“In the wake of a disastrous E3 product reveal Microsoft has purportedly distributed a confidential internal 100-point ‘FAQ’ for the Xbox One that reads like it’s from the Ministry of Truth. It was of course immediately leaked on pastebin. Kotaku has the story and an amusing online poll. In the discussion below make sure to line up the FAQ entries with the AC comments for extra ‘Informative’ moderation.”
Former Microsoft MVP Ryan (DaemonFC in our IRC channel) says “the silver lining is that people are absolutely up in arms over the XBOX One. It looks like Microsoft has finally crossed the line. They’ll either backpedal or be crushed.”
Watch this article about illegal activities from Microsoft, relying on euphemisms like “reputation management” (defined therein as “the term social media marketers use to “pose as happy customers” on social media sites. They upvote/downvote and make comments”).
“It looks like Microsoft has finally crossed the line. They’ll either backpedal or be crushed.” –RyanMicrosoft just knows it cannot perform well without playing dirty. This has always been true, perhaps with few exceptions. Microsoft should just be closing shop when it comes to gaming. Android, iOS and to some degree Valve/Steam, which is cross-platform now , generally mean that Microsoft’s inertia through games is mostly over. Some consoles are now based on GNU/Linux (Piston for example) or Android (Ouya and others), so the worst Microsoft can do is set barriers for games, such as this new case, which Slashdot summarises as follows: “The new Oddworld game New ‘n’ Tasty is coming to every platform in the current generation and even the next generation but not the Xbox One. It’s not that developer Oddworld Inhabitants isn’t porting the game. It’s not that they hate Microsoft or the Xbox One. No, it’s that Microsoft has taken an anti-indie dev stance with the Xbox One. While the game industry is moving to Kickstarter and self-funded shops, Microsoft has decided all developers must have a publisher to grace their console.”
“As discussed in our PR meeting this morning. David & I have spoken with Maureen O’Gara (based on go ahead from BrianV) and planted the story. She has agreed to not attribute the story to us….
“[...] Inform Maureen O’ Gara (Senior Editor Client Server News/LinuxGram) or John Markoff (NYT) of announcement on Aug 28, 2000. Owner dougmil (Approval received from BrianV to proceed)
“Contact Eric Raymond, Tim O’Reilly or Bruce Perrins to solicit support for this going against the objectives of the Open Source movement. Owner: dougmil [Doug Miller]. Note that I will not be doing this. Maureen O’Gara said she was going to call them so it looks better coming from her.”
Summary: Microsoft is playing with editorial staff of Slashdot, marketing itself as a FOSS company
We have recently given several examples [1, 2] where Microsoft’s proxy Outercurve interjected itself into geeks’ sites like Slashdot, very much by design. iophk says “Microsoft Outercurve is being peddled by /. again” (see Slashdot or direct link).
It was only very recently that we revealed Microsoft AstroTurfing in Reddit, so this is important. Slashdot should speak out about it because it’s subjected to the same problem [1, 2, 3, 4]. Someone very senior who had worked for Slashdot told me about this privately; he said they were infiltrated by AstroTurfers and asked me not to give away his name. Here is the PR being injected by Microsoft. Remember that Microsoft was exposed for also planting stories demonising its critics, such as Pamela Jones. I too got smeared by Microsoft staff, as a matter of routine (they got caught, then fled). Unlike Pamela Jones, I don’t have leaked documents to show if or how it was coordinated.
SCO has filed its reply to IBM’s response to SCO’s motion asking the judge to reconsider his refusal of SCO’s motion to reopen SCO v. IBM.
It will not surprise you that SCO doesn’t like IBM’s suggestions on how the case should go forward. IBM suggested a couple of rounds of a process, first tossing out whatever both sides agree are mooted claims, due to the Novell victory over SCO, then IBM would bring a summary judgment motion on the rest, and that would require briefing, IBM suggested, because there are new cases decided in the interim that are relevant.
Summary: Corporate propaganda channel is being used by a Microsoft lobbyist to demonise Android — not companies that attack Android — by essentially twisting reality
CNN, a supposedly “liberal” or “leftist” channel, has been exceptionally instrumental in demonising the NSA leaker and the messengers (some examples covered elsewhere, I would rather than link to them), but recently we also saw this propaganda outlet letting Microsoft Florian, a lobbyist, spread lies there. Now that patent armaments from Google and Apple are being used to determine who inherits the void left by Microsoft’s fall, the lobbyist keeps trying to distort the facts about Android, which never sought to pick up an axe (not a single Android player). It was attacked by Apple’s embargo attempts (see justsome of the latest); it’s Apple which wanted a "thermonuclear" war. Apple and Samsung are battling in court now while the lobbyist is mass-mailing journalists, groomed by Microsoft which pays him for his services (lobbying). Here is the CNN nonsense which starts with this disclosure: “His clients include Microsoft, Oracle, financial services companies and law firms.”
That being the case, why let the man write against Microsoft’s and Oracle’s rival? That is an error of judgment at CNN unless it was intentional and thus malicious. Pamela Jones already found factual errors and pointed some of them out in News Picks, summarising as follows:
I’m sorry, but this is incorrect information, or you could describe it as propaganda. No one can say getting injunctions for FRAND patents is universally outlawed, because that’s not true. And Apple did *not* say that to the ITC. In fact the article goes on to ask Congress to outlaw them, as you can see with your own eyes, proving my point.
And the ITC itself submitted a brief [PDF] in the case, stating that an exclusion order is perfectly appropriate in cases involving standards-essential patents, or SEPs.
Mueller has been pushing the idea that there should be no injunctions on FRAND patents. Microsoft pays him, and Microsoft would like FRAND patents to be unable to be used for injunctions, and so would Apple, but that’s because companies like Samsung and Motorola built the mobile world before Microsoft or Apple entered it, and so they want to defang the weapons the ones who created the standards can use to protect themselves from the patent jihad against Linux and Android (and because Microsoft and Apple don’t want to pay the traditional price), while keeping their utility patents to use as weapons against Samsung and Motorola. It’s that simple, to me. So take this opinion piece as propaganda, if you like. Here’s an article with more details, if you are curious as to what Apple really told the ITC, and with a link to the Apple filing, by an attorney, Matt Rizzolo on the Essential Patent Blog. What they really said was they hoped FRAND patents couldn’t be used for injunctions. It was their public interest
argument. Or as Rizzolo puts it, “Apple, on the other hand, argues that competitive conditions in the U.S. weigh in favor of no exclusion order issuing in this case.”
See what I mean? It’s misleading what Mueller wrote, and since he didn’t provide a link, you have no way to check what he wrote as to its accuracy.
Further, since the bio on Mueller says “His clients include Microsoft, Oracle, financial services companies and law firms,” I think he should tell the world what financial services companies and law firms he also does work for. If any of them are involved in the patent smartphone litigation wars, for example, either directly or indirectly via betting on the outcome, so to speak, or because they have an interest in the share price, he really should reveal his clients more fully.
Perhaps patent trolls and respective backers of theirs are the ‘other’ clients, perhaps Microsoft proxies also. One news site (Muktware) said that Apple was paying him.
The point of this whole matter is that corporate news sites like CNN are more interested in agenda than in facts. CNN coverage of PRISM has proven this marvellously well. One can find better information in today’s blogs than in the corporate media. Watch the following video with Greenwald, the journalist behind the latest NSA coverage (he is to Snowden what Assange is to Manning, The Guardian being analogous to Wikileaks).
There was another such shameful report from CNN’s Jessica Yellin, where she distorted the facts about Wikileaks and annoyed a great deal of people.
Here is the latest video CNN did of him:
CNN is delivering government talking points, defending the collective of corporations — everyone except actual citizens. █
“Mind Control: To control mental output you have to control mental input. Take control of the channels by which developers receive information, then they can only think about the things you tell them. Thus, you control mindshare!”
Summary: Infiltrating social networks is one of Microsoft’s strategic operations and this brings back older evidence, complementing the new
Several years ago I complained that Reddit had been filled with Microsoft influence [1, 2], similar to what happened to Digg [1, 2] and Slashdot [1, 2, 3, 4]. Well, Microsoft has just been caught AstroTurfing through proxies again. For a criminal company which tries to legitimise racketeering, this is actually a relatively minor offence, but still, it should be noted.
As for the evidence of the latest claims, here it is:
Looks like Microsoft just got busted for doing something on Reddit that is a big no-no, according to a Redditor that goes by the name “mistysilver.”
Representatives of Microsoft may be hanging out on the social news site voting up positive comments about the Xbox One, voting down negative comments and adding pro-Xbox comments of their own, Misty Silver says.
Misty Silver didn’t reveal his/her real identity, except to say. “I work for a marketing firm in Redmond that has a contract with Microsoft. I can’t say specifically which division, but suffice to say we are not involved with the Xbox.”
I have been a victim of systematic down-voting, demonisation, identity theft etc. in Digg and elsewhere. Now we know for a fact that Microsoft hires people to do such things. Xbox is a rogue product which significantly harms privacy and consumers' rights (we correctly called the coverage fake hype and paid-for nonsense; to give one example, “[s]hifting the blame from Microsoft” is what iophk calls this latest odd piece), boosted by illegal practices that the FTC said it would go after (but never really did, it was just a face-saving announcement).
“We asked Microsoft for comment on if they have people on their payroll using Reddit,” says the report. This question is asked improperly because Microsoft uses its many proxies to hire the AstroTurfers, as we repeatedly demonstrated before. Microsoft can try to deny using a cleverly-worded reply. “They won’t use their own payroll,” iophk pointed out. “It will be a contractor or sub contractor or subsub contractor etc” (we covered this before).
“Barkto taught them to have a layer of separation,” iophk added. We wrote about Barkto in [1, 2].
Gates and Ballmer, with the two operations they run for patent profiteering, do not do the illegal directly. Their PR department is not inside Microsoft, either. It is just like Intellectual Ventures. When you break the law you always try to obfuscate and remove yourself from a position of accountability. The thing about those thugs is, their “Communications” (PR) heads are often hired from one of these proxies, like Waggener Edstrom (also working to hide or rewrite the scams of the Gates Foundation).
Those who like Canonical can pretend that Microsoft has changed [1, 2, 3, 4] are doing everyone a massive disservice, helping to lend credibility to what clearly remains a criminal enterprise where ordinary people get abused and accomplices share a loot with Ballmer, Gates, and the rest of this legendary Mafia. If you had been on the receiving end of their attacks, you too would understand how serious this whole matter is and why federal action is needed. The FTC hardly did a thing when I filed formal complaints about these abuses by Microsoft; the FTC is there to serve corporations (as in rich managers and shareholders), not people. This means that nobody is regulating against AstroTurfing, not in the land of PRISM anyway. █
National press in Australia (corporate news) complicit in Gates’ agenda
Summary: How a “successful” (as in profitable) criminal bought the press, rebuilt his public image, and is now on a crusade to make a lot more money while the press misinforms the public, saying he distributes (gives away) his ill-gotten money
THE Gates Foundation has been discussed in our IRC channels quite a lot as of late. Australian members of this site are unhappy to see their so-called elected leaders hanging out with a famous criminal like it’s some kind of a badge of honour. Gates is buying the press (literally) in Australia and it is a recipe for disaster. It is not about helping journalists but about enlisting them for PR. Journalists these days are not talking about the business crimes of billionaires like the Rockefellers* and they are only ever mentioning Gates in a positive connotation because their editors or publishers know the implicit rule that money comes from PR, not criticism. Watch Associated Press whitewashing Rockefeller while lumping in Gates and the Bill Gates-funded [1, 2] BBCdoing the same. Some criminals go to jail; but if they are big enough they get a bailout (taxpayers’ money) and get characterised as heroes and business champions.
“Some criminals go to jail; but if they are big enough they get a bailout (taxpayers’ money) and get characterised as heroes and business champions.”The Gates-funded BBC uses promotional language like “Rockefeller (and most other private foundations) is dwarfed in size by the Gates Foundation, which has assets of more than $36bn.”
It almost correctly notes that “The Gates Foundation is also Rockefeller’s partner in the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, and Ms Rodin says it is a “terrific” partner.”
It’s not a a green revolution, it’s “Green Revolution” (capitalised). It is exactly the opposite of green. It’s greenwashing of seed monopoly by Monsanto et al. Gates is an investor; he’s in it for money. It’s about gaining wealth through monopoly on the food supply — a subject we covered here dozens of times before.
The Gates-funded BBC doesn’t say that this is a for-profit GMO alliance. The BBC has been publishing many pro-GMO/Monsanto pieces (or ignoring criticism) since Gates bribed it (to a certain degree the same has been true about The Guardian since Gates bribed it). We gave several examples of this. Appalling? Yes, but nonetheless very true. We are not unique in the making of this observation. This is actually a growing trend in alternative media and to a growing extent in some mainstream media too (they have to keep up with common knowledge and neglect PR).
“It’s not a a green revolution, it’s “Green Revolution” (capitalised). It is exactly the opposite of green.”To quote a noteworthy old article which has Gates and Rockefeller mentioned in tandem in relation to their pro-Monsanto agenda in Africa and the rest of world (monopoly on food), they sure have a “doomsday seed vault”. They seem to realise the problem with GMO, but GMO is about profit. Bill Gates just getting richer, he is not losing wealth. He is disseminating lies in the media to make it seem as though he is a giver, not a taker. Radio Australia says in this summary that “Bill Gates announced he would donate almost all of his fortune to charitable causes” (he is only getting richer a decade after saying this, so it’s more like expanding his fortune to widen the lead as the world’s richest man while also trying to portray himself as world’s most generous man).
We found this very gross article, too. The old headline was “Bill Gates: Richest Man and Also one of the Most Generous – ABC News” (this headline is not visible anymore, but we grabbed it from cache).
“It’s not hard to grasp the facts, it’s just hard to get the truth/facts past conservative editors and publishers of corporate media (where profit, i.e. advertising, comes before accuracy).”it is troubling enough seeing one engaging in crime; what’s even more blood pressure-raising is seeing criminals who do this injustice (with direct harm to those around them) literally buying themselves hero status, getting all the credit for the work of volunteers whom they looted, destroyed, demonised, and so forth.
For those with a strong stomach, here is some more gross PR from the corporate news sites. Well, it’s merely a lobbying trip to Gates in Australia and it’s paying off. The agenda and business model is usually relaying tax money (by lobbying politicians) to Gates’ private investments — companies whose manufacturing costs less than one percent of the retail price, so publicly-stated ‘donation’ numbers are grossly overstated and someone — some shareholders (wink-wink) — pockets the massive margins. Here is a lobbyingpitch from the man who got his wealth using illegal business tactics like sabotage designed to derail law-abiding competitors. Go figure why nobody in the corporate press dares to point this out. It’s not hard to grasp the facts, it’s just hard to get the truth/facts past conservative editors and publishers of corporate media (where profit, i.e. advertising, comes before accuracy). █
_____ * There are many books and documentaries about it, spanning approximately one century, but it is definitely not worth delving into at Techrights as it’s not technology related.
“Don’t encourage new, cross-platform Java classes, especially don’t help get great Win 32 implementations written/deployed. [...] Do encourage fragmentation of the Java classlib space.”
Summary: How a big lie about extortion is being spread by gullible (or at worst malicious) writers whom CBS pays to run blogs
Journalism, as per its definition, is dead or dying. It rarely pays to tell the truth. In the age of public relations and perception management [1, 2] we have descended to a state of turmoil where people who ‘report’ are just trying sell us something, usually a brand or an ideology.
Over at ZDNet, a new anti-Android piece titled “Is Android’s market share really a ‘joke’?” represents the old FUD pattern of IDC and Gartner, where money is the only yardstick by which to measure ‘share’.
In the same site we find this whitewashing of Intellectual Ventures (Microsoft’s patent trolls). The trolls are picking on a longtime rival of Microsoft, which was willing to pick up a fight with Microsoft over it [1, 2]. Rachel King is completely ignorant about this, or maybe she is deliberately doing a hogwash piece (which would be even worse as that would be malice, not neglect or incompetence).
“ZDNet’s Rachel King recently wrote about Salesforce.com paying off Intellectual Ventures not to sue it by basically reprinting IV’s press release, to the point of describing IV not for what it actually does, but as a company that “invests in and works with investors and technology businesses to drive innovation and invention.”” –Mike MasnickMike Masnick calls ZDNet “Tech Press”, but this is just a CBS tabloid made out of blogs, many of which are run by Microsoft people (staff, former staff, peripheral staff, etc.) and flamebait artists.
Masnick says: “It appears that Intellectual Ventures, the world’s largest patent troll, is testing out some new hilarious spin concerning its business of shaking down companies who innovate, getting them to pay huge sums of money to avoid getting sued. And, ridiculously, some in the tech press are falling for it. ZDNet’s Rachel King recently wrote about Salesforce.com paying off Intellectual Ventures not to sue it by basically reprinting IV’s press release, to the point of describing IV not for what it actually does, but as a company that “invests in and works with investors and technology businesses to drive innovation and invention.” Of course, if you know anything about Intellectual Ventures (or, hell, do a Google search) you’d quickly learn that what IV does has nothing to do with driving innovation or invention. It buys up crappy patents that are mostly worthless on their own, bundles them together in a big batch and then tells companies to pay up to (a) avoid getting sued and (b) get in on the deal by
letting them use that big batch of patents at times. ”
These are essentially lies published by ZDNet. These lies are entering news feeds.
Tell Google to stop syndicating ZDNet in Google News. Those blogs are rotting people’s brains and helping very mean companies. Wherever possible, avoid linking to ZDNet and attempt to never read it. Your mind will thank you. By reading it you merely feed the monster — the same monster which feeds Bill Gates by reputation laundering, facilitating the looting of a blinded society. █
Biased data, wrong conclusions, erroneous business model
Summary: A look at some spin-doctoring which favours Microsoft, arriving, as always, from Microsoft partners
The Economist is having a field day as it tackles Microsoft spin. Every now and then we see IDG publishing lies (for sale) from Microsoft or its proxy the Business Software Alliance (BSA). It’s part of the business model. IDC is part of IDG after all. Well, as our reader who showed this to us correctly points out, IDC ‘analysts’ (marketers) refrain from saying something negative about Vista 8 in the latest output they put forth. Here is IDG pushing its own lies (from IDC), essentially referring to itself as a third person by stating: “After the steep losses in the disastrous first quarter, IDC now predicts PC shipments to drop a whopping 7.8 percent in 2013—nearly twice the rate of 2012′s 4 percent decline, which already had the industry in a tizzy. Dell’s on the block, Lenovo’s pushing into smartphones despite its computing wins, and HP’s first quarter PC revenues dropped a whopping 20 percent.”
“PC industry bleeding to explode into full-blown hemorrhaging in 2013, says IDC” –IDG (parent company of IDC)They didn’t state the obvious. It’s probably self-censorship. Microsoft is a prominent business partner and client. As this report from Taiwan says: “Notebook vendors will wait till July before ramping up their orders in preparation for the back-to-school demand, a delay of about 60 days as compared to the usual practice in previous years, probably because the vendors are conservative about market demand or are waiting for sufficient supply of touch panels, according to sources with the Taiwan-based supply chain.” [via]
Here is some blog and tabloid (ZDNet) coverage about the IDC output, which is basically more of the usual spin. Speaking of spin, Fernando Cassia sarcastically says that “Microsoft does no wrong!”
“IDC now predicts PC shipments to drop…” –IDG (parent company of IDC)He cites Microsoft talking points regarding some company called Soluto manufacturing some ‘surveys’ to promote Vista 8. Typical booster, Ed Bott (ad bot, here is his latest ad), calls me “sack of shit”, showing he is no exception to Microsoft’s foul-mouthed culture. They are basically all trying to use Vista 7 as a brand to embellish Vista 8. It is the latest pattern of spin from Microsoft MVPs like Rod Trent, who used to shill for the company in Digg. Here is an example of this same spin.
Summary: Failure by the press to correctly identify people leads to misguided coverage which brings back mostly old news and helps smear Linux/Android
The borderline illegal tactics, such as blocking of competitors, are not new to Apple. The company has always been very restrictive as it allowed almost nobody else on its platform/s. Apple also dodges tax. Apple has in it everything a sociopath would love, so Apple’s popularity in some segments says a lot about today’s society.
Based on this report from CBS, “Antitrust regulators send questionnaire to wireless carriers to determine whether Apple is using anticompetitive sales tactics to squeeze out rival handset makers.”
Apple is no stranger to such tactics. More recently, boosted by European lobbyists like Florian Müller, Apple also deceived regulators. It tried to pretend that Android devices are worthy of bans in Europe. EU-based Microsoft-run Nokia did the same thing in recent months [1, 2, 3, 4, 5], aided again by this bribed lobbyist, who is quoted by Heise’s London-based branch (report by Walker-Morgan, who can’t deny knowing about Müller’s connections). A new article says: “It has now been revealed that Nokia’s recent submission to the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) alleges that HTC smartphones are infringing six US patents. According to a report by patent commentator Florian Müller, one of these (US 6,711,211) describes methods that are apparently infringed by Google’s VP8 video codec. VP8 is currently being proposed for standardisation with a number of organisations.”
“Microsoft pays this guy, and it no longer keeps it secret, either.”First of all, he is not a commentator, he is a lobbyist and he is funded by anti-Android companies. Secondly, he has been boostingMPEG-LA for years (Apple, Nokia-, and Microsoft-funded). Last but not least, he has a history of lying at Microsoft’s behalf, so why quote him? He is a mouthpiece that mass-mails journalists, he is no “commentator”.
The article continues: “The patent, granted in 2004, is entitled “Method for encoding and decoding video information, a motion compensated video encoder and a corresponding decoder”. In a document submitted to the ITC, Nokia explains in some detail, illustrating with source from VP8 open source code, how it believes VP8 is infringing on claims made in its patent. All devices which run Google’s Android 2.3 or later are able to play VP8 videos. According to Nokia, this means that the HTC One also infringes this patent.”
We covered this before, it is not news. The BBC has been doing the very same thing recently, as it repeatedly cited this lobbyist in anti-Android (or pro-Microsoft extortion) articles without correctly identifying him. Microsoft pays this guy, and it no longer keeps it secret, either. █