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SD Times Removes Miguel de Icaza’s Admission That Mono Has Patent Problems and de Icaza Mocks Jeremy Allison

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell at 1:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Miguel de Icaza and other Microsoft MVPs

Summary: An article that quotes rather damning material about Mono suddenly vanishes without a trace and Microsoft MVP Miguel de Icaza still attacks critics of patents around Mono (which he himself implicitly criticised in the now-vanished article)

THIS could be an innocent accident, but it may also be a case of cowardice or consensual censorship. We ought to say this in order to give those involved the benefit of the doubt. If it’s a case of censorship, they can later pretend that it was an accident.

It involves the author [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] who promoted an article which Groklaw called “The history of Windows, the Pravda version”. And yes, the previous post showed a photo of Lenin reading Pravda. So, what is it all about? Less than a week ago we published this post about Microsoft MVP de Icaza saying that Microsoft “shot the .NET ecosystem in the foot” because of patent threats. A lot of people paid attention to it and there was a bit of a controversy in Twitter. Not realising the strong impact of the Streisand effect (articles will arouse more curiosity when someone tries to remove them), SD Times magically removed the source of the quotes from de Icaza. We urge readers to make copies of the cached version of the deleted article while it lasts on Google’s servers. They are probably trying to make it vanish and The Source is the genius which caught this. Jason’s explanation goes like this:

I know this will startle the Gentle Reader, but I actually try to check and verify stuff. It’s how I pretend I have integrity.

So I plugged the quote into Google and found a few references, all of which linked the SD Times article “Does Windows cost Microsoft opportunites?” allegedly by David Worthington.

Oh – don’t bother with that last link. It’s a 404. The article isn’t in the list of articles by the author David Worthington as listed on the SD Times site either.

Google cache has it though. It certainly appears like the story was out there, and was on SD Times, and contained the alleged quotes from Mr. de Icaza.

The Question(s)

Why is this article no longer up on SD Times?

Are all the quotes attributed to Mr. de Icaza in the article genuine? (If they are I have more to say about some of them!)

Just in case this article never returns and never sees the light of day again, here are some of the exact or approximate quotes from de Icaza:

Paragraph 2: “Among the critics is Novell vice president Miguel de Icaza, who said .NET’s focus on Windows has come at the expense of opportunities for Microsoft, and its desire to guard its intellectual property is an impediment on the platform.

Paragraph 3: “”Microsoft has shot the .NET ecosystem in the foot because of the constant threat of patent infringement that they have cast on the ecosystem,” he said. “Unlike the Java world that is blossoming with dozens of vibrant Java Virtual Machine implementations, the .NET world has suffered by this meme spread by [Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer] that they would come after people that do not license patents from them.”


Paragraph 7: “However, Mono remains the only implementer of the ECMA CLI specification outside of Microsoft, and that is a testament to the legal uncertainty surrounding some aspects of .NET due to Microsoft’s statements about open-source software, de Icaza said.”


Paragraph 9: “Facebook, Google, Ruby on Rails and Wikipedia could have been built using .NET, de Icaza claimed. “All of those are failed opportunities. Even if the cross-language story was great, the Web integration fantastic, the architecture was the right one to fit whatever flavor of a platform you wanted, people flocked elsewhere.”


Paragraph 12: “Further, developers can build languages on top of .NET 4.0′s dynamic language runtime, which supports both Python and Ruby, Watson said. But it’s the addition of new technologies on top of the ECMA specification, such as the DLR, that de Icaza believes impedes the CLI’s adoption.

“Let’s remember that the same thing happened to Groklaw where it merely dared to express concerns about Mono…”Paragraph 13: “Microsoft’s submission to ECMA has remained at a “core level,” de Icaza claimed. “It never went into other areas like server APIs, GUI APIs, or even updating some of the core to include LINQ, the DLR and many others.”

Equally worthy of a mention is this new post from The Source where Jason shows an example from last week where Mono bullies do their typical routine to dismiss critics. This time we have Miguel de Icaza calling Jeremy Allison “fear monger, hating, conspiracy theorist” (context here).

That’s right, Allison ‘dared’ to say the obvious about Mono [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7], so now he has the label “conspiracy theorist” glued to his back by Miguel de Icaza et al. It’s a nasty label that we wrote about 2 years ago.

Let’s remember that the same thing happened to Groklaw where it merely dared to express concerns about Mono (for the reasons de Icaza explains and even justifies in the apparently-censored article). This is systematic bullying of everyone who criticises Mono (bloggers and journalists alike). This puts Mono at the same ethical level as Microsoft.

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A Single Comment

  1. Agent_Smith said,

    March 24, 2010 at 10:37 pm


    Great post… The curious case of the disappearing bad mouth article from Miguel de Icaza… Eeheheheheheeheh… His master already knows what he has spoken… And, for the weird it may look, he’s right in his criticism of M$ this time.

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