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Financial Post: Under the Red Hat lurks a capitalist

Nov 11, 2000, 14:30 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Diane Francis)

"Bob Young, chairman of alternative software company Red Hat Inc., is a boyish billionaire from Canada. Over a drink this week, he explained his latest creation -- the Red Hat Centre, which is taking on Washington's excessive patent and copyright protection laws...."

"'Every time Mickey Mouse is about to fall into the public domain again Disney ask for [copyright] extensions,' he explained. 'Such amendments are worth billions to companies like Sony, Disney or Viacom and cost the rest of us those billions. I'm just concerned that there is a lack of debate.'"

"Naturally, Mr. Young's new challenge is rooted in self-interest. Red Hat makes money by giving away its intellectual property then selling services and tools to help make it work. Microsoft fiercely guards its patents and copyrights and is the monopoly seller for their software."

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