Microsoft Reinforces Its Criminal Organisation Status by Bribing and Corrupting More Officials, Even in Europe
Summary: More criminal activity from Microsoft in Romania and a new TV programme that sheds light on Microsoft’s dirty assault on Free software in France
Bribes can be passed in all sorts of ways (e.g. promise of a job for a spouse, revolving doors, nepotism with verbal contracts). We have given many examples of Microsoft bribes over the years and last year it was reported that Microsoft had bribed officials in some of the largest countries in Asia and there was an investigation into it; maybe Microsoft bribed or somehow silenced the investigators too has we have not heard anything about it since then (some of these countries, however, have in the mean time shunned Microsoft). Some of the bribes we covered involved OOXML, a deeply monopolistic ’cause’ which had bribes given to officials in many countries including Romania, where Microsoft routinely uses infiltration as a strategy. For Microsoft to impose NSA back doors on the whole world takes some audacity and it shows that no strategy is beyond the acceptable; just watch how the NSA took a whole country (Syria) offline, cracked the network of a national technology giant (Huawei), and actively supported assassinations, even of US informants. No nation should ever even consider using Microsoft anywhere in its infrastructure, but what happens when bribed are introduced? Now we have yet another example of Microsoft corruption in Romania:
‘Microsoftgate’ scandal rocks Romania
The Romanian National Anti-corruption Directorate (DNA) is currently seeking approval to begin criminal investigations for office misconduct and corruption in an unfolding scandal the press has dubbed ‘MicrosoftGate’. EurActiv Romania reports.
The accusations are related to public procurement procedures for Microsoft licenses intended for schools. Ministers are suspected of having taken bribes for facilitating the conclusion and ensuring the continuation of an illegal contract with Fujitsu Siemens Computers for leasing Microsoft licenses at over-inflated prices.
The case started last summer after the Control Body of the Prime Minister was notified about the existence of a series of irregularities at the Ministry of Information Society and the Ministry of Education concerning the leasing of IT educational licenses.
Several former ministers, heads of the Secretariat-General of the government, as well as Microsoft officials, have been questioned by Romanian prosecutors. More recently, the Chief Prosecutor of the DNA requested that the general prosecutor of the office attached to the High Court of Cassation and Justice seek approval from the Senate, the Chamber of Deputies, the Romanian president and the European Parliament to start criminal investigations against nine former Romanian ministers.
Microsoft is not quite a “company” per se; it is almost like a crime syndicate that uses rogue (tainted) contracts for revenue and bribes officials for them. A government delegate once compared Microsoft's methods to “Scientology cult” and this new TV programming from France shows just how far Microsoft “lobbying” goes.
Thanks to the working group transcripts of April we managed to get an automated translation too English. Transcript below:
Journalist : France today begins its digital. So we have to buy hardware: tablets, computers, interactive whiteboards, but also virtually non-existent in the hexagon educational software. The British market, however, is overflowing already. We are in London, BETT, the show for educational technology. Everyone from digital to school has given them appointment.
English students in uniform, singing around shelves.
Journalist : We find Mrs. Becchetti-Bizot, the new head of digital in Education.
Speaker : I present the company Education City.
Journalist : It came out what could soon equip our schools.
Jamie Southerington, commercial Education City : Let me show you what we can offer in French. We have activities for students of three years. If you have an interactive whiteboard in your classroom, it was the software that allows children to learn the alphabet by singing. Well, just press here.
Catherine Becchetti-Bizot, responsible for the direction for the educational digital : I am very surprised by the richness and diversity of what is proposed by the vitality of small businesses that are there and really trying to adapt to the needs of the teaching community.
Reporter : Today the Department of Education is ready to provide all children in tablets?
Mrs. Becchetti-Bizot : The Department is not ready to buy for all, it would be impossible, can you imagine the price that would be! However it is ready to partner, to imagine consortia with communities and businesses, perhaps, perhaps! I do not know if we’ll do it, but we will try to do that, to effectively we can encourage, facilitate equipment.
Journalist : Partnerships who dream because the industrial market to win is huge. Globally, it is estimated at 100 billion euros and growth forecasts give the spin: more than 1500% in the next decade.
Today, the market leader in educational tablet is Apple. Yet the brand has no official stand on the show, preferring to highlight its suppliers of content, the famous educational software.
Why is Apple company absent the show?
Mark Herman, Albion : Because we no longer need to explain what an iPad. Everyone knows what it is. However one has to take people by the hand and let them demonstrations to show them the educational potential of our software. Then they can decide if they are interested or want to buy from our competitors and that is where we are useful. We are here to advise schools not to force their hand. But you know, we have equipped schools, there has been incredible changes and it’s a real motivation for us.
Reporter : For industry, this software is the best way to attract customers in their nets. Once purchased, you become dependent on their computer system. In most cases, your Mac software is usable by a computer or a Mac tablet. Ditto for the PC. We went to the other giant digital, Microsoft. To discover their marketing strategy, they invite us into a showroom software and educational materials to Paris. This place was named immersive class.
Teacher : That’s it. You sit in the pit there.
Journalist : Set up two years ago at the company’s headquarters here the teachers and students are invited to discover tomorrow’s school according to Microsoft.
Nao Robot : Hello. I’m Nao, a humanoid robot. I come from the planet Saturn.
Journalist : That day, a retired teacher, hired by the multinational, we made a small demonstration in front of some guinea pigs.
Prof : What is it?
Kids : It’s the land.
Prof : We’ll have to write the names of the planets. You take this pen, here you choose a color.
Journalist : The goal: to seduce the students and their teachers to schools to sell a classroom of the future, turnkey.
Prof : Let’s go get a picture of a book.
Children : Oh! Lava and smoke!
Prof : Well, that comes out. After it comes out of where?
Journalist : The man who had the idea of this showroom is Thierry de Vulpillières, education manager at Microsoft France.
“…the law forbids to advertise in schools. So to get around the problem, Microsoft has found another strategy. We’ll show you how, for years, the American company infiltrates National Education to sell its products.”Thierry de Vulpillières, head of Microsoft France Education : We at Microsoft. Our subject is to help the passion for the education of teachers and students. 55% of French children are bored in school. It’s a shame. Well it’s because we will move the way we teach and we will involve more students these tools come naturally fit into this new way of learning. What we want is that indeed all students can benefit from digital. I would love there to be 11 million tablets in the hands of every student.
Journalist : The difficulty of Thierry Vulpillières: the law forbids to advertise in schools. So to get around the problem, Microsoft has found another strategy. We’ll show you how, for years, the American company infiltrates National Education to sell its products. The man who found out about roses is Alexis Kauffmann, a math teacher. In 2008 he went to the site Innovative Education Forum, a forum sponsored by the National Education, where teachers have educational projects. Alexis discovers a photo that plot, that of this little Asian girl sitting in a classroom.
Alexis Kauffmann, math teacher : I was able to show that the site of the first forum of innovative teachers using the images we found on the official websites of Microsoft. You could tell they were a little sloppy, they have not even taken the trouble to make up the task of changing images.
Journalist : Oh yes, they reversed.
Alexis Kauffmann : Yes they reversed.
Reporter : Alexis wants to know why a photo is featured on the Microsoft site. He then discovers that the multinational is behind these forums and continues to fund discreetly.
We went to the last forum for innovative teachers. This year it is held at the Regional Council of Aquitaine. In the lobby, teachers present their projects.
Teacher : There is no class, in fact, it is a space that is completely open to life. One lot in life …
Journalist : On the platform of representatives of teachers, the Regional Council and the Ministry of Education
Jean-Yves Capul, Deputy Director of Digital Development, Education : Management of Digital Education was wanted by the Minister as a direction for educational purposes. This is the pedagogy and not technology that is the heart of this direction, even if the aim was to combine the two aspects, education and information systems and technology.
Journalist : In the audience in the front row, sitting behind the plant, Thierry de Vulpillières, Mr. Microsoft. Alexis Kauffmann came asking for more transparency in the financial involvement of the multinational forum.
Alexis Kauffmann : What is the sum allocated by Microsoft for this type of event, for example?
Thierry de Vulpillières : Me I do not give a number. The sum is marginal today on the organization of this forum. Unfortunately. I’m glad you ask me …
Alexis Kauffmann : Since the first time, Serge Pouts-Lajus launched a number, it was almost 50% of the budget.
Thierry de Vulpillières : I think it has never exceeded 50%, but actually it was in the order of 50%.
Alexis Kauffmann : It’s hard, even when enough!
Thierry de Vulpillières : Absolutely! And we are very proud to support that event.
Alexis Kauffmann : Okay.
Reporter : Thierry de Vulpillières will not say more. Sponsorship remains discreet. Some teachers do not even have knowledge.
This is an event that is largely funded by Microsoft. It inspires you what?
Christophe Viscogliosi economics professor : That I did not know already, first. And secondly it would have been better than the national education fully fund this type of forum.
Journalist : Why?
Professor of Economics : There is a potential conflict of interest. I did not necessarily want to be forced to use Microsoft products in progress.
Reporter : Thierry de Vulpillières is the only industrial digital world present here. From stand to stand, it maintains its network with faculty.
Thierry de Vulpillières Laurence June This is not the first forum.
Laurence June, Professor of French : No.
Thierry de Vulpillières And paradoxically it seems that we are in a stand of handicrafts. You see son and wool. This is a teacher who was one of the first teachers to use Twitter.
Professor of French Twitter that allows students to communicate, that is to say we are in a classroom, but it opens. We did projects where communication was contacted politicians, writers and journalists. Short exchanges, which led us to do larger projects, meetings, writings and exchanges.
Journalist : Adept Internet, the teacher becomes a target for Microsoft representative. This morning he offered his ten tablets Professor of French class was fortunate to have five computer stations, this is not the case all the time. Perhaps we will have tablets.
Journalist : Microsoft?
Laurence June, a French teacher : Yes.
Thierry de Vulpillières : Small areas will land home.
Professor of French : The good news. The forums also allow these exchanges there.
Journalist : Ten tablets offered to try to take the market in an establishment of seven hundred students. Microsoft has set up a well-rehearsed with faculty and hierarchy lobby. We were able to get that invitation sent to certain officials of the Ministry of Education. The Academy of Paris invites them to discover digital innovation at Microsoft headquarters. Program immersive class. Remember, the showroom Microsoft invented for the promotion of the classroom of the future. Alexis Kauffmann is the neutrality of the school that is harmed.
Alexis Kauffmann : What is outrageous is that academic information day, training, study, around digital is found in Microsoft. It has absolutely nothing to do with Microsoft, simply. Do we imagine the Ministry of Agriculture organize study days at Monsanto for example? No!
Journalist : We went to present the invitation to the new director of digital education.
On May 28 there was the Academy of Paris organized a day of innovation at Microsoft headquarters.
Catherine Becchetti-Bizot : Yes, the rector of Paris made the event at Microsoft headquarters.
Reporter : You do not see that it’s a bit much, it may be a collusion of interest.
Catherine Becchetti-Bizot : Yes, I found out the same day.
Reporter : Were you there?
Catherine Becchetti-Bizot : Ah, I was not there! I would not go there because I think there is a confusion of genres. I do not disagree with the President, I think there is a kind of naivete that there was no will to promote Microsoft. Reporter: But you are against?
Catherine Becchetti-Bizot : I am neither for nor against. I think it is not a policy of the Ministry of Education to organize that, with Microsoft in particular, things of that guy, and it will actually fit. It’s also one of the immediate projects I have in opening this direction is clearly align our corporate partnerships.
Journalist : Multinationals have powerful lobbies and nothing seems to stop them in their conquest of the school of the future. Recently they attacked an amendment to the law of rebuilding the school. The amendment proposed that our school prioritizes the use of free software. Free software is the bane of high-tech enterprises. They can be created, shared, and modified by anyone and they are almost always free. A system that competes digital giants. It’s Green MP Isabelle Attard offering this amendment to the Assembly in favor of free software.
Isabelle Attard, MP for Calvados : This amendment has been fully validated by the Culture and Education Committee for first reading in the Assembly, the Senate also. And when the text comes in second reading in the Assembly, we see that the union of the digital sector, Syntec, just sent a press release to alert precisely this amendment accepted by the Assembly and the Senate, on the overhaul law school.
Reporter : Here’s the press syndicate of digital companies. A very alarming statement: “These provisions will handicap seriously most firms already in this industry.” He was sent to the press, all members and to the Minister of Education at the time, Vincent Peillon. While Isabelle Attard amendment would have allowed the state to make significant savings, Vincent Peillon back.
How do you explain this?
Isabelle Attard : Because there is a lobby and incredible pressure from the largest proprietary software and, as I said, Microsoft is the biggest.
Journalist : We have tried repeatedly to contact the former minister for him to explain his reverse. He refused.
Anyone who still treats Microsoft like an ordinary company does this at his or her own peril. Microsoft is a criminal organisation and it should be regarded as such. █