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02.27.08

Week of Corruptions :: Day 3 :: Microsoft the Vicious Bully

Posted in America, Microsoft, Open XML, OpenDocument, Standard at 2:09 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Day three of the ridiculous BRM in Geneva [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] will begin in a couple of hours. We carry on bringing back memories of Microsoft's fight for OOXML. This third post among a series looks how Microsoft bullied (yes, quite practically bullied) States CIO and even diplomats in order to stifle the adoption of ODF in the United States.

Here is only a small portion of a very lengthy post (copied verbatim):


Those of you have followed the developments in the world of document formats probably come across plenty of corruption. The funny OOXML game continues to this date. Massachusetts is no exception and it is probably one among the first places from which ‘funny’ stories arrived. Let’s remind ourselves of the ‘Greatest Hits’ from the State of Massachusetts.

Here we have the first state CIO talking about his departure.

Almost to a person, to anybody involved or who knows about the ODF issue, they attributed the story to Microsoft, right, wrong or otherwise. Senator Pacheco may be a bully but I do not believe he is disingenious and would stoop to such a tactic. Senator Pacheco and Secretary Galvin’s office remain very heavily influenced by the Microsoft money and its lobbyist machine, as witnessed by their playbook and words, in my opinion.

Here is his successor, who held a similar position and stance that defends the interests of the citizens, not the cashflow of a convicted monopoly abuser.

As CIO of Massachusetts from February to November last year, Louis Gutierrez had to endure most of the brunt of Microsoft Corp.’s political wrath over a state policy calling for the adoption of the Open Document Format for Office Applications, or ODF — a rival to the software vendor’s Office Open XML file format.

To Microsoft, his departure was a sweet victory. Two CIOs then had their influence inherited by a Microsoft lobbyist. Microsoft essentially took control of the state.

That person is Brian Burke, the Microsoft Regional Director for Public Affairs, and if that surprises you, it surprises me as well, given the degree of acrimonious debate and disinformation witnessed in Massachusetts over the last 15 months involving the Information Technology Division’s transition to ODF.

If you think that’s bad, check out what they did in Florida.

Microsoft’s ‘Men in Black’ kill Florida open standards legislation

It was just a bit of text advocating open data formats that was slipped into a Florida State Senate bill at the last minute with no fanfare, but within 24 hours three Microsoft-paid lobbyists, all wearing black suits, were pressuring members of the Senate Committee on Governmental Operations (COGO) to remove the words they didn’t like from Senate bill 1974.


Delegates at Geneva will hopefully be fully aware of these stories. This is what they vote on.

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