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


Aiding Criminals

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Novell, Patents, Ubuntu at 10:59 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Al Capone mugshot and Steve Ballmer

Summary: Criticism of Canonical’s unnecessary and potentially harmful promotion of Microsoft

THE criminal history (and present) of Microsoft is not a matter of question but a matter of fact. For those who need to recall notable examples, this Web site documents many.

These days, Microsoft doesn’t get enough from its illegally-obtained monopolies; it is therefore imposing Microsoft on Linux stacks, too. One example of this is the continued attempts by Microsoft to put its proprietary software inside OpenStack — a subject that we covered here before [1, 2, 3].

But right now we are seeing more of the same strategy, wherein it’s Microsoft which sits at the bottom of GNU/Linux inside the stack (i.e. totally in control of anything on top). Techcentral and Techspot provide some coverage of the Ubuntu-Microsoft deal. “Microsoft has shown,” said the head of the Linux Foundation a few years ago, “that despite claims of acquiring a newly found respect for open principles and technology, developers should be cautious in believing promises made by this “new” Microsoft. [...] There is one other fact clear from this case. Microsoft does not appear to be a leopard capable of changing its spots.” (source)

Despite those words from Jim Zemlin, the Linux Foundation Executive Director, people like Mark Shuttleworth have a short memory span and Microsoft exploits this.

Michael Larabel says that Canonical “touts its new Microsoft partnership” because Shuttleworth did exactly that and Jono Bacon, the community manager of Ubuntu, claims this to be a victory for Free software (this would not be so comical to the FSF).

Microsoft’s PR/charm offence (link to Microsoft booster) is aided by Canonical in the sense that whatever companies tell competition regulators about Microsoft (e.g. B&N) will have less credibility. Peter Bright and colleagues who are Mono apologists too amplify the praises from Shuttleworth, which help nobody at all (except Canonical and Microsoft). To be fair to Canonical, it is not alone in this, but other distributions hardly brag about it.

For Mark Shuttleworth, based on his blog post, principles come later because he used to complain about Microsoft’s criminal behaviour. In IRC, iophk says: “Pushing Windows (Azure) is not going to help solve bug #1… rather the opposite. One could argue that it’s not even putting money first. No partner has ever done well before.”

“If he wants anything it is probably the continued lock-in or even extending lock-in.”
To quote just some of the things Shuttleworth said about Microsoft a few years ago, what they did with Novell and the following accompanying FUD he considered to be “extortion and we should call it what it is.”

“Microsoft is asking people to pay them for patents [...] that’s illegal. It’s racketeering,” said Mark Shuttleworth around the same time. So MS (Mark Shuttleworth, not Microsoft) knows that Microsoft’s behaviour is criminal, but now that Microsoft can help him make money (at the expense of other distros) all the principles are down the garbage can.

“Uncle Fester just wants his money,” Ryan says jokingly, but “[i]f he wants anything it is probably the continued lock-in or even extending lock-in. Money is only a tool in the control,” notes iophk. “Shuttleworth adopted the mentality of a Microsoft MVP or business partner,” I wrote in Identi.ca. “Never mind the crimes, if it helps me make money, I’ll perfume it…”

“Again,” notes another person, “it might not help him make money. Partners never survive well.”

An important question was raised by Sean Michael Kerner and it’s about the patent situation in this deal. He believes that the patent fees won’t be applied or added to Ubuntu on Microsoft’s subscription store, but it’s too early to tell:

That statement would imply that there is no patent deal with Canonical. But that hardly seems fair to SUSE then right? SUSE went out of its way to sign a special deal with Microsoft. How come Ubuntu gets to ‘play’ in the same field then?

It’s a question that I don’t have a definitive answer on. It’s the same kind of murky territory that Global organizations also face (in a significantly more serious sense, i’m just reaching and it’s not a direct comparison by any means) with China. Everyone wants to make a buck, but no one really wants to compromise their ethical standing.

I haven’t yet seen the full pricing for Azure and specifically the differences between SUSE pricing and Ubuntu pricing. Perhaps it’s just a margin thing that Microsoft builds in as a way to placate their intellectual property interests. Or perhaps they just don’t care at this point as Azure is trying to gain share.

We shall see what happens cost-wise. Remember Shuttleworth’s Invitation to OpenSUSE developers several years ago. “I know that posting this message to an OpenSUSE list will be controversial,” he noted, but still, he tried to distinguish Ubuntu based on ethical grounds.

“Canonical did advertise Windows Azure in their press release,” MinceR noted. Ryan said, “they haven’t paid Microsoft anything or acknowledged their patents afaik… they dumped Mono in 12.04.”

“Canonical did advertise Windows Azure in their press release”
In Ubuntu, “Bug #1″ which is “CRITICAL” and “IN PROGRESS” is titled “Microsoft has a majority market share” and it is assigned to Mark Shuttleworth. What is he going to do about it?

To see Ubuntu lumped in with SUSE is quite disheartening because Microsoft’s propaganda/spin can adapt accordingly. Now Microsoft is selling Linux, the propaganda will say. Microsoft was hoping to control Linux distributions which are popular and one step at a time it is getting there. Let’s remember that Ballmer claims Red Hat customers owe Microsoft money (video here), so the pressure on Red Hat continues to increase. “I once preached peaceful coexistence with Windows. You may laugh at my expense — I deserve it,” said Be’s CEO Jean-Louis Gassée, but Mr.Shuttleworth has not been paying attention as of late. While bashing Red Hat and some other GNU/Linux players (whose code he preys on) he keeps saying nice things about Apple and Microsoft. So much for a flag bearer (with a private jet and admiration for extremely rich people).

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. Links 18/3/2018: Wine 3.4, Wine-Staging 3.4, KDE Connect 1.8 for Android

    Links for the day

  2. TXED Courts Are Causing Businesses to Leave the District, Notably For Fear That Having Any Operations Based There is a Legal Liability

    A discussion about the infamous abundance of patent cases in the Eastern District of Texas (TXED/EDTX) and what this will mean for businesses that have branches or any form of operations there (making them subjected to lawsuits in that district even after TC Heartland)

  3. PTAB Hatred is So Intense Among the Patent 'Industry' That Even Scammers Are Hailed as Champions If They Target PTAB

    The patent microcosm is so eager to stop the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) that it's supporting sham deals (or "scams") and exploits/distorts the voice of the new USPTO Director to come up with PTAB-hostile catchphrases

  4. The Patent 'Industry' is Increasingly Mocking CAFC and Its Judges Because It Doesn't Like the Decisions

    Judgmental patent maximalists are still respecting high courts only when it suits them; whenever the outcome is not desirable they're willing to attack the legitimacy of the courts and the competence of judges, even resorting to racist ad hominem attacks if necessary

  5. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Carries on Enforcing § 101, Invalidating Software Patents and Upsetting the Patent 'Industry' in the Process

    A quick report on where PTAB stands at the moment, some time ahead of the Oil States decision (soon to come from the US Supreme Court)

  6. Luxembourg Can Become a Hub of Patent Trolls If the EPO Carries on With Its 'Reforms', Even Without the UPC

    With or without the Unified Patent Court (UPC), which is the wet dream of patent trolls and their legal representatives, the EPO's terrible policies have landed a lot of low-quality patents on the hands of patent trolls (many of which operate through city-states that exist for tax evasion -- a fiscal environment ripe for shells)

  7. The Patent 'Printing Machine' of the EPO Will Spawn Many Lawsuits and Extortions (Threats of Lawsuits), in Effect Taxing Europe

    The money-obsessed, money-printing patent office, where the assembly line mentality has been adopted and patent-printing management is in charge, is devaluing or diluting the pool of European Patents, more so with restrictions (monetary barriers) to challenging bad patents

  8. Links 17/3/2018: Varnish 6, Wine 3.4

    Links for the day

  9. Deleted EPO Tweets and Promotion of Software Patents Amid Complaints About Abuse and Demise of Patent Quality

    Another ordinary day at the EPO with repressions of workforce, promotion of patents that aren't even allowed, and Team UPC failing to get its act together

  10. Guest Post: Suspected “Whitewashing” Operations by Željko Topić in Croatia

    Articles about EPO Vice-President Željko Topić are disappearing and sources indicate that it’s a result of yet more SLAPP from him

  11. Monumental Effort to Highlight Decline in Quality of European Patents (a Quarter of Examiners Sign Petition in Spite of Fear), Yet Barely Any Press Coverage

    he media in Europe continues to be largely apathetic towards the EPO crisis, instead relaying a bunch of press releases and doctored figures from the EPO; only blogs that closely follow EPO scandals bothered mentioning the new petition

  12. Careful Not to Conflate UPC Critics With AfD or Anti-EU Elements

    The tyrannical Unified Patent Court (UPC) is being spun as something that only fascists would oppose after the right-wing, anti-EU politicians in Germany express strong opposition to it

  13. Links 15/3/2018: Qt Creator 4.6 RC, Microsoft Openwashing

    Links for the day

  14. PTAB Continues to Increase Capacity Ahead of Oil States; Patent Maximalists Utterly Upset

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) sees the number of filings up to an almost all-time high and efforts to undermine PTAB are failing pretty badly -- a trend which will be further cemented quite soon when the US Supreme Court (quite likely) backs the processes of PTAB

  15. Patent Maximalists Are Still Trying to Create a Patent Bubble in India

    Litigation maximalists and patent zealots continue to taunt India, looking for an opportunity to sue over just about anything including abstract ideas because that's what they derive income from

  16. EPO Staff Has Just Warned the National Delegates That EPO's Decline (in Terms of Patent Quality and Staff Welfare) Would Be Beneficial to Patent Trolls

    The staff of the EPO increasingly recognises the grave dangers of low-quality patents -- an issue we've written about (also in relation to the EPO) for many years

  17. The EPO is a Mess Under Battistelli and Stakeholders Including Law Firms Will Suffer, Not Just EP Holders

    As one last 'gift' from Battistelli, appeals are becoming a lot more expensive -- the very opposite of what he does to applications, in effect ensuring a sharp increase in wrongly-granted patents

  18. The EPO Under Battistelli Has Become Like China Under Xi and CPC

    The EPO is trying very hard to silence not only the union but also staff representatives; it's evidently worried that the lies told by Team Battistelli will be refuted and morale be affected by reality

  19. Links 14/3/2018: IPFire 2.19 – Core Update 119, Tails 3.6

    Links for the day

  20. Links 13/3/2018: Qt Creator 4.5.2, Tails 3.6, Firefox 59

    Links for the day

  21. Willy Minnoye (EPO) Threatened Staff With Disabilities Said to Have Been Caused by the EPO Work Pressures

    Willy Minnoye, or Battistelli's 'deputy' at the EPO until last year, turns out to have misused powers (and immunity) to essentially bully vulnerable staff

  22. IAM and IBM Want Lots of Patent Litigation in India

    Having 'championed' lobbying for litigation Armageddon in China (where IBM's practicing business units have gone), patent maximalists set their eyes on India

  23. The Patent Trolls' Lobby (IAM) Already Pressures Andrei Iancu, Inciting a USPTO Director Against PTAB

    Suspicions that Iancu might destroy the integrity of the Office for the sake of the litigation ‘industry’ may be further reaffirmed by the approach towards patent maximalists from IAM, who also participated in the shaming of his predecessor, Michelle Lee, and promoted a disgraced judge (and friend of patent trolls) for her then-vacant role

  24. Patent Trolls in the United States Increasingly Target Small Businesses Which Cannot Challenge Their Likely-Invalid Software Patents

    South by Southwest (SXSW Conference/Festivals in Austin, Texas) has a presentation about patent trolls, whose general message may be reaffirmed by recent legal actions in Texas and outside Texas

  25. EPO Staff Union Organises Protest to Complain About Inability “of the Office to Recruit the Highly Qualified Staff it Needs.”

    Having already targeted union leaders and staff representatives, the EPO may soon be going after those whom they passionately represented and the staff union (SUEPO) wants the Administrative Council to be aware

  26. Battistelli Likes to Describe His Critics as 'Nazis', Team UPC Will Attempt the Same Thing Against UPC Critics

    Demonising one's opposition or framing it as "fascist" is a classic trick; to what degree will Team UPC exploit such tactics?

  27. Session in Bavaria to Discuss the Abuses of the European Patent Office Later Today

    The EPO shambles in Munich have gotten the attention of more Bavarian politicians, more so in light of the Constitutional complaint against the UPC (now dealt with by the German FCC, which saw merit in the complaint)

  28. Links 12/3/2018: Linux 4.16 RC5, KEXI 3.1, Karton 1.0, Netrunner 18.03, Debian 9.4

    Links for the day

  29. EPO Patent 'Growth' Not Achieved But Demanded/Mandated by Battistelli, by Lowering Quality of Patents/Services

    Targets at the EPO are not actually reached but are being imposed by overzealous management which dries up all the work in a hurry in order to make examiners redundant and many European Patents worthless

  30. Doubt Over Independence of Judges at the EPO Clouds Reason in Deciding Regarding Patents on Life

    With the growing prospect of a Board of Appeal (BoA) having to decide on patentability of CRISPR 'innovation' (more like explanation/discovery), questions linger or persist about judges' ability to rule as they see fit rather than what some lunatic wants


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