Just the other day, we ran a post about DCI and the political games it had been playing for Microsoft. The following old page sheds some more light on such AstroTurf political campaigns, which Microsoft is resorting to at the moment in order to intercept Google/Yahoo collaborations (AstroTurfing is managed by the LawMedia Group). What it shows rather clearly is that Microsoft’s political muscle has not been loosened. In fact, Microsoft's lobbying activities reportedly continue to climb.
Read the following old gem.
Actually, this isn’t “astroturfs again”, it’s just another project in a massive ongoing astroturf campaign. Numerous magazine columnists have recently published columns spouting the Microsoft line, almost word for word. Microsoft’s PR fronts send them a template and pay them for getting the article published. The results are pretty easy to spot because they just paraphrase the template, All include the exact same points.
Microsoft sponsors two major lobbying groups, The Association for Competitive Technology, and a spin-off from that group, Americans for Technology Leadership. Both are active in trying to influence legislation in state governments, especially in California. Neither will state how much of their support comes from Microsoft, but Oracle Corp. got in a little hot water about a year ago for having a detective agency sort through one of the organization’s trash to try to determine that.
Microsoft also employs two high profile political advocacy groups: Dewey Square Group (Democrat oriented) and DCI/New Media (Republican oriented), has become the 5th largest “soft money” donor to both parties, and hires a whole lineup of other lobbying firms.
The stories above date back to US antitrust actions and also, for a variety of reasons, we have recently criticised the New York Times, which is frequently seen serving Microsoft’s agenda [1, 2, 3]. Here is another oldie pointing out the problem.
[The NYT ran a prominent article on Saturday raising questions about the
Independent Institute, an ad it placed, and funding from MS. Some of the
signers have told me they are very angry that they were not told that MS
was involved. Here is some fallout. --DBM]
The remainder is very interesting because it shows how an establishment which calls itself “Independent Institute” is not independent at all. It’s dependent on Microsoft and it serves as yet another pressure group. This ought to have people wonder about Microsoft’s use of the term “independent”. Recall the incident below. █
“Microsoft did sponsor the benchmark testing and the NT server was better tuned than the Linux one. Having said that, I must say that I still trust the Windows NT server would have outperformed the Linux one.”
–Windows platform manager, Microsoft South-Africa
Reference: Outrage at Microsoft’s independent, yet sponsored NT 4.0/Linux research