May 22, 2003

Open Letter: Hey Sco, Sue Me to stop.

John Everitt writes "Dear Signatories

I've sent this via public forums rather than send thousands of emails.
The Caldera^H^H^H^H^H^H^HSCO sue me petition is dead on May 24th. I've set a cut off point rather than edit a list numbering up to projected tens of thousands. I can't cope with the phenomenal response. It's amazing that one company could generate so much bad feeling. When the list is shut I am going to edit the petition and send it off to Caldera^H^H^H^H^H^H^HSCO.

What a response! I expected ten people to sign. Including myself! The size of the list reflects the chutzpah of those signing and how Caldera^H^H^H^H^H^H^HSCO has managed to alienate the wider world. For every one person that signed there were a hundred that wanted to, but were worried by the American court system. It's shame, but perfectly understandable.

This is a fight against IP pomposity and injustice. Your vibrancy and energy will make a difference. But! Organisations such as the Free Software Foundation *need* your support too. IBM can look after itself.

'If you tolerate this then your children will be next'. Something the Free Software Foundation realised when a lot of future Linux users were in diapers (I was just out).

Through all of the bromides, fashion and technological breakthroughs of Linux, the Free Software Foundation has remained reliable. Those guys and girls were in the process of switching from commercial Unix before Linux. They were doing what is fashionable now before it was fashionable. So every time you type gcc or emacs think not of Linux or BSD or OS-X but think of the man hours the FSF have put into promoting and protecting such software.

Some people talk of trenches. The FSF dug them.

How can you help them? Well the most obvious is cash. Not all can afford a donation. But like free software that doesn't matter:

Do what you can. The FSF is as good a way of fighting Caldera^H^H^H^H^H^H^HSCO as any petition. Although I do feel that our petiton showed a degree of verve, humour and irony that escapes a lot of zealots.

The FSF is not the *only* worthy organisation. For instance, SCO Sue Me was made possible by Petition Online, who rely on charitable donations to maintain the service. I'm donating £10. If you can afford it do it, even a dollar helps.

IBM and the FSF were in NO way involved with this petition and did not endorse it. Neither were they asked or made explicitly aware of the petition. My views may reflect yours but are by no means representative of the wider community. You should see some of the flames...

Thanks to you all. You are very brave.

- John ("


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