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The Funeral Oration of SCO

There is a funeral oration of sorts for SCO after the 10 August ruling that denied the Utah company's claim that it owned the copyrights to U◊◊◊. The article, from an Australian site, examined the role Groklaw held in reporting the years-long legal wrangling between SCO and its enemies (IBM, Novell, and others).

Slashdot reported on the article, and did not spare it for the annoying tone it shares with the rest of the popular media. Especially for the quip, We just filtered out the partisan crowd noise — no mistake, this is a pro-Linux crowd:

They have confused reasoned opinion with bias. Our mass media has decided that being unbiased means not favoring one side. This is wrong, of course; if the facts overwhelmingly favor one side, it would be dishonest not to report that fact. Unfortunately, it's easier just to take one press release from each side of a dispute and report both, without making an effort to determine which side is full of liars.

And anyone who does call a liar a liar is called partisan. It's pathetic.

Like the doomed Hingest in C.S. Lewis' That Hideous Strength noted, there are many sides to an issue until you find the right answer. After that, there is only one. The modern popular media do not like that sort of thing, though. They regard right answers as unsophisticated. They do not like right and wrong answers — unless it involves a pet cause, like Darfur, Iraq, Rwanda or Tibet. And the SCO case was a pet cause only to the legion of Linux users and kodumuloj whose freedom to program was at stake.

Then came the finishing insult: Did Groklaw really have an impact on those court cases? Naaah. In truth, it did have an impact on the cases. SCO surely thought so when it tried unsuccessfully to discredit and scare Pamela Jones, the paralegal who founded and maintained Groklaw, with the help of tech press shills like Daniel Lyons (who, to be fair, admits to have been had by SCO). A Slashdotter reply: Boy, does this guy do Groklaw and all its contributors an injustice.

Most Slashdotters have come to the conclusion that the article is crap, its journalist praising Groklaw mindlessly just because Groklaw, well, you know, did something.

As an aside, others are amazed at the eternal blind faith that the local Salt Lake City rag has in SCO surviving the court decision, believing the delusions of the CEO who started the legal war in the first place. The article is topped off with the following now-established lie:

In 1995, Novell sold the U◊◊◊ computer operating system to The Santa Cruz Operation. Santa Cruz sold U◊◊◊ to Utah-based Caldera International in 2001. In 2003, Caldera International changed its name to The SCO Group. (Emphasis mine.)

The real world, like dialing 911, is a joke.


2 december 2008

The judge has made his final decision in the SCO case, declaring that the rights to U◊◊◊ still belong to Novell and that SCO must therefore pay Novell more than 3½ million dollars. SCO, refusing to die, will likely appeal the verdict.

10 january 2009

The SCO Group, which lost to Novell in court on its claim that it owns U◊◊◊ and therefore can claim that Linux has its U◊◊◊ code in it, is proposing to dismember itself to keep the lawsuits going.

The embattled SCO Group Inc. is proposing to auction off its core products and use proceeds to continue its controversial lawsuits over the alleged violations of its copyrights in Linux open-source software.

The Lindon company has filed a new reorganization plan with the federal court in Delaware where it sought bankruptcy protection from creditors after an adverse ruling in the Linux litigation.

If approved by a bankruptcy judge, the plan could mean SCO's server software and mobile products lines are owned by other parties while SCO itself remained largely to pursue the lawsuits under the leadership of CEO Darl McBride.

That server software is U◊◊◊ System V, and it was its claims to own that server software that were refuted in court. SCO cannot sell what it does not own. Even its right to sell licenses that were legally purchased are now voided when SCO began claiming to own U◊◊◊ itself. It has the right to sell its mobile phone software; but that software is the only thing that is earning it income; and if that software is sold off, the company might just as well sell its remaining assets and dissolve.

I'm beginning to wonder if Darl is playing Weekend At Bernies with the board of directors, because no sane board would authorize the liquidation of the bulk of a company's assets so an obsessed executive can go tilting at windmills.

For you people who don't do movies, Weekend At Bernie's involves two young dudes who have a party at the house of their boss to hide the fact that their boss was killed trying to hide his insurance fraud. The comment implies that Darl & Co. are playing at pretending that SCO is still alive, even though it is dead, or at least is looking death in the face. But then, it might be the whole idea.

The decision was made by Ralph J. Yarro III back in 2003 to tilt at the windmill. Darl was hired to lead the charge. Back at the beginning Darl said SCO would pursue this to their utter destruction if need be. Well it looks like they are.

History: SCO, then called Caldera, was Novell's proxy in the DRDOS lawsuit against Microsoft. This lead Yarro, then managing the Canopy investment company that effectively had full control of SCO/Caldera to look for new lawsuit opportunities to cash in on. The decided to attack Linux using their "U◊◊◊ IP". To bad there is no U◊◊◊ IP in Linux.

The court system that allows civil cases of this nature is really to blame for the whole thing. SCO's lawyers are now heavily "invested" in the case (at one point they were literally going to be investors in SCO, but then changed their minds to cash up front) and are not really working for justice, but for their piece of the litigation reward pie.

26 june 2009

Early in May 2009 the regulator of bankruptcies, the Office of the U.S. Trustee, filed to convert the bankruptcy of SCO from Chapter 11 (reorganization) to Chapter 7 (liquidation) on the grounds that the company had no chance of reorganizing at all.

Then, a month later, SCO figuratively pulled a jackaloupe out of a top hat by signing a deal to sell its U◊◊◊ holdings (or, what it still believes are its U◊◊◊ holdings) to some company in London. The London outfit, as the holder of SCO's U◊◊◊ assets, will take over the fight against Novell, IBM and Red Hat. But the deal may fall through, as others have before.

Yes, SCO Group, the sociopathocratic fraud that it is, refuses to die.

11 august 2009

The latest attempt by the lying poser of a company to continue its litigation war against IBM, Novell, and Red Hat has failed.

The SCO Group attempted to stave off liquidation in June by signing a last minute deal with Gulf Capital Partners and a tech firm called unXis. The terms of the agreement, which were finalized only moments before a court hearing, stipulated that SCO would sell its remaining U◊◊◊ assets for $2.4 million — a maneuver that could have potentially made it possible for SCO to continue pursuing its bogus litigation against the open source Linux operating system.

But the judge, stating that SCO should not be permitted to continue burning money to the detriment of its creditors while the litigation goes on forever, and comparing SCO's behavior to the plot of the Samuel Beckett play Waiting for Godot, rejected the deal and put the company under a bankruptcy trustee, who will determine whether it is in everyone's best interest to liquidate the company. That liquidation will not proceed just yet, as the judge seems to believe that there may be something left of SCO to save.

The evil, the festering self-regard, of the human heart is beyond understanding, indeed. If it were not, then how does one explain these?

14 august 2010

The desperation of SCO became evident to all in its roundabout revealing of the code (by the lawyer brother of the company's president), that the moribund company proves infringement of its U◊◊◊ copyright. Never mind that it has been proven in court that SCO does not own the U◊◊◊ copyright. Novell owns the copyright to the operating system, and continues to do so, despite SCO's futile attempts to demand a new trial or even to take the copyright from Novell and hand it to SCO.


It is reported by kodumuloj that the infringing code is so common that it cannot be copyrighted. This proves the original findings of the original consultants, who in 2002 searched the Linux kernel code for infringing code and found nothing. SCO had no case, yet chose to pursue it anyway because — refusing to believe that it was possible for Linux and much of the GNU software to have come into existence without *someone* *somewhere* having copied pieces of proprietary U◊◊◊ source code to which SCO believed they held the copyright — they were so sure they would win.

SCO is so weighed down by the onus of its reputation that even a semblance of vindication is now beyond its reach.

21 september 2010

Perhaps, at long last, this is the end:

SCO Group announced Thursday that it plans to auction off most of its U◊◊◊ assets, including certain U◊◊◊ system V software products and related services, ITworld reports. This asset sale is an important step forward in ensuring business continuity for our customers around the world, said Ken Nielsen, SCO chief financial officer, in a statement. Our goal is to ensure continued viability for SCO, its customers, employees and the U◊◊◊ technology. Interested parties must submit a bid for the assets by Oct. 5.

You will notice that the listed assets does not include U◊◊◊ System V itself, which has been ruled to have belonged to Novell all along, SCO being merely the licensee. It is evident that, whatever happens, SCO is too broken to function as a viable company. Whatever it earns from auction will be sopped up by legal expenses and Novell's lien on the company for licensing fees.

When SCO finally dies, there will be rejoicing. For SCO and its executives are evil, and it is fitting that good rejoices when evil is defeated.

28 january 2011

SCO is still with us, but it is in its death throes. The problem is that Novell tried (but ultimately failed) to sell its open-source technologies to a patent troll whose partners included Microsoft. That has made a lot of Novell allies, including Groklaw, furious.

Written by Andy West on 19 April 2008; last updated 28 January 2011.