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EV1 Regrets, Novell Filing, and Kapor on SCO
Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:55 PM EST

EV1's Robert Marsh says he wouldn't do it again. Robert McMillan has the exclusive:

"So how does Marsh feel about the deal nearly a month later? 'Would I do it again? No. I'll go on the record as saying that,' Marsh said. 'I certainly know a lot more today than I knew a month ago, in a lot of respects.'

Though Marsh admitted that EV1 has lost some hosting business since the deal, he said it is not out of line with the number of sites EV1 loses in a typical month. . . .

"The big loser in this matter may be SCO, said Dion Cornett, an analyst with Decatur Jones Equity Partners LLC, an equity research firm based in Chicago. Having their first publicly announced customer express second thoughts over the deal so soon after its announcement may make it difficult for SCO to sign up other customers, he said.

"'For Robert (Marsh) to say that he would not do the deal again, that's certainly going to be heeded by anyone that SCO talks to in the future,' Cornett said."

It's certainly significant that they are having second thoughts despite business being up, according to Marsh's statement.

InternetWeek is reporting some details of the Novell filing, saying Novell argues the slander of title action should be dismissed. They already said that, so this is their memorandum in support of their previously filed motion to dismiss. We should have the document itself by tomorrow. Pacer lists it, but the document itself is not available to the hoi polloi yet. Novell may have sent it to InternetWeek. Here's what the article says they are saying:

"In the first part of its response, Novell lawyers argued that SCO has failed to show any written document verifying its claim that Novell transferred away ownership of its Unix or Unixware copyrights.

"'SCO has not identified that written instrument,' the Novell papers said. 'Absent such a written instrument, ownership could not have transferred.'

"The Novell papers also rebut any notion that passive copyright transfers took place. 'SCO's argument that the copyrights were transferred because the time to assign has come and gone is contradicted by the documents,' the filing stated."

Lotus founder Mitch Kapor spoke to a Python conference today and says that it's just a matter of time before open source becomes the predominant development model for software. In fact, he says that because of Microsoft, it's the only viable model for developing new applications for the desktop, because the road is littered with the corpses of proprietary competitors of MS. He did have some concerns:

"While extolling the open-source approach to development, Kapor cautioned developers about potential roadblocks ahead for the [Python] language and for open source in general. The most dire problem, he said, is the need to maintain funding for research and development.

"'An increased focus on sustainable support is at the top of the list' of concerns for the open-source community, Kapor said. He warned that 'free riders'—businesses that used open source as a major component of their business operations but fail to contribute anything back to the community—could doom open-source projects to 'slow starvation.'

"Kapor also warned of the growing legal threats concerning software patents and intellectual property claims. But he noted that lawsuits such as those from The SCO Group are also symptomatic of open source's success. 'You know you're (really successful) when the big-time parasites show up,' he said, to much applause."

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