EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

10.08.07

Ballmer’s FUD Makes a Comeback (and Microsoft Real ‘Open Source’ Plan is Unleashed) (Updated)

Posted in Europe, Free/Libre Software, FUD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Novell, Red Hat at 8:54 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Throughout a public talk in the United Kingdom, Microsoft’s CEO says some of the darnest (yet expected) things. For example, consider this short summary:

Any plans to bring development tools to other platforms? No.

[...]

Open Source

What’s our strategy
A. Compete–we need to offer better value where there is a direct overlap
B. Open Source innovation on Windows–our battle is product to product

Praise for Novell–”Novell says that IP matters, Red Hat doesn’t.”

Does anybody still think that the deal with Novell was not harmful? This is not the first time that Steve Ballmer uses it as ammunition. Matt Asay has apparently viewed the video as well and he is particularly interested — for obvious reasons — in Microsoft’s approach towards open source software.

Steve Ballmer apparently likes open source. Well, so long as it drives Windows revenue. And doesn’t replace any. Ever. In fact, as he said at an event in Microsoft last week in London that he hopes to see all open-source innovation going to Windows, rather than Linux (more below).

None of this is surprising of course. It is also the reason for what we consider a hijack of XenSource and the agreements with Novell on virtualisation. Microsoft uses money to make Windows more predominant in the server space (and later on in the desktop space too). All money which is spent is intended to optimise for Windows or to create more dependencies on Windows.

Matt proceeds to covering Ballmer’s latest patent FUD.

In fact, in this Q&A, he all-but-declared something that I’ve been saying for many moons: Microsoft wants to tax open-source innovation. He said, with respect to Red Hat:

“People that use Red Hat, at least with respect to our intellectual property, in a sense have an obligation to compensate us.”

Ding! Ding! Ding! We have a winner!!! Ballmer believes Linux violates Microsoft’s patents (as he says earlier in his comments), and wants people to pay up.

Recall what OIN and the OSC had to say about such insidious tactics from Microsoft. Also mind the fact that Ballmer talks about intellectual property and not software patents, which are not the same. He talks in the United Kingdom where software patents are not legal, so he throws patents into a collective bag that is IP. This is a very nasty strategy from Microsoft and not the first time it uses it in Europe.

Update: at least one article about this event has just been published. It poses things as though and it’s attack on Red Hat and Groklaw responds. Remember that Microsoft sneakily escapes every chance to disclose its own patent-sheet liability because it knows it’s essentially armless (and thus harmless).

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

6 Comments

  1. Jon said,

    October 9, 2007 at 10:57 am

    Gravatar

    This is all reminiscent of the Effective Software Evangelism that was released at the Iowa antitrust suit. Basically, they are still using a plan concocted over 10 years ago!

    How he (Steve B.) thinks that everyone owes him money, I have no idea.

    It’s stupid, really.

  2. Shane Coyle said,

    October 9, 2007 at 12:38 pm

    Gravatar

    More of Ballmer’s quote is available in update 2 of this groklaw article, he takes the time to pat Novell on the back:

    The only other thing I would say that is probably germane is, we spend a lot of money, the rest of the commercial industry spends a lot of money on R & D. We’ve spent a lot of money licensing patents, when people come to us and say, “Hey, this commercial piece of software violates our patent, our intellectual propery, we’ll either get a court judgment or we’ll pay a big check. And we are going to — I think it is important that the Open Source products also have an obligation to participate in the same way in the intellectual property regime.

    That’s why we’ve done the deal we have with Novell, where not only are we working on technical interoperability between Linux and Windows but we’ve also made sure that we could provide the appropriate, for the appropriate fee Novell customers also get essentially the right to use our patented intellectual property. And I think it’s great the way Novell stepped up to kind of say intellectual property matters. People use Red hat, at least with respect to *our* intellectual property in a sense have an obligation to eventually compensate us.

  3. Serenitude said,

    October 9, 2007 at 1:40 pm

    Gravatar

    Between recent articles – this in particular, and it’s counterpoint on Groklaw – after many, many months reading this site with my Skeptic’s handbook firmly in hand, color me convinced. I don’t think there can be any doubt, anymore.

  4. Stomfi said,

    October 9, 2007 at 8:17 pm

    Gravatar

    Steve Balmer is like the bully at school who used his weight advantage to get all the smaller kids to give him their lollies, otherwise they might get beaten up. Not that ever happened, the threat was enough, as Steve hopes will be the case in this instance.

    Eventually all the little kids would get together and threaten to beat up the bully, who more often than not turned out to be a runaway cry baby.

    This is already happening to Steve. The more the general community see the Microsoft CEO bullying the little guys, who are only trying to help make computing better for everyone, the more they wont want to be associated with Microsoft and will look for alternatives.

    The FOSS community has already had one win through the EU litigation, although it remains to be seen whether the punishment is effective, and the Open Standards community has effectively delayed MS’s attempt to fast track their own industry standard.

    Bullies always respond to individual threats, so I think that the FOSS community needs to use a few of its Open Patents to sue MS. This will make them retaliate with some of theirs, and we will then be able to force them to show the rest at litigation, otherwise they will have a lose lose PR exercise on their hands.

  5. Robuka Kenderle said,

    October 9, 2007 at 9:00 pm

    Gravatar

    Steve Balllmer is the most important person in FLOSS.
    No one can galvanize the troops as well as he can by simply opening his mouth. Linus cant be bothered to deal in non-technical matters and RMS scares people.

    Ive had quite a few discussions with laissez faire Linux friends over the past few months and they’ve been slowly sipping the interoperability kool-aid served by people like Bill Milf, Miguel and other lackeys who are supposed to make us believe that the times are a changin at Microsoft. Sorry, but I base my beliefs based on what the head honcho says, not some smoke screen.
    Who signs the checks?
    Then I will take heed to HIS words first and foremost.

    There are a lot of reasons I dont believe that Microsoft hasnt changed and one of the most important is BECAUSE THE BOSS HASNT CHANGED HIS TUNE since the days of Linux=Cancer.

    Whenever a friend says “that was the old Microsoft”, all I have to do is find the latest Ballmer threat and have them explain to me how their behavior has changed.
    And since Ballmer does this every few months, I always have fresh ammunition so no one can claim ‘that was the old Microsoft’.

    Im happy people like Serenitude have realized that you can whistle by the graveyard all you want, it doesnt change reality one bit.

    There is NOTHING that the Chief Executive Officer of Microsoft Corporation has said in the past 18 months which even REMOTELY suggest that there has been a softening of their stance towards Gnu/Linux and FLOSS.
    The tone has been agressive and threathening as it ever was.

    To claim otherwise is delusional.

  6. Shane Coyle said,

    October 9, 2007 at 11:47 pm

    Gravatar

    BetaNews has further information on this subject, including a fuller quote for context in addition to a link to a video of the Q&A session.

    I wonder if the MS spokespeople will try to float the idea that Ballmer was taken out of context, like Novell tried last time he put his foot in his mouth.

What Else is New


  1. Links 20/2/2019: digiKam 6.0.0, Cockpit 188, Mesa 19.0 RC5

    Links for the day



  2. How Long Can the EPO Bend the Rules Before the Avalanche of Invalid Software Patents?

    A 35 U.S.C. § 101/SCOTUS moment in Europe will likely squash loads of abstract European Patents granted by the EPO; shouldn’t the EPO foresee this and immediately cease granting such obviously bogus patents, whose main beneficiary is a bunch of patent trolls?



  3. Battistelli Trashed 223 Millions (of Stakeholders' Euros) on a System That Destroyed the European Patent Office and Made Few Private Corporations a Lot Richer

    A quarter of a billion euros later the EPO finally admits in private that this was a massive failure



  4. Links 19/2/2019: Mesa 18.3.4, Cutelyst 2.7.0, Plasma Pass 1.0.0

    Links for the day



  5. What Happened in the United States Now Happens in Europe: Lots of Patents Turn Out to Be Bunk, Fake, Bogus, Invalid and Thus Worthless

    Worthless patents — not opposition to such patents — are the greatest threat to the legitimacy of the patent system, yet bureaucrats fail to heed the warning in the name of short-term profits



  6. Stephen Rowan's and Nellie Simon's Letter to EPO Staff: eDossier Has “Not Reached the Required Quality Levels.”

    We've just commented on it; here is the raw letter in full, explaining that eDossier and related frameworks will be abandoned entirely and indefinitely within less than a fortnight



  7. Search Matters Not at the European Patent Office

    The EPO has found out that "System Battistelli" has been catastrophic for the quality of patents; it stops short of openly admitting it as such and in fact it keeps the message strictly confidential (explained to insiders, who will inevitably notice a system being abandoned)



  8. António Campinos Still Needs to Undo Battistelli's Union-Busting Activities at the EPO

    Solidarity and support for Laurent Prunier are needed because the new French president lacks empathy even for fellow Frenchmen whose sole 'crime' is that they represented EPO staff



  9. Links 18/2/2019: Linux 5.0 RC7, RISC-V Spreading Fast

    Links for the day



  10. António Campinos Still Needs to Hold Team Battistelli Accountable for Illegally Bringing Weapons to the EPO

    It is imperative that, in order to repair the reputation of the European Patent Office (EPO), António Campinos should pursue accountability for the managers who brought Benalla and firearms to the Office (very serious breach of German law, jail sentence included)



  11. Links 17/2/2019: Compiz 0.9.14.0, Geary 0.13.0, GNU FreeDink 109.6, Debian 9.8, Texinfo 6.6

    Links for the day



  12. Amazon's Patent Policy Should be Enough of a Reason to Boycott Amazon and AWS

    There are many things to criticise Amazon and its founder for; but rarely does the mainstream media bring up the company's appalling patent policy



  13. Don't Use Cloudflare Because You Impose This on People Who Least Want It

    Reasons to stop making the World Wide Web so heavily dependent on some dubious companies like Cloudflare, which already has a worrisome track record



  14. How Many/Most EPO Examiners View 'President' António Campinos

    Based on what readers/insiders have told us, there’s a prevalent perception that António Campinos is afraid of (thus controlled/directed by) Bergot, who is still doing Battistelli’s biddings at the European Patent Office (EPO)



  15. Techrights' Priorities Over the Years

    An old priority of ours, eliminating software patents in the United States, is no longer quite so relevant because such patents are perishing in US courts, with or without outside intervention such as activism



  16. Courts in Disagreement: Warning on Wrongly-Granted European Patents and the Looming Collapse of All Software Patents in Europe

    By devaluing patents and reducing their perceived worth (as is happening in China and Europe) patent offices risk decreasing participation in the very system they fundamentally depend on



  17. Computing Will Not Necessarily Make the World a Better Place

    The vision of "happy world" (because each person has a so-called 'smart' 'phone') is a yuppie delusion that overlooks business models and corporate interests



  18. EPO Grants Fake European Patents -- Including Software Patents -- and European Courts Keep Rejecting These

    The demise of the legitimacy or perceived validity of European Patents is measurable and the system isn't the same anymore; the EPO makes no effort to change this for the better, either



  19. Nobody But Patent Trolls and Litigators Will Benefit From the Corruption of the European Patent Office

    IAM, EPO leadership, Iancu and the rest of these raiders are enabling corruption and facilitating or supporting a racket; that money they collect comes at the expense of future victims of their "clients" or "customers" (that's what they call applicants, to whom they grant dubious monopolies as a matter of urgency)



  20. WSL is a Misleading Acronym/Name Because There's No Linux in It, It's Just Windows

    When Microsoft says "Linux" (as in "Microsoft loves Linux") what it actually means is Windows and/or Azure



  21. Links 16/2/2019: Ubuntu 18.04.2 LTS, PyCharm 2019.1 EAP 4

    Links for the day



  22. Outline/Index of the Alexandre Benalla/Battistelli Scandal

    Our writings about the scandals implicating Benalla and the European Patent Office (EPO)



  23. Reading Techrights on a Mobile Device Running Android

    A new Android app for reading this site is being tested



  24. Links 14/2/2019: “I Love Free Software Day” and Mesa 19.0 RC4 Released

    Links for the day



  25. “EPO Lawlessness Again”

    Blackberry uses bogus European Patents (on software) for lawsuits; "all of them pure software patents. Patents on programs for computers as such," as Müller puts it



  26. Unitary Patent (UPC) is All About Imposing Patent Maximalists' Ideology of Greed and Self Interest on Courts in the Name of 'Unification' or 'Consistency' or 'Community'

    Pushers of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) are upset that they don’t always get their way when independent judges get to decide; as it turns out, many European Patents are just fake patents, more so under António Campinos



  27. Battistelli's Bodyguard, Part V: Mediapart Explains the 'Raid' Attempt, Reporters Without Borders Involved

    Mediapart, an investigative site that unearths a lot of incriminating things about Battistelli's former bodyguard Alexandre Benalla, was the target of a raid attempt some weeks ago



  28. Links 13/2/2019: Tails 3.12.1, MongoDB Being Dumped

    Links for the day



  29. Battistelli's Bodyguard, Part IV: Suspected Offenses of Forgery and Possible Falsification

    In a very underworld fashion, Benalla continues to break the law and create yet more scandals



  30. Battistelli's Bodyguard, Part III: Mars, France Close Protection (Benalla's Family), and Russian Oligarchy

    An article which examines the business background of Benalla, the outrageous salaries, the severance indemnity pay, and contract with a Russian oligarch close to Vladimir Putin


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts