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AutoZone Responds To SCO 275

loftis writes "Groklaw is reporting that AutoZone has responded to The SCO Group's Lawsuit. Here is a link to the Groklaw community's discussion where you can find all the filings in raw form. Here is a text copy of the filing without amendments. AutoZone has pretty much said to the court, SCO has to prove 1) they own the code, and 2) that Linux infringes. Since SCO is litigating these two issues in other cases, they ought to wait until those questions are answered. Or, they say, 'If we cannot wait, we need SCO to tell us what we are infringing upon with specificity.' Since we know how SCO will answer the second question, and the court likely will too, since they amended the filings from SCO v IBM and SCO v RedHat and SCO v Novell, it seems to me (IANAL) that they should get to wait."
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AutoZone Responds To SCO

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  • by phaetonic ( 621542 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:32PM (#8985370)
    Pep Boys is funding SCO with cash!
  • Jesse (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:32PM (#8985372)
    Shouldn't they just send over Jesse and the boys to do some mods on the SCO folks?
    • Re:Jesse (Score:2, Funny)

      by Rufus88 ( 748752 )
      Ventura? Jackson? James? Helms? Who are you talking about?
      • Re:Jesse (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Skater ( 41976 )
        Jesse James - the guy in the Autozone commercials. He's also the "host" of Monster Garage on Discovery. ("Host" is loosely defined here.)

        --RJ
      • Re:Jesse (Score:4, Funny)

        by Tackhead ( 54550 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:24PM (#8986108)
        > Ventura? Jackson? James? Helms? Who are you talking about?

        One of these things is not like the other.
        One of these things does not belong.

        Answer: Jesse James. He's the only one worth voting for!

  • Ok.. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:33PM (#8985379)
    Someone really needs to start a live counter of SCOs legal costs..
  • by Chuck Bucket ( 142633 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:33PM (#8985385) Homepage Journal
    This is taking forever, the longer SCO drags this out, the more companies will be afraid of using Linux. When does this cross the line of being a lawsuit, to being racketeering? Am I being unreasonable? When they first went to court, why didn't SCO just put all the cards on the table? Is it because they don't have any cards to show?

    CVB
    • puddin' (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Rotworm ( 649729 )
      I'm not sure linux is held in any responsibility to SCO's actions. I mean, I think people understand the legal system enough to know that people sue for whatever reason they can sometimes: disregarding whether it is justified.

      A lot of people scoff at the legal system, I don't think companies would avoid a product because of one companies actions. Now, if microsoft gives similar advances to, say, ten more companies -and they decide to sue, then we got a problem.
      IANAL, but I don't see SCO, alone, damagin
    • This is taking forever, the longer SCO drags this out, the more companies will be afraid of using Linux.


      Isn't this SCO and their funders primary goal?

      • by AntiOrganic ( 650691 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:45PM (#8985561) Homepage
        Isn't this SCO and their funders primary goal?

        Not quite. If you follow the news regarding SCO, BayStar wanted to pull their investment because they didn't think SCO was investing enough resources in the IP lawsuits, and wanted them to all but entirely ditch their Unix "business." Unless they really are being paid by companies with vested interests in Linux's demise, like Microsoft, they want people to use Linux; that's more people to sue.
    • by kwandar ( 733439 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:42PM (#8985502)

      Actually, the longer this drags out, the more SCO spends in legal fees, and the quicker their ultimate financial demise takes place.

      With SCO now fighting on multiple fronts, they are likely to run out of cash before anything but the IBM suit, gets to court. And that suit will eat them alive.

      As for companies afraid to use Linux due to SCO's legal shenanigans, I haven't encountered any - have you?! That is surely the worst news for SCO to hear, as their tactic is in essence, legal terrorism.

      • The problem (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:50PM (#8985629)
        The problem is that it seems pretty obvious SCO isn't intending to come out of this alive. This court case has doomed SCO. The unfortunate thing is, that's the point. This entire mess was begun as a stock pump-and-dump, and kept alive by a publically documented huge donation from a certain party [microsoft.com] interested in encouraging any group that publically hurts linux. In the former case, the lawsuit was an exit strategy for SCO; in the latter case, the lawsuit is a corporate suicide bomb strapped to SCO's back.

        Of course SCO is going to die; the Canopy Group and MS are using SCO as the corporate equivilent of a human shield. You don't care whether your human shield survives.
      • i sure hope youre right on all your points
    • by jackbird ( 721605 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:44PM (#8985534)
      I'd say the opposite - the tone in AutoZone's filing is pretty dismissive, especially for a legal pleading. DaimlerChrysler is similarly unimpressed, SCO's investors want their money back, and the real digging is now in following the money trail and guessing whether or not IBM is going to get the BSD case unsealed.

      The truth is coming to light (thanks in large part to Groklaw) even outside the geek community.

    • From footnote 8:
      • "SCO defines these written materials as part of the "Copyrighted Materials" that includes various versions of the UNIX code. .... [snip] ... If SCO is alleging that the written materials served as the inspiration for Linux, SCO's claims would be subject to dismissal under the Copyright Act because the copying of ideas is not actionable under the Copyright Act. 17 U.S.C. 102(b)

      So if you have software copyrights, I can claim I didn't steal your code, just your ideas!?! (I'm not talking

      • Yep, that's exactly right. Otherwise everything would be a monopoly owned by the first guy who thought of it.
      • by FroBugg ( 24957 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:48PM (#8986424) Homepage
        Exactly.

        If the ideas in your software are original enough that you need to worry about them being copied, then you should apply for a patent.
      • What are you saying? That pure ideas should be copyrightable?

        If that's the case, then... wow, we have to throw away EVERYTHING WE HAVE EVER DONE. Hey! Isn't that a linked list there? That was someone else's idea!

        No, of course that's not the case. Ideas can only be protected by trade secret and patents, patents supposedly only covering implementations of ideas.

      • by tsg ( 262138 )
        So if you have software copyrights, I can claim I didn't steal your code, just your ideas!?!

        According to Copyright Law [copyright.gov]:

        S 102. Subject matter of copyright: In general

        (a) Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. Works of authorship include the following

        • In no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work.

          No, that's apparently what patents are for (JPEG, one-click, etc). Based on the way they're granting patents and the low bar for inventiveness, I could probably patent the sandwich.

          The invention improves the ease of manipulation of m

    • I would think the longer this drags on, the worse it is for SCO. They only have finite money (and some people already want that money back [informationweek.com]), eventualy they will be unable to finance continued litigation.

      Linux, and OSS in general, does not seem to be suffering a significant (or even noticable) negative backlash [thewhir.com] from all of this, if anything it has been free publicity [globeandmail.com].

    • by daVinci1980 ( 73174 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:03PM (#8985807) Homepage

      This actually brings up an interesting problem with the Linux development model.

      Because the development group is a (relatively) rag tag bunch of people who send code in, there isn't really an organization than can countersue companies like SCO for defamation, slander and libel.

      Which is what any normal company would be doing to SCO right now.
      • by peragrin ( 659227 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:07PM (#8985858)
        Actaully we can get one better.

        Class Action Lawsuits

        Piss off enough people so everybody or at least a major perctage joins a Class Action lawsuit, you can get tons more cash. Hey who says you don't get paid for being an Open Source Developer. It is also a lot harder to hide from a Class Action Lawsuit, rather than againist one enemy
        • No lawyer will take a class action if there is no money to be made.
        • Piss off enough people so everybody or at least a major perctage joins a Class Action lawsuit, you can get tons more cash.

          Sure, we could try something like this with SCO, but keep in mind, they will probably be dead before such an approach could get off the ground, and, if not, they would most likely have very little money left to extract. I think the best approach is to let IBM et al. suck them dry and let the winds of time blow them away.

          To me, the real question is: After SCO is drawn and quartered b

    • by KingFatty ( 770719 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:45PM (#8986374)
      Perhaps in time it will be recognized that SCO is the *BEST* thing that could have happened to Linux... Microsoft will eventually slap themselves in the forehead for their support of SCO. SCO is providing the flame for the Linux phoenix... after the flame dies down, the phoenix will rise, more powerful than ever. The phoenix will just look like a penguin, of course. Any attention is good attention. Think of how many more people know about Linux after all the SCO FUD? When the FUD goes away with SCO, Linux will explode. Look how the Napster beat-down turned everyone onto music sharing (via Gnutella etc.)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:34PM (#8985387)
    have you ever gone to autozone? they keep you waiting for years before someone finally decides to help you. i think SCO saw this one coming
    • Re:used to waiting (Score:3, Insightful)

      by svallarian ( 43156 )
      Yes, but at least when they do answer your question, they get it right.

      Unlike their competition, advance auto parts...which sold me the wrong size of belts (twice) and also the incorrect set of spark plugs (once).

      Of course, the average age of employees might have something to do with it. (advance = 17, autozone = 30)

      Steven V.
  • Thank god (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AviLazar ( 741826 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:34PM (#8985393) Journal
    It's about time someone asked SCO "Stop crying like a spoiled brat and tell us what your exact complaint is" -A
    • Re:Thank god (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:56PM (#8985701)
      IBM has asked them exactly that.

      I guess SCO hasn't yet been able to verbalize what their complaint is other than that people are no longer buying their POS operating system.
  • Huh? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Guy Innagorillasuit ( 249136 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:35PM (#8985413) Journal
    So they don't trust SCO's word? What's this world coming to when a fine outfit like SCO can't be trusted?
  • by glassesmonkey ( 684291 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:37PM (#8985433) Homepage Journal
    From AutoZone's filing:
    SCO's "hide-the-eight-ball" tactics in the IBM case leave AutoZone with little realistic belief that SCO will voluntarily identify the basis for its claims without this Court's intervention. SCO filed its Complaint against IBM more than a year ago; yet, at least as of April 18, 2004, SCO still had not provided IBM with any reasonable identification of its claims.
    I would like to play a little "hide-the-eight-ball" with.... oh, forget it, too easy.
  • me! me! (Score:5, Funny)

    by GillBates0 ( 664202 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:37PM (#8985442) Homepage Journal
    Since we know how SCO will answer the second question

    ask me! *raised hand*

    "there are trillions even quadrillions of infringing lines in linux. all your atoms comprising our lines of code are belong to us. hence you clearly and specifically infringed on SCO's rights."
    Sincerely,
    Darryl

  • by WwWonka ( 545303 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:39PM (#8985464)
    After pissing off a legion of auto-philes by suing Autozone, SCO has now set their legal sights on the organizations of the NRA, the KKK, and the NY Association of the Russian Mafia for infringing on intellectual property by using Linux in their daily operations.
    • How many AutoZone customers do you think have ever heard of SCO? For that matter how many do you think would care anyway?

      • by WwWonka ( 545303 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:46PM (#8985571)
        How many AutoZone customers do you think have ever heard of SCO? For that matter how many do you think would care anyway?

        Ah, good point.I imagine their customers think "Linux" is some sort of disposable window cleaning towlet that keeps rain off their windshield!
        • Hmmm... Amazing... Well, at least one.

          I use Autozone for some parts for our cars. I also use various other suppliers.

          My wife and I have an early model 1965 Ford Mustang (made June 10th 1964) and a Jeep Grand Cherokee. I do a lot of the maintenance on the Jeep and all of it on the Mustang. Autozone is a useful place to buy bulbs and chemicals from. Otherwise I tend to use specialists or a local equivalent (open 24/7 and can be cheaper). I think the last thing I bought from Autozone was some paint stri

        • Re:In other news... (Score:3, Interesting)

          by identity0 ( 77976 )
          How many AutoZone customers do you think have ever heard of SCO? For that matter how many do you think would care anyway?

          Ah, good point.I imagine their customers think "Linux" is some sort of disposable window cleaning towlet that keeps rain off their windshield!


          I know AutoZone doesn't seem like much of a Linux-centric company, but they actually host a LUG, Group of Linux Users, Memphis [golum.org] at their headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee. They have graciously let us use their facilities, including a nice con
      • Re:In other news... (Score:3, Interesting)

        by cprincipe ( 100684 )
        I specifically buy my parts from AutoZone to support them during their litigation.
      • Re:In other news... (Score:2, Interesting)

        by xs650 ( 741277 )
        Quite a few. People who understand their own cars well enough to modify and repair them tend to have the curiosity and intelligence to learn about other systems as well.

        The most common form of communications between automotive enthusiasts are online forums, newsgroups and mail lists. I haven't taken a survey, but the use of Linux by members of those groups seems to be at least as high as it is in the general computer user population.

        If you are on line much and use Linux, it is hard to not know about SCO
        • Yup...

          I would have thought that most geeks like to know how things work. I know that I do.

          If you're not working on a computer, how many geeks do you think indulge in other kinds of work with their hands? I know I like working on our Mustang (made June 10th 1964) and the enjoyment I get from repairing something, or making something new is the same as the enjoyment I get from writing software.

          Most of the contact I have with other people with mustangs is online.

          I also enjoy cooking and baking but I'm not
    • by big-giant-head ( 148077 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:50PM (#8986444)
      Nahh they'll never take on the NRA...... Moses would just cause a local river to rush over SCO headquarters and obliterate them. Besides having the pillar of fire appearing at all the pretrial hearings would be pretty un-nerving for Darl......

  • These lawsuits were stunts to distract from quarterly earnings in the first place, did anyone really expect anything new? Of course, they hinge on the IBM case and, of course, there really isn't anything there without determining what (if anything) infringes. Now had they been reasonable and sued for licensing violations alone, maybe there wouldn't ground for a stay.
  • by The_Rippa ( 181699 ) * on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:42PM (#8985518)
    The module SCO is talking about is the one implemented in the AutoZone system that make sure six different colors of shifter knobs are always in stock and the simple part you need for your car never is.
  • by pla ( 258480 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:44PM (#8985540) Journal
    "Yawn".


    I don't care. Nope. Not even a little.

    SCO has ceased to exist in my opinion. Based on the delay of AZ's response, I had assumed they to decided to pretend SCO doesn't exist, and to just ignore them.

    Nope. (Places fingers in ears and slowly rocks back and forth chanting "blah blah blah i can't hear you blay blah blah" over and over)

    The only interesting part of all of this? The amusing phrasing I've seen from the various briefs and filings and fnords and amendments and so on and so forth... "Hide the eight-ball"? I don't quite know the meaning of that in normal language, can someone elaborate on its specific legal-context meaning?
    • by NineNine ( 235196 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:01PM (#8985760)
      "Yawn".

      You obviously don't own a business that supports you and your family. If you did, you wouldn't take this so flippantly. SCO could care less if you're running you l33t gamerz box on Linux, so you have nothing to worry about. It definitely concerns those of us whose livelihoods depend on our computers.
    • by cev ( 572524 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:03PM (#8985791)
      Previous reply was pretty much correct. When playing eight ball, the goal is to sink all of one's balls, then make the eight ball to win. If you are in an impossible position (i.e. you can't make any of your own balls), the best strategy is to "hide the 8-ball" so that your opponent can't win either.

      However, there is no "stalemate" in pool, so your goal in hiding the eight-ball is to allow you (or force your opponent) to move your balls into better positions so that you might win.

      Perfect analogy.

      CV
    • "Hide the eight-ball"? I don't quite know the meaning of that in normal language, can someone elaborate on its specific legal-context meaning?

      Somebody needs to make SCO give the judge back his "Magic 8-Ball" so he can a "reliable and informed" judgement on these court cases. God forbid the judge use his legal expertise and exprerience to decide these cases on merit or lack thereof.
  • by ryanvm ( 247662 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:47PM (#8985584)
    it seems to me (IANAL) that they should get to wait.

    Is it just me, or does IANAL sound like a code in the personal ads?
  • by rewt66 ( 738525 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:48PM (#8985595)
    Three IPs for the Linux kings under the sky,
    Seven for IBM in their halls of stone,
    Nine for SGI doomed to die,
    One for the dark Darl on his dark throne
    In the land of Utah where the shadows lie.
    One IP to rule them all, one IP to find them,
    One IP to sue them all and in the courtrooms bind them,
    In the land of Utah where the shadows lie.

    (Yes, this has also been posted once on Groklaw. No, this isn't a karma whore - I'm the guy who posted it there. And no, I don't necessarily think that SGI is doomed to die, though things haven't been looking good for them lately...)
  • It's time for a new section. It's time for an SCO section, ala Games or YRO. A section devoted entirely to SCO stories, because I (and I imagine a lot of other people) simply do not care about them anymore.

    Yeah, I've got karma to spare.
    • Re:Ok, Slashdot.. (Score:4, Informative)

      by DaveAtFraud ( 460127 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:34PM (#8986230) Homepage Journal
      It's time for a new section. It's time for an SCO section, ala Games or YRO. A section devoted entirely to SCO stories, because I (and I imagine a lot of other people) simply
      do not care about them anymore.
      So why do you bother reading them and posting comments?

      BTW, if you go to the user preferences section and click on the "Homepage" tab you will note a rather large table that lets you exclude stories based on topic as well as other criteria. Check the box next to Caldera. That's the "old" name for the bunch of litiguous bastards known as The SCO Group. You can then stick your head back in the sand and stories about SCO will no longer interupt your reading of slashdot. Unless that is, due to a preponderence of apathy and ignorance, SCO happens to win in which case slashdot and a lot of the net as we know it will cease to exist. But don't worry. Some of us who do care will try to stay informed and keep that from happening.

      Oh, and quit whining and try to figure stuff out for yourself sometime.

    • Re:Ok, Slashdot.. (Score:3, Informative)

      by Chester K ( 145560 )
      It's time for a new section. It's time for an SCO section, ala Games or YRO. A section devoted entirely to SCO stories, because I (and I imagine a lot of other people) simply do not care about them anymore.

      Go to your preferences, choose not to show any stories with the "Caldera" icon.
  • by Saeed al-Sahaf ( 665390 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:55PM (#8985687) Homepage
    Don't fret, AutoZone, it's all safe in a briefcase in Germany...
  • Band of brothers (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DigiShaman ( 671371 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:02PM (#8985785) Homepage
    Would it add more weight to the case against SCO if IBM, Autozone, Novell and other band together with a class action lawsuit due to SCO dragging this out? It's gotta be hurting investment (thus business) for everyone involved.

  • by 0x0d0a ( 568518 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:03PM (#8985809) Journal
    Or, they say, 'If we cannot wait, we need SCO to tell us what we are infringing upon with specificity.' Since we know how SCO will answer the second question, and the court likely will too, since they amended the filings from SCO v IBM and SCO v RedHat and SCO v Novell, it seems to me (IANAL) that they should get to wait."

    You mean how they'll answer based on the IBM case?

    SCO: "Your honor, in order to list the lines with specificity, we need a copy of AutoZone's customer database, of their parts blueprints, and of all source involved with moving away from any SCO products."
  • by -tji ( 139690 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:12PM (#8985927) Journal
    When SCO originally sued AutoZone, I thought they were claiming that AZ copied SCO's libraries to their Linux environment to make porting of AZ's software possible. -- This was debunked by a former AZ employee, who confirmed that the application was cleanly ported to Linux, requiring no SCO code.

    But, AZ's response seems to imply that not even that was clear from SCO's claim. They don't even know if they are talking about the kernel, pieces from SCO's OS, applications, etc.
  • by WinDOOR ( 741468 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:32PM (#8986205)
    I think its funny how SCo told Autozone that they were no longer going to support their OpenServer installation and told Autozone they would have to upgrade(I use that term loosely) to System V. It seems as if Autozone was happy with their previous installation but was forced to look at another alternative as a result of SCo's actions. Sounds like a baby crying over spilled milk to me.
  • I have, for perhaps the last 8 months almost begun to wonder if by chance this company knew it was failing, and with its finaly resources perhaps SCO is trying to do the linux comunity a (covert) favor by actually
    1.) getting linux in the news so people know hear and talk about it, and
    2.) Getting the GPL tested and legitimised in court, so that people who never knew about linux before hand will then think about actually implementing it in the future... in all seriousness a non-tech savy buisnessman would pro
  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @02:03PM (#8986603) Homepage
    As I wrote last week [slashdot.org], "Before they can sue Linux users over copyright violations, they have to beat IBM and Novell and Red Hat and Damlier-Chrysler or AutoZone."

    If AutoZone wins this motion, anybody else SCO sues can just cite that, and their case will go in the queue after IBM/Novell/Red Hat. At that point, litigation against Linux users from SCO becomes an empty threat. You don't have to pay big legal fees to defend the case; you just have to have a lawyer file a motion citing AutoZone, and the case goes on hold for years, while three Fortune 1000 companies crush SCO in court.

    There are some great lines in AutoZone's motion. "There is no reason for SCO to have been so obtuse in its pleading, unless SCO is intentionally trying to avoid identifying the nature and basis of its purported claims." "Rule 8 does not require the defendants in federal court lititgation to engage in such guessing games." "However, SCO's "hide-the-eight-ball" tactics in the IBM case leave AutoZone with little realistic belief that SCO will voluntarily identify the basis for its claims without this Court's intervention.".

    Meanwhile, SCO stock is down to 7.05 today. There was a big runup last Thursday morning, probably due to SCO's stock buyback program. The overall effect is that the price is back to where it was a week ago. SCO is down about 60% since the beginning of the year. [yahoo.com]

    Time is now against SCO. Nobody is going to pay them unless they win all those lawsuits. It looks like they'll run out of money first.

    Something to think about: when SCO tanks, somebody will buy the "UNIX intellectual property". Who's likely to do that? Sun? Microsoft? Red Hat?

  • Endgame (Score:3, Interesting)

    by blueZhift ( 652272 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @02:20PM (#8986788) Homepage Journal
    I'm glad to see that AutoZone is not just rolling over on this case. As others have already noted, SCO is not likely to survive all of this litigation intact and probably never really intended to.

    With that in mind, I would say the latest round of high profile lawsuits against both corporate and government bodies is the intentional beginning of the endgame. I think that the legal team orchestrating all of this has decided that it's time to fall on the sword and end it all. So they start a round of suits they know they cannot win and cannot survive so that they can finally call this thing to a close.

    Obviously, there will never be any proof that this is what is happening. But the fact that the U.S. legal and financial systems allow this level of abuse is the saddest revelation of this whole affair.

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