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The Register: IBM risks billion dollar Linux strategy with W3C RAND demands

Oct 05, 2001, 00:26 (23 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Andrew Orlowski)
"Senior IBM server executives were horrified to learn yesterday that W3C standards may not in the future be royalty-free. Internet standards and Linux have helped IBM widen its appeal in recent years, and the company has pledged $1 billion on developing and marketing Linux. But its continued investment depends on good will from the Linux developer community, and that may well be imperilled by its preference of RAND to royalty-free for the most fundamental WWW standards.

IBM holds over 34,000 patents and gains over $1 billion in royalties annually from its patent portfolio.

'IBM's a great supporter of Linux if it can avoid pissing on its feet,' license watcher Karsten Self told us. 'IBM is straddling the line on intellectual property and content control measures, and while it has it has been a great supporter of the Linux community, it needs to decide which side of the bar it needs to stand on, before that bar comes up hard.'"

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