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10.05.10

Bill Gates-Funded Guardian ‘Writers’ Are Again Whitewashing Gates and Attacking Microsoft Rivals

Posted in Uncategorized at 2:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft Jack

Summary: The Microsoft/Gates-funded articles from the Guardian clearly begin to look like whitewash and The Guardian has turned into a PR front for hire if this trend is not stopped; Microsoft Jack (Schofield) from The Guardian is ridiculing ODF and those who support it

THE Guardian used to have many people’s respect before it accepted a lot of money from Bill and Melinda Gates and then started glorifying them very shamelessly. That’s the impression other people (e.g. in IRC) have been getting. We wrote about this subject in [1, 2, 3] and since it was made official it became easier to view The Guardian more like another PR front. If it sold its integrity away to Gates, the who else has it sold its integrity to? Well, The Guardian quit pretending that it reports fairly on some issues that matter a lot. Consider some of our more recent postings about Gates’ relationship with Monsanto, e.g.:

This has nothing to do with so-called ‘charity’, it is merely an investment, it’s all about business. And then comes the Gates-funded Guardian to help guard the Gates family’s image, which this family already spends billions of dollars guarding and constantly embellishing (by hiring external PR agencies).

“Gates becomes richer over the past year (including this past year), despite his widely-publicised claims that he gives away his wealth (via his tax-exempt bank account).”This brings us to the The Guardian and its Gates-funded new section. What does it do right now? Whitewashing versus critics. They write about Gates’ relationship with Monsanto and they don’t mention anything that people do not already know (it’s all over the Web); they pretend that it’s an innocent mistake from Gates.

The Guardian makes no definitive statement. In a cowardly way the headline only asks the question, “Why is the Gates foundation investing in GM giant Monsanto?”

Quick answer: profit. Gates becomes richer over the past year (including this past year), despite his widely-publicised claims that he gives away his wealth (via his tax-exempt bank account). But that’s not what the article can say. Here is what part of the Gates-funded article says (and that’s one of the most daring parts):

The fact is that Cargill is a faceless agri-giant that controls most of the world’s food commodities and Monsanto has been blundering around poor Asian countries for a decade giving itself and the US a lousy name for corporate bullying. Does Gates know it is in danger of being caught up in their reputations, or does the foundation actually share their corporate vision of farming and intend to work with them more in future?

Well, as expected, the Gates-funded Guardian and Gates-funded Monsanto get no bad reputation here. Almost nothing is said about the criminal nature of Monsanto’s operations (the authorities have had to step in) and Gates is receiving just softball criticisms. They are being too gentle on him (it’s almost like apologism) because they are funded by him to write those articles and detract from similar articles that address the same questions without being funded by Gates. That’s just PR, dressed up as “news” by The Guardian. They pretend to cover this issue fairly, which is even more dangerous because they deliberately leave out a lot of the gory details and some context. It’s like “controlled opposition”, i.e. Gates pretending to be his own critic and phrasing the argument in particular ways. For instance, they are not showing how Gates insulted GMO critics (dismissing them as “environmentalists”). At The Guardian, people who are reading about it for the first time may leave the page believing that it was all just an accident from Gates. The comments fill some gaps, but even though the comments could make up for a poorly-researched/biased article, very few people would read comments and the editors are deleting comments they do not like (deletion is indicated clearly). Here are some of the negative comments that survived censorship:

Why is anybody surprised? Bill Gates and Microsoft pretty much wrote the book on modern corporate bullying, why would he be worried about it now?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Microsoft

Also:

Come on John – have the Gates $$ infected your judgement?

Or:

‘Naïve’, right. Not enough for Gates to take with one hand and give with the other. It seems taking comes so naturally to the guy that he’s going to turn out to be ambidextrous at it.’

Another one among many:

Bill Gates has been very pro-GM for years, what are you talking about!?

Yes, none of this was accidental and the foundation has been asked many times before to withdraw support of GMO/Monsanto. It just won’t listen because it has a notorious patronisation complex. The foundation already knows how it wants the world to be run and only very bad publicity that billions in PR budgets cannot challenge may ultimately alter this plan.

Over at Twitter/Identi.ca, Glyn Moody (occasional contributor to The Guardian) told me: “they certainly don’t look good on this…”

“[T]hey certainly don’t look good on this…”
      –Glyn Moody
Later on I wrote in Identi.ca that “The Guardian should be pressured to reveal just how many millions of pounds the Gates Foundation has just injected into its bank account” and “NPR should be pressured to reveal how many millions of dollars the Gates Foundation paid it. Taxpayers pay for bandwidth, Bill pays for the bias.”

There are many other examples of media outlets which Bill Gates simply ‘bought’ so that they cover issues the way which makes him happy.

“Richard Stallman does not pay NPR and The Guardian millions of dollars to glorify himself,” I wrote, “so on Gates’ budget they help vilify his types.”

The likes of Gates are even resorting to propaganda films right now, as we covered just days ago. To quote one of our regulars on a similar subject last night (titled “The anti-social billionaire’s network”):

Without actually mentioning Zuckerberg’s ethical model, Gates, the review evokes him in several ways:

— The mention of Michael Corleone. Gates updated the Mafia playbook to build tech’s most personally lucrative criminal organisation;

— The smug, Teflon court appearances. You can see Gates’ sociopathic agenda in his insolent Albuquerque mug shot: “You arrested me today, but I am going to beat your system.”

— The reference to Rovian “if you don’t like the rules, ignore them”. That’s the key to Gates’ (and Rove’s) successes: The chutzpah of hacking immunity from the rules.

— Zuckerberg’s ambition is the same as Gates’: To corrupt the open, free web and put his paywall in front of it. Gates failed to achieve this, and Zuckerberg will also eventually fail. But, as in the case of the impossible global American Empire dreamed of by Rove and his clients, it’s important to recognise the dangerous megalomania and hubris in believing it possible, let alone right.

Some hero.

One of Gates’ whitewashers, Microsoft Jack (Schofield), is still loyal to the company which had him widely recognised as “Microsoft Jack” (the name is not our invention).

“[Microsoft] Jack, if you feel like making a coherent argument yourself, rather than just name calling, I’ll link you.”
      –Rob Weir, IBM
IBM’s Rob Weir was having a rough time on Monday. He ended up arguing with Microsoft Jack from The Guardian (he is hardly there anymore and sometimes he is seen in ZDNet UK) after Glyn Moody had dented Weir’s new post about ODF. Microsoft Jack decided to insult Weir’s intelligence and he then responded to me too (all I said was: “It looks like Jack Schofield (aka “Microsoft Jack”) is cursing ODF/IBM’s Weir for not being nice to OOXML”).

To quote Weir: “@jackschofield Sorry you missed the postscript with the OOXML data. ODF still smaller by 18%. Calling names is boorish and unprofessional.Source

Weir: “@jackschofield Jack, if you feel like making a coherent argument yourself, rather than just name calling, I’ll link you. #ODF Source

Weir: “@jackschofield @glynmoody ODF docs were 18% smaller than the equivalent OOXML ones. I focused on the better format not the 2nd best.Source

Microsoft Jack: “@rcweir Well, the “argument” was about the incompetence of your article, not the result. That’s why you’re so confused…Source

Microsoft Jack: “rcweir Sorry. As I said to Glynn: not including docx in the comparison is either incompetent, stupid or biased. #ODFSource

Microsoft Jack: “@rcweir I assume you are not a journalist. If you were, it would look to me either like an incompetent job or silly ODF-promoting bias.Source

Microsoft Jack: “@glynmoody If the article compared docx and ODF that might be useful. As it is, the only debate is how stupid or deceptive the original is.Source

Microsoft Jack: “@glynmoody Or confirmation of the view that ODF supporters are very partial in their choice of facts. Should you really puff this crap?Source

Weir: “@jackschofield Nothing wrong with leaving out data that supports your argument. Leaving out data that contradicts it is something else.Source

Weir: “@jackschofield OK. I suspected that you did not have an argument, but I did not want to presume. Thanks for the confirmation.Source

Microsoft Jack makes The Guardian look a lot less trustworthy and about an hour ago I messages him back: “a year ago you said Windows 7 “looks like Vista. Which I think is…uh…the thing I’m not supposed to say.” Still true? … when you are “not supposed” to say the truth, what does that tell about your journalistic integrity?” I am still waiting for his reply.

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4 Comments

  1. BrownieBoy said,

    October 5, 2010 at 3:45 am

    Gravatar

    Microsoft Jack hasn’t been a Guardian employee for a number of months now, Roy. He took early retirement, I believe.

    He still writes for them occasionally, and does the Ask Jack column, but as a freelance. Zdnet is his main home now, I think. And he still parrots the Microsoft party line there, just as he did at the Guardian.

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Yes, I was aware of it. But as long as he still writes for The Guardian there is some certain liability because it’s the writers — be they employees or freelancer — who make the paper. Some papers do not pay writers at all.

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Actually, look at his profile (where he curses me at the moment):

    http://twitter.com/jackschofield

    Jack Schofield
    @jackschofield London, England
    Tech journo who covered IT for the Guardian (1983-2010), the Jack in Ask Jack, and a jackdaw who tweets fun links about photography, Lego, advertising, art etc
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/profile/jackschofield

    He does not present himself as dissociated from The Guardian.

    BrownieBoy Reply:

    Yeah, he’s a charmer all right!

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