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Hot off the Press - News

SCO Subpoenas Torvalds & Linux OS Developers
Nov 15th, 2003

SCO Group Inc.'s spokesman Marc Modersitzki said last Thursday (11/12/03) that SCO Group’s legal counsel had issued subpoenas to Linux creator Linus Torvalds and a number of companies and luminaries of the Linux community.

In addition to Torvalds, the subpoenas were served to Digeo Corp., employer of Linux kernel maintainer Andrew Morton; the Free Software Foundation; Novell Inc.; the Open Source Development Labs; and Transmeta Corp., the employer of Linus Torvalds. Morton and Torvalds also work for the Open Source Development Labs, where they devote their time to Linux development. This is all part of the $3 billion lawsuit against IBM. It was also reported that Torvald will get free legal counsel from his employer. The Open Source Development Labs, which was also subpoenaed Wednesday in the case, said Friday that it would pay its law firm, AterWynne LLP, to represent Torvalds.

"We as an organization are taking responsibility for the funding of legal representation for anybody involved with our company as part of this

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litigation," OSDL spokesman Nelson Pratt said. "Our legal counsel is reviewing the subpoena that was sent to [Torvalds], as well as OSDL as an organization."

SCO filed its suit in March, claiming that IBM violated its Unix contract with SCO by improperly donating Unix code to the Linux kernel. Torvalds is the chief developer of the Linux kernel. IBM has denied the allegations and filed a counter suit.

In its suit, SCO has also attacked the general public license governing Linux, saying in court papers that the GPL "violates the U.S. Constitution, together with copyright, antitrust, and export control laws."

The common link between the entities, Modersitzki said, is that each has been involved in leading Linux or creating Linux code. Modersitzki characterized the subpoenas as seeking technical details, but he would not specify what SCO is hoping to uncover.

Modersitzki also countered reports that have suggested that SCO is making this move in response to IBM Corp.'s subpoenas of investment banks and The Yankee Group, which have been viewed as siding with SCO.



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