[TUHS] SCO sues IBM?

Peter Jeremy peter.jeremy at alcatel.com.au
Thu Mar 13 06:31:39 AEST 2003

On 2003-Mar-12 15:33:12 +1030, Greg 'groggy' Lehey <grog at lemis.com> wrote:
>On Tuesday, 11 March 2003 at 22:46:04 -0600, Jeffrey Sharp wrote:
>> Does the suit involve code xor concepts? If the patents are on concepts,
>> then any sufficiently similar implementation might infringe upon the patent,
>> no matter how untainted its code is. This case has the potential to go
>> horribly, horribly awry if a stupid judge sits on the bench.

There's no reference anywhere in SCO's suit to patents.  The suit is
based on misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of contract and
unfair competition.

The "misappropriation of trade secrets" and "breach of contract" seems
to be based on the premise that since AIX is based on UNIX, _all_ of
AIX is therefore covered by the terms of IBM's source code license for
UNIX.  There are regular whinges about the viral nature of GPL, but
this is the first time I've seen someone claim the the UNIX license
was viral - and the USL case pretty well demonstrated the opposite.
4.4BSD-Lite is clear evidence that it's possible to take a UNIX
derivative, developed with full access to UNIX source code, and
produce a product that is not covered by UNIX licenses.

The basis of the "unfair competition" seems to be that IBM can afford
more staff than SCO can.  IBM's had plenty of practise at defending
itself against unfair competition claims in the past...

>I this subthread is off the mark.  I'm personally convinced that IBM
>never used any licensed UNIX technology in Linux.

Agreed.  I don't see that SCO has a leg to stand on.  The only way I
can see for them to win would be a combination of an incompetent
judge and managing to bamboozle a not-technically-savvy jury.



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