IT Channel News Briefs, Dec. 12

Today's headlines: Cisco gets sued again, and IT jobs are getting harder to come by.

Information technology (IT) channel news in brief for Friday, Dec. 10, 2008.

Cisco sued for copyright infringement

Cisco just can't seem to pull itself out of court these days. This time around, the Free Software Foundation (FSF) hit Cisco with a copyright infringement lawsuit that claims Cisco's Linksys wireless routers violated licenses on programs held by the FSF, Network World reported yesterday. The FSF alleges that Cisco distributed products with open source programs and then denied its users their right to share and modify the software by not providing source code.

The FSF began working with Cisco in 2003 to help the company comply with FSF software licenses, but ultimately, Cisco didn't inform customers about previous violations or supply complete source code, according to the suit. In a statement, Cisco said it believed it had been compliant and that the company is a "strong supporter of open source software."

Last week, network services company Multiven filed an antitrust suit against Cisco. And in October, a court ordered Cisco to pay $6.4 million in damages to former channel partner Infra-Comm, which had sued the company for poaching a registered deal.

Dice: Less hiring, more layoffs coming

Hiring will be down and layoffs will be up in the next six months, according to a new report by Dice Holdings. SearchCIO.com reports that 70% of IT recruiters and hiring managers told Dice that they will scale back their hiring -- up from 50% this summer. Half of respondents also said they expect layoffs in the first half of 2009.

Non-news from IBM: Smart Cube's stealth debut

IBM has not announced its new Smart Cube, a convergence of the company's System i and Linux, according to blogger Timothy Prickett Morgan.

Big Blue apparently posted, then took down, a release about its IBM Smart Cube Power System 520. Based on the now-disappeared IBM post, Morgan characterized Smart Cube as a server appliance configured to use the company's stack and bring business applications -- ERP, CRM and IP telephony -- to SMBs with "virtually no IT complexity." And it would work with a consistent electronic support methodology. Or, as he calls it, an AS/400 on steroids.

Now the only question is whether it will ever actually surface.

Check out yesterday's IT channel news briefs.

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