Linux Follies Update


Lawrence Lessig drops everything he is doing and eviscerates the latest claim from SCO that Linux rips off their Unix. Lessig notes that SCO is basically saying that open source is unconstitutional (?!) because copyright holders are supposed to try and maximize their profits, presumably with a very restrictive licensing regime.

Lessig finds this downright silly:

Does Bill Gates violate the constitution when, instead of devoting $20b of his own money to making more "profit," he decides instead to use the money to save millions of lives in Africa?…

… But more fundamentally, where is there any legal authority anywhere for the claim that the only constitutional way a copyright might be granted is if it is granted to people who choose to sell or license for money the work they have created? Answer: No where. There is no such authority, anywhere. It is, like most of the SCO suit, simply made up.

If this case were a Little League game, the skunk rule would be invoked and everyone would go home.