Summary: Site gets better, faster, more robust to trolling
THE CONTENT management system of Boycott Novell has just been upgraded and slightly newer add-ons included. While we are preparing a commenting policy, comments require that people register with the site. This is trivial to do. It is not a censorship policy, but it reduces hit-and-run trolling. The suggestion came from 3 readers. █
Send this to a friend
Summary: Change is needed as attempts to harass this Web site and people behind it reach new heights (including libel against me)
GreyGeek, who is known to many as a popular participant from Linux Today, has just left the following comment, which led us to deciding to alter the commenting policy (it used to be strictly “no intervention”).
After reading all these comments one thing seems very apparent: Microsoft has INCREASED the number of TE’s assigned to you and this site. They are flooding each article with hostile comments linked with other comments on other articles by themselves and other TEs. Twisting, spinning, dodging, ducking, weaving, lying, and with plenty of ad hominem attacks to flavor their mutual love fest.
Yet, they never explain James Plamondon’s mea culpa, or his belief that Microsoft has continued to employ the very same techniques first noticed, posthumously, on the Compuserv Canopus forum, initially occupied mostly by OS/2 users. Joe Barr described the TE’s behavior and tactics (although he and the rest of the world did not know about James Plamondon’s digital terrorists at the time) in an appropriately titled article, “SLIME” (Spin, Lies and Insults by Microsoft Employees), and included this comment:
Online thugs, dimly lit cyberjerks who use the foulest imaginable language on anyone who disagrees with them, male or female, roam free. I recently reported the foul-mouthed William Beem to both CIS and the police for making threats. Other vermin contribute nothing but content-free ad hominem, including one pathetic munchkin who openly wishes me a horrible death. Me? I’m following Payne out the door. The stench on Canopus is more than I can bear
The original site is gone, but here is an archived copy of the SLIME article: http://web.archive.org/web/20070912130345/www.pjprimer.com/slime.html
better make a copy before “something” happens to it.
Wong’s mistake was to brag about his new position as an MS TE on line when he was first hired, thus exposing himself for what he is, one of James Plamondon’s creatures, a hired gun working for Microsoft. You can describe his posts as “gunning”, for that is what they are and what they do. If you are on the receiving end of one of their ad hominem campaigns they could be considered Digital Terrorists. Wong probably considers himself a digital samurai. One who would employ the Slog or the set up the Stacked Panel with no moral whims what so ever about astroturfing a site which is not Pro-Microsoft. “Bidness is bidness”. A paycheck is a paycheck.
Following in the footsteps of former Microsoft TE’s like Segal (“Barkto”), Diamond and Shupak, Wong and the other TEs infesting the comments section here are trying to do what their cohorts did to the Canopus OS/2 forum — hijack it or shut it down. Here is Joe Barr’s account of the “Barkto” event and evidence of Microsoft’s collusion:
They succeeded by sheer volume of posts and relentless ad hominem attacks against any not in the Microsoft camp, in order to hijack Canopus and drive out Joe Barr and other civil people. They can’t hijack this site because they don’t own it and they can’t turn you. That only leaves the last tactic — volumes of self-reverential negative postings, making all sorts of claims about “defeating” or “exposing” you or what ever. I often wonder how they can read about the graft and corruption revealed the internal MS emails revealed in the DOJ or Combs trials and not resign, or at least vomit. Anyone who can read Comes 3096.pdf and still want to be a TE has the kind of morals that Plamondon was looking for.
I have a suggestion. Allowing these MS shills to share the same threads as civil folks gives them too much front page space. That is precisely how they hijacked Canopus. Just like DELL and the other PC OEMs were/are forced to keep hardware featuring Linux to back pages or face get their “air supply cut off” by Microsoft not funding ad revenues, you should move obvious TE posts to another page, referenced by a single link which marked as such and is surrounded by all sorts of disclaimers and warnings about the content contained therein.
As I said, move the obvious AstroTurfs to a second page, accessible via a single link, surrounded by warnings of the hostile nature of the content, just the way MS has forced PC OEMs to hide Linux offerings.
It’s as fair a treatment as these egotists deserve. It is obvious that they are using the Canopus Attack method to swamp your website with the most outrageous postings possible, devoid or content, arguing over words, …. all the hallmarks of the Canopus Attack. They’ve got it down to an art form, like obnoxious WFW tag team members. Now you have “Lefty” threatening to sue you… classic MS tactic. That’s how MS muzzled the security people into forcing them to release news of security holes ONLY to Microsoft.
While “Lefty” is not related Microsoft (contrary to the insinuated claim from GreyGeek), his professional activity does suggest that it is in his financial interests to silence this Web site (along with other groups like the FSF*, which seek to forbid what his employer depends on**). This includes software patents. So he came here with false accusations against me, then flooded the Web site (and the Web at large) with the same defamatory false accusation, and then he aggravated everything and everyone who is in this Web sites (cursing beyond people’s imagination with about 100 lengthy comments per day), which leads to the suspicion that it was deliberate provocation of everyone, intended to find a reason for further harassment.
“I can see the IP addresses of those who are mod-bombing and fueling verbal attacks on this site, including libel against me.”To be clear here, the victim is me. I was accused of something I did not do in the first place and the rest was more of the same. The whole campaign was backed by many other trolls who promoted the same lies using quantity — sheer quantity — of comments and mod-bombing. I can see the IP addresses of those who are mod-bombing and fueling verbal attacks on this site, including libel against me.
The reference to lawyers as silencers is familiar. Actually, our server administrator*** received a similar type of treatment. Microsoft threatened to sue him for writing a factually correct blog post about security problems that their software had. That was a few years ago.
If comments are made harder to leave, then the trolls get their way, so we are still trying to work out how to clean up future feedback on posts.
Those who do not honour freedom of expression resort to intimidation and libel, which sometimes comprises or includes dishonest smear campaigns.
Lastly, adds GreyGeek:
It amazed the journalist at Wired, in retrospec, how easily he was spun by Microsoft.
And, I have NO DOUBT that you have read the emails which describe “handling” the journalist O’gara, who wrote and writes much like you.
Assign TE’s to this site? When you say “we” I know you aren’t referring to other Penquins or even rocks in your pocket.
We have already exposed (and reported to the FTC) at least one Microsoft TE who endlessly trolled this Web site in recent days. █
* He has already attacked Richard Stallman by taking satire out of context.
** He is not here on his own behalf. The employer is not dissociated from this because the topic discussed here is not politics, for example. If a person promotes his employer’s agenda or vilifies his employer’s competitors outside work (addressing the very same subject as in work), then he or she does this for financial gain. Period.
*** The man who kindly donated server space after of this Web site came under persistent and repeated DDOS attacks, which led to problems with the old Web host.
Send this to a friend
Summary: Novell promotes patent encumbrances with Microsoft, Xandros helps Windows again, and the SFLC warns about Melco
WE ARE not truly expecting Novell to issue a response to the racketeering news about Melco [1, 2, 3] because Novell too is part of the same type of racket. To make matters worse, Novell uses this racket to market its distribution of GNU/Linux at the expense of competitors while Novell also decreases its contributions to Linux. But look! Novell acquired some more software patents last week. Just what Linux needs: software patents.
Intentional-stance characterization of a general content stream or repository, patent No. 7,562,011, invented by Stephen R. Carter of Spanish Fork, and Delos C. Jensen of Orem, assigned to Novell Inc. of Provo.
Methods, systems, and data structures for electronic addressing, patent No. 7,558,826, invented by A. Kent Sievers of Orem, and David R. Hansen of Highland, assigned to Novell Inc. of Provo.
User MoreInterop (the Microsoft/Novell Web site) promotes Microsoft and Novell’s software patent coupons in a bunch of new videos that it has just uploaded to YouTube. That’s Microsoft and Novell fighting against GNU/Linux for which Microsoft cannot be paid owing to racketeering (notably Red Hat). The videos make it clear that it is just about the “customers” (if Novell is to be believed at all) but nobody else, including the volunteering producers of Novell’s products. Novell is exploiting and betraying the very same people that built SUSE. They are are not just Novell/S.u.S.E. employees, who were part of a collective effort that ought to be respected.
In other news, the following press release has just been published and it shows how Xandros too is helping Microsoft, its software patents partner. It’s part of a trend.
BridgeWays, a division of Xandros, today released a series of management packs that enable system administrators to manage business critical applications on Windows, Linux, and Unix from a single console. The new management packs help extend Microsoft System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2 to additional business applications on Windows and to the 85% of enterprise data centers with cross-platform environments.
For more details on this, see:
How can Xandros and Novell (and by inference Microsoft) be stopped? Well, the SFLC has just published the following post which reminds developers why they should choose the GPLv3.
Microsoft Patent Aggression Continues Against Free Software
What we see in this agreement between the Melco Group and Microsoft is another little above-water piece of the same patent aggression iceberg that Microsoft has placed in our community’s way. They continue to shake down companies that distribute GNU/Linux systems for patent royalties. As I’ve written about before, it’s difficult to judge if these are GPLv2-compliant, but they are almost certainly not GPLv3-compliant. If there were ever a moment for the community to scramble to GPLv3, this would be it, if for no other reason to defend ourselves against the looming aggression.
In my correspondence with Linus Torvalds it was made apparent that he would rather allow such patent deals than defend the integrity of Free software. He still underestimates the value of the GPLv3 and everything that’s at stake. █
Send this to a friend
Summary: Two new analyses from the Mono-Nono Web site
JASON has just published two posts that hit the nail on the head. The first one is a detailed explanation of how, why, and who might be interested in suppressing Mono opposition. There are many reasons to ignore these gagging attempts, which include relentless attempts to assassinate the character of individuals and reputation of Web sites. We’ve seen Miguel de Icaza cursing Sam Varghese for example. Why? Because he happens to support the FSF when it comes to his stance on Mono and GNU/Linux. It’s like some sort of Microsoft/Novell-organised McCarthyism.
From Jason’s post:
A lot of times, mono critics are told we should just “shut up”. Everything that needs to be said has been said, no one is going to change their mind, and there is no point in going on about things.
Let me tell you why I reject that.
Reason four: It is too important
We aren’t talking about arguing over the One True Brace Style here. Team Mono wants to be on your desktop. They want more Mono and even Moonlight up in GNOME. If they get GNOME based on .NET, then you can bet your sweet object code they are coming for KDE.
Reason five: It sets a bad precedent
First was C#/CLI, then .NET, then Moonlight. Each iteration has been less Free and more risky to build on. Each one is ever closer to some exclusive Novell-Microsoft arrangement.
What of the next Microsoft technology that Team Mono decides needs to be cloned? Microsoft can afford to have every component integrate tightly – in fact, it is to thier advantage to do so. But we who rely on standards and promises to protect us can not be so cavalier.
Reason six: That’s what Novell wants
Listen, Novell management is not a bunch of idiots. There can be no question that they knew entering into a relationship with Microsoft would be taken as a betrayal of the community. There is no doubt in my military mind they sat down and tried to judge the cost as best they could, and you know what they came up with…
Sadly enough, as a subsequent post puts it, Ubuntu separates Mono critics from the discussion. This is a tactless move for reasons that are explained in the post.
Time to draw attention to the “Free Speech Zone” on the Ubuntu Forums.
For perfectly understandable reasons, Team Mono is really targeting Ubuntu to get ever more mono applications in by default. Banshee is virtually a given at this point, and GNOME-Do is a likely follow up. There is a blizzard of pro-mono misinformation on the Ubuntu Forums – which it breaks my heart to say, doesn’t exactly have quite same level of intellectual rigor as the Dialogues of Plato.
Whoever takes over these distributions — be it Microsoft-sympathetic people or even Microsoft employees — they are ruining GNU/Linux, sometimes knowingly. Some people’s perception or vision of GNU/Linux is another Mac OS X with DRM, patent fees, .NET, and a desktop which is built based on Microsoft Silverlight (ask Miguel de Icaza about it). What would be achieved? This is not the GNU system and it is the antithesis of Free software.
“We are divided between people like Novell employee or Microsoft folks and those who are actually GNU/Linux users defending their platform, their territory.”Ubuntu does not even deny suppressing opposition to Mono anymore. What a spit in the face of the FSF and the large majority of the GNU/Linux users out there, who agree with the FSF. Ubuntu suppressed Mono opposition before and even eliminated it (it disappeared, according to Jason), which is what led to the creation of the Mono-Nono Web site on the face of it.
Some will say that we’re a “divided community”; yes, maybe we are. We are divided between people like Novell employee or Microsoft folks and those who are actually GNU/Linux users defending their platform, their territory. To a certain degree, this is indeed the case.
Several companies and organisations (e.g. VMware, ISO, OSI, Yahoo, XenSource) found out the hard way what happens when Microsoft takes over staffing or — as in Novell’s case — starts paying people’s paychecks in other companies.
The foresight of the FSF has been excellent for many years and the GNU GPL was defended for decades (it is the most popular software licence right now). Rather than reject the FSF, people should reject those who foolishly reject the FSF's advice. █
“He [Bill Gates] is divisive. He is manipulative. He is a user. He has taken much from me and the industry.”
Send this to a friend
Zion National Park
Summary: Bits and pieces from the past week’s news
THIS has been another boring week. For those with limited time, well.. it’s a post that can be spared. As the saying roughly goes, “move along, there is nothing much to see here.”
Read the rest of this entry »
Send this to a friend
IT HAS BEEN an exceptionally quiet week for Novell, but more news about SUSE (and OpenSUSE in particular) will be caught up with next week.
Heise published a list of GNU/Linux distributions and OpenSUSE was one of them.
The only other real news is OpenSUSE 11.1 being added to click2try’s catalogue. Then there is this blog post about SUSE Studio.
Some months ago I casually signed up for a beta program online that seemed to mix cloud computing with Linux distributions. This program being SUSE Studio. I was impressed by the concept and I took it for a brief whirl. It is quite powerful and apart from adding packages from the regular openSUSE repositories of the latest stable release version, you can add/remove your own repos. Furthermore, you can customize the artwork and share this custom distribution with the world. You can watch this video to see how to use SUSE Studio to build a custom Linux distribution based on openSUSE.
There was also not much about SUSE. In the context of GNU/Linux servers, the Var Guy mentioned Novell as follows:
Rewind to the 1990s, and Microsoft wisely evangelized Windows 95’s connectivity to Novell NetWare servers. Fast forward to the present, and Microsoft should do the same with Linux servers and open source.
Earlier on we mentioned the US Postal Service moving to Free software, but the role of SUSE was not mentioned at the time. Here it is:
The Postal Service is moving 1,300 Sun Solaris midrange servers to a Hewlett-Packard Linux environment, using Novell’s SUSE Linux on the mainframe and distributed computing platforms to forge greater interoperability between the two environments.
In an article about IBM, SUSE is mentioned very briefly at the end alongside its main rivals.
IBM will begin shipping the Istanbul variants of the System x3755 server on August 26. Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, Microsoft Windows Server, and Sun Microsystems Solaris 10 are all supported on this box.
This is nothing of significance, but it’s the little that could be found.
Turbolinux is one of the 4 server/desktop companies that signed a Linux patent deal with Microsoft. Turbolinux seems quite irrelevant in English-speaking parts of the world, but in Asia it is sometimes used and it got some scarce attention in the English press, even a press release this week. There is usually nothing at all about them, not even a mention. █
Send this to a friend
“We could refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop with Moonlight”
–Miguel de Icaza
Summary: A batch of small updates on the Mono/Moonlight situation
NOVELL’S (and Microsoft’s) plan with Moonlight is something that we have warned about ever since Moonlight was first announced. As usual, at the time, certain people dismissed this as something along the lines of "zealotry". The word “zealotry” (like “terrorism”) is increasingly being used to describe “something I don’t like” or “something I don’t agree with” (even protests or noise). The label most commonly fits a minority, so it is conventionally assumed that a majority cannot be “zealous” and strong nations cannot be supporting “terrorism” (which is, by definition, the use of force to accomplish political goals). Most critics of Microsoft are not “Microsoft haters”. On the other hand, Microsoft is a self-confessed "Linux hater", so Linux users are justifiably being defensive. But being a minority with little influence over the media, it is often GNU/Linux which gets daemonised.
Now, arriving at the actual point of this post, the community is rapidly becoming aware of Novell’s Mono-Moonlight intersection, which we covered in [1, 2, 3]. It is nothing but trouble, unless we all support Microsoft and Windows.
Banshee and F-Spot to depend on Moonlight
Planet Debian points to the news that Banshee and F-Spot is going to depend on Moonlight in the future. Moonlight is forbidden from Fedora. If this happens, Banshee and F-Spot have to be dropped from Fedora.
The FSF, which is against Mono, was very polite in its statement. As Sam Varghese puts it:
The statement conclude by saying that if Microsoft wanted to genuinely reassure free software users that it had no intention of suing them for using Mono, “it should grant the public an irrevocable patent license for all of its patents that Mono actually exercises.”
Watch the pro-Mono spinners in the comments. Here is one interesting comment from LWN:
I can only imagine the violent anti-FSF reaction and hate this will generate (or is probably already generating?) on various forums.
Anything that RMS or the FSF says is usually grounded in solid logic. Everybody would be wise to at least consider it.
As for me personally, and the businesses I am involved with, I would avoid Mono.
Which really saddens me because I like Mono. The language is better than Java, the implementation starts faster, it feels more lightweight, it supports static compilation, etc.
I have been on the receiving end of an IP-related lawsuit and it is an experience which one never forgets.
LinuxInsider quotes some more people, with statements that include:
“If you honestly think this will lead to cross-platform development, then you need your head checked,” wrote Josh in the comments on TuxRadar, for example. “Since when has Microsoft had any sincere interest in cross-platform anything?
“It looks to me like a classic Trojan horse,” Josh concluded, “and Miguel de Icaza is a tool.”
Similarly: “This Mono thing looks a bit like a Trojan horse,” agreed kt on LXer, where the topic was covered in not just one but two separate threads.
Jason has just suggested a new slogan for Mono:
New Slogan Time
Mono: Extending Redmond’s Reach into Proprietary Platforms on the backs of “Open Source” developers since 2001. Also some Linux apps in there somewhere too.
Boycott Mono and Novell. They take away the freedom of GNU/Linux users and turn Linux aficionados into clients of Microsoft. █
Send this to a friend
Summary: Example of hypocrisy and misrepresentation, using stereotypes [1, 2, 3]
AFTER character assassination [1, 2, 3] of Richard Stallman, the following probably ought to be quoted (comments are equally informative):
I was really sickened the other day to see an investigative blogger whom I respect and admire get attacked so unfairly. I am speaking of Roy Schestowitz, of BoycottNovell fame. Far beyond the original purpose described by the URL, Roy has focused with laser-beam intensity on all of the dirty dealings of proprietary technology. I have often been amazed to check a Boycott Novell article and discover hard evidence, before my very eyes, of things I’d only half-guessed and suspected before.
The attack was from Open Source to Go!, so it seems to be from a source within the community. Beside the point of who’s right on that one, David Schlesinger, in the post on Open Source to Go!, uses the little spat as an example of zealotry.
Now, at last, the point: Boycott Novell has intercepted real, actual, hard evidence of asstroturfing by a Microsoft employee. What pisses me off the most is that, without the Roy Schestowitzes of this world, if I try to say that Microsoft asstroturfs, I get called “paranoid.”
Do keep in mind that Microsoft has declared “jihad” against Linux. There is the hard evidence. Microsoft hires “evangelists”.
But check the rest of Armchair Theorist. If you didn’t know, you’d think it was a personal blog just like mine, wouldn’t you? But it’s not! It’s a soapbox for a corporation. A corporation that hires… “evangelists.” Definition of “evangelism” courtesy of Wikipedia:
“Evangelism is the practice of attempting to convert people to a religion. The term is used most often in reference to Christianity and Islam, since those two religions mandate that their followers make efforts to recruit as many people as possible into their faith…”
How many of these “Microsoft evangelists” are there, anyway? To take Microsoft’s own word for it, we can visit the MSDN page with the folksy-sounding title of “Meet Your Local Microsoft Evangelists.” With a map of the USA. I just clicked on my home-state of Iowa, and counted nine profiles. For Iowa. Which isn’t exactly saturated with computers to begin with. It’s that important that the fly-over state of Iowa, home to more hogs and cornfields than computers, has nine “evangelists.”
Yesterday came the formal complaint, but Microsoft AstroTurfing in this Web site has not stopped since. █
Send this to a friend
« Previous entries Next Page » Next Page »