Open source wins another day in court

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| The reason I was disappointed was the validation of the RIAA’s strategy,
| which goes well beyond education and pursuit of egregious offenders and
| burdens privacy, Internet service providers and others. When I was writing
| about the SCO Group’s claims and lawsuits against big Linux users in 2004,
| there were parallels to what the RIAA was doing.
| [...]
| Would it mean that broad, vague claims could be brought against a wide swath
| of individual consumers to make them face the full force of a company’s legal
| maneuvering and extreme financial penalties in the courts? Could this
| embolden Microsoft to consider the upside of such a strategy against open
| source users?

Microsoft "regrets patent deal" tactics

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| There'll be a continuing spread of FUD as it tries to make customers nervous.
| Open source is a genuine competitor now and it's found a tactic to deal with
| that competitor, but I think the threat is diminishing."

Regret? Pretending to want peace after doing the damage (not just to Linux, but
also to their own reputation and image)?


Linux group calls Microsoft's bluff

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| OIN chief executive Jerry Rosenthal told that Microsoft's
| assertions are simply an attempt to undermine the open source movement.
| Rosenthal added that it is time for Microsoft to reveal the patents that are
| supposedly being infringed, or to drop the claims.
| "The FUD is clear. If you have a patent that you are proud of, then disclose
| it," he said.
| [...]
| Mark Taylor, president of the Open Source Consortium, agreed with Rosenthal
| and described Microsoft's tactics in damning terms.
| "We say show us the patents," he told "This has been the strategy
| against open source all along. It's precisely the same tactics as SCO used:
| implied threats and mafia techniques. This is just FUD. It's smoke and
| mirrors. " *

Microsoft too busy to name Linux patents

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| * * First you get everyone riled claiming open source and Linux infringe on
| * * your patents, then you won’t detail those patents. Why? The paperwork.
| * * Yes, Microsoft cited administrative overhead for not detailing the 235
| * * Microsoft patents its chief legal counsel recently told Forbes exist in
| * * Linux and open source. *

Shuttleworth: Microsoft Fracturing the Open-Source Community

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| "That's extortion and we should call it what it is," he said. "To say, as
| [Microsoft CEO Steve] Ballmer did, that there is undisclosed balance sheet
| liability, that's just extortion and we should refuse to get drawn into that
| game. On the other side, if Microsoft is concerned about its intellectual
| property, there is no one in the free software community that wants to
| violate anyone's IP. Disclose the patents and we'll fix the code.
| Alternatively, move on." * * *
| Microsoft has said it does disclose which patents are being violated, but
| only in one-on-one conversations with vendors. To Shuttleworth, that is not
| disclosure, because patents are public documents. *

[Mark Shuttleworth Interview]

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| Microsoft is asking people to pay them for patents, but they won't
| say which ones. If a guy walks into a shop and says: "It's an
| unsafe neighbourhood, why don't you pay me 20 bucks and I'll make
| sure you're okay," that's illegal. It's racketeering. What Microsoft
| is doing with intellectual property is exactly the same. It's a great
| company and I have great admiration for it, but this was not a
| well considered position.
| So you wouldn't do a deal?
| No, absolutely not. But the time will come when the folks at
| Microsoft who have a clear vision for the company as a participant
| in this community, rather than as a hostile antagonist, will win.