In Court Nine at the Technology and Construction Court, which is part of the High Court, were more journalists than lawyers. Two rows of seats at the back of the court were full. All were there to hear the result of a five-year legal battle.
The judge, Sir Vivian Ramsey, had already broken records. It had taken him about 15 months to prepare his judgment in the case of BSkyB versus EDS.
BSkyB had originally ordered the CRM system in 2000. In the words of EDS, it was a “problematic” project. So, 10 years later, Court Nine was alive with ardent expectation as The amassed waited for the judge to enter and hand down his verdict. At 4pm, the pre-announced time of the judgment, the courtroom was hushed by the entrance of the judge’s assistant. He looked worrying sheepish.
“There has been a technical hitch,” he said apologetically, explaining that the judgment would not available until the following day.
The journalists were more than irate: there’s something not even slightly amusing about the judgment in one of the world’s biggest private sector IT disasters being unavailable because of a technical hitch.