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07.01.20

IBM-Funded FSF Censors Itself on Software Patents

Posted in FSF, Patents at 5:21 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Only earlier today we praised the FSF for the above version (hours later it was censored or self-censored without explanation)

FSF self-censorship

Summary: Donald Robertson’s article bemoaning and openly condemning the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) over software patents, which it illegally grants in some cases, was modified a week later; and why? One can only guess… (but remember that the FSF’s foremost sponsor is lobbying against 35 U.S.C. § 101 and for software patents)

[Humour/Meme] Remember That As Recently as Last Year Microsoft Was Still Shaking Down and Even Suing Companies Over ‘Linux Patent Infringement’

Posted in Deception, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 3:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Shrek: 'We believe every Linux customer basically has an undisclosed balance-sheet [patent] liability.' -Microsoft's CEO... We heard that!

Summary: There’s no ‘new Microsoft’ except a (better at) lying Microsoft; its covert actions tell us a lot about its ongoing hatred of GNU/Linux, which it is assaulting in new and more sophisticated ways

Contrary to Common Misconceptions, Free Software is More ‘Corporate’ or More ‘Enterprise-Grade’ Than Proprietary Abandonware (All Proprietary Software Will Die)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FUD, IBM, Microsoft at 3:23 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Let’s turn the tables on them because all they have is shallow marketing

A boardroom revisited

Summary: Free software can leverage the superficial and bland boardroom lingo/slang to promote itself; it would definitely harm or dilute/weaken the terms which proprietary software giants like to leverage against us

ANY piece of proprietary software will one day die for good unless its code is liberated (if that happens belatedly, like Microsoft releasing code it wrote before I was born… no sooner than 2020… then it’s worthless).

“When we look objectively at Linux and assess the breadth of usage of GNU or Curl or Firefox (well, not so much anymore because Mozilla lost its way) we quickly come to the realisation that the world is based on Free software.”FUD isn’t a new concept. Blame IBM for it. IBM started it. Evil company. Monopolist. Arrogant. Ask people old enough (like parents or grandparents if you’re young) how smug IBM engineers used to be back in the days they were presumed emperors of the universe, both hardware and software. Without IBM, Microsoft would be nothing (probably wouldn’t exist past the 1980s).

A month ago I quit reading "Open Source" news after more than 15 years (doing so every day!); it was so full of FUD and misinformation that I could no longer stand it. It was pure noise or close to pure noise (over 90% of it was garbage).

“So basically, what the media calls “Open Source” is nowadays more suitable (for pragmatic reason) or fit for purpose (technically) than this “enterprise software” or “commercial software”…”When we look objectively at Linux and assess the breadth of usage of GNU or Curl or Firefox (well, not so much anymore because Mozilla lost its way) we quickly come to the realisation that the world is based on Free software. It runs everywhere (never mind if the media calls it “Open Source”; the media giants have their own agenda, based upon the owners’). If there’s that (false) dichotomy of “enterprise software” or “commercial software” (what the media likes calling secret/proprietary software) compared to “free” stuff (they mean price but mockingly allude to free/libre software as shoddy), why do so many choose the latter — and more so over time, despite all the FUD?

Maybe it’s technically better, right?

And if it’s copyleft-licensed (GPL is still vast in the lines of code sense), then “enterprise software” or “commercial software” can have none of that (unless it decides to self-liberate).

“If Microsoft et al can hijack and warp the meaning of words, so can (should?) we.”So basically, what the media calls “Open Source” is nowadays more suitable (for pragmatic reason) or fit for purpose (technically) than this “enterprise software” or “commercial software”…

Let’s take control of words like ‘corporate’ (whatever they even mean), too. The openwashing agenda misuses these words to confuse us.

“What software do you use, Madam?”

“I use commercial enterprise corporate GNU software, thanks for asking, Sir!”

If Microsoft et al can hijack and warp the meaning of words, so can (should?) we. Messaging is very important, sometimes as important as the code, as with poor messaging it’s hard to convince people to actually use the code.

Social Control Media Will Not Exist One Day

Posted in Google at 2:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

So everything you put in there will cease to exist and you have no say on the matter

Samsung Star Trek: I have 1,300,020,000 friends and 2,000,000+ followers; You offended my momma, I filed abuse report; Oh, you didn't! Account terminated

Summary: Digital obsolescence and Internet bitrot — that’s what Social Control Media is really good for; as many Google+ ‘users’ (useds) found out, they’re just being ‘farmed’ for their ‘content’, which is neither valuable nor resilient (definitely of no value to Google)

THE one thing I agree with Linus Torvalds on (we agree on many things) is that Social Control Media is basically crap. He said negative things about Social Control Media not too long before Google zapped his Social Control Media account (along with everybody else’s).

It doesn’t matter much if Facebook blocks/mutes/bans you.

The same is true for Twitter.

One day both sites will be offline. They’ll no longer exist. In effect we’ll all be ‘banned’… one day. Anything you ever wrote there (or responded to, or read, or interacted with) will be gone too. For good! I saw that with identi.ca (after the controversial ‘overhaul’ which dumped all the old ‘content’).

“It doesn’t matter much if Facebook blocks/mutes/bans you. The same is true for Twitter. One day both sites will be offline.”When the ‘owners’ of the ‘platforms’ call people (with thoughts and feelings) ‘users’ who produce ‘content’ or ‘generate’ ‘actions’ you know you’re dealing with livestock mentality.

You’re nothing to them!

What about self-hosted Social Control Media? That’s just like having one’s own site.

Without connecting to a whole network of sites (federation) it’s not Social Control Media. It’s just a site. Like Richard Stallman’s personal site with his political notes (personal views, which nobody can block or censor or down-vote).

“When the ‘owners’ of the ‘platforms’ call people (with thoughts and feelings) ‘users’ who produce ‘content’ or ‘generate’ ‘actions’ you know you’re dealing with livestock mentality.”One day Social Control Media will explode in a big way, with or without major advertisers initiating boycotts. We look forward to that day. The impact on Techrights will be zero because we’ve all along rejected/dismissed Social Control Media as a bad concept. People who pushed me to participate in identi.ca over a decade ago actually decreased productivity in Techrights (my Twitter account was set up later only to mirror my identi.ca posts) and now that I'm leaving Twitter behind (it’s 100% a phantom account), more so than other Social Control Media, I find a lot more time to read, write, and research.

Let’s say it again; if you’re not in Social Control Media, do not get started! If you’re on it, find ways to reduce that. It’s more likely that you need it a lot less than you’ve imagined. It’s addictive by design. When all this Social Control Media hype blows over we hope that people will return to RSS feeds, blogs, and maybe even news sites (if anything is left of those).

What Freedom of Software Actually Means to Us

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FSF, GNU/Linux, IBM, OIN at 1:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Liberty

Summary: Liberty or libre (freedom) is about more than brands or personalities, as names or institutions or individuals can change or completely perish; but concepts outlast superficialities

THE concepts put forth by rms (Richard Stallman) more than 35 years ago are more relevant than ever. Back then computers rarely had network connections (the Internet was immature and the World Wide Web was still waiting a decade in the future). The concept of back doors wasn’t quite the same in the 1980s; remote access through back doors is meaningless unless there’s a network. Maybe back doors as a concept made sense in the forensics sense (when physical access to the machine is possible, albeit data rather than packets may be encrypted).

Techrights started by dealing with the issue of software patents and standards almost 14 years ago. Prior to Techrights I had already written about patents elsewhere, including in my personal blog. The subject wasn’t new to me at all. About a week ago the FSF finally issued a press release on the matter, berating the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for what it called the “virus” of software patents.

“The concept of back doors wasn’t quite the same in the 1980s; remote access through back doors is meaningless unless there’s a network.”This gave me hope; is the FSF recognising the big picture and the big issues? Without elimination of software patents (35 U.S.C. § 101 got us closer to it, but IBM lobbies against 35 U.S.C. § 101 and it also pays the FSF) there’s no software freedom. Such patents impede the dissemination of free/libre code.

As per our latest Daily Links with an editorial comment, the IBM-connected OIN is still pushing software patents, this time disguised as “hey hi” (the EPO loves this term as a loophole for granting software patents in Europe). It makes one wonder if IBM, the ‘old’ big bad monopolist, is compatible with Free software (and by extension Red Hat as well). Why does the FSF allow itself to become financially dependent on the company that lobbies for software patents in India, in Europe and in the US? In other countries too of course… (but it takes more work to show this)

The author figosdev, who used to support the FSF financially, has pretty much given up on the FSF. To me, one key issue is the FSF’s silence on systemd (modularity under attack, probably for vendor lock-in) and IBM’s lobbying for software patents. How can the FSF reconcile all this?

figosdev wrote to me some hours ago to say: “By the way Roy, who else has pointed out that OIN is the GitHub of software patents?

“The latest moves into OIN and the latest moves into GitHub aren’t coincidental. The assimilation and annexation continues.

“Ultimately whoever owns OIN will own free software. Of course you can’t own OIN, can you? Wait, that’s like saying you can’t own the FSF or the GNU project.”

Sarcasm noted.

“I think rms made a mistake by embarking on that trip to Microsoft (a few weeks before he was ‘canceled’) and it’s clear that Microsoft/GitHub took none of his suggestions seriously.”My interpretation of Free software is somewhat personal; the concept itself is impersonal, but each can have a different interpretation of it. The advocacy of rms is still as lucid as ever, even if the FSF doesn’t give rms the limelight he deserves. I think rms made a mistake by embarking on that trip to Microsoft (a few weeks before he was ‘canceled’) and it’s clear that Microsoft/GitHub took none of his suggestions seriously. GitHub is a mess, full of JavaScript and lock-in. It’s totally proprietary.

To me, software freedom is about more than “GNU” or “Linux” or “GNU/Linux”. Seeing so-called ‘digitalisation’ of society (that’s what EPO calls it) and seeing software patents and secret code and clown computing and listening devices connected to these clowns makes me growingly concerned. Recently, in the United States, the drones of the police were taken up another notch. These combine surveillance with strategic response (violence). It may only be a matter of time before these Orwellian ‘machines’ (military gear) do to US citizens what’s already done to Somalis. What can we, as producers of code, do about this?

“To me, software freedom is about more than “GNU” or “Linux” or “GNU/Linux”.”The so-called ‘ethical’ licences mostly serve to distract from software freedom itself. They’re based upon the assumption that limiting access to software or restricting who can run it (a bit like UEFI ‘secure boot’) would somehow enhance freedom. It’s worse than misguided, it’s not enforceable (good luck getting military contractors to obey copyright laws, especially as some impoverished programmer with no lawyers), and it’s strategically weak.

I used to say that OSI and OIN and the Linux Foundation and whatnot are useless front groups beholden to corporate interests. The FSF is beholden to IBM, which in itself is a growing concern. The FSF should never have accepted corporate patrons at all.

So who to trust? Well, rms seems to have not been compromised. He’s still out there (or indoors; the coronavirus doesn’t help one who travels to give speeches). He’ll be out there for years to come. I predict that I too will be out there, hopefully for decades to come. Techrights will never take money from corporations and depending on how the Web evolves (or collapses) it may stick around for a couple more decades. Contingencies and successions are already in place. The site is in good hands, strong hands, technical hands. It can outlive all sorts of perils.

[Humour] Thinking Beyond Just the Linux Brand

Posted in Deception, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, OSI at 12:17 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Aragorn Merry Pippin Second Breakfast: I'm off, lads... I don't think he knows about software freedom

Summary: We’re supposed to believe that because “Linux” is dominant we finally have freedom; but almost all the very big companies that are using GNU/Linux leverage it for freedom-hostile purposes and keep about 99% of their code secret from us, so the fight for software freedom must go on

LOTR second breakfast: Are you going to keep fighting with us? No, Open Source has won. He doesn't know Open Source is a corporate ploy. Proprietary giants carrying on the way they always did. But 'openly', in proprietary GitHub openwashing monopoly.

Corporate Media Blames ‘China’ and ‘Open Source’ for Back Doors in Microsoft’s Intentionally Flawed Proprietary Software That’s Causing Chaos

Posted in Asia, Australia, Deception, FUD, Microsoft, Security, Windows at 11:16 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Corporate media has long helped Microsoft distract the public, oftentimes leveraging nationalism to achieve this

The red flags

Summary: ‘Red Scare’ tactics are being used to divert attention away from Microsoft’s incompetence and conspiracy with the NSA (to put back doors in everything, essentially making all software inherently vulnerable, by design)

LAST month we published our hospital series. It was about hospital managers and media, in cohesion, blaming or punishing Microsoft’s competition for Microsoft’s own failings. Hospitals are being taken out of service because of Microsoft and somehow, perhaps miraculously, everything gets blamed except Microsoft. It’s part of a media cover-up and hospital blame-shifting pattern.

“It’s almost as though someone is in deep denial about the nature of the real culprit, instead blaming people who exploit the holes (as they can).”It’s barely surprising to hear — as I did earlier this week — that: “An analysis of the ongoing massive cyber attack on Australia finds mostly Microsoft vulnerabilities exploits.”

The official page speaks of “tools copied almost identically from open source.”

They focus on how the exploits were put together, not the holes that they exploit. But this part is telling: “During investigations, a common issue that reduced the effectiveness and speed of investigative efforts was the lack of comprehensive and historical logging information across a number of areas including web server request logs, Windows event logs and internet proxy logs. The ACSC strongly recommends reviewing and implementing the ACSC guidance on Windows Event Logging and Forwarding and System Monitoring.”

This part is pretty clear about Windows being the issue. “Stop public spending on Microsoft,” the person who highlighted to to me said. “Public Money, Public Code. Media blames China.” The above page also link to this page: “The actor has been identified leveraging a number of initial access vectors, with the most prevalent being the exploitation of public-facing infrastructure — primarily through the use of remote code execution vulnerabilities in unpatched versions of Telerik UI. Other vulnerabilities in public-facing infrastructure leveraged by the actor include exploitation of a deserialisation vulnerability in Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS), a 2019 SharePoint vulnerability and the 2019 Citrix vulnerability.”

IIS, SharePoint, Citrix…

It’s almost as though someone is in deep denial about the nature of the real culprit, instead blaming people who exploit the holes (as they can). Not the people are blamed but the tools. Or sometimes the people, especially if they “foreigners”…

Another person highlighted to us this new piece which he says demonstrates “Windows TCO,” albeit it is “Microsoft marketeering spam” because it sort of rewrites the history of Maersk incidents, which years ago the media said had a major catastrophe due to Windows. This page entitled “Maersk, me & notPetya” says: “Within a couple of hours, it was clear this had impacted every single domain-joined Windows laptop, desktop, virtual machine and physical server around the planet.”

So Windows, with its notorious NSA back doors (for which there are remote access tools — tools which leaked online), is the actual culprit. Maybe stop using something which you know to be flawed (and often by design)?

Microsoft Has Infiltrated Authorities and/or Their Consultation Processes

Posted in Microsoft at 10:51 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Entryism” is an understatement

Puppet

Summary: In the European Union, the United States and just about everywhere else in the world one can find Microsoft officials replacing public officials, as if the decision-making too has been outsourced to the “Good Folks” from Microsoft

“Here in Portugal the head of Marketing for Microsoft will be leading the EU-sponsored Digital Transition plan on a newly created temporary mission structure,” one person told me this week, pointing to this article in Portuguese with the hashtags #heyHi and #clowncomputing (we seem to have spread those).

“They’re pretending to be some sort of force for good holding together the economy when in fact the exact opposite is true.”Only yesterday we pointed out the event in Munich that's held in Microsoft's headquarters while Microsoft bribes officials in Munich (it’s bribing officials everywhere). It’s the home of the EPO and Microsoft controls the events about patents there. It’s a familiar pattern and the Indian corporate media has also just published this garbage entitled “Microsoft, LinkedIn to train 25 million unemployed workers this year for in-demand jobs” (“s/train/indoctrinate/” as our source told us about this link). They’re pretending to be some sort of force for good holding together the economy when in fact the exact opposite is true.

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