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Status Update on Microsoft’s Smear Campaign Against ODF (Corrected)

Posted in Deception, Microsoft, Open XML, OpenDocument at 11:00 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Working behind the scenes to orchestrate “independent” praise of our technology, and damnation of the enemy’s, is a key evangelism function during the Slog. “Independent” analyst’s report should be issued, praising your technology and damning the competitors (or ignoring them). “Independent” consultants should write columns and articles, give conference presentations and moderate stacked panels, all on our behalf (and setting them up as experts in the new technology, available for just $200/hour). “Independent” academic sources should be cultivated and quoted (and research money granted). “Independent” courseware providers should start profiting from their early involvement in our technology. Every possible source of leverage should be sought and turned to our advantage.”

Microsoft, internal document [PDF]

Microsoft’s smear campaign [1, 2, 3, 4] against OpenDocument Format continues. It’s not only a Vice President from Novell who participates in this. It’s also comes from the usual suspects. As our reader Logan put it yesterday (using an excessively pessimistic tone):

You’ll see in coming months more and stories to discredit ODF, by Mr. Brown [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14], by Jesper Lund Stocholm [1, 2, 3, 4], by Jirka Kosek, by Rick Jelliffe [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9]… The usual whores! They’ll be referenced daily by Microsoft’s employees in their blogs. Just like it’s happening right now.

This charade will only be over when the only way to exchange documents is by using only Microsoft’s file formats and by using only Microsoft’s applications.

Links above were added for some context. Andy Updegrove expects a war or words to carry on for quite some time. He wrote:

The series begins with BRM Convenor Alex Brown reporting on the results of a conformance test that he applied to assess OfficeOpen 2.4.0 to ISO 26300 (ODF 1.0) (an earlier blog entry reported on his using the same test to compare Office 2007 to ISO 29500 (OOXML)). Rob Weir filed the folloiwng reply, challenging Alex’s results. I see a comment at the end of Alex’s post promising “to put Rob right in a follow-on posting.” It appears that this is likely to run on for some time…

ODF formatLast night it was Rob Weir who dispatched another item which, among other things, requested that Alex Brown retracts his invalidated [pun] ODF smear. Microsoft’s anonymous bloggers (or partners, or Munchkins) will probably respond with the usual personal insults [1, 2], even libel.

There’s a lot of funny stuff happening with business relationships that are too complex to follow, but it usually turns out that all those who support OOXML are in Microsoft’s pocket one way or another. We still have our suspicions about Patrick Durusau and his new buddies (mind the photo at the top), especially after he pulled links to his rather shocking pro-OOXML letters [Correction: see corrections in the comments below]. A source tells us this might be related to the ongoing antitrust case which revolves around OOXML abuses.

In other news that is actually more positive, the OpenDocument Fellowship received many donations.

The OpenDocument Fellowship has attracted nearly $40,000 (USD) in donations to help fund development projects under the Fellowship’s Targeted Donations Programme .

One donation will be used to reward volunteers from the OASIS ODF Formula subcommittee for their continuing work on the formula specification. The other donations are targeted at development projects. The Fellowship is producing an “ODF toolkit” for developers, and a light-weight ODF viewer.

GNOME textMicrosoft pretends to have accepted the existence of ODF, but based on its actions in South Africa at the moment, it remains nothing but a bully offering candy to attract victims. Microsoft wants to kill ODF. No more, no less.

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  1. Gopal said,

    May 7, 2008 at 5:51 am


    The links in Patrick Durusau’s site to his various “pro-ooxml” articles are very much active and working.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 7, 2008 at 5:55 am


    Interesting.Marbux may have been lying then.

    Thanks for pointing that out.

  3. AlexH said,

    May 7, 2008 at 7:35 am


    Your ODF story is from 2006 too, and probably doesn’t count as “news” any more.

    I also don’t buy Rob Weir’s witterings. The issue is that no app seems to output ISO standardised ODF; for all the technical talk about conformance, that basic issue remains.

    Ideally you’d have the choice; ISO ODF by default, or ODF plus extensions.

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 7, 2008 at 7:40 am


    Alex, you’re right. I didn’t spot the date on this item (surprising it was indeed) although it came up in my feeds as news.

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