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

03.19.11

Microsoft-hired Lawyer Deletes Reference to Microsoft Employment and Goes GNU Hunting Amid New FUD Campaigns

Posted in FUD, GNU/Linux, Red Hat at 6:26 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Moose

Summary: The smear campaign against software freedom and where it is coming from

ANOTHER week, another lump of slime from the Microsoft camp. Microsoft Florian and the gang have been having a lot of fun this week, fueled by fellow FUDmeisters to whom software freedom is a reconnaissance of fascism and the end of commerce (typical FUD which is actually the exact opposite of the truth). Even though the FUDmeisters are largely ignored and even ostracised by the Free software community, some in the mainstream press are easily fooled by it, maybe even by choice.

Bradley M. Kuhn explains that he “was hoping to avoid having to comment further on this problematic story [of GPL FUD]. I figured a comment as a brief identi.ca statement was enough when it was just a story on the Register. But, it’s now hit a major tech news outlet, and I feel that, given that I’m typically the first person everyone in the Free Software world comes to ask if something is a GPL violation…”

To quote the ‘meat’ of his counter-argument:

Anyway, most of what’s been written about this subject of the Linux headers in Bionic has been poorly drafted speculation. I suppose some will say this blog post is no better, since I am not answering any questions, but my primary goal here is to draw attention that absolutely no one, as near as I can tell, has done the incredibly time consuming work to figure out anything approaching a definitive answer! Furthermore, the original article that launched this debate (Naughton’s paper, The Bionic Library: Did Google Work Around the GPL?) is merely a position paper for a research project yet to be done.

Naughton’s full paper gives some examples that would make a good starting point for a complete analysis. It’s disturbing, however, that his paper is presented as if it’s a complete analysis. At best, his paper is a position statement of a hypothesis that then needs the actual experiment to figure things out. That rigorous research (as I keep reiterating) is still undone.

Some spectators who came to our main IRC channel thought this was part of a Microsoft PR offensive. Well, it’s not necessarily so far from it. We will avoid linking to the FUD directly (or to those who fueled it) and instead link to responses such as this one, which missed a crucial bit of information about the obscure firm from which the FUD originates. It is daemonising Google, Linux, and the GPL all at the same time. Quite the ace, eh? “Edward J. Naughton bio gets revised,” claims the text at Groklaw and Pamela Jones writes: “Edward J. Naughton, the attorney Huffington Post just published claiming Android may be in violation of the GPL has done work for Microsoft. Surprised much? His article states this at the end: “The views expressed are my own individual views and should not be attributed to any clients.” Nevertheless, at least one of them may be delighted.

“His bio has changed recently. The link above is to its current state, where you will not find any mention of Microsoft. It’s been changed to a “Fortune 50 software company”. Here’s what used to be on it, still in Google cache, a snapshot taken recently, on March 8…”

Further it says:

- Co-counsel defending Microsoft against a putative consumer class action alleging that it had violated wiretapping statutes and common law privacy rights by designing Windows to permit third parties to place cookies on computers. Obtained dismissal of complaint….
- Represented Microsoft in several dozen lawsuits against resellers and corporate end-users of counterfeit, infringing, and unlicensed software. – Brown Rudnick bio page for Naughton

Over at IDG, Brian P. (former Linux Today editor) says with his tongue in his cheek that “Helpful lawyers think Google stole Linux code”. To quote the opening: “By now you have likely heard the noise about Google possibly violating the GPL by using Linux header files to create a new BSD-licensed library that userspace applications can interface with the Android kernel.

“The allegation comes from Brown Rudnick partner Edward Naughton, who has done quite a bit of research into the matter and has come up with a 10-page report that highlights what he believes are serious concerns for Android’s implementation.”

Brian’s colleague, Zonker, makes the important point: “Lawyer behind Android infringement claim has Microsoft ties”

Edward J. Naughton, is out promoting the idea that Android violates the GPL over on Huffington Post. But Naughton seems to be hiding his ties to Microsoft.

Compare Naughton’s bio on Brown Rudnick’s site and then compare to the Google cached version.

Here’s the original, with my emphasis:

Co-counsel defending Microsoft against a putative consumer class action alleging that it had violated wiretapping statutes and common law privacy rights by designing Windows to permit third parties to place cookies on computers. Obtained dismissal of complaint.

Microsoft is now redacted to read “Fortune 50 software company” in two places on his bio. Now, if you read through the entire thing, most of Naughton’s experience is cited vaguely rather than naming specific clients. However, the Google snapshot is of the page on March 8. Naughton’s story on HuffPo is from March 16. I find it a bit odd that his bio changed sometime in the last eight days to specifically retract Microsoft. Maybe in the last eight days, completely independent of Naughton’s publishing a broadside against one of Microsoft’s largest competitors, someone at his law firm said “hey, this goes against our style guide — we better edit it.” Maybe Microsoft contacted his law firm and asked not to be named specifically — that happens, some companies don’t like being singled out for case studies or customer win stories.

This is not exactly the “most ethical” company in the world, eh?

“That is the guy that claimed Android is a trap,” gnufreex commented, “with “GPL virus” (not with th[ose] words, but that is what he meant) [...] And FMtroll [Microsoft Florian] linked it also.” He has been twisting some other old events to daemonise Red Hat last week and so did his online friend Maureen O’Gara, whom Microsoft has been using to “plant” Linux-hostile stories. “(maureen o’gara alert),” appended Susan Linton some days ago, which shows just what kind of notoriety these people have earned for themselves. Their role is to push agenda, not to report news. Speaking of which, Joseph Tartakoff who previously served as the Microsoft booster (full-time) at the Seattle P-I shows that his predecessor is leaving the Microsoft-sponsored TechFlash. Based on this report, it is not entirely clear if he will just promote Microsoft full-time from another source. “The new site,” it says, “will still revolve around Cook’s coverage of venture capital and tech startups, as well as Bishop’s reporting on Microsoft and major tech companies like Apple and Google, Cook said in a phone interview.”

Does that mean less emphasis on Microsoft? Let us hope so.

This month and last month Tartakoff reported on Microsoft’s continued destruction of Yahoo! (although the details about what Microsoft did are omitted like in every good case of revisionism). Microsoft is not a scapegoat, it is a very destructive company without any morals — a result of sociopathic management.

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

What Else is New


  1. Microsoft's and Bill Gates' Biggest Patent Troll (Intellectual Ventures) Suffers Setback and Nokia is Dead While Patents Scattered to Microsoft Patent Proxies

    Microsoft's patent collectors (trolls) are to have a feast with Nokia patents while Intellectual Ventures, Microsoft's largest patent proxy, continues to attack companies including Motorola



  2. Patent Racketeering Continues With Nadella: Motorola the Latest to Join the FUD Campaign

    Nadella continues Ballmer's campaign of intimidation and alienation, showing that nothing has changed at Microsoft, not even the FUD



  3. Links 23/4/2014: GNOME Maps Application, LG in Headlines

    Links for the day



  4. Links 22/4/2014: More GNU/Linux Gains, Syria Updates

    Links for the day



  5. Links 21/4/2014: New Games for GNU/Linux, Some NatSec Politics

    Links for the day



  6. Site Focus for The Remainder of the Year

    What we plan for the rest of 2014 and why



  7. Links 20/4/2014: EFF FOSS, Easter Drone Strikes, Copyright Industry Fear of Google

    Links for the day



  8. Links 19/4/2014: Slow Easter News Day

    Links for the day



  9. Links 18/4/2014: New KDE, Kubuntu, and More

    Links for the day



  10. Some Perspective on Heartbleed®

    Our views on the whole Heartbleed® bonanza, which seems like partly a PR stunt (for multiple stakeholders)



  11. Microsoft is Leaving Windows -- Including Vista 8.1 -- Vulnerable to Non-Government Crackers, Not Only to NSA

    Microsoft makes it ever more evident that securing users of Windows is not at all a priority, and perhaps not even a desire



  12. Links 17/4/2014: Android RDP, New Ubuntu, RHEL 7 Milestone

    Links for the day



  13. Racing to 1984: Mass Surveillance, Cracking, 'Targeted' Assassinations, and Illegal Torture

    Links for the day



  14. More Microsoft Subsidies to Patent Troll Intellectual Ventures

    Microsoft hands money to Bill Gates' close friend who is the world's largest patent troll



  15. Aiding Microsoft Under the Disguise of 'Pro-FOSS'

    Not everything which is FOSS necessary becomes, by virtue of existence, a positive contribution, as we are constantly reminded by projects that help proprietary software and/or restrictions get a strong grip on FOSS



  16. Links 16/4/2014: Red Hat PR, Ubuntu LTS Imminent

    Links for the day



  17. Links 15/4/2014: Lots of PCLinuxOS Releases, Ukraine Updates

    Links for the day



  18. Apple and Microsoft Actively Lobbying Against Patent Reform in the US

    Apple and Microsoft are reportedly intervening/interfering with US law in order to ensure that the law is Free/libre software-hostile



  19. Lawsuit by Microsoft Shareholder Targets Fine for Crimes Rather Than the Crimes Themselves

    A new lawsuit by a Microsoft shareholder shows everything that's wrong with today's model of accountability, where those who are responsible for crimes are accused of not avoiding fines rather than committing the crimes



  20. Public Institutions Must Dump PRISM-Associated Software

    Another reminder that taxpayers-subsidised services should refuse, as a matter of principle, to pay anything for -- let alone deploy -- proprietary software with back doors



  21. GNU/Linux News: The Opportunities Amid XP EOL

    Links for the day



  22. Microsoft Gets Its Money's Worth From Xamarin: PlayStation 4 Now Polluted by Microsoft

    The Trojan horse of Microsoft, Xamarin, is pushing .NET into Microsoft's console competitor



  23. After Brendan Eich Comes Chris Beard

    Having removed Brendan Eich using bullying and blackmail tactics, his foes inside Mozilla achieved too little as we have yet another man (coming from inside Mozilla) acting as CEO



  24. Healthcare News: Free Software in Health, Humanitarian Causes

    Links for the day



  25. Links 14/4/2014: MakuluLinux, Many Games, More Privacy News and Pulitzer Prize for NSA Revelations

    Links for the day



  26. TechBytes Episode 87: Catching up With Surveillance (NSA, GCHQ et al.)

    The first audio episode in a very long time covers some of the latest happenings when it comes to privacy and, contrariwise, mass surveillance



  27. Server News: KVM, ElasticHosts, Other GNU/Linux Items, and Open Network Linux

    Links for the day



  28. Hardware News: Freedom, Modding, Hackability on the Rise

    Links for the day



  29. Distributions News: GNU/Linux Distros

    Links for the day



  30. GNOME News: Financial Issues, Mutter-Wayland, West Coast Summit, Community Participation

    Links for the day


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