Microsoft Says It Will Continue to Extort Companies That Distribute Linux, Using Software Patents As Usual
Microsoft PR versus Microsoft reality
Summary: Microsoft’s war on Linux, a war which is waged using software patents (for revenue and/or for coercion in bundling deals), is still going on in spite of all the PR tactics from Microsoft and its paid partners
MICROSOFT is still googlebombing Linux (the latest is a bunch of nonsense about a Linux subsystem in Vista 10, citing a blurb from Microsoft’s own Channel 9) and trying to tell us that Windows is Linux and Linux is Windows, or something to that effect (widespread confusion serves Microsoft here).
Based on a lie (Microsoft “embracing Linux,” and not in the E.E.E. sense), this foolish new article gives Microsoft a kill plan for Android. It’s the same old E.E.E. tactics, which are evidently still in the mix.
“It’s a clever plot from Microsoft, which is trying to simply engulf the competition, as it did two decades ago with Java.”Amid rumours and suggestions of a Canonical/Ubuntu buyout (we have encountered 4 articles about it by now) Microsoft keeps roping in Canonical and Ubuntu for Vista 10 marketing and we can’t help but feel that this is the “Extend” phase in E.E.E. Microsoft is trying to convince people to flock to Vista 10 if they want this “Linux thing” (or Ubuntu). The lock-in is only getting ever more aggressive, as even data from Windows is automatically being uploaded to Microsoft’s ‘cloud’ and various Windows-only elements (set aside OOXML lock-in). It’s a clever plot from Microsoft, which is trying to simply engulf the competition, as it did two decades ago with Java.
Well, there was a long chat about it in IRC the other day and patent aspects were discussed as well. According to this new article, in spite of Microsoft's patent Mafioso (Horacio) leaving, his ugly patent racketeering strategy goes on. Microsoft now uses patent lawsuits and threats thereof to get BUNDLING. See what it recently did with Acer (a sort of patent settlement involving Microsoft bundling). Microsoft basically uses patents to compel OEMs to choose Microsoft or face lawsuits (like Samsung not too long ago). Is this even legal? How is this not racketeering and an antitrust violation?
To quote this new article: “More than 20 vendors have inked agreements with Microsoft since then, including Samsung, LG, HTC, Acer and Asus. In March, Taiwan-based Wistron and Tokyo-based Rakuten became the two latest Android patent licensees.
“Google oughtn’t tolerate Microsoft’s attacks on Android OEMs (using software patents for leverage) because if it does not stand up and fights back, Microsoft will do it to other platforms that are Linux-powered, e.g. Tizen, SailfishOS, WebOS.”“Although Microsoft intends to seek additional licensing agreements with Android vendors, [Microsoft's] Hill suggested that these deals will be more about forming lasting relationships than enforcing intellectual property rights.”
No, what the above says is that patent deals are still on the agenda and that settlement with bundling is the current modus operandi. Funnily enough, Forbes (Gates’ and other rich people’s mouthpiece) calls Microsoft’s racketeering against Android OEMs “Microsoft’s Android Success”. Missing the big story there, don’t they?
Google oughtn’t tolerate Microsoft’s attacks on Android OEMs (using software patents for leverage) because if it does not stand up and fights back, Microsoft will do it to other platforms that are Linux-powered, e.g. Tizen, SailfishOS, WebOS.
Going back to the above article, it says: “Some Microsoft partners are expecting the software giant to step up its patent enforcement efforts in response to this trend. Jeff Middleton, president of IT Pro Experts, a Microsoft partner in Metairie, La., doesn’t expect Microsoft to tread lightly in going after potential Android licensing revenue.”
“For Microsoft to claim to have withdrawn complaints against Google after the FTC and EC already take action is like an invading/occupying army ‘pulling out’ of a nation after its complete destruction.”So nothing has changed and nothing will change, either. Murdoch-owned British media (Microsoft-friendly) currently makes it looks as though Microsoft softened while it’s obviously attacking Linux with patents and at the same time Murdoch-owned US media shows that Microsoft lobbying against Linux (or Android) in the US is paying off [1, 2] (“FTC Extends Probe Into Google’s Android”), after it paid off in Europe. Who benefits from this and how can anyone consider Microsoft a trustworthy partner? Microsoft, based on these new reports from today [1, 2], is bundling to the exclusion of Google again; even Google search is being denied by Microsoft, despite most people preferring it. Is Google not paying attention to this? Microsoft fights very viciously against Android’s steward, with help from front groups and proxies (while pretending to have stopped, to the point where some naively say “Microsoft’s out” of the EU case, citing reports like this one).
As TechDirt‘s Masnick pointed out in relation to this, “Microsoft, which has agreed to drop its complaints — despite kicking off much of the EU antitrust focus on Google” (we covered this at the time).
For Microsoft to claim to have withdrawn complaints against Google after the FTC and EC already take action is like an invading/occupying army ‘pulling out’ of a nation after its complete destruction. Who would be naive enough to seriously believe that Microsoft has changed? Only the CEO and PR have changed. █