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09 March 2009, 09:18

SCO appeals Unix copyright claim again

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The SCO Group has filed an appeal against last years ruling that it did not buy the copyright to Unix from Novell. The company is hoping to overturn the judgement and resume its legal action against IBM and Linux. When SCO started to pursue IBM in court in 2003, Novell said that when it sold its Unix business to SCO in 1995 it retained copyright to the code and merely sold SCO a licence to use it. SCO then sued Novell over that claim.

In August 2008, Novell requested summary judgement in the copyright case, and were awarded $2.5M in un-paid royalties. Without SCO having Unix copyright ownership its original case against IBM, for improperly using Unix code in features they incorporated into Linux, collapses.

SCO is now claiming in its filingPDF that the judge prematurely ruled for Novell while disregarding "evidence of numerous witnesses and documents drawn from both sides" and that Judge Kimball "improperty drew inferences in favour of Novell". According to the Salt Lake Tribune, SCO officials are declining to comment further. Michael Jacobs, an attorney who represents Novell, said "We have high confidence in Judge Kimball's ruling".

The appeal is scheduled to begin with oral arguments on May 6th. SCO is currently moving to sell its software business as part of the Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganisation so that it can spend more time in court.


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