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

04.03.14

GNU/Linux Advocacy Needs to Become Stronger in the Face of AstroTurfing

Posted in FUD, GNU/Linux at 6:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“In the Mopping Up phase, Evangelism’s goal is to put the final nail into the competing technology’s coffin, and bury it in the burning depths of the earth. Ideally, use of the competing technology becomes associated with mental deficiency, as in, “he believes in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and OS/2.” Leaked Microsoft document

Summary: In the age of ‘Scroogled’ and other AstroTurfing campaigns we need to become more vocal, not less vocal, in support of GNU/Linux

“The year of the [GNU/]Linux desktop” is a phrase that we used earlier today. FOSS Force correctly calls the phrase “a comical punching bag for a number of years.”

We need to change that.

Just as the Pirate Bay and Pirate Party helped change the connotation of the word “pirate” (more commonly used these days to refer to copyright infringement) we ought to change the connotation of the phrase “the year of the [GNU/]Linux desktop,” insisting that this year is already behind us. Judging by the number of Android devices, this is undeniably true for “year of Linux”.

FOSS Force explains that the “phrase has been At the turn of every new year the question can be found on hundreds of Linux-centered websites.”

It adds that: “The fact is, we’ll never see “the year of desktop Linux.”” This actually relates to a later post from FOSS Force [2], which Robert Pogson responds to in [3].

Giving up on the phrase or conceding (as suggested above) would actually just serve the FUD, or in other words this would make it seem like the FUD was legitimate and true. We need to battle the FUD, not surrender to it.

Surprisingly enough, the Linux Foundation has just published an article from an FSF basher. The article itself is quite good and it is titled “Why Arguing That Windows is Better Than Linux Makes You Look Silly” (we have already rebutted many such arguments over the years).

Jim L., who have been a good proponent of GNU/Linux in recent years (even in IDG), adds his views to the article [5], but he goes as far as chastising advocates of GNU/Linux, Android, etc. Some strong GNU/Linux advocates like Robert Pogson have already responded in the comments and as my wife put it, “I would usually agree. However, a lot of anti-Linux is not fanboyism but part of ‘Scroogled’-like whisper campaigns. A lot of anti-Windows is reactionary. Some of the comments here already point this out. You cannot always turn the other cheek.”

What we need to understand id that much of the anti-GNU/Linux ‘journalism’ from sites like ZDNet (that’s what the original alludes to) can actually be traced down to editorial control. Many writers in ZDNet are connected to Microsoft (some are current or past Microsoft staff) and the parent company, CBS, works with Microsoft. Framing OS wars as two camps of “fanboys” fighting against each other is willingly putting a false image and turning a blind eye to Microsoft PR agencies, which we know are manufacturing GNU/Linux-hostile articles (‘Scroogled’ AstroTurfing is one example).

The bottom line is, GNU/Linux advocacy is often facing opposition from a corporate propaganda effort, not a grassroots effort. We oughtn’t just like the PR agents win. We ideally need to expose them. In recent years Microsoft was exposed rallying propaganda agents in sites like Reddit and YouTube.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Making a Difference the Linux Way

    The year of the Linux desktop.

    The phrase has been a comical punching bag for a number of years. At the turn of every new year the question can be found on hundreds of Linux-centered websites.

    “Will this be the year of the Linux desktop?”

    The fact is, we’ll never see “the year of desktop Linux.” Not the way we imagine it anyway. Many of us long for the time when Linux will become a well known alternative to Microsoft Windows. That just isn’t gonna happen.

  2. Meeting Windows User Expectations With Linux
  3. Making a Difference

    He makes some good points, that don’t actually support his thesis. I can give a single counterexample that shows the error of his ways. There are places on this planet where GNU/Linux is a well known alternative OS on the desktop.

  4. Why Arguing That Windows is Better Than Linux Makes You Look Silly

    It seems as though you can’t throw a rock on the internet without hitting an article which argues for the superiority of Windows over Linux. With titles like “Five reasons I’d rather run Windows 8 than Linux”, these articles are a dime a dozen.

  5. Who cares about Windows versus Linux?

    Platform wars are as old as computing itself, but they never seem to really die off and go away, they just morph into new ones as technology itself changes. Linux.com takes a look at the classic Windows versus Linux battle, and why the Windows advocates make themselves look silly by bashing Linux.

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 21/9/2014: Fedora 21 Alpha

    Links for the day



  2. More of Bill Gates' Investments in GMO and Mass Indoctrination Under the Disguise of 'Donations'

    Microsoft's arrogant and famously corrupt co-founder is taken to task by those whom he is trying to bamboozle for monopoly, unlimited cross-generational power, and never-ending profit without risk



  3. Home Depot Confirmed a Victim of Microsoft's Bad Security, Microsoft Lays Off Security-Related Staff

    News reports circulate showing that Home Depot was knowingly careless with its Windows dependency while Microsoft lays off staff focused on security



  4. European Patent Office/Organisation - Suspicion of Improper Collusion Between EPO President and Chairman of the Administrative Council: Part III

    A preliminary look at Battistelli's reign and how regulatory powers got abolished, leaving the EPO reckless and largely unaccountable



  5. Links 21/9/2014: xorg-server 1.16.1, Linux Kernel 3.16.3

    Links for the day



  6. Links 20/9/2014: GNOME 3.13.92, Android L

    Links for the day



  7. Scanning Patent Troll Implodes; Is the Podcasting Patent Troll Next?

    MPHJ loses and Personal Audio LLC perhaps wins for the last time since software patents are quickly losing legitimacy in the United States



  8. If CAFC is Not Above the Law, Then it Should be Shut Down Now

    A long series of abuses in CAFC may as well suggest that this court has become broken beyond repair



  9. The Latest From Microsoft Patent Trolls and Patent Partners

    Microsoft-linked and Linux-hostile trolls continue their relentless attacks (albeit with little or no success) while patents as a weapon lose their teeth owing to a Supreme Court ruling



  10. Microsoft Proves That Its Massive Layoffs Are Not About Nokia

    Microsoft is laying off a lot of employees who have nothing at all to do with Nokia



  11. Links 19/9/2014: Another Red Hat Acquisition, Netflix Dumps Microsoft Silverlight and Brings DRM to WWW

    Links for the day



  12. Links 18/9/2014: Windows Copying GNU/Linux, Germany Moves to Security

    Links for the day



  13. Web Site 'Patent Progress' Now Officially 'Powered by CCIA' (FRAND Proponent, Microsoft Front)

    After talking a job at CCIA, "Patent Progress" and its chief author should be treated as dubious on real patent progress



  14. Articles About the Death of Software Patents in the United States

    Recent coverage of software patents and their demise in their country of origin, where even proponents of software patents are giving up



  15. The Death of Software Patents is Already Killing Some Major Patent Trolls

    VirnetX seems to be the latest victim of the demise of software patents in the United States



  16. More Microsoft Layoffs

    More Microsoft layoffs go ahead as the company is unable to compete



  17. ODF on the Rise

    Milestones for OpenDocument Format (ODF) and the launch of FixMyDocuments



  18. Links 17/9/2014: CoreOS, ChromeOS, and systemd

    Links for the day



  19. Italy is Cracking Down on Microsoft's Monopoly Abuse While Gradually Moving to GNU/Linux

    Italy is not only moving to Free/Open Source software but also to GNU/Linux while at the same time barring Microsoft from forcibly tying Windows to new PCs



  20. OpenSUSE's 'Assurances' Are Classic MBA School Hogwash

    OpenSUSE is not part of any commitment, except for SUSE's; the impact of the Novell/SUSE acquisition casts uncertainty on the project's future



  21. Links 16/9/2014: Firefox OS Smartphones in Bangladesh, “Treasure Map” of the Internet

    Links for the day



  22. The United Kingdom Should Dump Microsoft For the Sake of National Security

    The UK has issues of Microsoft dependency and Windows viruses; its migration to Free software and GNU/Linux is not fast enough to guard its autonomy in the age of digital imperialism



  23. CBS Hires Even More Microsoft Staff to Cover Microsoft Matters

    CBS continues to be infested with Microsoft staff past and present (this time Dave Johnson) and the bias in output is quite revealing



  24. Microsoft Has Just Killed Minecraft for GNU/Linux and the Possibility of Free/Open Source Releases

    Persson sells out to Microsoft and lets the abusive monopolist destroy the popular cross-platform game that a community has been built around



  25. Another Reason to Boycott Intel UEFI

    More anti-competitive aspects are revealed inside UEFI, which helps merginalise GNU/Linux



  26. Quick Mention: Novell and SUSE Passed to Microsoft's 'Partner of the Year', Microsoft Focus

    Novell is changing hands again, and falling into the hands of even more Microsoft-friendly actors



  27. Links 16/9/2014: Linux 3.17 RC5, KDE Frameworks 5.2.0

    Links for the day



  28. Željko Topić, Benoît Battistelli, and the European Patent Office (EPO): Part II

    Part II of our look into the EPO appointment of Željko Topić and other matters showing the dubious integrity of the EPO



  29. Links 14/9/2014: Android-based Watches Earn Optimism

    Links for the day



  30. Links 14/9/2014: Eucalyptus Devoured

    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