12 October 2005

Some good damage control from MySQL AB re SCOX

Pamela Jones interviews Marten Mickos from MySQL AB. The summary:

  • no money went to SCO from MySQL, so MySQL is not supporting SCO financially [hoorah!]
  • it was SCO seeking out the partnership, not the other way around [big surprise there, not]
  • MySQL had stopped supporting SCO in 2004 [see comment below]
  • MySQL did not put out the press release about the partnership. [good, but again no surprise] Mickos did provide a quotation for the press release however. [something you could hardly avoid]

This comment by Mike Kruckenberg in April 2004 (referenced in the GrokLaw article) is interesting:

SCO Unixware support is being stopped.

If anyone knows:

  • What about OpenServer?
  • What is the practical difference between “support” for SCOX OSes and “partnership”?

Call me inconsistent if you will, but stopping support for UnixWare (unless MySQL was running out of UW customers) is inconsistent with embracing a partnership with SCOX.

SCOX certainly haven’t changed, except that a few of their stupider claims have bounced off the Courts, crashing and burning before even coming to trial. And why stop support for UW but not OpenServer? Now OS uses what amounts to a UW kernel, so I suppose that the remaining differences are hardly radical, but if MySQL stopped support on moral grounds, why resume it again while the moral issue remains in full force? This confuses me.

Marten said:

I can tell you that the deal produces revenue to us.

And what do we do with revenue? We hire developers who produce GPL code.

Good. But the money is tainted. It’s almost akin to taking drug money to support a school. Likewise:

As a company, we do not have a position on other companies’ strategies.

Taken as a general comment devoid of context, fine, but Marten’s talking about a company he’s ”partnered” with. Quite a different kettle of fish. The “partnership” makes SCOX’s strategies MySQL AB’s problem. Pilate washing his hands? I think considerably more distancing is required than we’ve so far seen.

In summary, MySQL have scored some good points with me and I think improved their conceptual position, but there’s still some major stuff in there not making sense. We await further revelations with the usual ’bated breath.

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