HP says Oracle is taking cheap shots

The maker of jolly expensive printer ink HP has hit back at Oracle’s claim last month that it is trying to conceal information that would weaken its position in the case.

Larry Ellison’s legion of spinners claimed that by trying to keep parts of its case “under seal” HP is trying to suppress the truth about the basis for its claims against Oracle.

However, according to PC World, HP has made a filing to the court saying that there was not a single word in HP’s complaint that HP is not eager to make public.

Apparently the reason that it is under seal is because it included terms of a settlement agreement in the lawsuit that HP filed against its former CEO, Mark Hurd, after he took a job at Oracle.

HP insists that settlement included a contractual commitment between the companies around continued product support.

Oracle also said that HP is trying to keep the settlement agreement under wraps because releasing it would hurt its case.

In a filing to the court, HP said that the Settlement Agreement contains a provision that precludes the parties from disclosing the terms of the agreement for any purpose.

HP was bound to honor the terms of the strict confidentiality provision and took the appropriate procedural steps to do so, it says.

Oracle decided to “land a cheap shot” against HP, the filing moans,  by “inappropriately larding the record with misleading and inflammatory assertions about the merits of the case.”

The HP lawyers said the agreement requires Oracle to continue to port its database and other software to HP’s platforms. In fact that was what Oracle’s own general counsel expressly told HP the provision meant during negotiation of the agreement.

HP is willing to have an unredacted version of its complaint made public, the settlement agreement should remain sealed apart from the section concerning contractual obligations, the HP filing states.