02.25.10

Microsoft Uses Vapourware and ‘Piracy’ (Empty Slurs) to Block Competition

Posted in Africa, Asia, Europe, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 4:20 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“The purpose of announcing early like this is to freeze the market at the OEM and ISV level..

Nathan Myhrvold, Microsoft

Summary: It’s propaganda time for Microsoft as the world starts exploring better software that the user actually controls

THIS post accumulates news reports that show how Microsoft deceives the market and blocks competition in this way.

Return of the Vapourware

In order to contribute to further damnation of the market, Microsoft saturates the press with vapourware about Vista 8. Microsoft booster Gavin Clarke is doing exactly that while belittling Free software, as usual, using British humour and spin. Yes, he is spouting out a lot of spin and Pogson replies/rebuts. Microsoft Nick and others play along with this shameless routine too. They haven’t actually seen anything (it’s a closed process), but they sure write about it.

“Windows team manager Scott McGregor would later recall, Gates was always complaining, “Why isn’t this like the Mac?” and “Be more like the Mac,” long before the Mac even shipped. This was a mantra that would become numbingly familiar in the months ahead.”

Barbarians Led by Bill Gates, a book composed
by the daughter of Microsoft’s PR mogul

Microsoft already neglects to deliver security patches for Windows XP [1, 2], not just Windows 2000 which receives almost no patches despite the obligation that Microsoft has. “When XP is Discontinued” is the title of this new article from the Washington Post and according to this new report, Microsoft is suing a business that still sells Windows XP.

Microsoft Corp. is suing a Southern Nevada company it claims has been selling refurbished computer systems loaded with unauthorized copies of Windows XP Pro software.

Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft filed suit Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas against PacificGeek.com of Boulder City, its owner Kirk Frantz and PacificGeek officials Dylan Frantz (son of Kirk) and Mark Frantz (brother of Kirk).

This is part of a new push to suppress software that Microsoft does not want to be sold. Experience suggests that Microsoft does not mind if the ‘right’ version of Windows is sold illegally.

Africa

Several weeks ago we showed how the United Nations and the World Bank practically helped Bill Gates and Microsoft colonise Africa. We also showed how Ethiopia was affected and earlier this month we saw that Windows Vista (not Vista 7) is finally being made available in the Ethiopian market, about 3 years after its original release in English and other languages. This is how much of a priority Africa is to Microsoft. If there is not much money to be earned from a translation, then it probably won’t be done. Africa is left years behind the rest of the world simply because Africa is not allowed to control the software it uses; this would not happen with GNU/Linux, where discriminatory treatment can only exist if the local population is uninterested in development.

So why does Microsoft translate its software to more languages? As we saw in south America, Microsoft makes such translations available only when it must block Free software adoption (GNU/Linux). Microsoft has also just launched Office 2007 for Africa. We’re in 2010, right? What took Microsoft so long? Here is what seems like another plug/advert in Africa’s press.

In summary his message was simple: How Microsoft as a business has benefited from utilising the concept of interoperability and why member states should consider such a model.

Interoperability is the ability of diverse systems, organisations and products to work together without special effort on the part of the consumer.

Microsoft is not interested in interoperability; it just wants to use software patents, so it ignores open standards. The above is a single article which seems like part of a marketing blitz (see more new examples from Kenya and from Nigeria). Those articles are ignoring the existence of decent Free software whose latest versions have been available for quite some time. Africa deserves better than that, but Microsoft keeps blocking the competition, often using the propaganda that it calls "piracy". Here are some lies and spin saturated with euphemisms like “protect consumers” and “Clean Dealer Program”:

As part of efforts to curb the challenges of non availability and lack of access to genuine software and information on how to identify and get the best from their IT investments, Microsoft has introduced the Microsoft Clean Dealers Programme.

According to the company, the programme was designed to increase customers‘ access to genuine software solutions.

This article from Nigeria has an Orwellian headline. There is also this one:

THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) in partnership with Microsoft has identified music as a veritable tool to tackle the menace of cybercrime in Nigeria.

Russia

Microsoft has been using this whole “piracy” nonsense in order to suppress adoption of GNU/Linux in Russian schools [1, 2, 3]. Microsoft booster Marius Oiaga contributes to similar Microsoft spin about Russia, where Microsoft uses this insulting word in order to portray itself as a victim while it’s blocking competition. Associated Press has an article with propaganda and insulting language (this article can also be found in Microsoft’s ‘news’ site) and they are issuing a whole paper about it. Now is the time of the year for Microsoft to pretend that it’s a victim and Nick Farrell, for example, plays along rather than expose what Microsoft is really doing here.

“It’s easier for our software to compete with Linux when there’s piracy than when there’s not.”

Bill Gates

Middle East

This news report says that “software piracy [sic] rate dips in Jordan” and nevertheless, Microsoft whines about what actually brings Windows to more clients.

‘Jordan should do more to combat piracy’

Jordan should do more to combat piracy in order to make the Kingdom a regional hub for information and communications technology (ICT), according to Microsoft Jordan.

[...]

In November 2009, Microsoft Jordan renewed its strategic partnership agreement (SPA) with the government, which includes supporting various projects for the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology.

Yes, Microsoft Jordan is also part of this new campaign that portrays Microsoft as a poor victim that everyone ‘steals’ from. Over in Qatar, Microsoft just ensures that people remain stuck with Windows and there is this new deal with Qtel:

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) and Qatar Telecom (NASDAQ: QTEL) have signed a strategic alliance to bring together integrated cloud-based services, software applications, mobile services and devices over QTEL’s converged network for work and entertainment purposes. MSFT and QTEL plan to launch their first products by mid-2010.

Over in the UAE [1, 2, 3], Microsoft is up to no good either and in Oman Microsoft is imposing the Live@edu scam (maybe some bribed officials):

Furthering its commitment to the development of a knowledge based society in Oman, Microsoft today announced that the Oman Ministry of Education has deployed its Live@edu online offering across schools in the Sultanate.

This is terrible. Students will be turned not only into Microsoft customers but also into people whose data is stored on Microsoft servers. Later on we will show how Microsoft abuses this data, in violation of the law.

Asia

The whole “piracy” propaganda has also come to Singapore:

Microsoft’s local office has formed a new collaboration with local IT mall, Sim Lim Square, to build upon the mall’s ongoing efforts to lower software piracy by promoting genuine software and offering incentives to adhering retailers.

Microsoft is being a sheer hypocrite for reasons that we explained in posts such as:

Here are some more of the imaginary numbers that supposedly refer to “damages”:

Pirates in Armenia cause 50 mln damage to Microsoft annually

[...]

Armenia, along with countries such as Georgia, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe joined the list of the largest consumers of pirated products.

Microsoft is just insulting nations where it prices its products out of reach and then allows people to obtain the software without licensing. The Copyright Cartel is doing the same thing. They want to enjoy sympathy while they abuse the market.

Europe

Microsoft’s scandals in Romania withstanding [1, 2], we now learn that the government keeps leaking money to Microsoft. The background posts put this in perspective. Microsoft is using Romanians as a diplomatic tool in Europe.

Romanian Ministry of Communications is to pay, until 2012, in nine equal instalments, the amount of 90.18 million euros (VAT included) for the right to use a total of 163,427 Microsoft licenses in about 30 public institutions.

Over in Norway, where Microsoft abuses are abundant [1, 2], only Microsoft is the named option in procurement:

The Vanylven municipality in Norway has issued a request for proposal for the purchase and delivery of Microsoft licenses. The contract has a period of performance of three years with an option to further extend by one year.

Why does this municipality only consider Microsoft licences? This is the type of discriminatory request that got a government sued (in Switzerland). See the following posts:

  1. Microsoft Sued Over Its Corruption in Switzerland, Microsoft Debt Revisited
  2. Can the United Kingdom and Hungary Still be Sued for Excluding Free Software?
  3. 3 New Counts of Antitrust Violation by Microsoft?
  4. Is Microsoft Breaking the Law in Switzerland Too?
  5. Microsoft Uses Lobbyists to Attack Holland’s Migration to Free Software and Sort of Bribes South African Teachers Who Use Windows
  6. ZDNet/eWeek Ruins Peter Judge’s Good Article by Attacking Red Hat When Microsoft Does the Crime
  7. Week of Microsoft Government Affairs: a Look Back, a Look Ahead
  8. Lawsuit Against Microsoft/Switzerland Succeeds So Far, More Countries/Companies Should Follow Suit
  9. Latest Reports on Microsoft Bulk Deals Being Blocked in Switzerland, New Zealand
  10. Swiss Government and Federal Computer Weekly: Why the Hostility Towards Free Software?
  11. Switzerland and the UK Under Fire for Perpetual Microsoft Engagements
  12. Lawsuit Over Alleged Microsoft Corruption in Switzerland Escalates to Federal Court

BETCA is also guilty of using vendor names (Microsoft) rather than adhere to open bidding based on capability and functionality.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

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

A Single Comment

  1. Robotron 2084 said,

    February 26, 2010 at 5:44 am

    Gravatar

    “Experience suggests that Microsoft does not mind if the ‘right’ version of Windows is sold illegally.”

    And that suggestion would be wrong. You can collect data through experiences, but you need logic and reason to come to the correct conclusions.

    Microsoft, like most any company selling software, doesn’t condone software piracy. Some people do sell pirated software without getting caught, but selling discontinued/out of date software is a dead giveaway. Not only that, but as the article goes on to say, this isn’t the first time the infringing company has been in trouble. It’s logical to assume that Microsoft would keep closer tabs on companies already found to be distributing pirated software in the past.

What Else is New


  1. Microsoft 'Moles' Inside WINE Project? WINE Should Bring Windows Users to GNU/Linux, Not the Other Way Around.

    The press release above (link omitted, it was pinned in several sites) is a cause for concern; after Microsoft infiltrated OSI and the Linux Foundation (both are now GitHub boosters, in effect diverting projects to Microsoft’s proprietary monopoly) it’ll be important to watch this space



  2. Links 25/11/2020: Raspberry Pi 400 With Touchscreens, Animation Framework in GTK/GNOME

    Links for the day



  3. [Meme] Things Will Get Amusing When/If EPO Proceedings Are Cancelled Due to Patent Trolls Suing the Platforms Using Software Patents (Granted by the EPO)

    The management of the EPO is so proud to be granting illegal software patents in Europe; this clear abuse of authority can come back to bite it in the rear



  4. Dr. Bausch Questions the Merits and Claims of EPO Management Regarding ViCo ('Skynet' Virtual 'Courts')

    Few courageous attorneys are willing to speak out about (and against) what EPO management is doing right now, in effect exploiting a public health crisis to override the law, spy on lots of people, outsource legal proceedings to the United States and so on



  5. Links 24/11/2020: Linux 5.9.11, Istio 1.6.14 and LibreOffice 7.1 Beta Released

    Links for the day



  6. Lots of Good News Today

    A quick roundup of news and key developments; most of them are positive and they give us hope



  7. Massive Collective Action Begins at the European Patent Office Today, Demanding Change and Forewarning the Management (Litigation)

    The financial "hoax" at the EPO (taking away money from staff to feed a gambling addiction of managers) needs to stop; staff has begun mass-mailing the management, threatening legal action



  8. EPO Management is Still Distracting From the 'Elephant in the Room' by Corrupting Media and Academia

    Under the EPO's dictatorship the law is being routinely violated; in order for the public to not pay attention or receive mixed messages (resulting in confusion) the EPO is manufacturing so-called 'studies' (which patent offices aren't supposed to do; they should focus on patent-granting while complying with the law)



  9. EPO's Central Staff Committee on Latest Meeting With Office Dictator: “No Meaningful Discussion Could Take Place.”

    Whilst allegedly preparing legal action the staff representatives at the EPO report on the lack of progress after so-called 'dialogues' (merely a false impression of consultation)



  10. Growing Concerns That EPO Staff Has Been Placed Under de Facto House Arrest by an Entirely Unaccountable Office

    "House arrest" is excessive and disproportionate. So says the Central Staff Committee of Europe's second-largest institution (which surprisingly enough the media is failing to properly study and investigate) as it highlights yet more human rights violations.



  11. IRC Proceedings: Monday, November 23, 2020

    IRC logs for Monday, November 23, 2020



  12. Internal Error: Unified Patent Court and Unitary Patent Incompatible With the Constitution and Basic Laws

    The FFII has issued a statement for Members of the Bundestag, Members of the European Parliament, Members of the Council, German Presidency of the EU, Chancellor Merkel, Commissioner Von Der Leyen, Commissioner Reynders, and Battistelli's buddy Breton



  13. The EPO is Using Hype Wave and Buzzword to Promote Illegal Software Patents in a So-Called “Digital Conference”

    The "HEY HI" or "AI" hype is misused by the Office; not just in person but also in webstreams, which basically serve as a vehicle for illegal agenda



  14. Dutch Delegation and German Delegation at the Administrative Council of the EPO Upset at the Office for Secrecy, Working Behind the Scenes to Crush Productive Staff

    Less than halfway through his term at the Office, Battistelli's buddy already faces growing criticism and, according to the Central Staff Committee, he "was emotionally affected by the intervention such that he was not able to effectively reply to the questions of the delegates."



  15. Links 23/11/2020: GNU Guix 1.2.0, Evaluating Precursor’s Hardware Security, Kdenlive 20.08.3, Kodi 19.x Beta, Vulkan 1.2.162

    Links for the day



  16. Links 23/11/2020: Linux 5.10-rc5, GIMP Turns 25, 4MLinux 34.2, Escuelas Linux 6.11, MPV Player 0.33

    Links for the day



  17. How to Put on Airs of Professionalism Like a Boss

    "Boardroom suits are not meant to be flashy, but to conform. Simple lines and smart ties -- the opposite of what Richard Stallman would wear, show that you are either a well-machined cog or a serious adversary."



  18. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, November 22, 2020

    IRC logs for Sunday, November 22, 2020



  19. Legal Action at the European Patent Office (EPO) Leveraged Against Management... for Robbing EPO Staff and Robbing Europe, by Extension

    The EPO is being looted for its value; the staff is rightly concerned and there’s legal action on the way, filed reluctantly as there’s clearly no other option (a last resort/necessary recourse)



  20. Cory Doctorow at Privacy Week 2020 on DRM, Freedom/Software Freedom, Regulation, Etc.

    “We Used To Have Cake, Now We’ve Barely Got Icing” by Cory Doctorow.



  21. Links 22/11/2020: KaOS 2020.11, Calindori 1.3, KStars 3.5.0

    Links for the day



  22. New Position Paper on the Unified Patent Court (UPC) Says It's “Not the Best Solution for Europe” -- Clearly an Understatement

    UPC proponents (profiteers) aren't enjoying support anymore; not only has progress stalled (come to a complete stop) but the whole debate about the UPC (or anything conceptually like it) turned toxic and negative because facts come out, overriding lobbyists of litigation giants



  23. Mortality Rates Increase at the EPO and Christmases (or Holidays) During Corona Mean Fewer Days Off

    There's still no sign (other than hand-waving and empty gestures/smiles) that the EPO's management wishes to right the wrongs and undo the damage done over the past decade or so; in some ways, today's management is worse than ever before (grossly incompetent and eager to break the law at every turn)



  24. Newly Abnormal: A Crackdown on EPO Staff and Labour Rights in 'Survey' Clothing (Willis Towers Watson)

    In a very characteristic fashion, with zero consultation/input from staff (or staff representatives/union leaders) EPO President António Campinos proceeds to implementing illegal ‘reforms’, assuring any remaining non-sceptics that he’s just another Benoît Battistelli



  25. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, November 21, 2020

    IRC logs for Saturday, November 21, 2020



  26. [Meme] Good Advice From the FSF, So It's Time to #DeleteGitHub

    A good gift for the FSF would be git; not GitHub, but git



  27. Go Distributed, Go Encrypted, Go Secure, Transparency Still Possible

    Earlier today we enhanced access to our (sometimes anonymised) IRC logs by issuing text (ASCII) versions, which will from now onwards be a nightly/daily occurrence; we're also making everything we publish accessible from a large number of IPFS nodes (akin to P2P)



  28. IAM Celebrating and Glorifying Illegal Patents With Fake 'Awards' and Bogus 'Endorsements'

    IAM's fake 'awards' are nothing more than business and agenda-steering lies; it's time to call out again the real corruption that's driving IAM (which is itself supporting and advocating corruption)



  29. Been There, Done That: Team UPC's 'October' Becomes 'Early November' and Now Late November

    The self-serving litigation fanatics who mislead their customers are still at it; Bristows says that UPC has no issues other than “delay”



  30. The Only Real Dialogue the 'European' Patent Office is Having... is With Litigation Parasites, Even Foreign Ones

    The EPO's mask falls off again, revealing a ruthless herd immunity-like mentality that welcomes patent trolls, threatens/condemns actual scientists, harms Europe and basically does a disservice to everybody


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

Recent Posts