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Novell Repeats GPL Claims; Ballmer’s Accusations Debunked

Posted in Africa, Asia, FSF, FUD, GNU/Linux, Intellectual Monopoly, Microsoft, Novell, Samba, Steve Ballmer at 8:59 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

While the Free Software Foundation takes its time to ensure exclusion of Novell, its managers seem apathetic. The company has said this before (in South Africa) and it now repeats the same argument. It insists that the next version of the GPL will not leave it out in the cold. This latest statement comes from an executive in Asia.

Open source vendor Novell has asserted that there is no truth in speculations of it losing out on the General Public License (GPL) to sell Linux operating system software.

Also in the news watch, you might find this snippet from an InformationWeek article informative.

Samba project leader Jeremy Allison, who left Novell in protest over the Novell-Microsoft deal, insists no reverse engineering of Microsoft file formats or other infringements have occurred in his project. The file exchange is engineered at the network protocol level, he says, based on published Microsoft documents. “We haven’t used anybody else’s IP to develop Samba,” Allison asserts over lunch at his new employer, Google.

Jim Zemlin, executive director of the Linux Foundation (the merged Open Source Development Labs and Free Standards Group), calls Ballmer’s repeated allusions to intellectual property rights “scare tactics.”

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  1. shane said,

    February 24, 2007 at 9:03 am


    One analyst also referred to Ballmer’s earlier statements as an "intimidation tactic". It’s just funny who it was…

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    February 24, 2007 at 10:11 am


    General Manager of FUD Department.

    An example of her opinion on how Open Source Software is handled shows in this remark (quoted from a phone interview from her home in Massachusetts): “The thing about Linux is, you can talk about a free, open operating system all you want, but you can’t take that idea of free and open and put it into a capitalist system and maintain it as though it is some kind of hippie commune or ashram, because if you can do it like that, at that point I’m like, ‘Pass the hookah please!’” [1]

    Even recently, after admitting that a SCO victory in their case against IBM seemed like an extreme longshot, Didio said, “There is a larger issue, though: Even if the SCO case gets dismissed entirely, it does not remove the copyright cloud hanging over Linux and open source.” [2]


    Unsurprisingly, Linux advocates have in response heavily criticised DiDio. Typical criticisms are a lack of formal Computer Science qualifications and promoting studies funded by Microsoft; frequently this has resulted in questioning of her integrity and her being characterised as “a Microsoft shill”.

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