In case anybody here hasn’t been following SCO’s dramatic attack on Open Source software and the GNU General Public License, or if you haven’t kept up to date for a few months, now is a good time to go over to and settle in for some satisfying reading. Those of us who were worried that SCO might be able to conjure up some sort of legal garbage and win even a few battles can breath a little easier I think, because IBM is finally striking back, and doing so in a way that shows us that law can be an art form, and IBM practices that art very well indeed (as some have pointed out on the groklaw forum).

Try to see how IBM has forked SCO on the GPL. (I can imagine this conversation at SCO: Darl asks his minions, “Didn’t anyone here READ the GPL before we tried to repudiate it?” “Garsh no!”, “I thought you did!”, “No not me, how about you?”)

And it gets better. Go here to see IBM show that SCO’s ‘experts’ aren’t qualified, and even if they were their declarations are a form of horse manure. And IBM’s experts? They brought in Randall Davis, Professor of Computer Science at MIT, and Brian Kernighan, whom you may have heard of before. (Yes, THAT Kernighan!)

We are not at the end yet, there’s still a lot of legal maneuvering to get through, but SCO is looking more and more like a corpse.

And if anyone reading this is thinking about defending SCO, even a little, go over to groklaw first. It will keep you from looking foolish.

Don’t you love it when someone (in this case SCO) tries to argue both ends of the argument??

Point 1: We have the right to distribute the copyright material from other companies and sources in accordance with the GLP.

Point 2: We repudiate the GPL and hold it to be invalid, so we can charge royalties and license fees for Linux users.

You’ve got to wonder if anyone on SCO’s legal staff actually looked looked at the GPL at all before they decided to shoot themselves in both feet, not mention about 1/2 way up!!

Realize that SCO has basically one major shareholder. If he can get IBM to settle, and other companies to settle, he’d be a be-zillionaire. Otherwise his property is basically worthless since IBM gave-up on him. And that, I think, it really what all of this comes down to. He wants to force a settlement. But… he doesn’t have the legal basis to do so. He wants to muddy the water so much that they’ll settle with him just to make him get lost… which he’d be all-too-happy to do. But… the stakes are too high.

I hope that this lands squarely back in his face, because the act of making a spurious claim just to cause the court to be your “big stick” is a crime called “abuse of process.”