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National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:25 PM EDT

The National Retail Federation, which says it is the largest retail association in the world , has put out a press release saying that from what it has seen, SCO's legal claims appear to be without merit and that Novell "is the last company that can demonstrate legal ownership of Unix System V." AutoZone is, of course, a retailer.

**********************************************

"SCO Group Lawsuit Appears Unfounded, Says NRF

"Within the last year, The SCO Group has claimed Intellectual Property rights to parts of the Linux operating system. Within the last few months, The SCO Group has threatened legal action against several major retailers for using Linux. The SCO Group claims that they hold the copyright to Unix and believes that retailers who use Linux violate SCO’s copyright.

"The following is a statement from NRF CIO Dave Hogan regarding the lawsuits:

"Based on the information we have seen, the National Retail Federation believes the claims by The SCO Group are without merit. Novell Corporation is the last company that can demonstrate legal ownership of Unix System V.

"Novell Corporation filed a court challenge to The SCO Group's claim of Intellectual Property rights, demonstrating serious questions regarding whether The SCO Group ever gained legal ownership to Unix System V. Furthermore, The SCO Group has not specified which parts of Unix System V have been copied into Linux.

"In my opinion, it is almost as if The SCO Group’s business model is to generate a revenue stream through litigation.

"NRF expects that retailers who use Linux will survive the current litigation.

"The NRF CIO Council will continue to pay close attention to this issue.

"The National Retail Federation is the world's largest retail trade association, with membership that comprises all retail formats and channels of distribution including department, specialty, discount, catalog, Internet and independent stores as well as the industry's key trading partners of retail goods and services. NRF represents an industry with more than 1.4 million U.S. retail establishments, more than 23 million employees - about one in five American workers - and 2003 sales of $3.8 trillion. As the industry umbrella group, NRF also represents more than 100 state, national and international retail associations. www.nrf.com."

*********************************

According to Stephen Shankland, the NRF decided to act when AutoZone got sued:

"The NRF decided to issue a statement after SCO moved from 'saber-rattling' to the legal offensive against AutoZone, Hogan said in an interview. In addition, about 20 to 25 of the NRF's CIO council received threatening letters from SCO, he said.

"SCO--whose Unix products have been popular among retailers--argues that companies must pay for a SCO intellectual property license or risk legal action. But SCO's legal battles are opposed by many top technology companies and by open-source advocates."

SCO just laid off some employees, and they don't guarantee there won't be more:

"Spokesman Blake Stowell declined to say how many were cut but said the layoff affected less than 10 percent of the company's staff, which totaled 275 employees before the cut. Jobs were eliminated across the company, including sales, marketing and engineering, he said.

"The cuts took place at the end of the company's second fiscal quarter and were part of its goal 'of trying to be profitable within our core business'--selling the UnixWare and OpenServer Unix products, Stowell said."

According to eWeek, who broke the story, they didn't do it because of BayStar:

"Stowell said the Lindon, Utah, company made the layoffs so it 'could be profitable within our core Unix business in the next quarter.' The cuts were companywide and were not confined, as rumor has had it, to just the engineering staff. In addition, the company made no changes to its management."

BayStar wanted McBride to go and SCO to drop UNIX and concentrate on litigation against IBM. This story indicates that so far, there is no resolution between BayStar and SCO. That's if the story they are telling about the layoffs is true. It may be but my sources are telling me a different story.


  


National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs | 379 comments | Create New Account
Comments belong to whoever posts them. Please notify us of inappropriate comments.
To all Ex-sco employees
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:31 PM EDT
I saw a post on Newsforge regarding this issue about being laid off and they had
some recommendations. Ever heard of the BSA? Think SCOG is on the up and up with
regards to software licenses? Why not give the BSA a call to make SCO prove they
are in compliance,,,, WWW.BSA.ORG... May not get your Job back,, but it sure
makes you feel better.

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: enginepop on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:32 PM EDT
The press relaease is generally good news, but it's disheartening to see
"Intellectual Property" written with initial caps. It speaks of a
mindset in which "intellectual property" is more than a general
collective noun.

Still, it's good to see an organization influential in SCOX's market echo the
Groklaw party line :^}

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: math geezer on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:33 PM EDT
If the layoffs were to allow for a continuing UNIX presence, are the lawyers all
gone?
If the lawyers are still there will NFR be sued next?

Good news to see the high profile jab at the meritless suits.

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:37 PM EDT
Retail had been Old SCO's best market. Interesting to see the retailers giving
them the old thumbs down.

[ Reply to This | # ]

New Links and Off-Topic [OT] Discussions Here Please
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:38 PM EDT
Please reply to this message with new links of interest to Groklaw readers. This makes it easy to find them. Please try to use the HTML Formatted mode to make it easy to click on a link and follow it directly to the article of interest.

This is also the place to start discussions unrelated to the topic(s) of the article.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Corrections Here Please for PJ's attention
Authored by: morven24 on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:40 PM EDT
I did not see any but my eyes are getting weary reading this Cornucopia of
information.

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:44 PM EDT
I cannot believe that Groklawyers could break a company like this. Groklaw just
shows what a collaborative effort to bring out the truth can do. Just like an
open collaboration among OS geeks can show the levels to which an OS can be
developed.

My regards to all Groklawyers.

[ Reply to This | # ]

I worked for a public company that went under
Authored by: arrg on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:50 PM EDT
As it slowly sank they fired people every quarter claiming that they were
removing the fat. They lied right up until the doors closed. I suspect the same
thing with SCO.

---
Time is funny stuff, space has it's points too.... - Hap

[ Reply to This | # ]

Percentage of R&D?
Authored by: TechnoCat on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:50 PM EDT
Standard R&D costs for a firm run 8-12% More is considered too heavy, less
and you have no actual added value of your own. So... if SCO laid off
"less than 10%", and it's a safe bet it wasn't from marketing,
financial, legal or execs, wotchawannabet it dramatically reduces R&D?

[ Reply to This | # ]

SCO's Spin?
Authored by: joef on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:53 PM EDT
I can see TSG's spin on it now: They issue a press release claiming support
from NRF, saying: "Based on the information we have seen, the National
Retail Federation believes the claims by The SCO Group..."

Wonderful things, these ellipsis.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Have a *nice* day, Darl...
Authored by: Jude on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:53 PM EDT
...and be sure to say "hi" for us when Baystar calls to talk about
this.

[ Reply to This | # ]

OT: Dale Kimball provides a controversial ruling against ACLU
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 12:55 PM EDT
Interestingly enough, Dale Kimball, judge in the SCO-IBM case,
ruled< /A> against the ACLU in a case yesterday,
concerning whenether the Mormon church should be allowed to restrict speech in a public plaza they purchased from Salt Lake City.


Personally I don't agree with this ruling, but I'm certainly not implying Kimball will rule poorly in the SCO case. But it is interesting to see what else the judge is doing.

[ Reply to This | # ]

OT: layoffs here, all-expenses paid vacations there...
Authored by: belzecue on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 01:05 PM EDT
Sure, they had to get rid of 30 staff, but look on the bright side: the money
they save allows them to send their favourite channel partner on an all-expenses
paid vacation!

http://www.sco.com/partners/success/sandiego/winner/


"In January 2004, SCO announced the North America Channel Success Story
contest and asked partners in North America to submit information about their
successes selling SCO UNIX. After assessing the stories that were submitted,
SCO has chosen a success from Mardon Healthcare Information Systems as the
contest winner.
[...]
As the winner of the contest, Mardon will enjoy an all expense paid vacation at
the beautiful Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego in May."

[ Reply to This | # ]

25% gone in past year
Authored by: rand on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 01:09 PM EDT
It's "under 10%" because exactly 10% of 275 employees includes 1/2 of somebody. I make it 27 out of 275, about 9.81%

BTW, remember how they had 330 employees a year ago?
Interview: SCO chief Darl McBride, By Peter Williams [27-06-2003]: "Well, we have about 330 employees in the company..."
That means they've already lost 17% of the company. With this round of cuts it goes to almost 25% attrition in less than a year.

Methinks the deadwood hath been trimmed clearly to the quick.

---
carpe ductum -- "Grab the tape" (IANAL and so forth and so on)

[ Reply to This | # ]

Shrinking payroll
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 01:12 PM EDT
When I attended the SCOG road show in St Louis in early October, the SCOG
representatives said that SCOG had about 330 employees. Now they are reportedly
down to 275, before the current layoffs.

Hence over a seven-month period the SCOG work force has shrunk by an estimated
20 - 25%.

Scott McKellar
http://home.swbell.net/mck9/sco/

[ Reply to This | # ]

SCO stock prices
Authored by: KBellve on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 01:12 PM EDT
Ok, so I am watching SCO's closing price. It appears after today's close, SCO will have two more days to qualify for the 20 days and under $10.50 in the Baystar pipe deal.

Last time, it went 19 days before it was pushed above $10.50. How many bets want to be made that it goes above $10.50 on the 19th or 20th day? This Friday is the 20th day.

Wouldn't you think Baystar wants to be below $10.50 for twenty days so they can force a redemption (if I recall everything right)? SCO wouldn't want this and would like their stock price to go about $10.50, right?

SCO Prices


Karl

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Israel Pattison on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 01:18 PM EDT
To Ex-SCO employees: I am not a lawyer, and this is just
my opinion. Before you consider any advice which might
lead to legal consequences, I strongly suggest that you
seek out compotent legal advice. If your former employer
has no problems bring multi-billion dollar lawsuits
against former business partners with deep pockets, what
sort of action might they be willing to take out against
you?

Israel J. Pattison

[ Reply to This | # ]

SCO Shoots Self In Foot
Authored by: dmscvc123 on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 01:32 PM EDT
Fact
SCO’s lawsuits against IBM, AutoZone and DaimlerChrysler include violation of
SCO’s copyrights related to the UNIX operating system, but does not involve
patents.
http://www.sco.com/company/presskit/corrections/

I guess SCO should check their own website for the facts to see what their
lawsuits are about before they do court filings.

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: JustFree on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 01:44 PM EDT
If BayStar has stated that “SCO should drop its Unix products business and pay
more attention to its legal case against Linux”, it seems as though who ever is
controlling BayStar is more confused that McBride.

With the rest of the world waking up to the fact that SCO Groups claims are
merit less it seems that BayStar may have to ask McBride to cut the a personal
cheque for $20 million dollars US.



---
as in free speech get it.

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 02:02 PM EDT
I just saw something about Reg Broughton, a SCO senoir vice president is gone.


link http://twiki.iwethey.org/twiki/bin/view/Main/RegBroughton

How did he fit into the puzzle?

ken king

[ Reply to This | # ]

SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 02:09 PM EDT
No big surprise, isn't it? What do you need employees for if you don't make or
sell products anyway?! :-)

[ Reply to This | # ]

See Utah PACER 203cv00294000000145.pdf
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 02:14 PM EDT
Abby, Abby...someone.

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation
Authored by: rsteinmetz70112 on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 02:17 PM EDT
One of the main supports of SCOs core business has long been POS.

These users have been moving to Linux and SCOG seems determined to push them
there faster.

Nothing like alienating some of your best customers.

Having an industry group representing one of you major markets make a statement
like this has got to hurt.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Priorities?
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 02:27 PM EDT
A company's most important business relationships are with its (1) employees,
(2) customers, and (3) stockholders. SCO's record with (1) and (2) don't need
much elaboration. The only reason this company is still in business is (3), but
that one is just a matter of time.

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Priorities? - Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 03:07 PM EDT
  • Priorities? - Authored by: Greebo on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 03:49 AM EDT
National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 03:42 PM EDT
Workers gone and managers and executives stay. What a wast of air and skin the
sco management appear to be. That is OK ... Stockholders must be getting upset
by now.

[ Reply to This | # ]

SCO gives up on threats?
Authored by: scott_R on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 03:48 PM EDT
"Stowell said the Lindon, Utah, company made the layoffs so it 'could be
profitable within our core Unix business in the next quarter.'"

So, does this mean SCO's finally admitting that companies won't ever be begging
them for a license to use Linux? :) Wall Street should enjoy learning that SCO
has no hopes for any income in the meantime.

[ Reply to This | # ]

If you are looking for a wonderful Job Oppourtunity...
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 03:48 PM EDT
Why not try SCO...

http://www.sco.com/company/jobs/

they have three job listings despite a recelt layoff>.>


-sil

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: geoff lane on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 03:52 PM EDT
When a company lays off sales and marketing staff it's a bit like cutting off
the head to cure a bad leg.

I predict a huge bowdlerisation of the SCO web site within weeks. Everything to
do with product sales will disappear and be replaced with a generic
"contact a SCO sales rep" type message as the linux IP eula page has
already.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Layoffs
Authored by: mobrien_12 on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 04:35 PM EDT
Note that they don't lay off their legal team. Cutting their legal expenses
would leave a lot of money for UNIX development. But their software sucks so
they are, despite what they claim, starting to do what BayStar told them to
do.

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Layoffs - Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 09:02 PM EDT
National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 05:49 PM EDT
The National Retail Federation press release is going to do a lot to counter SCO
FUD. I think this is the first really big organization to say flat out that
there is nothing to SCO's claims.

It is interesting what the press release bases its position on. It seems the CIO
in question had his lawyers read the APA. That is a great way to counter SCO
FUD. SCO won't show you the code it claims is in Linux, but anybody can look at
the APA.

If you are working at an organization that has been thinking about linux but is
hesitant because of SCO's claims, you might recommend that your lawyers look at
the Novell case and read the APA.

Oh, and just to give them some entertainment, have them look at the DC case.
When they get to the part about how DC sent a letter to AT&T seven years ago
saying they are no longer using the software, you should hear them laughing from
the next building.

[ Reply to This | # ]

OT: How Companies Use (and Abuse) Law for Competitive Gains
Authored by: Tim Ransom on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 06:07 PM EDT
In teresting article talks about the U.S./Asia chipwars. A sample:

'Moreover, with these successes behind it, TI aimed its new litigation guns at additional targets -- U.S. and European firms that had built chip designs using TI’s patented models. “If we were going to get Japanese and Koreans,” said Sharp, “we needed to treat Americans and Europeans the same way.” In 1992, TI’s patent portfolio returned more revenue -- $391 million – than did all its other operations combined.'

---
Thanks again,

[ Reply to This | # ]

National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 06:30 PM EDT


Great.

so sco breaks the rules of discovery and allows internal engineers to look at
the propriatary AIX and Dynix code, THEN fires a bunch of engineers to obfuscate
who in actuality they needed to leave the company and join up with a third
company that either is going to use the information for further separate
litigation or for other corporate espionage.

or, more likely (not most likely), they are trying to distance themselves from
proof that they disregarded the rules of discovery.

i guess most likely they are just trying to plug leaking money holes, especially
since they don't really need to act like they are a real tech company anymore.
but this isn't nearly as fun as the first hypothesis.

-jig

[ Reply to This | # ]

Too kind?
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 06:39 PM EDT
> In my opinion, it is almost as if The SCO Group’s business model is to
generate a revenue stream through litigation.

Come on, you're being too kind. It is not "almost", that exactly what
it is!

[ Reply to This | # ]

OT: student-made linux distro
Authored by: Tim Ransom on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 11:33 PM EDT
supposedly works with windows apps.
Link

---
Thanks again,

[ Reply to This | # ]

OT: David Boies
Authored by: josmith42 on Wednesday, May 05 2004 @ 11:41 PM EDT

I was just wondering: has anyone heard from David Boies lately? His firm still seems to be listed in court filings on this case, but recently SCO hasn't been trumpeting his name like they were a year ago. Is he on the case in name only now, but in reality has written it off as a mistake one makes after having one too many beers?

---
Forty-two: the answer to the question of life, the universe, and everything.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Microsoft uses Linux for hardware developement
Authored by: afore on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 12:20 AM EDT
Interesting tidbit of information.

I have a friend who works for Microsoft Hardware developement in Mountain View,
CA. They use Linux for their simulation tools etc. because the tools only work
on Unix or Linux. Solaris is too slow, so they use Linux as the servers are
cheaper and the tools run twice as fast on Linux.

Art

[ Reply to This | # ]

Look what's still around
Authored by: k4_pacific on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 12:25 AM EDT
It's the SCOSource FAQ!

http://pl.caldera.com/scosource/Final_SCOsource_QandA.html

Strangely, it appears to be worded such that SCOSource is a campaign offering to
license SCO libraries to run on top of Linux rather than Linux itself. Did they
rewrite this?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Layoffs on SCO's head
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 01:14 AM EDT
The company that would have had the money to pay its employees, but spent most
of it on the lawyers. Jobless people over one man that will not give up a mad
battle that has never been made clear by a simple act; providing evidence.


McBride's personal battle will destroy him and what remains of SCO. How does
such madness start; and it seems to never end, not until the neglect takes its
toll, and that things have gone beyond reach for saving: Where SCO is right now
!.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Salt Lake Tribune coverage quotes DiDio(t)
Authored by: ubi on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 07:07 AM EDT
The local paper is covering the story, mostly fairly. Sounds like our dear Laura is finally coming around. It also quotes some shill named George Weiss of the Gartner Group. Anybody heard of him? He warns us direly:
[Linux] users are still faced with that worst case scenario: What if the opinions in the open source software community did misjudge the merits of SCO's case?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Boises website ... very "flashy"
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 08:51 AM EDT
http://www.bsfllp.com/

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Lawyers - Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 09:31 AM EDT
National Retail Federation Says SCO's Claims Appear Meritless and SCO Confirms Layoffs
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 01:12 PM EDT
Microsoft was wise to let SCO go in first. Microsoft can't handle this type of
criticism from agencies outside of their market. It would be very hurtful to
them. If SCO wasn't doing this, Microsoft would and they do not need this type
of backlash with all of their other court cases going on.

Linux and the GNU isn't going away like OS/2 Warp did. This problem is no longer
on a playing flied they can control.

Can Microsoft face the truth of their legal woes and anticompetetive behavior?
Microsoft was good at the back-door and under-the-table and the wink-wink deals.
They can't handle this out-in-the-open stuff, yet....

[ Reply to This | # ]

Stating the Obvious
Authored by: tangomike on Thursday, May 06 2004 @ 02:32 PM EDT
A TSCOG major line of business is point of sale systems, used by... (all
together now) Retailers!

While this isn't a legal finding, it is a huge blow to TSCOG's "core
business".

Anybody seen a comment from Enderle yet?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Investing in companies
Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, May 07 2004 @ 01:35 AM EDT
My brother-in-law was showing me about penny and sub penny stocks. (how to buy
and what not) All I could think of was SCO and the Simpsons commercial where
Bart and Lisa keep asking "Are we there yet?". He doesn't understand
why I was laughing so hard.

[ Reply to This | # ]

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