Summary: Another look at what Microsoft’s Group Vice President said about Free software a few years ago
ONE month ago we showed Bill Gates trying to mix up proprietary with “commercial” and Free software with “non-commercial” (or unsuitable for use). This is a classic type of slur from Microsoft and here is Jim Allchin doing it as well (as Microsoft Vice President).
In response to the question “How do you feel about the recent developments in the open source community? Do you still feel open source as a threat?”
“So yes, I view [Free software] as a competitive challenge.”
–Jim AllchinJim Allchin replies: “Customers need to judge non-commercial software and Linux based on the merits of what they provide. This is true in terms of technology, compatibility, and the safety of your investment (whether the product you buy indemnified from patent-infringement lawsuits). Non-commercial software is a competitor to all commercial software. So yes, I view it as a competitive challenge.”
It’s Free software versus non-Free software, not “non-commercial software” versus “commercial software”. Jim Allchin understands that, but he plays dumb to justify the derogatory spin.
Also notice the inclusion of patent FUD in there. Jim Allchin was not asked about patents at all. Let’s not forget that 6 months before SCO sued Linux (with Microsoft funding) Jim Allchin said “there’s going to be a patent lawsuit on Linux. It’s bound to happen.” [1, 2] █