01. August 2013

Improved legal certainty for maintenance

Oracle settles court-case with third-party support provider CedarCrestone
Courts are not notoriously in favor of the big!

Oracle's lawsuit with CedarCrestone, a provider of third-party maintenance for PeopleSoft, seems settled. Oracle had alleged CedarCrestone to have provided support for PeopleSoft tax updates in an illegal way. The details of the agreement are not known. It is also not known whether CedarCrestone will continue to offer support for Oracle's PeopleSoft.
CedarCrestone is actually an Oracle partner. And provides support for PeopleSoft implementation services in addition to numerous other ones. Using Third Party Maintenance, corporate users may opt out of the support contracts with Oracle and still maintain their systems. In September, Oracle sued CedarCrestone. According to the company, they had used the updates from Oracle and developed their own updates. Therefore, as the third party, no property rights have been infringed by Oracle.
CedarCrestone had stated at that time that “we are dealing with this lawsuit by a wrong and systematic attack on the market for third-party maintenance”. Oracle would thus secure their own monopoly for support for its products. And so CedarCrestone had filed a number of counterclaims against Oracle. Among other things, the vendor Oracle was unlawfully coupling the updates for new regulations on contracts for software maintenance.
With various lawsuits in the past, Oracle has created a degree of uncertainty in the market, which could potentially deter some users to opt for an alternative provider for maintenance. To some extent, the current agreement with CedarCreston stands out from this strategy.

What does this mean for you?

The good news is the fact that the large vendors cannot win every case at court using their financial power. It also shows that litigation can be a part of a monopolistic strategy that can effectively be challenged. For users of License12, this is an opportunity to reflect on the loyalty of their own expenses for maintenance, in order to counteract the formation of monopolies.

(Source: CedarCrestone)


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