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Appeals Court Overturns 2007 Unix Copyright Decision

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the long-dark-teatime dept.

The Courts 330

snydeq writes "A federal appeals court has overturned a 2007 decision that Novell owns the Unix code, clearing the way for SCO to pursue a $1 billion copyright infringement case against IBM. In a 54-page decision (PDF), the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals said it was reversing the 2007 summary judgment decision by Judge Dale Kimball of the US District Court for the District of Utah, which found that Novell was the owner of Unix and UnixWare copyrights. SCO CEO Darl McBride called the decision a 'huge validation for SCO.'" The case over who owns Unix will now go to trial in Utah.

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Years of appeals (5, Funny)

assemblerex (1275164) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184655)

We'll be using quantum computers before the appeals run out.

Re:Years of appeals (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184779)

Don't forget you pay your $699 SCO licenseing fee, you cock-smoking teabaggers!

GAWD BWESS AMERWIKA !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184837)

God Bless America,
Land that I love.
Stand beside her, and guide her
Through the night with a light from above
From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans, white with foam
God bless America, My home sweet home

Twank you, twank you wary mwuch

Go Eagles, Go SCO, Go Go Go !!

Re:Years of appeals (5, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184865)

We'll be using quantum computers before the appeals run out.

Actually, quantum computers will be using us.

Which brings curious questions about the future and soviet russia.

Re:Years of appeals (4, Funny)

iCEBaLM (34905) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185241)

In, or out, of Soviet Russia, quantum computers use you, or you use them. It's impossible to know until it is observed.

Re:Years of appeals (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185741)

In, or out, of Soviet Russia, quantum computers use you, or you use them. It's impossible to know until it is observed.

Yes, but observing it will change the outcome, just ask Schrodinger's dead cat

Re:Years of appeals (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185785)

But ... but observing it will change their behaviour and we'll have to start over!

Obama - the affirmative action pick (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184965)

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/23/AR2009082302381_pf.html [washingtonpost.com]

I guess he thought that we'd mistake his "C" grade promises of no more lobbyist influence for "A" grade work. Apparently he's been working so hard to give these lobbyists acres of fine print in his bills in which to play that he already needs a vacation. Didn't he visit a National Park a couple of weeks ago? Man, I wish I could get a vacation from my vacation! Somehow I don't think that'd fly, though. I haven't lied to enough people yet.

Re:Years of appeals (1)

elerran (1001939) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185273)

We'll be using quantum computers before the appeals run out.

Will they run linux?

Re:Years of appeals (1)

shadowknot (853491) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185565)

If so, don't forget to pay your $699 fee to SCO!

first (0)

asdfndsagse (1528701) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184661)

Damn, well more of these schenagigians

Re:first (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184753)

Spelling shenanigans isn't all that difficult.

Re:first (1)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185095)

ugh !!

i won't blame novell, i won't blame sco, i blame bell labs !

why don't they just open-source that thing in the beginning???

Re:first (1)

Curunir_wolf (588405) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185277)

And it's working! SCOXQ is up from .09 to .26 !

Looks like Wall Street thinks Unix is worth about ... $400,000.

:/

Re:first (3, Insightful)

Curunir_wolf (588405) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185315)

Oops - that should have been $4,066,000.

Damn those floating decimals!

Re:first (0, Offtopic)

wbren (682133) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185827)

Hey, asdfndsagse, what's the name of that restaurant you like with all the goofy shit on the wall and the mozzarella sticks?

Damn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184667)

Thats a shame!

wtf (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184671)

Did it become april fools day when I wasn't watching?

Is it (0, Redundant)

zepo1a (958353) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184673)

April 1st already? Seriously, WTF?

Re:Is it (5, Informative)

CozmicCharlie (1471823) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184747)

It's no big deal. Really. The appeals court did say that New SCO owes Novell a bunch of $$. ($ they already spent.) The rest goes to trial. And this ruling has nothing to do with the IBM case. IBM has maintained all along that there was NO infringing code. SCO will likely be gone long before this ever gets settled.

Re:Is it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185237)

can i get your word on that?

Re:Is it (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185289)

SCO will likely be gone long before this ever gets settled.

While I dont want SCO to win, I hope the end result is nothing to do with SCO running out of money.
I like that the little guy can sue the big company, they just happen to be wrong in this case.

IBM has maintained all along that there was NO infringing code.

I hope that is how IBM wins, it might help stop some of the FUD that has been spread.

Re:Is it (2)

lexluther (529642) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185059)

Thats exactly what I thought .... seriously though, I don't know if I can deal with any more of these SCO stories. Can we have a new icon to represent these? Maybe like a festering wound, or feces?

Will they never die? (5, Funny)

mcvos (645701) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184727)

It's like a zombie infestation. Didn't scientific research recently prove that violence was the only solution to that?

Re:Will they never die? (2, Interesting)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184969)

Didn't scientific research recently prove that violence was the only solution to that?

"Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent" -- Salvor Hardin, Foundation (Isaac Asimov)

Therefore the FIRST refuge of the competent (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185037)

And yes, they did do a but of modelling on the slow zombie infestation and you HAD to act hard and quick or else the zombies would win.

The BBC had something on it recently on their website.

Re:Will they never die? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185057)

Didn't scientific research recently prove that violence was the only solution to that?

"Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent" -- Salvor Hardin, Foundation (Isaac Asimov)

Did he say that before or after meeting a zombie?

Re:Will they never die? (2, Funny)

Insanity Defense (1232008) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185233)

Did he say that before or after meeting a zombie?

After meeting politicians so pretty much the same.

Re:Will they never die? (4, Funny)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185313)

Didn't scientific research recently prove that violence was the only solution to that?

"Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent" -- Salvor Hardin, Foundation (Isaac Asimov)

Yes, I'm sure that fictional quote will be a great comfort to you during the coming zombie apocalypse. You hippies need to live in the real world occasionally.

Re:Will they never die? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185477)

"If violence isn't your last resort, then you didn't use enough violence." -- The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates [schlockmercenary.com]

Re:Will they never die? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185491)

"Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent" -- Salvor Hardin, Foundation (Isaac Asimov)

"The competent would have long since resorted to it."

Re:Will they never die? (5, Insightful)

EvilNTUser (573674) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185563)

Violence is the last refuge against the incompetent.

Re:Will they never die? (1, Redundant)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185575)

"Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent" -- Salvor Hardin, Foundation (Isaac Asimov)

"The competent make it their first refuge." -- jimicus, Slashdot

That is litterature (2, Insightful)

aepervius (535155) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185597)

It is quite clear that all along in history, violence solved a lot of problem. Solved them very definitively. It might have created other, or ultimately led to the end of the offender, but the original problem was mostly solved, even if it involved putting to the sword the whole populace, including children, and then salting their fields.

Re:Will they never die? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185739)

"Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent"

Of course violence is the last refuge of the incompetent. For the rest of us, it's waaaay before last. It's like third.

Groklaw coverage (5, Insightful)

RedK (112790) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184743)

http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20090824142203182 [groklaw.net]

It's important to note that the Appeals court hasn't said that the copyrights do belong to SCO. They've only found that a decision regarding copyright ownership based on the APA wasn't something that should have been decided in a summary judgment and that the decision should've been made during the jury trial.

Re:Groklaw coverage (1, Informative)

db32 (862117) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184811)

In the meantime everyone who uses or sells Linux stuff that isn't a giant like Novell is stuck in the crosshairs. The damage has been done already...the one thing that served to mitigate continued damage has been removed. Terribly damned convenient timing to have Linux called into question right before Windows 7 is coming to try and save MS from their Vista failures... My organization has been discussing the potential of a Linux desktop shift because of the draconian licensing involved with Vista/Win7...I suspect this news may cause problems. There is NO WAY that this will be resolved before the Win7 release unless MS pushes it back a long ways. What a mess...

Re:Groklaw coverage (5, Interesting)

san (6716) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184939)

Hardly. Considering SCO still owes Novell, and that this ruling only overturns a summary judgement, doesn't make Novell's copyright claim much weaker.

This case is not about end-users, but about whether SCO even has standing to begin to sue Linux end-users. Which it doesn't (the nature of their copyright deal with Novell was pretty clear, but apparently not enough for a summary judgement).

In the very unlikely event that SCO wins this case, big end-users like IBM may again have to begin to worry about defending against SCO's bizarre claims.

Until then, this case has about as much impact on Linux users as one of the many claims against Apple, Microsoft or Sun have on their respective products' end users.

Re:Groklaw coverage (4, Interesting)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185075)

Not to mention the fact that SCO might not survive long enough to persue the case against Novell. They're in Chapter 11 already and McBride & co have been kicked out in favor of a bankruptcy trustee who is likely to move SCO into Chapter 7. There it will be taken apart and the pieces sold off. Even if SCO avoided Chapter 7, the $3 million SCO payment to Novell was upheld. So SCO would have huge debts to pay off while fighting a legal battle against Novell. Even if they somehow survived that, IBM's Nazgul... I mean lawyers are waiting on the other side. The average Linux shop won't have anything to worry about from SCO for *years* even under SCO's best case scenario.

Re:Groklaw coverage (1)

db32 (862117) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185097)

By all means, explain this to all the PHBs and investors that drove up SCO stock prices through the roof when this crap kicked off. It doesn't matter that they don't have a snowballs chance in hell (according to logic). They DO have a snowballs chance in hell when you factor in payoffs, politics, and other such nonsense. MS pumped them full of money to keep these idiotic proceedings going for that very reason. All it matters is that it looks like there is a chance. I honestly don't really expect them to win, but that would be an even worse scenario. Judge Kimball is gone too, a new guy is hearing this mess.

Re:Groklaw coverage (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185279)

Judge Kimball is gone too, a new guy is hearing this mess.

Sweet Zombie Jesus, you're right. Just when Kimball had finally figured it out, SCO get gifted a blank slate to write their ills on anew. Cue a Mystery Investor in 3... 2... 1...

Re:Groklaw coverage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185513)

explain this to all the PHBs and investors that drove up SCO stock prices through the roof when this crap kicked off.

I think you're misremembering.

Most of the SCO stock was held by insiders.. the amount of SCO stock held by "PHBs and investors that drove up" the price was nearly zero.

Re:Groklaw coverage (1)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185027)

So go ahead and switch to Linux desktops ... if SCO somehow sticks their nose in your business they can be dealt with in three words or less: "go fuck yourself."

Re:Groklaw coverage (1)

Truekaiser (724672) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185153)

Wasn't it shown that microsoft was funding sco through a third party?

Re:Groklaw coverage (3, Informative)

gtall (79522) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185541)

This has nothing to do with Linux, it is merely an argument over Unix copyrights. SCO has never been able to show any Unix code in Linux. Their beef with Novell centered on the Unix copyrights.Their beef with IBM wandered around witlessly for awhile and finally centered on Unix in AIX or contract disputes involving the Monterrey project. SCO hasn't been making noises about Linux for awhile...for good reason, other then putting Linux on their own servers for download, they have nothing to do with it.

Re:Groklaw coverage (4, Informative)

growse (928427) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184843)

Novell Response [novell.com]
Novell points out that the Judge affirmed the payment ($3million) SCO was ordered to make to Novell, so there's hope yet.

Re:Groklaw coverage (4, Interesting)

Nursie (632944) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185023)

Regardless of where this one goes, I'm not sure that opening up the path to renewed litigation against IBM could ever be seen as a good thing.

They'll be ripped to pieces the moment that starts. They're called the Nazgul for a reason.

Re:Groklaw coverage (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185339)

Wasn't there some line about SCO having entered an ass kicking contest against a monster with eight legs and no ass (IBM) ?

Re:Stronger than "Ordinary Nazgul" (4, Funny)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185719)

Nah, even the ordinary Naz aren't enough here. Companies as big as IBM always have a scary "Iridium Team" or such. You know, one guy is 6'11" with the eidetic memory who serves as the walking caselaw and the bombshell woman with the 228 IQ to run the speeches. They only serve one case per year and charge $666 per hour, but they end the nonsense.

Re:Groklaw coverage (2, Informative)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185459)

Oh, please, now that they've been tossed another lifeline, Uncle Fester Investments [theregister.co.uk] will drop $3 million pocket change on them to keep this rattling on.

Re:Groklaw coverage (1)

Fnord666 (889225) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184991)

They've only found that a decision regarding copyright ownership based on the APA wasn't something that should have been decided in a summary judgment and that the decision should've been made during the jury trial.

That sounds about right. Who better to decide a complicated copyright case than a bunch of people who can't think of a way out of jury duty?

Re:Groklaw coverage - no change of copyright ever. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185017)

Note that:

1- Novell board voted not to approve sale of any UNIX copyrights before this APA deal ever was signed.

2 - Santa Cruz Operation (original SCO) never took Novell to court at all (maybe they knew that the APA and Amendment were both clear to them and that they didn't get copyrights)?

3- The original SCO (Santa Cruz Operations) never did not do a final transfer of copyright paper work from NOVELL. That paperwork never happened, and Santa Cruz Operations never changed the UNIX code to show they had registration rights to the code). So they KNEW something.

4- Santa Cruz Operations SEC filings never said they owned UNIX ever. DARL when Caldera/newSCO/The SCO group did say this in their SEC filings (why the change of tune, when the one who did the deal never declared this in SEC filings at all)?

5- DARL and newSCO (TheSCO Group who became TheSCO Group by changing their name from Caldera), asked Novell for the copyrights BEFORE trying to sue LINUX users and IBM, etc.

6 - Santa Cruz Operations after the deal only collected 5% income from sales so why did they need the deal when Santa Cruz Operations already had RIGHTS to develop a "branch of Unix", why pay more money to do the same thing? Hmm, maybe to use the LIST of licensees that they go to market something else to the list (like Tarantella)?

7 - So ask yourself why the US court system has to go thru an expensive trial on this at all?

Re:Groklaw coverage (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185069)

In complex matters like this a jury trial is a meaningless formality and everyone knows it. Despite countless mind numbing hours of explanations to the jury about the intricacies of copyright law, the jurors won't have a clue on what the case is really about. So the real decisions will be made at the appellate level and perhaps even by the Supreme court.

Re:Groklaw coverage (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185401)

Also regarding IBM, all this decision means is that the case with IBM is no longer decided automatically by the summary judgment. It does not mean that SCO's chances have improved in winning the IBM case. When we last heard, both the magistrate judge and judge Kimball made key rulings that severely weakened SCO's case like throwing most of the claims for lack of specifity. However, if Judge Kimball decides at trial that Novell owns the copyrights, then the IBM case is decided again.

Killer Cockroaches in Salt Lake City! (1)

Virtucon (127420) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184759)

SCO has now morphed into those Killer Cockroaches in "Damnation Alley." Those were in Salt Lake City too. George Peppard was right!

Unfortunately these roaches don't eat rubber like in the movie, they eat money and generate litigation. The ultimate lawyer fodder.

WOW (1, Interesting)

OrangeMonkey11 (1553753) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184767)

I suppose this is the new business plan for most companies; instead of putting out product for consumers they sue one another for infringement to get profits.

WOOT!! FINALLY (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184785)

Now that SCO has been rightfully named the owner of the code behind unix this will mean the end of COMMUNIST LINSUX!! Next COMMUNIST OPEN SORES should be banned. Then all shitdot sheeple will fucking committ suicide from the lack of communist "solutions"

GO AHEAD FUCKING FLAME AWAY OR
WASTE YOUR GODDAMNED MODPOINTS FUCKTARDED SHITDOT SHEEPLE.

Re:WOOT!! FINALLY (1)

cbraescu1 (180267) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184973)

Is that you, Darl McBride?

Re:WOOT!! FINALLY (5, Informative)

Insanity Defense (1232008) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185661)

Now that SCO has been rightfully named the owner of the code behind unix

Actual facts:

1/ The ruling leaves SCO owing Novell $2.5 Million + Interest.

2/ The rest of the case (including copyright ownership) goes to a jury trial.

3/ If SCO somehow wins they get no money.

4/ SCO then gets to go ahead with the IBM lawsuit which they were losing badly.

5/ The SCO management has been ordered (by the bankruptcy judge) to be replaced by a trustee. A trustee who may or may not continue the lawsuits. He/she may choose to try and negotiate a way out to stop the bleeding.

6/ After the SCO vs Novell trial if the trustee pursues it there is still the IBM trial.

So the trustee has a problem. The company money is owed to Novell and they don't have the cash to continue until the case goes to trial (which will be delayed due to the new judge needing time to come up to speed).

Only then can they go on with the IBM trial. To make money off the IBM trial they need to have won on the key issues in the Novell trial (copyright and right to waive), they also need to beat the IBM lawyers (who are not nicknamed the Nazgul for nothing).

Even if somehow the trustee can be persuaded to fight these cases and manages to win what are the odds that neither Novell or IBM would appeal? What are the chances that SCO can survive long enough to fight through the appeals if it comes to that?

At most this is a lesser defeat for SCO. So long as they owe Novell the money and still have to fight the trial they are still doomed. The chances that the trustee would be willing to keep the company bleeding to fight dubious lawsuits is pretty low.

I think I speak for most slashdotters when I say.. (0)

Anti_Climax (447121) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184789)

...Fuck

Re:I think I speak for most slashdotters when I sa (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184879)

I'll go with "lolwut?"

Re:I think I speak for most slashdotters when I sa (1)

Philip_the_physicist (1536015) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185087)

This one says "Oh good, the world isn't ending after all"

Blah, blah, blah. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184793)

Some appeals court judge probably just got a suitcase full of hundred dollar bills handed to them by a high-level Microsoftie. They've been backing this whole thing financially from the beginning and they don't want to lose. Now it looks like they might have a chance yet again.

When are people going to realize that these companies don't GIVE a fuck about you and stop supporting them? Stop buying their products and use the ones they don't want you to use (i.e. Linux) no matter what the corrupt fucking U.S. legal system has to say about it. It's your computer, it's your data and it's your right. Start using it instead of sitting back and complaining (which I imagine is already happening). I've already returned my XBOX 360 to the store I bought it from and made a call to Microsoft's customer support to let them know that I will continue to use Linux on every PC I own regardless of how many judges they buy off.

Re:Blah, blah, blah. (5, Funny)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185073)

I made a call to Microsoft's customer support to let them know that I will continue to use Linux on every PC I own regardless of how many judges they buy off.

I hope you realize that you took Vikram in Bangalore way off script with that support call.

Do we need to rehash this? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29184805)

SCO released a Linux distro, thereby waving any rights to pursue Linux vendors for copyright violations [at the time]. If people inserted UNIX code *after* SCO was involved then maybe there is a case...

But you can't try and release a distro, profit from it, then sue later saying the distro which you licensed under GPL included your copyrighted [non-gpl] code...

I see how this works now... (1)

Firemouth (1360899) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184825)

1. Stake claim to something that's widely used.
2. Appeal to death anyone who disagrees with you.
3. ????????
4. Profit!

Re:I see how this works now... (1)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185101)

1. Stake claim to something that's widely used.
2. Appeal to death anyone who disagrees with you.
3. Slowly bleed money for a decade or so.
4. Die.

Re:I see how this works now... (1)

wstrucke (876891) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185145)

3. Use the legal system to block everyone else from using said widely used system.

Re:I see how this works now... (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185483)

Number 3 is employ your brother as the one of the main lawyers you are giving your companies money away to and just keep leeching it all away until it is gone. If a CEO actually steals the money they can get in trouble, but charging a fortune for long running actions designed to run as long as possible is perfectly legal.
I really do not understand why the Directors have not run Darl out of town with tar and feathers for destroying SCO.

April 1st? (-1, Redundant)

Dynamoo (527749) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184839)

Is it April 1st? I thought this case (and SCO) were dead in the water.. someone needs to put a stake through that outfit's heart to make sure it stays dead.

Unsurprising, but.... (4, Insightful)

idiotnot (302133) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184857)

....all this means is it'll have to go back to trial to decide the issues. I kind of figured this would happen; Kimball's summary judgment was premature.

(yes, I skimmed through the long-ass PDF)

The same verdict as Kimball granted could potentially be reached again, this time with a full court proceeding. What it does do is delay the other cases even longer, as the Novell case decision is really required before any of them can proceed.

See you in 2012.

Re:Unsurprising, but.... (4, Funny)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185009)

Wait, isn't the world supposed to end in 2012? I can see it now: SCO will win the trial and the resulting warping of reality will cause pigs to fly, hell to freeze over, Linus to switch to Windows, human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together... mass hysteria!

Re:Unsurprising, but.... (1)

idiotnot (302133) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185187)

Well, supposedly, cockroaches are the ones expected to survive the apocalypse; SCO will be around. :-/

still money pumped down from Redmond? (2, Interesting)

kubitus (927806) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184873)

I would like to see the guarantees SCO's lawyers have for getting paid!

Dan McBride Liar (2, Interesting)

shareme (897587) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184893)

Read groklaw people ful decision was not over turned..Dan McBride is somewhat wrong and liar to boot

Re:Dan McBride Liar (1)

whisper_jeff (680366) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185003)

Darl. Darl McBride. Not Dan.

Still a liar though.

NOT ! (5, Informative)

frith01 (1118539) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184909)

Appeals court only determined that the contract is a mess, and cannot be interpreted on its own. The court agreed that SCO owes Novell a large portion of the
money it received from SUN , and that a full trial is required to figure out the rest. Again this is just more delay for SCO, but SCO will soon be in Trustee-ship under chapter 11 bankruptcy, which means that it is HIGHLY likely that these cases will be closed by SCO itself, and settled in favorable terms to Novell & IBM.

Darl will not be in control of SCO once the trustee is assigned, and then we'll really get to find out who's been behind this mess.

Re:NOT ! (1)

Prof.Phreak (584152) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185127)

Indeed. Smart Judge---he just provided for continued employment of many lawyers for a few more years. Self feeding system :-)

Code ownership... (2, Insightful)

Targon (17348) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184947)

One thing that needs to be kept in mind is that there is the ownership of some code, but how much code can really be said to belong to one entity. BSD was spawned from the idea of creating a UNIX-like operating system, but was not using code from UNIX. So, when you say "UNIX", it is important to look at the code base and where each piece came from. All things considered, there are standard methods of doing things that are taught in school that may have originated from the old UNIX code, but are now considered a standard way of doing things. Can you say that everyone who uses code they have learned in school now runs the risk of copyright violation because the code may look identical to pieces of the "copyrighted" UNIX code?

This is where a lot of the problems will come from in these lawsuits from SCO. Also, if AT&T put a lot of code out into the public domain back when they owned System V, then it can't be taken back at this point. Does anyone know how much of the so-called UNIX code is actually held under the copyright at this point?

Re:Code ownership... (1)

Holi (250190) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185461)

No BSD is UNIX, or at least a flavor, and the BSD's can really be considered direct descendants of the original UNIX developed at BellLabs. I believe you are speaking of Linux which is a UNIX like OS but is not derivative of the original UNIX.

Good news and Bad News (1)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184957)

The good news is that this doesn't mean that SCO owns UNIX. It just means that the appeals court thought that SCO deserved a jury trial. SCO would need to present their evidence to a jury and convince them that SCO purchased the copyrights. Meanwhile, Novell would be shooting down SCO's arguments and presenting their own evidence. If the previous trial is any indication, SCO will stumble and delay it's way through always acting as though Novell was holding back on giving them that crucial piece of evidence that they had proving SCO's case.

The bad news is that this means more years of SCO saying "We own UNIX and, by extension, LINUX!"

The good news, however, is that Darl's lost control of SCO's rudder ( http://blogs.computerworld.com/14597/the_sco_zombie_wins_one [computerworld.com] ). The Chapter 11 court has seized control of the company and is appointing a trustee. The likely outcome is that SCO will enter Chapter 7. There, it will be ripped to shreds and sold off piece by piece.

Re:Good news and Bad News (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185721)

The likely outcome is that SCO will enter Chapter 7. There, it will be ripped to shreds and sold off piece by piece.

Wouldn't that include whatever rights SCO claims to have? So couldn't Micr...somebody buy these rights/contracts/whatever and continue this whole mess?

Oh Gawd... (1)

whisper_jeff (680366) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184961)

Oh gawd, no. Please. No. Make it stop. No, really. Make this damn circus stop. How have they manage to continue this charade for this long and why are people enabling them to continue? Gawd almighty, make it stop. Please. I beg of you...

Re:Oh Gawd... (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185325)

How have they manage to continue this charade for this long and why are people enabling them to continue?

Welcome to the "justice" system, where it's Pay to Play all day, every day. This is a consequence of electing legislators who are predominantly lawyers; if you can't make a living from arguing the law, you can always get a job making up new ones.

chipper (1)

muckracer (1204794) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184985)

I, for one, can't wait to have a fantastic 'SCO IS DEAD' party when Darl's zoo finally gets thrown by the bankruptcy trustees onto history's trash dump where it, IMHO, belongs!

Jaws of life widening the rift (0, Redundant)

macraig (621737) | more than 4 years ago | (#29184995)

Just when I thought that perhaps this enormous rift in the fabric of space-time might actually seal itself and save us all from Darl McDoom, along comes an ambulance full of judges with jaws of life to tear the scar open again? What the hell Dark-Kirk parallel universe have I been sucked into here?

ObPython: "He's not quite dead yet!" (3, Funny)

Mjlner (609829) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185053)

Prince SCO: "Oh, I feel much better!"
King Novell: "Your case was butchered in the courts, you creep!"
Prince SCO: "I was saved at the last minute."
King Novell: "How?"
Prince SCO: "Well, I'll tell you."
[music begins playing, the townspeople begin dancing and singing, "He's going to tell, he's going to tell!"]

Re:ObPython: "He's not quite dead yet!" (3, Funny)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185281)

I was thinking more that we should send the Crimson Permanent Assurance after SCO's offices.

Re:ObPython: "He's not quite dead yet!" (1)

phrostie (121428) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185709)

i'd rather we sent the Master Chief.

Payment Liability Affirmed, Ownership Remanded (5, Insightful)

edgarmoon (785523) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185079)

So SCO is fully liable for payment to Novell, meaning they cannot get out of bankrupcy that easily. Ownership has not been reversed, SCO still does not own anything, that has to go to court and in the meantime SCO has to pay more money out. The question is will they continue to get investors to fund this campaign? Even if by some miracle SCO was to get the copyrights to unix, there is little if any chance they can succeed in proving any code was misappropriated by IBM. Basically all this proves is that our court system does everything in its power to make sure lawyers get all the money.

ignorance (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185147)

Did the moron who wrote this bunch of lies actually bother reading what happened?

Even though SCO lie in just about every press release for years why do people spout the lies they tell :(

make it stop (1)

z_gringo (452163) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185249)

My god, won't this thing ever end?

How can this thing keep coming back?

I am so sick of hearing about it.

Novell should... (1)

ITJC68 (1370229) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185251)

Why doesn't Novell just buy out SCO. That would end the whole thing. Of course SCO won't go quietly so they need to buy out as much stock as they can first.

Re:Novell should... (3, Insightful)

Sique (173459) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185373)

Because that would mean more confusion in the end, and it would encourage the nextSCO to pull the same stunt: Sue a company with big pockets on claims without merit und wait for the company to reward you with buyout money.

Re:Novell should... (1)

drseuk (824707) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185445)

Yet were IBM to buy i4i ...

Re:Novell should... (1)

gtall (79522) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185579)

Because it would reward thieves and encourage a whole raft of me-too lawsuits.

Re:Novell should... (3, Insightful)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185703)

People asked the same question about why IBM didn't buy out SCO at the beginning.

The argument against, IIRC, pointed out that in so doing they'd be sending a strong message to the IT industry: "Fuck with us, and we'll buy your company for enormous gobs of cash and all your directors will be able to retire with massive golden parachutes!".

I wonder... (2, Funny)

jburroug (45317) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185643)

I wonder if this SCO business will resolve itself before Duke Nukem Forever is released...

what was that about their death? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29185729)

once again we see that slashdot is overly optimistic in the area of things falling apart on proprietary software. oh well guys, keep thinking that every little victory is a nail in a mystical coffin. sadly slashdot will still not talk about the victories on the other side that make each nail in the coffin a moot point.

Oh... (1)

shentino (1139071) | more than 4 years ago | (#29185835)

...SHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIT!!!!

No, this cannot be!

Now we're at the mercy of a twelve-pack of idiots who hold linux's future in their palms?

I would rather trust engineers with my life, and that's saying something.

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