09.29.12

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Microsoft Says Free Software Has No Copyrights

Posted in Africa, FUD, GPL, Microsoft at 11:04 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: The latest FUD from Microsoft and some of those who attack Free software

Professor Moglen wrote about the case of a parasite versus Red Hat, noting that GPL violation is now being alleged by Red Hat: “Twin Peaks Software, Inc., which makes proprietary data replication and cloud storage software, sued Red Hat and its subsidiary Gluster for patent infringement back in February. Last week, Red Hat filed a counterclaim in that litigation, alleging copyright infringement by Twin Peaks in misappropriating GPL’d software.

“Red Hat’s counterclaim asserts that Twin Peaks has copied GPL’d code, from mount, into their proprietary mount.mfs utility, which is distributed to licensees of their data replication products. Red Hat holds copyright on most of the code in the relevant version of mount, which is part of the util-linux package.”

As put by another site, “Red Hat Says Twin Peaks In GPL Violation, Seeks Injunction”. As a reminder, it is copyright law that helps enforce the GPL. To quote the article: “If you remember, Red Hat was sued by a company called Twin Peaks over patent infringement. In its lawsuit filed in March 2012, Twin Peaks alleged that Red Hat and its newly acquired subsidiary Gluster infringed upon its U.S. Patent 7,418,439 Mirror file system. The patent was filed in 2001 and issued in 2008. According to the patent description, A mirror file systems (MFS) is a virtual file system that links two or more file systems together and mirrors between them in real time. Twin Peaks seek injunctions and damages for the alleged patents.”

So it is clear that the GPL finds copyright law a necessity, not wholly a nuisance. In that case, why does Microsoft continue to abuse the population of Kenya [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6] by showering it with lies? Here is the latest lie: “Information Technology firms are warning of increased cyber-attack should the Government move to ditch copyrighted software.

“We expect Microsoft to play dirty and to lie as it always does in Kenya, based on what we saw.”The headline says “State warned on ditching copyrighted software”. To quote further: “Last week, the Government issued a warning that in the next three years it will move its IT operations to Free and Open Source Software (FOSS), a move that will reduce cost by more than half in IT expenses.

“Microsoft said the move is risky and bound to make Government systems more vulnerable to hackers.

““We agree with the open standards but not the free and open source software strategy,” said Paul Roy Owino, technology advisor, Microsoft East and Southern Africa.”

We expect Microsoft to play dirty and to lie as it always does in Kenya, based on what we saw.

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