Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 26th Jun 2007 21:09 UTC, submitted by WillM
Linux The Linux community is splitting - right down the middle, at this point - over Microsoft's controversial claims that the open-source operating system infringes on patents it holds. Last Tuesday, Mandriva became the third Linux vendor within five days to say it isn't interested in signing a licensing deal with Microsoft to avoid possible infringement claims. A blog posting to that effect by Mandriva CEO Francois Bancilhon followed similar declarations by officials at Red Hat and Canonical.
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Microsoft has no interest in suing, because very likely
a) a lot of the patents would not hold up in court as they are trivial or prior art,

b) as already mentioned, it would loose a patent law, which Microsoft would not be able to win (likely that IBM and others hold for Microsoft very important patents)

c) as it would mean Microsoft would need to sue some of its own customers or potential customers, not a great business strategy

Therefore, what Microsoft does and has always been doing, spread FUD about a competitor - and the very nature of FUD means to keep it all unclear, mirky and nebulous, after all if they were to show their cards the competition could do sth. about it, which is the last thing Microsoft wants. This is far more effective and useful for them, make it harder for enterprises, small businesses to choose Linux, a kind of "Reverse Marketing".

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