What if its true?

I have been thinking about the SCO claims. Although I find their
behavious unacceptable and proposterous, Id like to play devil’s
advocate and see what happens?

Lets for a moment assume that their claims are true. What happens then? This is what ESR says in his latest letter to SCO.

We will swiftly meet our
responsibilities under law, either removing the allegedly infringing
code or establishing that it entered Linux by routes which foreclose
proprietary claims.

Even if the code is removed from the operating system, how does one
make sure that the changes are propagated to all machines that run the
OS? How does SCO get compensated? Will it be traced backed to the
perputatror and the company he was involved with be sued? May be I just
do get it! But I dont think the the community has answered the what if
question. Although the burden of proof lies with SCO, would’nt it make
sense to address the “What if”: question? Im hoping the pundits who
have been following/have a understanding of the history would be able
to enlighten me on this.

What bothers me even more is why cant SCO openly address this issue with ESR & co instead of playing cheap and dirty games?

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One thought on “What if its true?”

  1. Obviously, IANAL, but I did have some copyright classes in school. Considering the joys of copyright law, SCO’s current actions will be looked at in court. Did they, in good faith, attempt to resolve the issue. You see, they are claiming that they are suffering because Linux contains this code. For them to NOT attempt to make reasonable efforts to resolve the situation will not help their case. The judge could very well deem that they contributed to the cause, and dismiss their claims.

    You see, I can copy your copyrighted material all I want, and no one can do a thing about it legally, except for you (and people you authorize). So that means you have to actively enforce your copyright on the material.

    However, if you do find that I am violating the copyright of your content, you would notify me to remove it. SCO isn’t doing this.

    So SCO has the burden of proof. They must prove in their case (if they ever attack Linux users) that Linux users willfully committed copyright fraud, that the Linux users knew they were infringing on copyrights, and that their was no effort on the part of the infringer to work with SCO to do something about it.

    The “What if” question has already been asked, and answered. ESR and others have said many times that if there is infringing code in Linux, they will remove it quickly without a problem. And this is the key. Because if this goes to trial, what the Judge and Jury will see is that the Linux developers weren’t willingly infringing on copyrighted code, didn’t know they were doing it, and were more than willing to work with SCO to remove the code. SCO would then be put on the spot: They are claiming all these damages because the code is in Linux. However, when SCO had the opportunity to work with willing participants in the removal of said code, they refused.

    Of course, this is all based on the hypothetical situation of their actually being infringing code in the Linux code.

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