[Talk] SCO vs. IBM - the gloves come off...

Adam Donnison adam at saki.com.au
Thu Jun 19 13:55:48 EST 2003

I'm not an expert on international copyright legislation, but am
certainly familiar with the provisions of the Australian legislation.

There are 2 classes of breach, one of which is civil, the other
of which is criminal.  Off the top of my head I can't remember the
exact wording, but there are links from IP Australia's website.

There is also a very interesting provision that means that if
the party alleging the breach does so without a provable case then
the defending party can actually sue them for wrongful use of the
copyright act.  But as I say, this is the Australian Copyright
Act, not the US one.

Still, its going to be an interesting battle to watch.


david.newall at auug.org.au wrote:
> Greg Rose <ggr at qualcomm.com> wrote:
>>At 12:16 PM 6/18/2003 +0930, david.newall at auug.org.au wrote:
>>>I'm sure they'll stop distributing AIX.
> That's a bit strong, isn't it?
>>It's a civil matter. Until a court issues an injunction, they're no
>>worse off, given that they've registered their disagreement, than if
>>they stop.
> Are you certain it's civil?  Presumably SCO would claim a breach of
> copyright, which I think is a criminal matter.
>>No. IBM doesn't even agree that the license *can* be terminated, and again 
>>they've said so.
> Of course, I haven't seen the licence (you might well have seen one that's
> equivalent), but the reason SCO gave 100 days notice was because that
> was a term of the licence.  Clearly the licence *can* be terminated; the
> question is whether IBM have given cause.  SCO say they have; IBM say they
> haven't.  I don't know who is right, and frankly, neither does SCO or IBM.
> It won't be until (and unless) this goes to court that anybody knows.
> Just suppose SCO wins.  Just suppose IBM continues to distribute AIX in
> the mean time.  Having won, it will be clear that IBM have violated SCO's
> copyright.  Would you, were you in IBM's legal team, permit that risk?
> The damages would be astronomical, not to mention that the board would
> almost certainly be criminaly negligent (they have a duty of care to
> their shareholders.)
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Adam Donnison                                  email: adam at saki.com.au
Saki Computer Services Pty. Ltd.
93 Kallista-Emerald Road                        phone: +61 3 9752 1512
THE PATCH  VIC 3792    AUSTRALIA                fax:   +61 3 9752 1098

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