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04.03.09

Hypocritical Novell Lacks a Sense of Humour

Posted in Humour, Marketing, Microsoft, Novell, Videos at 5:06 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Press jumps the gun

Movell and Nicrosoft

Summary: Novell does not want people to think that Microsoft has already acquired it; littering of YouTube resumes

THIS year’s April Fool’s Day was filled with pranks and Red Hat too was a victim. IDG insinuated that it was going proprietary. When it comes to Novell, however, the suggestion that Microsoft was buying it upset the company because the prank was ‘too’ believable. Here is the short story:

The idea that Microsoft would buy Novell isn’t exactly that far-fetched. Events on April 1 have proved this.

A spoof run by iTWire, written by Linux expert David M. Williams, and headlined “Linux beware: Microsoft acquires Novell, become UNIX copyright owner”, was sufficient to cause a few people to call Novell in the US and inquire if there was some truth to the story.

Novell PR chief Ian Bruce phoned iTWire and asked that the story be retracted. iTWire editor Stan Beer had to add a paragraph to the story to state emphatically that it was an April Fool’s joke.

[...]

He replied: “I wasn’t angry. Unfortunately, your story was so well done as a spoof it got picked up in the US and we actually had a couple of calls. Amazing, I know. The headline did it, I think. Sorry for the alarm.”

That people took such a story seriously tells us more about Novell, Microsoft and the public impression that the infamous patent contract has created, than any of the articles that have been written analysing, criticising or praising the deal.

So, here are Novell’s marketing people trying to remove ‘bad’ publicity despite the fact that it’s obviously a joke and almost every large company is a victim of such jokes.

It ought to be added that, based on what we found yesterday, Novell keeps flooding YouTube with corporate brainwash, so there’s a tinge of hypocrisy in its acts regrading publicity. Yesterday alone we found someone called “Phil” shoving an extraordinary amount of Novell advertisements into YouTube. “Phil” apparently describes himself based on his employer, saying that “PJA creates marketing as innovative and inspirational as your technology and science.” It also says “Interests and Hobbies: BtoB Advertising and Marketing.” Has Novell hired these people to do this? Why can’t Novell leave YouTube alone? As evidence of this latest mass insertion of marketing material, here are the videos which “Phil” added yesterday:

Also worth adding is the fact that the Microsoft press (Redmond Developer) has just added webcasts that promote the Microsoft-taxed SLES. There are two of them.

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15 Comments

  1. David Gerard said,

    April 3, 2009 at 5:12 am

    Gravatar

    Y’know, I really can’t see anything intrinsically evil in companies (Novell, Microsoft, RIAA, Monsanto) putting their ads up on YouTube. It’s not like anyone’s forced to look at them.

    Ian Reply:

    I agree. I use some of their products and I don’t even watch anything they put up there. If they posted some technical content, that would be a different story.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Technical content I’ve no problem with and they put some up yesterday (account NovellSupport).

    What is your opinion about advancing a format riddled with corruption by polluting YouTube?

    David Gerard Reply:

    That I’d rather their propaganda was where it could be seen than where it couldn’t.

    I still don’t see how companies putting their ads up on YouTube is intrinsically objectionable.

    Dan O'Brian Reply:

    I think he’s just upset because it’s Novell. He’s ok with Red Hat, Canonical and Sun doing it, for example.

    Dan O'Brian Reply:

    An example of Canonical advertising on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F6L51uZjaZU

    Another example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkMlCeDu-0c

    Oh, and have you noticed that these 2 examples are not “obviously” by a Canonical marketer? Yet the only videos he’s posted are commercials for Canonical. Hmmm.

    At least Novell submits their videos under accounts with Novell in the name.

    The following example, at least, was submitted by an account obviously tied to Canonical: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EgeS8WinWz4

    Ian Reply:

    What is your opinion about advancing a format riddled with corruption by polluting YouTube?

    I look at it this way, anyone who is bored enough of watching dragon ball z scenes put to linkin park songs to watch a youtube video about a file format probably has a good idea what OOXML is about and what ODF is about and isn’t going to be swayed one way or the other.

    David Gerard Reply:

    I concur with Ian :-)

    Besides, think of the classics Microsoft has put out.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Oh no. Who left the zoo’s doors open?

    David Gerard Reply:

    Ballmer is a fratboy at heart, but he’s not a stupid man, and he does take the piss out of himself very effectively :-)

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Well, yeah… but it’s not good for business.

    David Gerard Reply:

    Oh, I dunno. That video was an internal promo for the team’s amusement. Ballmer’s a salesman but has a sense of humour about the role. Similarly, his “developers developers developers” dance – he was being self-consciously silly, but he was, after all, *entirely right*. It is about getting the developers. He’s a salesman, and not a bad one. He might be out of his depth as CEO (looking at the stock price), but he’s not a complete incompetent, far from it. Never underestimate your opponent.

    David Gerard Reply:

    Indeed. Steve Ballmer is just one job out of his depth right now.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    We’ll give you a sneak peek of the third post in the series, a candid interview with an outspoken shareholder who likens Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates to fraudster Bernard Madoff.”

    http://www.networkworld.com/community/node/38350

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    We shall see what’s *really* in the coffers one day.

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