slashdot [vasoftware.com] have a vested interest in the well-being of Linux. So if Linux tends to get a little more press here than seems normal, the reason ought to be obvious to all.
      • Re:Argh! (Score:4, Funny)

        by aled (228417) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:35PM (#7469109)
        Now you tell me! If nobody cares to explain things how I'm supposed to knew? I thought we were supporting SCO! At the least the faq should tell us "SCO bad, Linux good". Next you will try to make me think that Microsoft is the empire of evil or something.
  • by Space cowboy (13680) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:44PM (#7468491) Journal

    Excellent - it seems I'm reading more and more critical-of-SCO stuff these days. Just desserts, and all that :-)

    Simon
    • Linux hitmen (Score:3, Interesting)

      by goombah99 (560566)
      His previous article was called the Linux Hitmen and painted the EFF in a really ugly light almost like they were the extortionists not SCO. So its quite a aturn around. or maybe he just hates everyone.

      The article is written in a very casual almost unbussiness-like tone of voice--odd for forbes. I bet it does not make it into the dead-tree edition of forbes read by real bussiness types, so it wont have much impact
      • Re:Linux hitmen (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Euphonious Coward (189818) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:06PM (#7468783)
        I found Lyons's previous article, about EFF hitmen, to be tongue-in-cheek and quite funny. All the direct quotes in that article made the EFF principals seem like reasonable people. The silly editorial remarks probably were meant to appeal to Forbes editors, some of whom are real whackos, hired by the Chief Whacko himself, Steve Forbes, and the rest of whom know they have to tread lightly around him.

        Lyons is evidently more careful with his facts than most of the reporters we like to count as clueful. Still, it would have been better to credit GNU to the FSF, and not just to Stallman personally.

    • I think the reason things are turning round is that this whole SCO debacle has let Linux/OSS detractors to come out of the woodwork and a "Linux bashing bandwagon" began in the media. What has changed is that now things have got serious with Subpoenas they realize their posturing has consequences (other than inflating SCOs' share price) and hence the abrupt U-turns.
  • Congrats, Forbes (Score:5, Interesting)

    by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:44PM (#7468493) Homepage Journal

    Stallman's GNU/Linux operating system is not the target of SCO's suit. Linux, the program SCO is targeting, is not an operating system, but only the kernel of the GNU/Linux operating system, which could run using a different kernel.

    It's refreshing to see mainstream media getting it right.
    • some of GNU's stuff runs with a Unixware kernel :D
      • All of GNU's stuff, excepting HURD, works with all UNIX and unix-like operating systems. Which makes me very suspicious that "The GNU System" isn't an operating system at all.
    • by eurleif (613257) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:47PM (#7468537)
      Almost right. Should be "Stallman's GNU operating system", since RMS has very little to do with Linux.
    • by Aardpig (622459) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:53PM (#7468623)

      Stallman's GNU/Linux operating system is not the target of SCO's suit. Linux, the program SCO is targeting, is not an operating system, but only the kernel of the GNU/Linux operating system, which could run using a different kernel.

      Nope, the press is still wrong-headed about this. Firstly, the operating system is not RMS's, although he certainly made valuable contributions toward it. Secondly, if the GNU/Linux operating system were to use a different kernel, then it would be the GNU/XXXXX operating system. This bolsters my impression that RMS is always trying to keep the positive associations of the word 'Linux', while at the same time insisting that the work of Linus et al. is a disposable commodity. Weasel words, if you ask me.

      • This bolsters my impression that RMS is always trying to keep the positive associations of the word 'Linux', while at the same time insisting that the work of Linus et al. is a disposable commodity. Weasel words, if you ask me.

        This bolsters my impression that you are an eejit. RMS didn't write that, that was the reporter. He is always careful to make the distinction between Linux and GNU. If any weasel words are being used, they are yours.
      • by Xenographic (557057) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @08:50PM (#7470230) Homepage Journal
        Blame Stallman, then. As I recall, he refuses to be interviewed by anyone unless they promise to use that terminology in their article...
    • by CaptainCarrot (84625) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:59PM (#7468698)
      He'd obviously just finished getting an earful on the subject from RMS over the phone when he wrote that...
    • It's refreshing to see mainstream media getting it right.

      Not so fast. He called it the GNU/Linux operating system, which is clearly a misrepresentation.
    • "GNU/Linux" could run without GNU.

      So why is GNU the obsessive focus, then?
  • Confusion ... (Score:5, Informative)

    by bigjocker (113512) * on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:45PM (#7468500) Homepage
    Stallman says the Boston-based Free Software Foundation, which he founded in 1985, has nothing to do with SCO's lawsuit. "SCO is suing IBM for violating a contract. We don't even know what the contract said. In terms of the resolution of that lawsuit, the Free Software Foundation is entirely uninvolved," he says.

    Stallman's GNU/Linux operating system is not the target of SCO's suit. Linux, the program SCO is targeting, is not an operating system, but only the kernel of the GNU/Linux operating system, which could run using a different kernel.


    This sums it up. SCO is suing IBM for breach of contract, nothing more, nothing less. What dows Linus Torvalds, Richard Stallman et al have to do with this contract? did they sign it?

    Even that Forbes reporter could (kind of) tell the difference between GNU/Linux the OS and Linux the kernel ... how come Caldera, a former distributor, can't?
    • Re:Confusion ... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by iggymanz (596061)
      SCO's purpose is to pump their stock & keep their name in the headlines. These actions suit their purposes wonderfully.
      • Actually, I belive the dump [yahoo.com] part is happening or has already happened.

        I figure they have to keep pumping no matter how insane so they can claim it wasn't just a pump and dump when the SEC finally comes after them.

        They must continue... or go to jail.

    • by AuraSeer (409950) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:50PM (#7468588)
      Even that Forbes reporter could (kind of) tell the difference between GNU/Linux the OS and Linux the kernel ...

      Of course the reporter could tell the difference, he had just gotten done interviewing RMS. He probably heard "GNU/Linux" a hundred times in ten minutes.
      • RMS refuses to do interviews unless the interviewer agrees to use his terminology throughout the article.
      • For the sake of arguement, let's say the transcript runs 100 pages.

        * 1 page, Richard Stallman providing his name, address, current occupation, other identifying material.

        * 18 pages of Stallman explaining what "Free Software" means.

        * 18 pages of Stallman explaining the GNU Public License.

        * 20 pages of Stallman ``correcting" the interlocutor that they are talking about `GNU/linux'"

        * 10 pages of Stallman being shown snippets of Linux kernel code & responding, ``I have no idea; I've never seen this cod
    • Re:Confusion ... (Score:5, Informative)

      by Cheeko (165493) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:54PM (#7468640) Homepage Journal
      Well Linus could make sense in that context. As mentioned in the article, as the one overseeing much of the direction Linux takes, he is in a unique position to provide information with regard to IBM's Linux submissions. This could directly impact the lawsuit claiming IBM breached its contract. The rest though, seem like the result of an angry child flailing about for being put in its place.
    • Re:Confusion ... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Jaywalk (94910) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:05PM (#7468774) Homepage
      SCO is suing IBM for breach of contract, nothing more, nothing less. What dows Linus Torvalds, Richard Stallman et al have to do with this contract? did they sign it?
      It has to do with the GPL. As part of their defense, IBM claims that SCO's claims are rubbish from the get-go because SCO distributed Linux under the GPL. If the GPL holds up in court, SCO will have a very hard time blaming IBM for distributing the same code that SCO has been distributing.
    • Isn't it obvious? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by adiposity (684943) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:23PM (#7468945)
      Think for just a minute about how SCO claims IBM breached the contract. Remember, they took SCO's code and put it into Linux? Well, whether they actually did or not, or whether the code in question really "belongs" to SCO (under "derived work") is in debate. But Linus, as the person in charge of changes to the kernel, would be in a unique position to comment on whether IBM actually did this.

      As for calling Stallman, it's clearly to deal with the counter-claims re: the GPL, which IBM brought to the table. Certainly Stallman is worth questioning if the GPL is being challenged or used as a point of attack.

      -Dan
    • by SmackCrackandPot (641205) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:23PM (#7468951)
      This sums it up. SCO is suing IBM for breach of contract, nothing more, nothing less. What dows Linus Torvalds, Richard Stallman et al have to do with this contract? did they sign it?

      Reminds me of a car bumper sticker I once saw:

      "Protected by Mafia Insurance - You hit us, we hit you."
    • Re:Confusion ... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by ntsucks (22132) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:38PM (#7469139)
      This sums it up. SCO is suing IBM for breach of contract, nothing more, nothing less. What dows Linus Torvalds, Richard Stallman et al have to do with this contract? did they sign it?

      Civil litigation is not always about achieving equitible settlement. Its very often about intimidation, marketing, public relations, bragging rights, money, etc. To achieve these goals lawyers regularly entangle as many related entities as possible. Its FUD and intimidation.

      A few years ago I changed jobs. My old employer sued me, my new employer, and a corporate officer of my new employer. They sued with an overly broad interpretation of violating a non-compete clause I had signed with them. (They claimed any other job in computer programming was competing.) They knew they would not win the case and they sued my new employer who did not sign the non-compete contract. In the end the judge rendered summary judgement and dismissed their case. BUT-- Guess what? Mission accomplished. I had to hire a lawyer and go to court. So did my new employer and its officer. Ever try to buy a house when you are being sued? Banks don't like to lend money to people being sued. Now other employees of my old company were scared to leave and my new employer had financial incentive not to hire any more of my former co-workers.

      SCO is undertaking a similar but grander plan. They are doing some discovery, I am sure, but they also want to intimidate Linux developers, waste their time, and cause them to run up legal bills. They want to do the same for Linux companies.
      Thus, providing incentives to "see it there way". It also serves to muddy the public reputation of GNU/Linux itself, its developers, and Linux companies. The later provides a clear marketing reason to pay SCO license fees. All of this also drags out the case, keeping the Linux FUD out there for people to see for a longer period of time. Which of course provides reasons to settle or license up.

      SCO's tatics here are the norm, I would expect more of the same in the future.

    • Re:Confusion ... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Eggplant62 (120514)

      Even that Forbes reporter could (kind of) tell the difference between GNU/Linux the OS and Linux the kernel ... how come Caldera, a former distributor, can't?

      Because the entity that was Caldera spun off and became Tarantella, then Canopy stepped in and bought out the rest of the business, the Linux distribution, the Unix software, and all the successive rights. The clowns at Canopy probably looked at the failing bottom line of what was left of the business, said to themselves, "We gotta stop this hemor

  • SCO content (Score:3, Funny)

    by rootofevil (188401) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:45PM (#7468507) Homepage Journal
    has been so low lately, i havent had a good laugh in weeks.

    whats wrong daryl? did that iraqi defense minister stop feeding you tips?
  • blah (Score:5, Funny)

    by Leroy_Brown242 (683141) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:46PM (#7468515) Homepage Journal

    Jeese I'm tired of hearing about SCO.

    I wish Moore's law applied to the speed of lawsuits as well.

    • Re:blah (Score:5, Funny)

      by mopslik (688435) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:48PM (#7468551)

      I wish Moore's law applied to the speed of lawsuits as well.

      Actually, Moore's Law applies to the number of lawsuits today.

    • I Think it kinda does!

      Remember Moore's law doesnt say anything about speed, but about the doubling of the amount of transitors in a processor.

      This is apropiate because the amount of documents and subpoenas exchanged seems to double every couple of weeks

  • Holy shit! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:46PM (#7468519)
    Stallman says the Boston-based Free Software Foundation, which he founded in 1985, has nothing to do with SCO's lawsuit. "SCO is suing IBM for violating a contract. We don't even know what the contract said. In terms of the resolution of that lawsuit, the Free Software Foundation is entirely uninvolved," he says.

    Holy shit! RMS talked to a member of the press and DIDN'T come off looking like a smug, reality-disconnected jackass!

    Truly amazing.
    • Holy shit! RMS talked to a member of the press and DIDN'T come off looking like a smug, reality-disconnected jackass!

      He did apparently convince the reporter that Linux was the kernel and the greater operating system was "GNU/Linux".
      • No he didn't. He went a step further and talked about the "GNU OS", which I had never heard of until now.
        • He talks about that all the time. It's the reason we have GNU/Linux and GNU/Hurd. I've actually installed the HURD, and it seems to work, with some well-known limitations which they are trying to work out... But it'll be a long time before it's really useful on anything but a narrow range of limited hardware.
          • So you've seen he call it "GNU OS" as opposed to GNU/Hurd or GNU/Linux? I don't spend my days reading what RMS has said lately, so I may have missed it, but this is the first time I have heard the term "GNU OS".
  • Is the exact wording of the subpoena available anywhere?

    I'm not really familiar with US subpoenas, so I'm not sure if it would actually be helpful or not.

    No reaction to the article. It seems to be void of actual content. But yeah, Daniel Lyons seems to be clued in now.

    • He also realized that if he writes articles about SCO, he gets tons of traffic to his column. Job Security at it's best for him. From here on out, he could simply write "SCO SCO SCO SCO... IBM IBM IBM IBM. Utah, Darl McBribe visited by aliens. Darl McBribe charges abducters $699," and embed an mp3 of Linus pronouncing Linux, which loops over and over again.
    • Re:Exact wording? (Score:3, Informative)

      by bahamat (187909)
      Here [darksideofdenton.com] are [state.nm.us] some [texas.net] links [itsforthekids.com] to images of subpoena's found in a Google Image Search [google.com]. As you can see, there isn't much to it other than "be in court". Unless SCO tells us we won't know until the date of the summons why they've been served.
  • Daniel Lyons ? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jesrad (716567) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:47PM (#7468544) Journal
    You actually mean Daniel "FSF-are-hitmen and Linux-users-are-religious-fanatics" Lyons ?

    Quite a change in tone ! Oh, well, maybe he's grown as tired of the SCO-IBM case as I am...
    • by schon (31600) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:52PM (#7468617)
      Quite a change in tone !

      Maybe his last cheque from Darl & co. bounced..
    • Re:Daniel Lyons ? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by javaxman (705658)
      I'm going to guess two things after reading this latest article by Mr. Lyons :

      1) Daniel had to face some of the criticism generated by his previous articles, and recognize that criticism as legitimate. Maybe one of his editors caught wind of what was going on and had to have a talk with him. While the top brass at Forbes are obviously pro-business, they don't want to be seen as biased or ( worse ) unable to comprehend current technology issues.

      2) He's woken up to the fact that SCO has used him as a mouthp
  • by j0keralpha (713423) * on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:49PM (#7468559)
    It would seem to an outside observer that SCO is getting desperate and seeking discovery from anyone they can get their hands on(this is alluded to in the article). Im not sure thats how they are thinking. SCOs logic trail seems to follow two basic paths:

    1. We know there is UNIX code in linux, and we need to bring in as many people as possible to show how fragmented and uncontrolled Linux Development is. This will make the court favor us, as we can show a lack of true orginization on the defendants part (the defendant being Linux, not the legal defendant e.g. IBM).

    2. We have gone on record disclosing that our revenue model is largely based around SCOSource, which is largely based around people paying us for our IP. Ergo, we have to show people that we can win(otherwise we have no IP to charge people for), and to do this we must undermine Linux's Credibility.

    The practical upshot is that the 'buckshot' discovery model is aimed partially at garnering as much information possible (relevant or not) and partially to illustrate to the court that there is no one authoritative 'source' to the problem (thereby undermining the general credibility of linux with the court, making the court more inclined to see it as a dangerous conglomeration of not-necessarily-IP-abiding individuals.)

    I know this is supposition, but like many of the other theories about why SCO is doing what they are doing it fits well in the facts.
    • +1 Insightful, someone. Spot on. This is exactly what SCO has been getting investments for.
    • by schon (31600) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:00PM (#7468705)
      we need to bring in as many people as possible to show how fragmented and uncontrolled Linux Development is .. and to that end, we are going to subpoena people who have nothing to do with Linux kernel development.

      Of course, if you look at it crosseyed enough, it starts to make a little sense.. by bringing to the stand people who have nothing to do with it, you make them seem even more fragmented and uncontrolled...

      "Mr Stallman, let's talk about the Linux kernel code you contributed.."

      "I've never made any contributions to the Linux kernel."

      "Ahh - so then let's talk about the code that you didn't contribute, then."

      "What?!?!"

      "Your Honor, see how fragmented and uncontrolled they are!"
      • "Your Honor, see how fragmented and uncontrolled they are!"

        What more evidence do we need that $CO is going to employ the Chewbacca Defense:

        "RMS did not contribute to Linux. This does not make sense. Chewbacca lives on Endor. That does not make sense. Therefore, you must acquit!"

      • by j0keralpha (713423) * on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:05PM (#7468770)
        More or less dead on. The true target here was never IBM, the target was Linux, and the only way to start targeting Linux as a whole is to target the kernel. Then you move on from there to the GPL (which they've already done). Id be willing to bet most of the discovery targeted at stallman and other G/L people will deal with undermining the GPL, not the kernel itself. This, if successful serves to blow linux as a whole out of the water.
        • by fishbonez (177041) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:45PM (#7469226)
          The target is money. Plain and simple. SCO will do whatever it can to make money with this sharpened scheme. Originally, the idea was to get bought out by IBM hence the agreement with Boies' law firm granting them ownership in the event of sale. Then the idea was to force IBM to idemnify its customers so it could get a settlement from IBM's insurance company. Now the idea is to avoid actually complying with disclosure and revealing that they don't actually know what code has supposedly been misappropriated. To stall they are sending subpoenas to everyone remotely connected to Linux so they can supply large amounts of useless information to IBM and claim to the court that they are complying with disclosure requests. IANAL but I know one from TV and his name is Matlock.
    • by molarmass192 (608071) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:48PM (#7469258) Homepage Journal
      The only problem I see with this is that Torvalds and Stallman, regardless of what people think of them as personalities, are extremely intelligent individuals, not to mention highly methodical. These types rarely "put their foot in it" so to speak. SCO's lawyers, regardless of how intelligent they think they are, are dealing with 2 people that are way above their league in terms of "knowing what they're talking about".
  • by Preach the Good Word (723957) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:49PM (#7468564)
    This thought occurred to me:

    SCO goes after Linux as a marketing/gain money tool.

    They get hated.

    Opposing SCO becomes popular.

    SCO has just handed people a new marketing tool - oppose/stand up to SCO, get attention, customers, etc.

    Though in reflection, their egregeous approach to an unsubstantiated claim was bound to provoke a backlash. And it was bound to be something that people would take advantage of.

    Did SCO even see this? My guess, no. They're up their in their own little world.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    It seems that SCO is in reality just a service to provide news stories. A really nice written story-generator though, since everybody keeps talking about them. Maybe they have a excellent business consultants [feisar.de]...

    greetings,

    Al
  • I'm just waiting for whatever bizarro-world response Duh-rl will have when the press starts asking the right questions.

    Ought to be good for some laughs. Reporters who get pissed off by disinformation tend not to be kind

  • Because... (Score:2, Funny)

    by clifgriffin (676199)
    The clearly stole the idea of unix from chips. Chips weren't running linux before SCO!

    Blogzine [blogzine.net]
    Fortress of Insanity TM [homeunix.net]
  • by Camel Pilot (78781) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:56PM (#7468669) Homepage Journal
    Mr Lyons is now sounding like a reporting instead of a puppet (or perhaps a SCO investor).

    The best cut is:

    Oddly enough, on Nov. 11, SCO Executive Vice President Christopher Sontag complained to Forbes about IBM's decision to send subpoenas to investors and analysts who supported SCO. Sontag called the move "an attempt to bully and intimidate" and said IBM was engaged in "legal gamesmanship."

    So why didn't Sontag mention that, uh, SCO itself was about to target Torvalds and Stallman with subpoenas? SCO's spokesman says Sontag and Darl McBride, SCO's chief executive, did not know that SCO's lawyers were planning the move.


    The CEO and Vice-President did not know what their lawyers were up to!? Well I guess it is a clue to who is running the show.

  • RMS is right (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Scholasticus (567646) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @05:58PM (#7468689) Journal

    "I am concerned about long-term entrenched confusions such as referring to a version of our GNU OS as 'Linux' and thinking that our work on free software was motivated by the ideas associated with 'open source.' These confusions lead users away from the basic issue: their freedom. By comparison, the events involving SCO are transitory and almost trivial," Stallman says.

    I think RMS is making an excellent point here. Though the Linux kernel itself is not trivial, these issues surrounding SCO will in the long run become trivial. I have no doubt that the GPL and therefore software freedom will be upheld in court, even if worse comes to worst with the Linux kernel (however unlikely that is). Yes, SCO is crazy/dangerous, but in the long run they can't really hurt free and open source software.

  • No whining (Score:4, Informative)

    by Alizarin Erythrosin (457981) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:00PM (#7468708)
    I've seen a few posts already about "stop beating the dead horse" (to quote one post).

    If you'll kindly notice, everything SCO has been posted under the "Caldera" icon. So here's how to turn that off, for those that don't want to see any SCO stories anymore.
    1. Go to http://slashdot.org/users.pl?op=edithome [slashdot.org]
    2. Where it says "Exclude stories from the homepage", middle column ("Topics"), and check Caldera
    3. Scroll down to the bottom of the page (or press ctrl+end, or just end) and click the Save button

    You're done! Now shut the hell up.
    • Re:No whining (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Hobbex (41473)
      I think they can still run the SCO stories, but could they not link to every damn article that Daniel Lyons writes. Like Dvorak before him, he has realized that bating Slashdot is a profitable business.

      (This article is anti-SCO tilted, but only because he was pissed off that SCO used him as a mouthpiece yesterday and didn't tell him they had also sent subpoenas. He is lashing out to tell them: I'll be your mouthpiece, but then I want the scoops when I talk to you.)
    • On the other hand, for those of you who can't get enough SCO news, I strongly recommend GrokLaw [groklaw.net].

      OK. No whinning about too much SCO news and no whinning about too little SCO news. /.ers will just have to whine about the RIAA, MPAA, etc. until we find something else for you to whine about.

  • by rmohr02 (208447) <mohr,42&osu,edu> on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:02PM (#7468739)
    ...SCO is now suing Forbes.
  • by wa1hco (37574) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:05PM (#7468772)
    I'm not sure David gets it, yet.

    Groklaw.net (IBM's Subpoenas to Analysts and Investors: Why? Why? Why?) points out that IBM's going after the network of analyists and investors, possibly because this whole SCO/Linux thing looks strikingly similar to a pump and dump scheme the Feds have already found.

    Does Lyons need to appear balanced to avoid getting entangled with IBM Subpoenas?

    Notice that this article spends more time than necessary on the differences between Free and Open software. If I was a SCO lawyer with MS interests at heart, I play RMS to really divide the community. It won't work, but will generate useful FUD.
    • Yeah, a kind of win the battle, lose the war thing. SCO self destructs, but in the process spreads FUD, starts open/free religous wars, distracts the public enough that MS can launch a (PR) attack on Linux security, and show the business world that a very few linux supporters go too far in their support.

      Each SCO move may seem ludicrous, but don't celebrate their demise too much. So far this thing has been awful for Linux at a time when it should be gaining on Windows (security issues).
  • ... that SCO will stick a link to _this_ Forbes article on the front page of their website?
  • SEC execs and the concerned Investor may not read /. but, they are more than likely to read Forbes on the pot.
    Good to see that the FUD has reached levels intollerable even to the PHB perspective.

    I consider this and the (hopefully) subsequent articles to be the harbinger of a lynch mob and land shark feeding frenzy as soon as IBM bitch-slaps SCO et al in court.
  • by bstadil (7110) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:09PM (#7468813) Homepage
    The headline from SCO may be a Freudian slip of sorts.

    Press Relaese [cnn.com]

    • by Anonymous Coward
      The SCO Group Closes $50 Million Equity Financing
      Thursday October 16, 5:16 pm ET

      $50 Million Private Investment Transaction Led by BayStar Capital Provides SCO With Funding for Future Software Development, SCOx Web Services Partnerships And Acquisitions, Future Licensing Opportunities and the Protection of the Company's Intellectual Property Assets

      LINDON, Utah, Oct. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The SCO(R) Group (SCO) (Nasdaq: SCOX - News), the owner of the UNIX operating system, today announced it has rece
  • "I am concerned about long-term entrenched confusions such as referring to a version of our GNU OS as 'Linux' and thinking that our work on free software was motivated by the ideas associated with 'open source.' These confusions lead users away from the basic issue: their freedom. By comparison, the events involving SCO are transitory and almost trivial," Stallman says.

    Way to get your priorities straight, Richard -- putting your pet semantics above the users' ability to use your software legally. For the
  • Quote from the article: "Stallman's GNU/Linux operating system is not the target of SCO's suit. Linux, the program SCO is targeting, is not an operating system, but only the kernel of the GNU/Linux operating system, which could run using a different kernel".
  • by Camel Pilot (78781) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:13PM (#7468857) Homepage Journal
    Sounds like Daniel Lyons sold his SCO stock yesterday...
  • but in the unlikely event that this FUD succeeds can't everyone move over onto BSD or Darwin or some other kernel, or am I missing something. I realise that this is hardly a trivial matter but nonetheless its hardly going to stop Free/Open Software developing, only delay it's inevitable acceptance as part of the mainstream of computing.
  • by superdan2k (135614) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:30PM (#7469041) Homepage Journal
    Dear SCO & Friends,

    I understand what you're going through. As an individual, I went through this back in 2001, when the market tanked and I lost my cushy dot-com gig. A lot of companies went through what you're going through, but most of them had the common decency to go quietly and with dignity, rather than hiring lawyers and trying to take a Scorched Earth approach in a last valiant effort to save themselves. Here's a hint: you're not the Soviet Army and Utah isn't Stalingrad.

    Let's face it -- your goose is cooked. In an attempt to fill your coffers, you have succeeded in the most perfect execution of Operation: Footbullet since the dying gasps of the dot-coms in 2000-2001. Even if you win, you lose -- you have alienated the one group that you needed to hold on to any sort of market share: the geeks. If, by some stroke of magical luck, bought judge, planetary alignment, or guiding hand of Microsoft, you manage to actually pull this off and have the GPL declared null-and-void and you and your puppeteer, Bill Gates (no doubt, elbow deep in your asses, playing ventriloquist), manage to clean house registering patents and copyrights on works you didn't create, you will have only succeeded in enraging those who are responsible for creating those works. Those creators are people who have a say in what gets purchased at their offices, and I'd be willing to bet that it wouldn't be SCO or M$ (should their complicity in this fiasco be shown to be true and not just educated guesswork).

    That said, I'd encourage you to call off the attack dogs. We'll all have a good laugh at your "clever ruse" and share a beer together. Twenty years from now, SCO will be long-gone and irrelevant. God willing, M$ will be gone then, too. And you'll wonder to yourself: what the fuck was I thinking back then?

    Think it over. There's more of us than there are of you, ultimately, we, the consumers, control the future of your business. Do you really want to taunt that 800-lb. gorilla? Do you?
  • by nniillss (577580) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @06:38PM (#7469152)
    Since today is my RTFA day, I came across this nice excerpt: In addition to Torvalds and Stallman, SCO told the U.S. District Court in Utah it would issue subpoenas to ... software maker Novell ...

    Quite possibly, Novell will not be amused. The next logical move by SCO would be to terminate Novell's unix licence. Oh wait...

  • LinuxWorld today notes that one of its editors, Brian E. Ferguson, features prominently in the Forbes story. Ferguson authored the savvy analytical article SCO's IP Gamble [linuxworld.com] in the current issue, which, as Forbes notes, concludes that "SCO's case a long shot."
  • Great quote... (Score:3, Informative)

    by herrvinny (698679) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @07:23PM (#7469583)
    Don't ask SCO's top execs. They don't know anything about this stuff, remember?

    Classic, definitely classic. The mass media is finally catching one. SCO is really going to be backed into a corner now.

    Although, I question if that's a good thing. The Chinese general Sun Tzu once said that you should always leave your enemy a way out, so he does not become desperate and do some lasting damage. Like a animal, it must be shown that it has been defeated fairly, and let go to nurse it's wounds.

    Slightly OT, I know, but would anyone be interested in building an open-source website mocking SCO? I already regged two good domain names, registrations lasting for two years (Which should coincide with the end of this case). What stuff should I put on it?
  • Top Story (Score:3, Interesting)

    by rock_climbing_guy (630276) on Thursday November 13, 2003 @07:28PM (#7469628) Journal
    Check it out. If you go to forbes.com, this is the story at the top of the page, as opposed to being burried in some tech news link.
    • Re:Top Story (Score:3, Interesting)

      by fferreres (525414)
      Maybe IBM got a bit upset, and made some calls. After all, they are official sponsors of Forbes "Executive Connection", as anyone visiting forbes can notice (front page) :-)
  • by gwappo (612511) on Friday November 14, 2003 @07:23AM (#7472774)
    WOW! RMS not only gets to completely clarify his GNU/Linux nomenclature, he's also got the "Free software" vs. "Open Source" software argument nailed.

    All this in a magazine like Forbes!

    Holy crap and WOW! This might now be adopted by others in the press, and I love the "Linux Operating System Kernel" naming convention as a trade-off.

    Wonderful. Now if only the Nobel committee would consider him and Torvalds for a Nobel Prize for sacrificing much of their lives for the sake of computing humanity's freedom, THEN we'll be getting somewhere.

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