05.23.08

Gemini version available ♊︎

Op-Ed: Novell Pollutes Free Software (and GNU/Linux) in Preparation for Microsoft Attacks

Posted in Courtroom, Free/Libre Software, FUD, GNU/Linux, Law, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Open XML, Patents at 12:05 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

A reader’s opinion

About year ago we wrote and later tried to show (ideally prove) that Novell just loved Microsoft’s saber rattling against GNU/Linux. Novell’s response (or lack thereof) sometimes spoke louder than words. Like many companies, Novell is selfish and its roots of vanity do not help, let alone Microsoft's presence.

“It would also be in Novell’s interest if Microsoft started suing other Linux distributors like Red Hat.”Some hours ago a reader wrote to say: “The ‘do not sue’ promise is only for Novell’s paying customers. That means the others do not get access to all the patented stuff. It would also be in Novell’s interest if Microsoft started suing other Linux distributors like Red Hat. That way, large corporate users of Linux will run to safety in the Novell IP-protected safe harbour. See, that’s where the real money is.”

A few days ago we showed that Microsoft hasn't softened its hard stance against GNU/Linux. This was made explicit, based on the latest word from Microsoft's lawyers and the recent talk from Brad Smith. IT Pro has just published this article about the use of patent terrorism techniques in the fight against real innovation.

Patents and how they’re controlled are damaging the way technology is developed – and the Linux case is a key example of this.

[...]

Litigation as a mode of business is fashionable in the current climate, but offers little or nothing of benefit to users or developers. Authorial copyrights in the US have been extended to 70 years after the author’s death. The law that made this possible, the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act, was passed in 1998. Patent law, meanwhile, increasingly protects the interests of the powerful, encroaches upon notions of innovation and freedom to operate, and is used to inhibit competition. Both are in critical need of reform.

Dana Blankenhorn has also just published an excellent short anslysis which explains how Microsoft used Novell to bypass the courtroom’s ‘acid test’. Remember that Microsoft's software patents were defeated by Alcatel-Lucent just a couple of days ago, showing that they may be worthless, never to be upheld.

“What’s in it for Novell? Some more contracts and about a third of a billion dollars in immediate rewards.”It’s almost as though Novell chose to lose in court (staging a defeat, or “taking a dive”, to use boxing terminology) and then voluntarily pay Microsoft some royalties. What’s in it for Novell? Some more contracts and about a third of a billion dollars in immediate rewards.

In short, Novell sold us out when it possibly ran short of cash and almost got kicked off the NASDAQ. In exchange for Microsoft’s bribe generous incentives, Novell also decided to inject some more software patent poison into GNU/Linux , thus fulfilling the prophecy it had initially fell for (and was paid to fulfill with Mono, Moonlight, OOXML translators, and other junk code which is encumbered by Microsoft patents).

Anyway, here is what Dana said:

They have signed innumerable contracts based on the claims, contracts which assume the truth of the claims, and caused the production of products whose chief selling point is that their makers admit the legitimacy of the claims.

Microsoft seems in no hurry to change the status quo. They are not going to put up, in the form of a lawsuit. They are not going to shut up, either, given the commercial advantages they have created.

Our reader concluded with a personal opinion: “And this is what Bill Gates’ long-term strategy seems to be. Eventually there will be a Novell/Microsoft merger/takeover and Microsoft/Novell will be the prime seller of fully ‘IP-protected’ Linux solutions. To get there they have to pollute the ecosystem with hybrid Open Source/Closed-Source solutions. Like what they are currently about.”

Novell has already spoken openly about this hybrid model [1, 2] (as far back as 2006). If you care about Free software, then boycott Novell. Now, not later. Do what you can to ensure nobody pays a dime to that company, which shares revenue with Microsoft, for a fact.

If Novell gives software patent infringements by Linux some legitimacy — no matter the disclosure or validity, as judged by impartial experts — then Novell must lose all legitimacy and credibility as a Linux vendor.

Linux gives blood to Novell

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

13 Comments

  1. self_liar said,

    May 23, 2008 at 12:50 am

    Gravatar

    Is possible create a script to eliminate mono in distributions?
    Please ,someone make one.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 23, 2008 at 1:10 am

    Gravatar

    There is something close to this here. For DEB/RPM, sort of.

  3. self_liar said,

    May 23, 2008 at 1:27 am

    Gravatar

    Ok
    Thanks

  4. ZiggyFish said,

    May 23, 2008 at 3:23 am

    Gravatar

    There are a few things with mono, Moonlight and OOXML translators, that may make the patents invalid.

  5. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 23, 2008 at 3:25 am

    Gravatar

    Just don’t forget that all Microsoft needs is something to rattle the saber over. It doesn’t need to actually test its claims in court, let alone specify what they are (cryptic documentation aside).

  6. ZiggyFish said,

    May 23, 2008 at 3:36 am

    Gravatar

    Red Hat will take it to court.

    It doesn’t need to actually test its claims in court,

    I’m not a lawyer, but AFAIK, there is a law that has to do with public discrimination (the FUD campaign). Which is what Microsoft is doing to Linux. Also we have the EU that will say something when they decide to take it to court. Their already on Microsoft’s back about the ODF implementation.

  7. ZiggyFish said,

    May 23, 2008 at 3:38 am

    Gravatar

    The other thing is mono, Moonlight and OOXML translators, are all Novells ‘Invervations’, which means that Red Hat is not the inventor, so it’s only Novell who will get sued.

  8. AlexH said,

    May 23, 2008 at 4:22 am

    Gravatar

    @ZiggyFish:

    In general, you don’t need to have invented/written/created something to be sued over patent infringement. If Red Hat distribute Mono, and Microsoft decide they think Mono infringes one of their patents, they are quite within their rights to sue Red Hat.

    Of course, if they do that, then Novell/OIN must counter-sue Microsoft and stuff gets interesting ;)

  9. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 23, 2008 at 4:36 am

    Gravatar

    I’m not a lawyer, but AFAIK, there is a law that has to do with public discrimination (the FUD campaign).

    Yes, it applies in Germany. I can find you the relevant Web page (in German) if you are interested.

    The other thing is mono, Moonlight and OOXML translators, are all Novells ‘Invervations’, which means that Red Hat is not the inventor, so it’s only Novell who will get sued.

    Alex is right on this one.

  10. gggggg said,

    May 23, 2008 at 12:42 pm

    Gravatar

    “The other thing is mono, Moonlight and OOXML translators, are all Novells ‘Invervations’, which means that Red Hat is not the inventor, so it’s only Novell who will get sued.”

    They can sue anyone: a user, a distributor, seller it doesn’t mind. It’s fair game. A round of applause to the close minded individuals that write laws…

    And if they are knowingly infringing it’s worse: read this from “http://www.air2water.net/legal.html”

    “Contributory infringement can be committed by knowingly selling or supplying an item for which the only use is in connection with a patented invention. Good faith or ignorance is no defense for direct infringement, but it can be for indirect or contributory infringement.

    Knowingly infringing on a patented his willful infringement and subject of triple damages and legal fees and maybe punitive damages.”

    Microsoft has put everyone on notice: the only safe place is “Novell/Microsoft”. Please thank Novell for this.

    Microsoft will sooner or later buy/merge with Novell. This is a thing that many inside Novell want from Ron to Miguel.

    I just want to see how the developers will react. Will contribute to something that only Micronell can safely “sell”. Will they fall for the “non-commercial/hobbyist developer”.

  11. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 23, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Gravatar

    Yes, Novell is Microsoft’s Pen O’ Sheep. That’s where it wants to ‘imprison’ all GNU/Linux users, but it has some smaller companies under its thumb too.

  12. stevetheFLY said,

    May 24, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    Gravatar

    This ‘article’ of yours is just a big bag of nothingness. No substance. Only Blablabla…

    Note: comment has been flagged for arriving from a possible incarnation of a known (eet), pseudonymous, forever-nymshifting, abusive Internet troll that posts from open proxies and relays around the world.

  13. stevetheFLY said,

    May 24, 2008 at 4:56 pm

    Gravatar

    …and the latter surves was done by another ‘Anti-Novell’-freak like yourself. Very, very convincing…

    At http://www.distrowatch.com openSUSE now ranks second behind Ubuntu. Not bad. Fedora ranks 4th.

    Note: comment has been flagged for arriving from a possible incarnation of a known (eet), pseudonymous, forever-nymshifting, abusive Internet troll that posts from open proxies and relays around the world.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Gallery of Patent Law Firms That Still Lie, Still Promote Illegal Agenda, and Casually Game the Media to Mischievously Shape Perceptions

    Another roundup of the past week’s lies (or responses to the lies) from Team UPC; it has become rather absurd and to make matters worse António Campinos is posting similar lies (and advocacy of unlawful agenda) in the EPO‘s official Web site



  2. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, May 28, 2022

    IRC logs for Saturday, May 28, 2022



  3. Links 29/05/2022: PulseAudio 16.0 and Fresh Complaints About COVID-19 Patents

    Links for the day



  4. The Popularity of the World Wide Web is Partly Faked (Bots and Scams, Especially in Social Control Media)

    ontrary to popular misconceptions surrounding a Web 'monoculture' (therein exists a Web browser monoculture too; many used to equate the Internet with the Web and with the "Blue E"... and now Chrome), there's a lot of fakes, lots of bot activity, and alternatives to the Web are worth exploring



  5. Links 28/05/2022: KDE Eco Sprint and GUADEC 2022 Conference Plans

    Links for the day



  6. When 50% of Slashdot's 'Linux' Section is Microsoft Marketing, EEE, and FUD

    As this minutes-old screenshot shows, Slashdot is not what many of us “geeks” remember it for



  7. Do Not Become (or Remain) Enslaved and Exploited by Microsoft GitHub

    Slavery isn’t a dirty word but a strong word — or a disturbing concept — used to convey or describe an abusive relationship between organisms — typically human beings — or between corporations and humans, e.g. the way Microsoft treats GitHub projects/users



  8. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part XXI — Rumours About How Microsoft Plans to Actually Make Money (Not Losses) From GitHub

    GitHub is not 'free hosting' but a ticking time bomb, a proprietary platform looking to entrap its users (serfs) inside yet more proprietary platforms (for Microsoft to become their oppressive master)



  9. Links 28/05/2022: KDE Weekly Summary, RZBoard V2L

    Links for the day



  10. [Meme] Fluffy Staff

    EPO President António Campinos is failing to ‘contain’ the media after less than 4 years at the Office, just like Benoît Battistelli around 2014



  11. Kluwer Patent Blog Belatedly Gives EPO Staff a Voice

    There are at least 2 bloggers — if not 3 people — at Kluwer Patent Blog who air grievances of EPO staff; in addition, many of the comments there blast EPO management and Team UPC and it helps change the perceptions long shaped by bribes and blackmail from EPO management



  12. [Meme] Fluffy President

    Prepare for more puff pieces and fluff from President Fluffinos, who has commandeered the EPO‘s official Web site for self-serving whitewash and promotion of illegal agenda like European software patents and a kangaroo court to approve those (UPC)



  13. Blaming Patent Examiners Who Respect the Law

    The latest comments here are quite revealing; the EPO not only breaks the law with impunity but it also challenges the very legal system (like courts) with total impunity; Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos are, in that regard, no better than Putin, just more temperamental



  14. Our Priorities and Our Future: More Gemini and More Daily Links (a Lot More Frequently)

    An informal and unscripted video that explains where we are and where we’re going



  15. IRC Proceedings: Friday, May 27, 2022

    IRC logs for Friday, May 27, 2022



  16. Links 28/05/2022: Twitter Fined for Spying in '2FA' Clothing

    Links for the day



  17. Links 27/05/2022: Trisquel 10.0.1 LTS and Perl Appreciation

    Links for the day



  18. Links 27/05/2022: Fwupd 1.8.1 and GCC 9.5

    Links for the day



  19. Visual Proof That Twitter Very Likely Faked Its Magnitude the Moment Musk et al (KSA, Ellison and so on) Wanted to Buy

    There's a very compelling case for the allegation that Twitter is defrauding shareholders and participants in the platform; Twitter is a lot smaller than it used to be (fewer people are actively involved), it is losing money, and it is so desperate to be acquired that it's shamelessly faking traffic



  20. Links 27/05/2022: Wayland 1.21 Alpha, KDE Adds Flatpak and Snap Permissions to Discover

    Links for the day



  21. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, May 26, 2022

    IRC logs for Thursday, May 26, 2022



  22. Links 27/05/2022: Many More Microsoft Security Failures (and Spin/Lies)

    Links for the day



  23. Links 26/05/2022: KStars 3.5.9 and Chrome 103 Beta

    Links for the day



  24. Links 26/05/2022: AlmaLinux OS 9.0, MooseX::Extended for Perl Introduced

    Links for the day



  25. Links 26/05/2022: Kernel Events and Systemd-Free GNU/Linux Distributions

    Links for the day



  26. Links 26/05/2022: DuckDuckGo Increasingly Exposed as Microsoft Proxy

    Links for the day



  27. EPO Celebrates Software Patents Again, Dubbing Them 'Hey Hi' (AI) and '4IR'

    The ludicrous state of the EPO is demonstrated by yesterday’s puff piece about “four million” (merely requests for monopoly in Europe; most come from outside Europe) and L’Oréal, which claims to have “invented” something that was already done in the 1990s if not the 1980s



  28. [Meme] EPO's Monkey Business: Lowering the Patent Examination Bar

    As we shall show in a moment, EPO President António Campinos has lowered the quality of patents and applications; sooner or later he might outsource the job to ‘livestock’



  29. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, May 25, 2022

    IRC logs for Wednesday, May 25, 2022



  30. Heads of Patent Offices Are Immune to Coronavirus

    The overconfident chiefs of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and EPO might love speaking about COVID-19 (in relation to patents), but they do not take it seriously themselves


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts