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Microsoft sharpens aims patent guns at Red Hat “‘You’re violating our IP, now pay up,’ Ballmer”

Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer has warned users of Red Hat Linux that they will have to pay Microsoft for its intellectual property.

“People who use Red Hat, at least with respect to our intellectual property, in a sense have an obligation to compensate us,” Ballmer said last week at a company event in London discussing online services in the UK.

A video report of Ballmer’s speech (registration required) was posted on Mydeo over the weekend.

Red Hat has repeatedly stated that it will engage in a patent licensing deal similar to the Novell-Microsoft partnership, referring to its as an ‘innovation tax’.

Microsoft has been the second most aggressive party in pursuing alleged intellectual property claims against Linux and open source in general.

The firm ranks behind SCO, which failed in its attempt to prove that it owns the intellectual property to Linux and now faces bankruptcy.

Microsoft inked a partnership with Novell last year in which Novell agreed to license Microsoft’s intellectual property in exchange for a patent pledge to users of Novell’s SuSE Linux.

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Microsoft, Steve Ballmer, Linux, Red Hat, Open-Source, Open source, SCO, Patent, Licensing

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