Imagine if Darth Vader's secret identity had turned out to be Bozo the Clown. Luke Skywalker and his pals would have been afraid Darth would blow up the whole galaxy, but instead the Dark Lord of the Sith did pratfalls all around the Death Star control room, sending stacks of papers flying through the air, accidentally hitting himself in the face with a cream pie and squirting seltzer down his pants.
Imagine if Darth Vader's secret identity had turned out to be Bozo the Clown. Luke Skywalker and his pals would have been afraid Darth would blow up the whole galaxy, but instead the Dark Lord of the Sith did pratfalls all
around the Death Star control room, sending stacks of papers flying through the air, accidentally hitting himself in the face with a cream pie and squirting seltzer down his pants.
That's how the SCO lawsuits against the Linux community are ending up. Until early this year, it was easy to envision SCO as a super-villain, threatening the Linux community with its deft gamesmanship and masterful legal
maneuvers. Now, SCO is looking like a bunch of bumblers.
But then a couple of things became apparent: first off, SCO wasn't suing about Linux, they were suing about Unix. The DaimlerChrysler action really had very little to do with the main conflict, which was SCO's attempting to
prove that Linux contained SCO's proprietary Unix intellectual property.
Worse for SCO: It later turned out that DaimlerChrysler wasn't even using SCO's products - hadn't been for seven years. Whoops! Ha ha!
BayStar sued on Friday, claiming SCO didn't live up to its end of the bargain. This was a few hours after SCO issued a press release saying the settlement was a done deal. BayStar claims SCO misled it on how much money could be made from SCO's intellectual property licensing, a claim that SCO denies.
The outcome of the DaimlerChrysler lawsuit and the BayStar dispute leave SCO looking pretty foolish. But it's a mistake to think SCO is completely harmless. The company is still well-funded and its main lawsuits, against IBM, Novell and customer AutoZone, are still alive. Companies and users who depend on Linux should be sure they're comfortable with the legal ground they're standing on.
The Linux community should by no means let down its guard against SCO. But a little pointing at SCO and laughing is certainly in order.
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