No Licensing Suspension

Tuesday, August 12 2003 @ 01:27 PM EDT

Contributed by: PJ

I know you've seen the reports, and I have too. I haven't published the story up until now, because I couldn't confirm it. When I saw it in the Inquirer, I decided it was time to call SCO. I asked if they would confirm or deny the report that the Linux licensing program had been suspended. The woman said, "I haven't heard anything about it." She asked me where I'd heard or seen this. I told her. She then said she'd heard that someone told her it was on Slashdot, but she couldn't find the story.

What does it mean? Honestly, I don't know for sure, but I'm taking it as a denial. First she said something that could be interpreted a couple of ways, and then said something that indicates one interpretation is that she wasn't completely forthcoming. But what I think she actually meant is that she hadn't heard anything about the program being suspended. Perhaps if I'd tried to get a license, I'd have gotten more information or even different information, but I would have had to lie to do that, and I won't do that. Until there is more than a Slashdot comment to go on, I consider it unfounded, and I think it would be unfair to SCO to spread this story.

Obviously, if I hear more, I'll let you know.

By the way, an alert reader sent me the part of the Wall Street Journal article that the Salt Lake Tribune cut: "It's not hard to imagine a comparable denouement this time. Microsoft has long warned that Linux is a ticking copyright time bomb. Naturally, it's delighted with the lawsuit. But those warnings could have a kernel of truth. It wouldn't be shocking if, scattered in Linux's millions of lines, there were other examples like the one seen by Mr. Taylor: incidental and easily excised. In fact, few pieces of software this big could survive the same sort of review.

"What if, thanks to SCO, Linux could rid itself of any such questionable lines, and end up with a court-issued seal of copyright approval? Then what would Microsoft complain about? And what would SCO's new business plan be?"