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01.28.15

The Openwashing of Microsoft is Now Threatening to Eliminate the Identity of Free Software

Posted in Deception, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft at 11:27 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth.” ~Joseph Goebbels

Joseph Goebbels

Summary: More openwashing of Microsoft, including in the corporate media, shows just to what great an extent and how quickly the old “Microsoft Open Source” Big Lie grows feet

SEVERAL days ago we wrote about Condé Nast‘s attempt to paint as "open source" a Microsoft takeover which had nothing to do with FOSS (Free/Open Source software). Yesterday we saw Microsoft apologist Adrian Bridgwater doing the same thing. He has lots of conflicts from him are being disclosed this year, the latest being this article about Pentaho where he admits he “has worked on eBook materials for Pentaho.”

We are generally disturbed to see how Microsoft perturbs media coverage to lie so much on its behalf. Consider this latest nonsense article titled “Microsoft Slowly Easing Into Open-source” and the “Microsoft loves Linux” nonsense. This is a shotgun wedding from people whose attempt to paint Microsoft as an “Open Source company” has gone too far. It’s completely detached from facts as the company’s cash cows and crown jewels are all as proprietary as can be. The Microsoft propaganda sites that play along with the Microsoft-Linux angle would go quite far to convince us that Microsoft and GNU/Linux are now in more or less the same camp. It’s designed to confuse outsiders and it is proving quite effective so far. It’s often repeated without any fact-checking.

Black Duck, a Microsoft-connected firm that has worked hard to facilitate Microsoft’s infiltration into FOSS and dubbed Microsoft "Open Source Rookie of the Year" is now coming out with another such list. One article about it says that “Black Duck Open Source Rookies of the Year are selected irrespective of commercial motivations, according to Black Duck officials. Rather, they reflect projects that have demonstrated significant traction through developer contributions and involvement over the past year.”

Complete nonsense. They are saving face. IDG completely gives the company the platform as though it turned author (see author’s name). It says that “Each year sees the start of thousands of new open source projects. Only a handful gets real traction.”

Like Microsoft? Black Duck would have us believe that it is an authority in FOSS in its press release that it paid to spread and Microsoft-friendly (and funded by Microsoft) media rewriting is now the press release to make puff pieces. Black Duck, like Microsoft, is a proprietary software company.

The bottom line is, Microsoft and its allies spent a considerable amount of money and effort trying to push this illusion that Microsoft is now an “Open Source company” or something along those lines. If we don’t refute these lies, then perception may change and legislators for example, may find themselves unable to discern/tell apart Microsoft lock-in (e.g. OOXML) from Free software. That is perhaps the conflation that Microsoft strives to achieve.

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