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Journal: Is the purpose of the SCO mess to destroy the GPL?

I have noticed lately that there is a strange parallel forming between the way that certain people are talking about the GPL and the SCO / Unix copyright and licensing issue.

I believe that statements by Gates such as "The way the GPL works, if you license any Linux, you have to license all Linux.", should be a clue to what SCO is planning. In particular, consider SCO's current party line: The way UNIX licensing works, if you license any UNIX, you have to license SCO UNIX. Now also consider that their IBM lawsuit specifically sites IBM's rights to redistribute IBM developed derivitive works. This looks, to my eyes, to be an intentional choice framed by the legal similarities of enforcing viral licensing terms on software developed by deriving it from GPL'd code.

Now also consider that SCO is on extremely shaky legal ground here. They look, for intents and purposes, as if they are insane. But let's cast a new light on what they are doing: Perhaps the true purpose (revealed) behind the SCO fiasco is to lose in court. But first, they must create a strong set of legal parallels so that, by loosing the lawsuit, they can set precedents that will help to damage or destroy the GPL.

This is something that we should worry about. Consider the scenario: First, SCO and their supporters draw legal parallels (not neccessarily common-sense parallels, you understand) between the viral copyright and licensing nature of SCO's UNIX (all your derivitive works are belong to us) and the GPL. Next, a massive court battle where IBM ruthlessly smashes SCO and sets precendents...

The danger? Should SCO succeed in drawing the correct parallels and loosing the case in the right way, the variety of viral licensing and viral copyrights that are important to open-source may be legally nullified. Kaboom! The GPL is smashed like so many rotten eggs...

We can do something about this. We can talk about it. This scenario needs to get into the minds of the people who are in a position to do something about it. If the true intent of this mess is as I have speculated, then it will be easily avoided if it is understood. IBM is probably capable of choosing strategies and tactics to fight SCO that would avoid setting "licensing and copyright precedents" that could damage the GPL.

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