So, Groklaw is coming to an end, with PJ stating she is no longer going to be making new posts. I have to say, I’m not to upset at this and in fact I’m glad Groklaw is finally shutting down. See, when Groklaw started it provided some useful legal opinions on some of the issues Linux faced as it gained prominence, particular in the SCO fiasco. However as time went on the site became heavenly biased, attracting many of the worst kinds of Linux zealots. What was once an objective overview of legal issues became a front to attack anyone or anything that threatened or criticized Linux, or to a lesser extent open source. Perhaps naturally the audience the site then began to attract were those that found a reference they could sell as authoritative which matched their views. Despite the fact the legal analysis became increasingly flawed as viewed through a particular lens, it didn’t matter as long as those people were hearing what they wanted to hear.
Some critics of Groklaw began to question if the site was a shill for IBM or some other entity with an agenda. I don’t think that was the case at all. I think it’s far more likely a paralegal with a cursory interest in open source and Linux got a little too comfortable with the very strong support from the community and then started writing posts an analyzing legal issues in a way that would most appeal to that crowd, with all regard to objectivity gone. Perhaps a good example is in one of the non SCO issues the site covered, such as the whole Psystar case. In her analysis it seemed that PJ forgot many of the ideals she seemed to believe in, randomly siding with Apple. The analysis of the case was lacking in many areas and was certainly far from objective. It seemed like this random Pro-Apple support came just as the site reached its peak in its childish anti-MS campaign. Anything MS is evil and thus by extension anything that may hurt MS is good.
These type of people are one of the very worst things about the Linux community and Groklaw has fueled and supported them for the last several years. It is for this reason I am not sad to see the site go, while simultaneously having respect for PJ and the good work she did in the beginning of the site.