Eye on Oracle

Dec 16 2008   8:52PM GMT

A small victory for SAP or another big win for Oracle?

Shayna Garlick Shayna Garlick Profile: Shayna Garlick

Every time we hear news come out of the infamous TomorrowNow lawsuit, it seems like SAP has found itself in even more trouble (or at least accused of it) than before.

Is this time — after SAP tried to get part of rival Oracle’s lawsuit against it dropped — any different?

It doesn’t seem that way, although one might argue that any win for a company who has been accused of “massive illegal downloading,” and “corporate theft on a grand scale,” could be considered at least a small victory.

On Monday, a U.S. court upheld an SAP motion that two Oracle entities did not have the right to sue for copyright infringement. That could be significant; however, the court also ruled against SAP in all of its other claims. According to Reuters, this means that Oracle still has the right to sue for the majority of their claims, a couple of which include:

  • Breach of contract: The court ruled against SAP’s argument that TommorowNow employees were not party to the contracts relating to customer terms of when downloading support materials. ‘”Clickwrap agreements” — where the online user clicks “I Agree” before continuing to password-protected areas of a Website — had been found enforceable by many courts,” the court ruled.
  • Unjust enrichment and restitution: “[The court] also rejected SAP’s argument that Oracle’s claim of unjust enrichment should be rejected as not being a legally proper claim.”

SAP responded that they were disappointed in the outcome, but “look forward to working with the court to achieve the proper resolution of this case.”

Just when that will be is still indefinite. SAP is set to respond to Oracle’s latest amended complaint by Dec. 30, and Oracle is scheduled to give a settlement price by Feb. 13 (SAP then has five days to respond).

In other recent news about the lawsuit (and again, not favorable for SAP), a recent court filing shows that SAP co-CEO Henning Kagermann was allegedly once concerned about the legal implications of buying TomorrowNow.

Whatever SAP thinks the “proper resolution,” to the case is, it seems like they have a long way to go if they want to reach it.

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