Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Groklaw — Don't Go Home, Go Big

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the if-you-strike-me-down dept.

Open Source 230

jfruhlinger writes "You may have caught PJ's Christmas Day post on Groklaw, expressing her anger and frustration that, after she helped save Novell's Unix patents from SCO's clutches, Novell turned around and sold many of those patents to an open source-unfriendly coalition. She's feeling at a crossroads and wondering what Groklaw should become. Brian Proffitt has a suggestion: a bigger, more community-oriented site."

cancel ×

230 comments

OMG (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746016)

That's what she said!

Dumb bitch (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746056)

Dumb bitch thought she could make a difference - no one can.

All hail our corporate overlords!

Re:Dumb bitch (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746086)

let's reinstate slavery while we're at it. we can do that in 2013.

Does she have a job? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746058)

Maybe she should go to law school and get a law degree?

how about..... (0)

MichaelKristopeit336 (1967526) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746066)

legal aid for SCO?

Re:how about..... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746326)

You're completely pathetic.

She's feeling abused? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746104)

So she was asked by Novell to help with the SCO case?

I was under the impression that she was just reporting and analyzing for her blog - I didn't realize that she had some sort of deal with Novell.

Re:She's feeling abused? (2, Insightful)

kiwimate (458274) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746644)

The whole rant reads like, well, some kind of emotional rant from an angst-ridden teenager. She's "furious", and feels "used and abused. How could Novell enter into such a deal?...Why do I bother...".

The seventh paragraph alone sounds like a 13 year old's diary entry.

Is it intentional? Or does the heart find ways to justify what people want to do because they personally benefit? I leave that part to God. I can't read hearts. I analyze behavior only. But I see results. It's depressing to find out that community members are so easy to buy off, which is how I view it.

PJ has always struck me as being disingenous at best. She seems to have lost all perspective. The mission statement includes all these lofty goals and statements about legal research, being a resource, etc., etc. But if you read her own interview on how it started, she states right at the beginning that she used to hand out Knoppix CDs to Microsoft users, started Groklaw so she could learn how to blog, and then along came SCO and "it made me so angry". But she always wants to appear disengaged and "legal" and able to see both sides. What a load of self-serving rubbish.

Re:She's feeling abused? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746820)

Maybe, I dunno, she put a lot of hard work into covering the case, so she might react a bit emotional when countless hours of tireless work were almost for nothing.

Nonsense (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746900)

Maybe, I dunno, she put a lot of hard work into covering the case, so she might react a bit emotional when countless hours of tireless work were almost for nothing.

Nonsense. Her purpose was to report and analyze and enlighten the FOSS community which she did. If she was intending to have Novell give everything away, she was obviously mistaken and horribly naive.

Re:She's feeling abused? (3, Insightful)

bberens (965711) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746842)

I think she fails to see the differences between people and corporations. People can be idealists, corporations exist to make money.

Re:She's feeling abused? (5, Informative)

vadim_t (324782) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746982)

Amazing discovery: PJ is actually human! Stop the presses!

Well, duh. Of course she had to have some motivation. Do you think people 100% coldly and rationally decide to dedicate so much of their time to a purpose they are completely disengaged from?

I don't really care about her motivation. She either provides a good service to the community or doesn't, regardless of whether she's doing it out of anger, love for the cause, or some robotic need to analyze things in a 100% logical manner.

Re:She's feeling abused? (1)

markdavis (642305) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747054)

+1 Had I not already been compelled to post a comment, I would mod you up (and I have the points, too).

Re:She's feeling abused? (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747084)

How could Novell enter into such a deal?

"Ever since the Phoenicians invented money, there has only been one answer to that question." -- Clarence Darrow

Re:She's feeling abused? (4, Insightful)

drakaan (688386) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747238)

PJ has always struck me as being disingenous at best. She seems to have lost all perspective. The mission statement includes all these lofty goals and statements about legal research, being a resource, etc., etc. But if you read her own interview on how it started, she states right at the beginning that she used to hand out Knoppix CDs to Microsoft users, started Groklaw so she could learn how to blog, and then along came SCO and "it made me so angry". But she always wants to appear disengaged and "legal" and able to see both sides. What a load of self-serving rubbish.

*sigh*

If she has always struck you at being disingenuous at best (really, at *best*?), then of course it would appear to you that she's lost all perspective.

As someone who earns a living writing code on Microsoft's application stack, I'm not your total idealist when it comes to open source or free software. I do understand that there are reasons that people choose to use proprietary stuff. That said, I have a personal understanding of why free software is important, and why software patents are bad, period, that's not far removed from hers.

You're saying that because she thinks free software is better than proprietary software for her stated reasons, then she's not worth listening to. If that means that you think that the legal research she has done is not fairly representing the issues at hand, then I'd ask you to point out where we can see some evidence of that. SCO making someone angry is grounds for whatever they do afterwards to be self-serving rubbish?

That's an *awful* lot of protest over a person expressing disappointment...

I get what you're going for, it just doesn't sound likely...or impartial, for that matter.

Her disillusionment has been growing for years (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34747746)

Originally I think PJ tried and others that helped her would try to be impartial and for the most part succeeded or apologized when they realized they were slanting things. The apologies got more and more sarcastic as SCO and other associated groups got worse and worse. I know from personal experience that posts pointing out slant or proposing more reasoned interpretations would be pulled from their site. Initially it was people obviously from known IPs (or so PJ said), then I got censored a few times asking her to de-rant some comments a few years ago. I got pretty jaded with her community and stopped logging in or posting, though I usually still read it for the 'news' content as much as there is. I hope she keeps going and maybe does realize their aren't really heroes and villians in corporations (though most individual FOSS developers are heroes even if they do it because they have a huge ego).

I think this disillusionment of PJ's happens with many people within FOSS as it is a worthy cause for the self-righteous as much as the anti-MSFT, but things are always murky and get increasingly disappointing as you get older and other people turn your dreams and work into their money. All companies are out for themselves, if you are lucky they may give a shit about their customers and employees (but few do). Hell, I was a significant contributor to a Linux distro for years, and now I work for MSFT. I honestly want MSFT to succeed for many reasons besides self-interest - MSFT gives a real crap about customer privacy unlike its major competitors, cares 100% about ISVs as they make its market (developers dev...), will eventually produce standardized software which can be 'cloned' and made portable, it has to compete more honestly than most big companies (which is why it attacks through other groups and politics and also usually easily exposed). And sadly, I looked at the future Google wants, the one that Apple wants, the one Oracle will stumble into, and the one MSFT wants. The MSFT one is the most open with the most changes for other people to succeed. (This assumes IBM and Red Hat continue to keep selling Oracle's Java and so will merge with it eventually).

Standard corporate behavior... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34747654)

> She seems to have lost all perspective.

I would argue that she never really had it. I mean, few others could stomach the thought of covering SCO every day for... how many years has it been now? 7? 8? I don't even remember any more. So in a sense, the lack of perspective was necessary for her to be able to slog through all of this.

But yeah, I do understand how she can be upset that companies don't act human. They have no loyalty to anyone. It's sad, particularly because she doesn't appear to realize that the same thing can happen to, say, IBM or Google with a management change. Sure, they're our friends now, but if our interests cross? Well... I think you'll find that profit wins out in the end.

Re:Standard corporate behavior... (1)

cinderellamanson (1850702) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747978)

this is what PJ needs to do, start a legal defense resource that actually gives a fucking shit, so when a C.E.O. decides to give a shit she has protections against shitbag shareholders who will burn her at the stake for not offering her first born (more likely everyone else's) to the almighty dollar. I think the why of this situation is way more interesting than the what.

A patent consortium (5, Interesting)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746124)

No, seriously. Groklaw should become a patent consortium run by open source software folks. It should use its resources to fund patent applications by open source projects and should hold those patents collectively so that they can be used defensively if any of the member projects are attacked by software patents.

Re:A patent consortium (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746346)

and what is going to stop them from being used offensively? a sweet promise made?

Re:A patent consortium (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746440)

Just make the mantra of the consortium "Don't be Evil", obviously!

Re:A patent consortium (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746452)

If it means adding more patents to the "open source software folks", then I say yes, go for it. Let's show these huge corporations how it feels to be on the other side of the fence for a change.

The perfect ending would be for the open source group to own ALL the damn patents or to get (software) patents abolished altogether. It's getting ridiculous.

Re:A patent consortium (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746670)

and what is going to stop them from being used offensively? a sweet promise made?

The principle of mutually assured destruction, basically. Same reason that such a patent pool would make companies less likely to sue random open source projects that are members of the consortium.

That and it should ideally be constructed in such a way that any offensive use would require a vote by its members, and most members would probably not choose to do so except in very limited circumstances.

Re:A patent consortium (2)

peragrin (659227) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747440)

Mutually assured Destruction only works if both sides actually care about living afterwards.

With patent pools it doesn't matter the companies can't die, they can sell everything off when things look bad, leave a shell corp to handle the litigation and shunt everything and everyone else to saftey under a different corporate umbrella. Or a patent troll that is nothing but a meeting room for lawyers really doesn't care if they lose that meeting room.

right now we are in the middle of the mobile patent wars. in the next 6-9 months we find out if android will stick around or be killed by Oracle. whether Apple can fight nokia and HTC and win, Whether Motorola or MSFT has more patents related mobile phones(remember Motorola just got stripped down to a meeting room and brand name)

If your betting on M.A.D. for patent protection your going to lose. As there is always someone crazy and scared enough to fire off something stupid.

Re:A patent consortium (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747588)

True, that patent trolls aren't thwarted by mutually assured destruction. That wasn't the question. The question was what would keep this patent pool from devolving into that, and the answer is that the pool would be managed by its members, who would have no interest in losing their patents due to frivolous action against someone else.

Re:A patent consortium (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746826)

A sweet, legally-binding promise.

Re:A patent consortium (2)

justdrew (706141) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746424)

yep. no alternative. but - patents are 20 years. shouldn't these old unix patents be expired by now or nearly so?

Re:A patent consortium (1)

Simon80 (874052) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746588)

I like this idea. I have no idea if it would gain momentum, but it would be pretty nice if it did.

Re:A patent consortium (2)

Jahava (946858) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746770)

No, seriously. Groklaw should become a patent consortium run by open source software folks. It should use its resources to fund patent applications by open source projects and should hold those patents collectively so that they can be used defensively if any of the member projects are attacked by software patents.

There are a lot of important questions that would have to be answered in order for this idea to actually work. Off the top of my head:

  • Who will fund this? It costs money to review and file patents, maintain and defend a portfolio, and actually litigate.
  • Who gets protected? Patent lawsuits occur against companies as a whole, not specific projects. To what degree of open-source friendliness / compliance does an entity have to operate in order to not be on the receiving side of this?
  • Who will manage it? Obviously, some coalition of trustworthy individuals is needed both to ensure internal integrity as well as to entice developers to sign over their intellectual property.
  • What's to stop unfriendly companies from sneaking into the coalition? Because this is exactly what I'd try to do if this project ever gained momentum.
  • What would provoke such a consortium into attacking an entity? Seems like defensively, any company that patent-trolls, especially against open-source, is candidate, but there's the question of whether or no to be proactive, and how proactive to be.
  • Would licenses to use the patents be GPL-style or BSD-style? Specifically, would these patents be granted to the public domain, or would some form of patent compliance on behalf of an organization be required to license them?

Personally, I think a diverse group of people from (but not limited to) the EFF and Groklaw would make great board members. There would have to be a soliciting arm that identifies potential patentable material in a given open-source project and raises the possibility of patenting it to the developer(s) of that project. There would also have to be a very powerful license backing them, else nobody would trust them. Conditions on governing the board of trustees and options to prevent its corruption would be critical.

All-in-all this would be an excellent idea. Protect open-source and independent development and provide some teeth to the open-source side of the craziness that is patent law. As it gains power and grows large enough to stand next to major corporations, the consortium could get proactive and start making a case for serious patent reform or the abolishment of software patents altogether.

Re:A patent consortium (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746966)

What's to stop unfriendly companies from sneaking into the coalition?

That is easy enough.

Any lawsuit over patents against any FREE software project members or users will result in removal from the coalition and said member will have 30 days to cease using any and all patents from the pool or face infringement suits.

Re:A patent consortium (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747236)

I'll give my thoughts on this.

Who will fund this? It costs money to review and file patents, maintain and defend a portfolio, and actually litigate.

Well, the idea was that the site would raise money through donations and advertising while covering legal issues that pertain to open source, and that some portion of those donations would cover that. You could also solicit open-source-friendly corporations to pledge money in the event of an actual legal defense.

Who gets protected? Patent lawsuits occur against companies as a whole, not specific projects. To what degree of open-source friendliness / compliance does an entity have to operate in order to not be on the receiving side of this?

When you're talking about open source, it's usually individuals acting rather than companies, which makes things even more complicated. However, the answer would have to be that any open source developer who is either a member of the consortium or is a member of a project that is a member of the consortium would be defended against lawsuits, and the full weight of the consortium's patent portfolio would be used in a countersuit. I would also say that companies should be on the receiving end of lawsuits only in retaliation for actions by those companies against any individual or group member of the consortium.

Who will manage it? Obviously, some coalition of trustworthy individuals is needed both to ensure internal integrity as well as to entice developers to sign over their intellectual property.

I would probably start with the creation of an appropriate constitution/set of bylaws that govern how the executive board operates, that govern how those bylaws can be changed, general policies, voting procedures, etc. Then, I would probably have a democratic election of an executive board consisting of... say nine members to handle much of the day-to-day operations.

What's to stop unfriendly companies from sneaking into the coalition? Because this is exactly what I'd try to do if this project ever gained momentum.

Nothing. They would, however, have to follow the same rules as everyone else. They would have to agree not to sue any coalition member in order to gain access to the coalition's patents, and they would have to cross-license all patents that they own to any member of the coalition.

What would provoke such a consortium into attacking an entity? Seems like defensively, any company that patent-trolls, especially against open-source, is candidate, but there's the question of whether or no to be proactive, and how proactive to be.

I would argue that proactive enforcement is probably not in the best interests of the organization, and particularly not a good idea in the short term. Defensive use (counter-suits in the event of a third party suing a member, saber rattling in the case of a third party threatening to sue a member, etc.) should be the sole purpose of such an organization. As soon as you cross the line into suing companies that aren't suing you, you lose the moral high ground. :-)

Would licenses to use the patents be GPL-style or BSD-style?

That's tricky. I would start with a standard patent grant wherein any member of the consortium is granted the right to exploit the patent, and wherein anyone who obtains a copy of covered software is granted the right to use and redistribute the software so long as it remains open source. Beyond that, the board should be allowed to negotiate cross-licensing deals, and all patent agreements should contain a mutually assured destruction clause wherein if a company or individual sues any member of the consortium, that company or individual loses any rights to continue distributing the patented technology.

Also, as a policy, the consortium should disclaim outright any claims of infringement arising out of the use of (rather than the implementation of) patented technology. That is to say that if a member sues another member (for example), that member loses the right to continue to produce products made with those patents, but the users of that member's open source tools do not lose the right to continue using those existing products.

Specifically, would these patents be granted to the public domain, or would some form of patent compliance on behalf of an organization be required to license them?

Certainly not. A patent abandoned to the public domain cannot be used defensively. And I would say that the licensing of patents should be on a mutual basis, e.g. cross-licensing only, with immediate revocation if they sue any member of the consortium. That's pretty much standard patent policy in the industry anyway, so it shouldn't come as much of a surprise to corporate patent lawyers.

Re:A patent consortium (4, Informative)

just_another_sean (919159) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746832)

Isn't that what the OIN [openinventionnetwork.com] is for?
PJ wrote about that [groklaw.net] a few weeks ago as well.

Re:A patent consortium (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747624)

Sort of, but that seems to be a lot more narrowly focused on Linux.

Re:A patent consortium (2)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747140)

Playing the ridiculous software patent game is not going to help ... getting rid of software patents is. They will effectively end when the Western software industry crashes anyway.

Re:A patent consortium (1)

iplayfast (166447) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747430)

The problem is, you can't take your ball and go home. You are playing the ridiculous patent game whether you want to or not.
It seems to me that Software people and companies are against patents on software, as it effectively creates an unlevel playing field for all involved.
On the otherhand, lawyers and patent companies love them and make a huge amount of money from them.

The only reason software companies have patents is to defend against other companies that have patents. It's a defensive tactic.

Re:A patent consortium (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34747998)

The only reason software companies have patents is to defend against other companies that have patents. It's a defensive tactic

So is having public development repositories. And frankly, the latter is much less expensive.

eliminate software patents (1, Insightful)

bzipitidoo (647217) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747262)

Patent consortium? Not a big enough idea, I think. The root of the problem is that software is still patentable in the US. If not for that, Novell could not have sold out. And SCO would not have had even a veneer of credibility, and might not have tried suing anyone. Get rid of software patents [swpat.org] .

I would like to go even further, and eliminate the government enforced monopoly protections for all patents. Don't create barriers and artificial scarcities for the sake of the starving inventors, reward them in some other way. But I can't see anything as revolutionary as that happening, certainly not anytime soon, no matter how much sense it makes. Or how terrible the current system is.

But how to achieve the more modest goal, the elimination of patents on software, and business methods? I have read there are a few crucial court cases from the 1970's where it all started. Would getting those reversed or struck down do the job? Is the Bilski case enough?

Take up another cause? (1)

i.r.id10t (595143) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746138)

Sure, the SCO thing was great and interesting and ran a long time, but I think that something like groklaw for other laws or fields or items would be great.

Censorship (2, Interesting)

Ganty (1223066) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746146)

So long as PJ continues to censor posts she doesn't like the site has limited value.

Ganty

Re:Censorship (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746220)

So long as PJ continues to censor posts she doesn't like the site has limited value.

Ganty

Er, wait a minute... it's PJ's site right? Then PJ can do what she wants with it - including editing any posts she feels she needs or wants to. PJ's entitled to that freedom because it's her site.

So much *waaaaaing* around here anymore.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746258)

It is still censorship no matter if it is her site or not.

Re:Censorship (2)

Dishevel (1105119) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746602)

Censorship in and of itself is not evil. I like that childrens books censor sexual content. I like that Google "censors" search results. I like that I can "Censor" who comes into my house, who eats at my restaurant, who I do business with, who I am friends with. It is when the Government forces censorship on us all that it becomes bad.

Re:Censorship (2, Insightful)

HBI (604924) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746288)

Sure, it's her site, and she can do what she wants. In response, those of us who dislike censorship in any form - whether performed by ChiComs or PJ - can point it out when the subject comes up. I'm entitled to that freedom and I intend to avail myself of it.

Fanboi worship is nice for the recipient but your position is mindless, simpering and without merit. She deserves appropriate criticism.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746474)

based on your comment history you have nothing of value to add to her site anyway. that's fine, neither do I, but I'm not the one complaining about it.

think about providing some cited examples of civil, well-reasoned & on-topic discussion snippets being censored, and you might sway a few more minds.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746596)

...think about providing some cited examples of civil, well-reasoned & on-topic discussion snippets being censored, and you might sway a few more minds.

Yeah, but since she doesn't remove any post that remotely resembles what you described, such examples do not exist.

Re:Censorship (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746532)

In response, those of us who dislike censorship in any form - whether performed by ChiComs or PJ - can point it out when the subject comes up.

I had a response originally typed here. Then I erased it. Odd I must have censored myself.

One must be careful how one uses that word, "censorship". It's not a catch-all for things we disagree with or dislike.

Ok, you've changed my mind - she shouldn't delete any comments ever posted to her site including spam from spam bots hocking watches or pills. After all, removal of spam from forums or blog comments would also be considered censorship. It would be hypocritical to disagree.

I'm entitled to that freedom and I intend to avail myself of it.

Indeed, that is your freedom to be entitled to your opinion.

Fanboi worship is nice for the recipient but your position is mindless, simpering and without merit.

Please. I've only been to Groklaw once in it's whole existance. I could care less if it exists or not. Certainly not a fanboi(sic).

She deserves appropriate criticism.

I never stated she should never be criticized.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746562)

Fanboi worship is nice for the recipient but your position is mindless, simpering and without merit. She deserves appropriate criticism.

Yes, a private individual can censor posts on their own website. That doesn't necessarily merit criticism. It sometimes merits praise. I suspect (because of the obnoxious quality of your above post) the quality of her site was raised by the deletion of your posts. You're free to complain about it, also; just don't assume that your complaints enrich whatever site you select to vent at.

I have only briefly ever visited groklaw, and don't have a particular opinion about it.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746614)

Start a blog about it and see if anyone cares.

Re:Censorship (2)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747058)

You're entitled to your own freedom. You're not entitled to the freedom to post whatever you want on someone else's site.

See how that works?

The difference is that China doesn't allow people the freedom to decide what is and isn't on their own site. The difference between censoring your own venue and censoring everyone's venue is profound.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34747490)

You missed the point: the criticism isn't about "freedom" (whatever that is, anyway). It's about the utility of the site: her censoring of posts makes the website less useful. A clearinghouse of rational discussion about the patent and copyright issues surrounding Linux should be uncensored. She is being criticized for exactly this reason.

Re:Censorship (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746578)

Considering the amount of posts here that boil down to "we must force X to do Y, for Freedom!" I can see why you posted AC.

Re:Censorship (4, Insightful)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746594)

What does PJ's rights and personal freedom have anything to do with the judgment that the "site has limited value"? Maybe some people value sites more that don't censor comments.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746738)

So long as PJ continues to censor posts she doesn't like the site has limited value.

Ganty

Er, wait a minute... it's PJ's site right? Then PJ can do what she wants with it - including editing any posts she feels she needs or wants to. PJ's entitled to that freedom because it's her site.

So much *waaaaaing* around here anymore.

Lemme guess, your're an American Conservative, right?

"Being a doucebag is my God-give right, protected by the Consitution. Anyone who suggests that being a douchebag is not a good idea is a communist socialist terrorist facist and should be taken out in a preemptive strike and left to burn in the fires of Hell evermore, praise Jeebus. Now go out there and be a douchebag for America!"

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34747256)

So long as PJ continues to censor posts she doesn't like the site has limited value.

Ganty

Er, wait a minute... it's PJ's site right? Then PJ can do what she wants with it - including editing any posts she feels she needs or wants to. PJ's entitled to that freedom because it's her site.

So much *waaaaaing* around here anymore.

Lemme guess, your're an American Conservative, right?

"Being a doucebag is my God-give right, protected by the Consitution. Anyone who suggests that being a douchebag is not a good idea is a communist socialist terrorist facist and should be taken out in a preemptive strike and left to burn in the fires of Hell evermore, praise Jeebus. Now go out there and be a douchebag for America!"

I don't know whether to be offended by this or not if I wasn't laughing my ass off at you in another part of the world then where you believe me to be. Ahahaha. Lol. Guess again!

Re:Censorship (4, Insightful)

walterbyrd (182728) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746776)

I think you misunderstand the argument. Yes, PJ has the legal right to censor her own blog - nobody is arguing otherwise. But, she loses a lot of credibility by doing so. You have to wonder, why can't PJ's argument hold up to opposition? Everybody has to know: when you are reading groklaw forums, you are reading a one-sided debate.

Re:Censorship (3, Insightful)

Idarubicin (579475) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747460)

You have to wonder, why can't PJ's argument hold up to opposition? Everybody has to know: when you are reading groklaw forums, you are reading a one-sided debate.

I don't think that PJ has ever tried to present herself as being an impartial observer; she openly advocates for the side she feels is in the right. Why should she provide a soapbox for her opposition, who already were rather well funded and perfectly capable of providing their own platforms? I note that PJ was never invited to offer commentary on SCO's website, and no other legal expert seemed interested in presenting his own blog covering the case from poor downtrodden SCO's side.

In any event, having watched oh-so-many basement-dwelling wannabe lawyers trot out their weighty opinions on questions of law here on Slashdot, I can certainly understand why PJ - a trained legal professional - might get tired of matching wits with the unarmed. For that matter, she may just not want to let troll/countertroll flaming and bickering distract from constructive discussions and drag down the level of conversation. The sensible hostess knows when to send the belligerent, uninvited guests home.

Slashdot is also Censored (1)

ed (79221) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747166)

In effect by modding down then, unless you have your settings turned that way, modded down posts disappeared

Re:Slashdot is also Censored (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747308)

Not really the same thing.

Re:Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34747370)

I call troll. The site has performed a huge community service.

Re:Censorship (1)

Schnoodledorfer (1223854) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747684)

I can't read Brian Proffitt's article (I get an "Unsupported database type" error), but I can't hold out much hope for a "a bigger, more community-oriented site" given PJ's desire to limit and control what can be said. Already there isn't enough time for her to adequately review and consider whether or not comments actually deserve to be censored, nor even to explain her decisions afterward. It seems that she would prefer to have a small, pure, community rather than a large and potentially messy one. That limits its value to me.

No thanks (3, Insightful)

etymxris (121288) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746148)

Last I checked, there were several complaints of post deletions on groklaw, to which her response was she was not really interested in "open" debate. I agree with many of her opinions and analysis of the SCO debacle, but I wouldn't want to be part of any community she's running.

I'm sure she could be valuable as a writer on various IP issues surrounding free software.

Re:No thanks -- oh for goodness sake (5, Insightful)

DrJimbo (594231) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747478)

The people PJ exposes fight dirty. They try all sorts of tricks to discredit Groklaw, chief among them is posting awful things anonymously. The idea being they can then smear Groklaw by pointing to these abusive posts as indicative of the Groklaw community. I've seen a bunch of these posts over the years and I've reported them to PJ so she can delete them.

So on one side we have a bunch of lying cheating dastardly bastards who will do anything they can (legal or not) to destroy FOSS. On the other side we have PJ who insists on allowing people to post anonymously on her site which entails the extra burden of throwing out the trash people post that is designed to discredit Groklaw.

And for this she is criticized. Give me a break. PJ is human and like all humans she is both opinionated and imperfect. Like the rest of us, she has flaws and is not always right. I imagine that while throwing out the trash she has probably deleted some posts that may not have deserved it. But by criticizing her for protecting her reputation and the reputation of Groklaw (while at the same time allowing anonymous posts) you are aiding and abetting the enemies of FOSS.

You sir/madam are implying that PJ lacks integrity because she has been forced to delete terrible posts that make Groklaw look awful. The truth is she has more integrity than almost anyone else I know (of). It is her integrity that makes the Groklaw site shine despite the fact that it is run by imperfect human beings. IMO PJ is a true hero because she maintains her integrity even though her site is constantly bombarded by posts from people who completely lack it.

Perfect website for lawyers? (1)

whiteboy86 (1930018) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746184)

This could grow big. It needs stories presented in a manner similar to /., push the law abstract to the side menu or somewhere accessible, write introduction to the stories, add icons or images for better orientation, add comments, messageboards, wiki?

Lawyers have real work to do. (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746204)

They don't have time to be dicking around on some shitty web site.

Awards, and now part of case law (1)

ChapterS (666029) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747576)

From here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groklaw#Awards [wikipedia.org]

Awards
Groklaw has been cited by the attorneys for several firms in law journal articles. It has also won awards:

        * 2010 - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) 2010 Pioneer Awards[7]

        * 2009 - Top 200 Tech Blogs: The Datamation 2009 List "The famed Groklaw is still going strong, far past the SCO case that first brought the blog to prominence." [8]

        * 2008 - The Award for Projects of Social Benefit - The Free Software Foundation (FSF)[9]
        * 2007 - Knowledge Masters Award for Innovation - Knowledge Trust and the Louis Round Wilson Academy [10]
        * 2007 - Best FUD Fighter - Google-O'Reilly Open Source Awards[11]
        * 2005 - Best News Site - ConsortiumInfo*.org - Pamela Jones/Groklaw: Best Community Site or Blog (Non-Profit)
        * 2005 - Best Blogger of the Year - Dana Blankenhorn, Corante[12]
        * 2004 - Best Website of 2004 - The Inquirer[13]
        * 2004 - Best Independent Tech Blog - TechWeb Network: Readers Choice Award
        * 2004 - Best Nontechnical or Community Website - Linux Journal: Editors' Choice Award
        * 2003 - Best News Site - OSDir.com: Editor's Choice Winner

patently false (2)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746186)

In effect, it would become a meta-blog, like Huffington Post...

Well, that's not necessarily a good thing judging by the number of ads and crap you find on that site. In comparison, its current version is much cleaner and nicer.

hopefully with better discussion than HuffPo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746310)

The level of discourse on that site makes me ashamed to be associated (most of the time) with liberals.

Now I know how George F. Will feels when he reads FoxNews.com.

Re:hopefully with better discussion than HuffPo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746568)

C'mon, admit it, you only read HuffPost to keep up on Megan Fox bikini pix and Lindsay Lohan gossip.

Which, coincidentally, is exactly why George Will reads FoxNews.com

Applause to Groklaw (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746304)

Groklaw is part of the good guy community and deserves to feel pride and be respected.. The ultimate effects of every battle fought can not always be anticipated.

Sadly it's a reality of business.... (2)

i_want_you_to_throw_ (559379) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746312)

that your only obligation is to make a profit. That being said, GO BIG PJ !!!! If anything you have gained massive respect from the open source community.

Groklaw is pure FUD and BS, PJ bans disagreements (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746396)

Groklaw posts pure FUD and BS.

PJ will ban ANYONE who disagrees with her BS agenda.

If you find factual information that totally flies in the face of the lies she posts, she bans you for that too.

Groklaw stopped being useful about 3 months after it started.

seriously.

"move along, nothing to see here"

Re:Groklaw is pure FUD and BS, PJ bans disagreemen (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746514)

Damned straight. I used to post on Groklaw, but after being banned a few times as an "astroturfer" because I disagreed with her conclusions, I got fed up and stopped following the site.

She's managed to drive lots of useful contributors away because they don't agree with her. She's not a journalist, she's an editorialist. She's certainly entitled to her opinions, but to call herself a journalist does a disservice to real journalists. (Unfortunately these days, most people who think they're journalists aren't because they editorialize - so there are very few actual journalists left).

It bothers me greatly that her site is hosted by a journalism school, yet they seem to have no idea that she's got a long history of suppressing any and all dissent and those who disagree with her.

Re:Groklaw is pure FUD and BS, PJ bans disagreemen (0)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747390)

Perhaps she banned you as an astroturfer because you post anonymous replies in support of the anonymous rants you make, in an effort make it appear as if more than just you hold that opinion.

Re:Groklaw is pure FUD and BS, PJ bans disagreemen (0)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746836)

Ah look, another sore SCO shareholder blaming PJ. You guys are pathetic.

PJ needs some perspective (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746434)

She's assuming that the patents being sold to CPTN Holdings are related to Unix - despite any confirmation of any sort that they are. In fact, there was a statement made that said that the Unix IP wasn't part of what was being sold to CPTN.

Open Source Lawyering (2)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746438)

How about a place where the common man can get good defensive law advice and sharing of defense related material against big corporation mega tort scare tactics, like the one SCO tried on Novell, IBM et. al.?

The Huffington Post of the tech world (1)

joeszilagyi (635484) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746548)

Why not? Add authors/news on every niche. Want a news section dedicated to ICANN/Internic, stuff on that scale? Web hosting? Security? Even if you just quote/selectively guide folks back to the other generalist locations like Ars or more specific niche places like discussions on NANOG, it could be a constantly updated field of info on all manner of stuff. Most people don't give a crap what the top 10-20 news stories of the day about botnets or DNS are, perhaps, but I bet you there are a lot of people who do, and that you'd be able to get at least a small team of maintainers/authors for various niches.

The Scorpion and the Frog (5, Insightful)

MarkvW (1037596) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746570)

The scorpion needs to get across the river, but he can't swim. He asks the frog to ferry him across. The frog refuses; he tells the scorpion that the scorpion will sting him and he will drown. The scorpion tells the frog that he won't sting the frog, because if he did, they both would drown. The frog ferries the scorpion. Midriver, the scorpion stings the frog. Before they both drown, the frog asks the scorpion, Why? The frog states: It's my nature.

Expecting gratitude from Novell is like expecting gratitude from a scorpion. The scorpion will sting, and Novell will seek to maximize profit.

I don't think Novell realized the huge bad will it has generated.

Re:The Scorpion and the Frog (5, Funny)

smallfries (601545) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746690)

That would have worked better as an analogy if you hadn't fucked up the most relevant part.

Re:The Scorpion and the Frog (2)

Joehonkie (665142) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746788)

The frog mind controlled the scorpion to set him up for murder, is that what I'm getting here?

Re:The Scorpion and the Frog (1)

smallfries (601545) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747106)

Maybe I was a little hasty. Now that you've explained it I'm seeing a certain similarity to Novell...

Re:The Scorpion and the Frog (2)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746756)

I don't think Attachmate realized the huge bad will it has generated.

Fixed that for you.

Or did you not realize that Novell was acquired by another company a few months ago?

Re:The Scorpion and the Frog (1)

ralphart (70342) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747312)

To quote a former co-worker:

Business is business and fair is fair and never the twain shall meet.

Re:The Scorpion and the Frog (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34747982)

Midriver, the scorpion stings the frog. Before they both drown, the frog asks the scorpion, Why? The frog states: It's my nature.

George W. Bush, is that you?

After she what? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746610)

Holy ego, she didnt do shit, and wasnt involved.

After Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity helped liberate afghanistan, they got angry and upset that the people living there were still brown and still hate us for our freedoms.

Patents aren't a problem any more (1)

Animats (122034) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746618)

Patents aren't much of a problem for open source any more. Most of the technology in open source is old. Anything in use by 1990 is out of patent now. (The "submarine patent" problem used to be an issue, but for applications filed after June 8, 1995, it doesn't work any more. The patent term counts from the original date of application, regardless of continuation applications.) UNIX, after all, dates from the 1970s, and by 1990, UNIX-type operating systems were a mature technology.

This is a mature industry now. As with other industries, patents are a big issue in the early years, and cease to be a major concern as the technology matures.

Re:Patents aren't a problem any more (4, Informative)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746646)

Patents aren't much of a problem for open source any more.

False. They're a HUGE problem for anything recent. Most of the concepts and technologies in open source span decades, including very new concepts as well as old ones that are covered (wrongly) by new, vague patents.

As with other industries, patents are a big issue in the early years, and cease to be a major concern as the technology matures.

No, the goal with software patents is to make them a perpetual hazard. Vague, ill defined, and useless for actually implementing the concept in question but always useful for beating down on your enemies and keeping out potential competitors.

Re:Patents aren't a problem any more (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34746838)

This is a mature industry now

Are you aware that "open source" is not an industry? It's just SW development and licensing method that can be used in a huge amount of industries.

_Your_ industry may be mature and finished, but most of us probably work in areas where a lot of innovation happened in the last ten years and lots more will happen in the next ten. Don't keep your eyes closed.

The lesson is... (3, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746812)

DO NOT TRUST A CORPORATION!

Honestly, why would anyone? They are out for the profit line and nothing else. They are nothing like a real company that is ran by the guy or gal that started it and is chasing a dream... We need to stop thinking they are in any way benevolent. Walmart gives away basic medications because it PROFITS THEM. Companies donate to causes because it Gains them more profit in advertising. There is no soul to these things, they don't care about anything but profits.

Same Novell, Different Year (2)

markdavis (642305) | more than 3 years ago | (#34746952)

Quote: "I also needed to take some time to think about the recent discovery about Novell taking money from Microsoft and contractually agreeing to show up at Open XML standards meetings and events. Yes, I'm furious. Or I was. I always tell you the truth. And the truth is I felt used and abused. How could Novell enter into such a deal? Then top it off with selling 882 patents to a Microsoft-organized consortium?"

This is the same Novell in 2006 that essentially sold itself into a pseudo-bondage/partnership arrangement with Microsoft, one of the most FOSS-hostile organizations that had ever existed. How can she possibly be surprised? Most leopards do not change their spots. Novell never was and never will be a real Linux/FOSS champion.

PJ helped save Novell's patents?! (1)

TheoMurpse (729043) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747020)

Since when did Groklaw do anything to save any patents? I thought it was a news reporting site that basically explained the SCO litigation to techies.

Underground vigilante group (1)

jamesh (87723) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747162)

PJ should start up an underground vigilante group, administering justice wherever she see's fit. She has the followers to do it.

There's no justice like angry mob justice!

Fix your password! (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747290)

From the slashdotted site:

$db_url = 'mysql://itworld:bec-cit-bi-wets@10.10.10.230/itw';

Your config file is being served up. Change your password right away - better yet, revert to a backup after first changing your password.

Problem being that PJ is a basket case (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747336)

I mean that in the nicest possible way, she's a shy nerd spazz. Lovely voice, but a total paranoid shut-in. Probably got lots of cats and a glass menagerie.

People like PJ don't readily trust other people, because they don't really know any other people. If this "Brian Proffitt" character wants a bigger Groklaw, he'd better get on with creating it himself.

Re:Problem being that PJ is a basket case (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747420)

well Maureen O., long time no see, you stalker cunt, where you been?

Re:Problem being that PJ is a basket case (2)

Idarubicin (579475) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747622)

Problem being that PJ is a basket case.... I mean that in the nicest possible way, she's a shy nerd spazz. Lovely voice, but a total paranoid shut-in. Probably got lots of cats and a glass menagerie.... People like PJ don't readily trust other people, because they don't really know any other people.

This pop psychological pseudo-diagnosis brought to you by someone posting to Slashdot. Seriously?

I mean this in the nicest possible way, of course, but Rogerborg is a total paranoid shut-in who thinks attacking nice people he's never met makes him looker smarter and 'cooler' to his basement-dwelling nerd peers.

Even if the parent poster's insulting and appalling stereotyping is spot on, his breathtakingly casual approach to openly attacking another human being would seem to confirm every 'paranoid' suspicion about humanity he accuses PJ of harboring.

Bad attorney? Don't blame Novell. (1)

mschaffer (97223) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747450)

How is this any different than giving a vagrant your spare change for food---which is then later spent on liquor?
I don't know if PJ is a good attorney (or one at all), but she seriously needs one. If she want's to ensure that what she does is for a good cause, get a binding agreement or contract to enforce her wishes or profit by it.

She missed the point (2, Informative)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747696)

"You may have caught PJ's Christmas Day post on Groklaw, expressing her anger and frustration that, after she helped save Novell's Unix patents from SCO's clutches, Novell turned around and sold many of those patents to an open source-unfriendly coalition."

PJ seems to have missed that the patents belong(ed) to Novell and they are free to do whatever they wish to do without consulting or appeasing her.

Goodbye Old Novell, meet New Novell (2)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747754)

The funny thing about corporations is that they can be bought or sold by other corporations.

In this case, Attachmate bought Novell. Once it purchased Novell, it split Novell into two units, and sold off a bunch of Novell's patent assets.

It's funny how quickly PJ is to point out how Old SCO and New SCO were different companies [groklaw.net] , but doesn't appear to recognize that old Novell and new Novell are different companies...

Coolidge is underrated (3, Interesting)

rumblin'rabbit (711865) | more than 3 years ago | (#34747922)

.Pamela Jones said the following:

Calvin Coolidge. Lordy. If there is a top ten list of worst presidents in the history of the nation, might he win the top spot? He is definitely in the top ten.

I've never understood why Coolidge was considered a poor president. His tenure seems exceptional and he remained popular even up to his resignation. His actions on civil rights were particularly enlightened, even though thwarted by Democrats in the legislature. Perhaps people don't like him cause he was a Republican. Who knows?

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...