EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

12.21.09

Microsoft Still Corrupts the Meaning of “Open” in Order to Enter Government Contracts, Cronies Help

Posted in Finance, Fraud, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 10:09 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

My cat

Summary: The fat cats from Redmond take taxpayers’ money, pay almost no tax, and also use their political power to make the system more discriminatory

Microsoft just cannot help ruining the word "open". Microsoft used this word in order to describe a NASA platform that it built to exclude "open source" platforms. A few months ago Microsoft also snatched NASA data which was owned by US taxpayers and it is currently blocking GNU/Linux users [1, 2] from a new service that NASA contracted Microsoft to build. It is amazing that all these projects are described as “open”, even though they serve just proprietary platforms and also fill the pockets of a multiple-times convicted monopolist.

While pretending to be “open”, Microsoft ventures forth and strives for even more control of the United States government.

Microsoft Taps Into Open Government Market

With the open government movement in full swing and the Obama administration’s Open Government Directive finally in federal agency hands, vendors such as Microsoft are looking to offer up their help.

[...]

For example, Microsoft recently worked with NASA to develop a Website called Be A Martian…

Well, too bad this Web site excludes users of Free software, eh?

Should people give up their rights and purchase proprietary software from convicted felons in order to access services that they have already paid for? It was a similar situation with the British iPlayer.

What about the security implications? As many people know from personal experience, using Windows also means loss of security. To give one of the latest examples:

Microsoft has decided that it is better to disable a 17-year-old video codec in older versions of Windows rather than patch the thing.

There are other new issues:

According to Andrew Brandt, a security researcher with the IT security vendor, the fake Microsoft security certificates appear in the properties sheets of both the installer and two of the three executable payloads dropped by the installer.

Going back to the issue of taxpayers being denied access to services which they paid for, who are those taxpayers anyway? Does Microsoft pay tax at all? Former Microsoft workforce still speaks about Microsoft’s tax evasion/dodging [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6] and reduction of wages with territorial tactics.

Here is another infuriating reminder from the news:

That spigot of revenue may be short-lived due to the state’s stance on data center tax incentives. Microsoft announced in August that it was migrating its Windows Azure cloud computing infrastructure from its data center in Quincy to another Microsoft facility in San Antonio. The reason: Microsoft’s unhappiness with tax policies in Washington state.

Well, that’s right.

Microsoft is so poor. Why should it pay tax at all? Let all those other (less affluent) citizens fill the pot of tax money, which in turn will be passed to Microsoft thanks to a government filled with cronies (NASA contracts for example). To make matters worse, using lobbyists they can pass the costs (or tax) down to poor people, even though wages have declined for decades. Well, not for the top 0.01%, whose wage rose on average by 600%.

Also from last week’s news:

More companies are disclosing their political activity

[...]

Monday, the Center for Political Accountability will announce that software giant Microsoft, Time Warner, Campbell Soup and Wisconsin Energy have agreed to detail their trade-association donations, along with other political spending.

Dan Bross, Microsoft’s senior director of corporate citizenship, said the company wanted “to lead by example.” Microsoft has posted its political-related dues online for the first time. The largest payment: $2.1 million in fiscal year 2009 to the Computing Technology Industry Association, a high-tech trade group.

That is just one firm. $2,100,000. Microsoft has a huge number of them and loads of lobbyists too. Many are located offshore, in Europe for example. To properly understand the impact of this, one need only look at the Gates-Abramoff scandals. Abramoff is in prison, Microsoft is not. Maybe it just has enough political clout to stay out of jail no matter how serious and heinous the crimes (which continue to this day).

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

5 Comments

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    December 21, 2009 at 11:28 am

    Gravatar

    $2.1 million to a single PAC. So if that was all in the US, then M$ spent on that single occasion, $21000 per US Senator. Or that’s $42000 per state, a decent annual salary.

    What’s the grand total for all the M$ lobbying, broken down by country?
    What’s the timeline for getting M$ reflagged for what it is, a political movement?

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    It was well over $10 million last year.

  2. Yuhong Bao said,

    December 21, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    Gravatar

    “To give one of the latest examples:”
    Indeo is BTW third-party software licensed by Microsoft originally from Intel. Here is a thread on the VirtualDub forums I created discussing this:
    http://forums.virtualdub.org/index.php?act=ST&f=3&t=18095&s=498f7f934560f63a27d3dc1ece261989

  3. williami said,

    December 22, 2009 at 12:50 am

    Gravatar

    I think this is realated, I emailed RMS (rms@gnu.org) before this article was posted about M$ “pesduo-open source” (ie: “open source” that just runs on Windows systems), and here’s what I said:

    “Also, (in my words) the new Micro$oft is just the old Micro$oft but
    with a false claim of “we’re open source!!!!” And M$ dosen’t know what
    free is. I rember “Lest Codeplex Preplex”, which means even when M$
    joins the free software world, I’m not trusting Microsoft.”

    RMS’ response:

    “Microsoft talks about “open source” to distract attention from the issue
    of freedom.”

    I pretty much know that, being a FSF member myself, and reading RMS’ essay on why “open source” misses the mark.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    “Open source” is no longer just a surrogate wrt “Free software” as defined in terms of the 4 freedoms.

What Else is New


  1. Patents Roundup: Bad Quality (USPTO), Bad Analysis (India), Bad Microsoft, Bad Actors (Trolls), Bad Scope (Software Patents), and the Ugly

    A mishmash of news about patents, mostly regarding the United States, and what can be deduced at the moment



  2. Links 26/6/2016: IceCat 38.8.0, Wine 1.9.13

    Links for the day



  3. With UPC Dead for Battistelli's Entire Remaining Term, No Reason for the EPO or the Administrative Council to Keep Battistelli Around

    Thoughts about what happens to the EPO's leadership after 'Brexit' (British exit from the EU), which severely undermines Battistelli's biggest project that he habitually used to justify his incredible abuses



  4. Links 24/6/2016: Xen Project 4.7, Cinnamon 3.0.6

    Links for the day



  5. Benoît Battistelli Should Resign in Light of New Leak of Decision in His Vendetta Against Truth-Telling Judge (Updated)

    Benoît Battistelli continues to break the EPO's own rules, not just national laws, as a new decision helps reveal



  6. Fake Patents on Software From Fake Australian 'Inventor' of Bitcoin and the Globally-Contagious Nature of EPO Patent Scope

    News from Australia regarding software patents that should not be granted and how patent lawyers from Australia rely on European patent law (EPO and UK-IPO) for guidance on patent scope



  7. Patent Lawyers Love (and Amplify) Halo and Enfish, Omit or Dismiss Cuozzo and Alice

    By misinterpreting the current situation with respect to software patents and misusing terms like "innovation" patent lawyers and others in the patent microcosm hope to convince the public (or potential clients) that nothing in effect has changed and software patents are all fine and dandy



  8. Looks Increasingly Plausible That Battistelli is Covering up Bogus and/or Illegally-Obtained 'Evidence' From the EPO's Investigative Unit

    Why we believe that Benoît Battistelli is growingly desperate to hide evidence of rogue evidence-collecting operations which eventually landed himself -- not the accused -- in a catastrophic situation that can force his resignation



  9. As Decision on the UK's EU Status Looms, EPO Deep in a Crisis of Patent Quality

    Chaotic situation at the EPO and potential changes in the UK cause a great deal of debate about the UPC, which threatens to put the whole or Europe at the mercy of patent trolls from abroad



  10. Another Demonstration by European Patent Office (EPO) Staff on Same Day as Administrative Council's Meeting

    SUEPO (staff union of the EPO) continues to organise staff actions against extraordinary injustice by Benoît Battistelli and his flunkies whom he gave top positions at the EPO



  11. Links 23/6/2016: Red Hat Results, Randa Stories

    Links for the day



  12. Interview With FOSSForce/All Things Free Tech

    New interview with Robin "Roblimo" Miller on behalf of FOSSForce



  13. Links 22/6/2016: PulseAudio 9.0, GNOME 3.21.3 Released

    Links for the day



  14. IP Europe's UPC Lobbying and the EPO Connection

    The loose but seemingly ever-growing connections between AstroTurfing groups like IP Europe (pretending to represent SMEs) and EPO staff which is lobbying-centric



  15. EPO “Recruitment of Brits is Down by 80%”

    Letter says that “recruitment of Brits is down by 80%” and "the EPO lost 7% of UK staff in one year"



  16. The Conspiracy of Patent Lawyers for UPC and Battistelli's Role in Preparing by Firing People

    The parasitic firms that lobby for the UPC and actually create it -- firms like those that pass money to Battistelli's EPO -- are doing exactly the opposite of what Europe needs



  17. Patent Lawyers, Having Lost Much of the Battle for Software Patents in the US, Resort to Harmful Measures and Spin

    A quick glance at how patent lawyers and their lobbyists/advocates have reacted to the latest decision from the US Supreme Court (Justice Breyer)



  18. Links 21/6/2016: Fedora 24 and Point Linux MATE 3.2 Officially Released

    Links for the day



  19. Supreme Court on Cuozzo v Lee Another Major Loss for Software Patents in the United States

    Much-anticipated decision on the Cuozzo v Lee case (at the highest possible level) serves to defend the appeal boards which are eliminating software patents by the thousands



  20. As Alice Turns Two, Bilski Blog Says 36,000 (Software) Patent Applications Have Been Rejected Thanks to It

    A look back at the legacy of Alice v CLS Bank and how it contributed to the demise of software patents in the United States, the birthplace of software patents



  21. EPO Self-Censorship by IP Kat or Just Censorship of Opinions That IP Kat Does Not Share/Accept (Updated)

    ree speech when it's needed the most (EPO scandals) needs to be respected; or why IP Kat shoots itself in the foot and helps the EPO's management by 'sanitising' comments



  22. Caricature: Bygmalion Patent Office

    The latest cartoon regarding Battistelli's European Patent Office



  23. Links 21/6/2016: GNU/Linux in China's HPC, Linux 4.7 RC4

    Links for the day



  24. Under Battistelli's Regime the EPO is a Lawless, Dark Place

    How the EPO's Investigative Unit (IU) and Control Risks Group (CRG), which is connected to the Stasi through Desa, made the EPO virtually indistinguishable from East Germany (coat of arms/emblem above)



  25. New Paper Demonstrates That Unitary Patent (UPC) is Little More Than a Conspiracy of Patent 'Professionals' and Their Self Interest

    Dr. Ingve Björn Stjerna's latest paper explains that the UPC “expert teams” are in fact not experts but people who are using the UPC as a Trojan horse by which to promote their business interests and corporate objectives



  26. Money Flying to Private Companies Without Tenders at Battistelli's EPO (by the Tens of Millions!)

    Extravagant and cushy contracts to the tune of tens of millions of Euros are being issued without public scrutiny and without opportunities to competition (few corporations easily score cushy EPO contracts while illusion of tendering persists -- for small jobs only)



  27. Patent Examiners and Insiders Acknowledge Profound Demise in Patent Quality Under Battistelli

    By lowering the quality of patents granted by the European Patent Office Battistelli hopes to create an illusion of success, where success is not measured properly and is assessed by biased firms which he finances



  28. Jericho Systems Threatens Alice, Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Threatens the Patent Trial and Appeal (PTAB)

    A look at the two latest threats to those who helped put an end to a lot of (if not most) software patents in the US



  29. How the Halo Electronics Case Helps Patent Trolls and How Publications Funded by Patent Trolls (IAM for Instance) Covered This

    A Supreme Court ruling on patents, its implications for software patent trolls, and how media that is promoting software patents and patent trolls covered it



  30. Patent Lawyers' Fantasy Land Where Software Patents Are Suddenly Resurrected Even When They're Not

    A quick glance at where the debate over software patents in the United States stands and how profiteers (such as patent lawyers) not only mislead the public but also bully the messengers


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts