Image from Android Beat
Summary: Microsoft’s sheer abuse against Android is laying bare for everyone to see now that Microsoft has paralysed Google’s legal department with potential antitrust action in Europe
WHAT can we say? Cyanogen's latest move is very troublesome. We have warned about this for a very long time, but much of the press played along with Microsoft’s plot (covering Office for Android), propping up Cyanogen etc.
So, what do we do now? Microsoft has nothing to fear but an informed public (or truth itself). The sooner people realise what Microsoft is up to, the sooner they will reject Cyanogen and stop buying from Samsung (we called for a Samsung boycott way back in 2007, right after Samsung had signed its first Microsoft patent deal covering Linux).
“If Microsoft bought Cyanogen, as some people had speculated, it would harm its ability to pretend ‘independence’.”Several readers have sent us links about Cyanogen. My wife says Cyanogen’s interest is “just making money, they don’t care about privacy or people’s concerns.” Richard Stallman asked me today for more information (having read my previous articles) and the better familiar we are with this circumstance and the underlying facts, the more effectively we can challenge this “Embrace, Extend, Extinguish” (EEE) manoeuvre from Microsoft.
A Microsoft-linked site weighed in on Friday, explaining to readers how Cyanogen is essentially a Microsoft proxy. The article titled “3 Companies Are Helping Microsoft Corporation Steal Android From Google Inc.” It also names Samsung and Amazon (many executives from Microsoft moved there, including those who manage the Linux efforts, such as Kindle, and ended up paying Microsoft for Linux). The section about Cyanogen is titled “Making Android-powered Windows Phones”. That’s a good description of Microsoft’s goal.
As a kind of FUD advisory, one ought to know that Microsoft has gone “full frontal assault” mode on Android. It’s usually done through proxies, e.g. biased publications with Microsoft boosters who are shamelessly misleading audiences. Here for example is some Microsoft propaganda from Microsoft’s booster Matt Rosoff (yes, he is still around). It was published yesterday. It used deception/false charts, big lies, shameless PR, and ultimately sought to mislead Google, mischaracterise Google, and incite readers. It’s disguised as analysis, but being from Rosoff (a loyal Microsoft 'analyst'), one oughtn’t expect it to be honest.
“Deceptive charts,” called it iophk, “using ‘shipments’ rather than activations. Microsoft market share gets the illusion of being more than double that way. In reality it is less than 2% and shrinking.”
What Rosoff provides is not advice for Google (the headline says “It’s time for Google to throw ‘open’ Android under the bus”), Rosoff has been a Microsoft propagandist for many years and his words should be treated accordingly. Rosoff is offering a trap, misguided ‘ideas’ that would essentially help his friends at Microsoft and get Google in a lot of trouble (e.g. in China, where promises have been made).
The anti-Android propaganda (not just the above) is all in sync; in Europe there’s talk of antitrust (after Microsoft lobbying and pressure through proxies like Nokia) and then there’s the bribe for Cyanogen to sell out (official announcement here). They want to pretend that ‘evil’ Google must be destroyed and Microsoft will be our ‘saviour’. All of this happened almost on the same day, so there is probably no coincidence in timing. It looks like a strategic alignment of announcements that exploit people’s emotions and put forth a misleading storyline; while Microsoft lobbyists are misleading regulators Microsoft is proposed as the ‘solution’ by Cyanogen and while regulators slam Google over many things (some legitimate, e.g. privacy) Cyanogen steps forth to ‘help’. Microsoft is trying to pressure OEMs — using threats of litigation or bribes — to preinstall Microsoft (and thus drop Google), all whilst EU press (and by extension the international media; see the New York Times article “Microsoft, Once an Antitrust Target, Is Now Google’s Regulatory Scold” further down in this post) attacks Google for being so unbelievably evil (even compared to Microsoft). Microsoft is about as evil as ever, if not worse. The fact that it hides this behind a grin and massive PR efforts (lies) won’t change that.
We already see some large media sites helping Cyanogen (explaining to people how to replace Android with ‘Microsoft Android’) and promoting Microsoft’s narrative. We, in response, ought to work hard to make sure Cyanogen has not a single partner and that people don’t ever install it. We called for a boycott quite some time ago and shortly afterwards OnePlus dumped Cyanogen ([cref 82427 there is more to be done by OnePlus and its users).
Over at the Microsoft-friendly ZDNet one does not get the full story. Microsoft’s Mouth at ZDNet/CBS, Mary Jo Foley, downplays the evilness of this move. As one site reminded readers: “There were rumors before of a potential synergy between both companies especially when Cyanogen initiated its funding round. Although at that time Microsoft did not invest, but rumor mill announced a potential team up between the two, which has now been realized.”
Wired shamelessly labelled Microsoft spyware ‘choice’, saying that “[t]he partnership, as detailed by Cyanogen yesterday, will allow the budding mobile OS to integrate Microsoft apps like Outlook, Office, Skype, Bing, OneDrive, and OneNote. The subtext here is that these apps can act as a replacement for the ones that Google appends to its Android releases, such as Gmail, Maps, Hangouts, and more.”
Further down it says: “That’s a lot of upside with not much to lose, especially given the recent cross-platform push. And an arrangement like this makes more sense than the $70 million investment Microsoft was rumored to make back in January. Cyanogen doesn’t have to feel beholden to one software suite, and Microsoft limits its financial exposure and Windows Phone conflicts.”
That’s untrue. Cyanogen is imposing or at least pushing Microsoft software, it is not offering choice.
In response to this article from Wired (titled “Microsoft Just Took Android’s Future Out of Google’s Hands”) one person published a post titled “No, Microsoft isn’t taking Android’s future out of Google’s hands — here’s why”. To quote the conclusion: “Microsoft isn’t taking Android’s future out of Google’s hands, it is likely taking Cyanogen’s future out of Cyanogen’s hands.”
Cyanogen is now a proxy of Microsoft. If Microsoft bought Cyanogen, as some people had speculated, it would harm its ability to pretend ‘independence’.
What Microsoft does here with Cyanogen is similar to what Microsoft did to Yahoo! (Yahoo! shows signs of regaining some independence now). All that Microsoft can do right now is try hard to bamboozle politicians, developers and users, pretending it is all about “choice” rather than destroying competition, much as it did when it took over (before shattering) Novell, Corel, and Nokia. Microsoft does not need to complete an acquisition in order to destroy the competition. Microsoft’s proxy war on Android is very much similar to other Microsoft plots to “knife the baby”, to use Microsoft’s own words (in reference to Linux). And for anyone still gullible enough (or amnesic) to believe that Microsoft no longer hates GNU/Linux, revisit the following series:
We urge readers to keep track of where many people who run Cyanogen are from; many come from Microsoft’s back yard in Seattle. “The startup that wants to take Android ‘away from Google’ just struck a deal with Microsoft” is a new report that helps put it in perspective. “The move,” says the report, “comes months after The Wall Street Journal and The Information reported that Microsoft had considered investing in Cyanogen, but the company opted to strike a partnership with the company instead.”
Wall Street Journal‘s owner Rupert Murdoch (a close friend and business partner of Bill Gates) gave the money instead and Microsoft is then making the investment ‘worthwhile’. Clever accounting tricks are likely to be at hand. Microsoft potentially reassures “return on investment” by making promises of deal before some third parties funnel money into Cyanogen. Larry Goldfarb from BayStar, a key investor in SCO, once said that Microsoft’s “Mr. Emerson and I discussed a variety of investment structures wherein Microsoft would ‘backstop,’ or guarantee in some way, BayStar’s investment…. Microsoft assured me that it would in some way guarantee BayStar’s investment in SCO.”
Learn from SCO history.
“Microsoft has kept its coffers full for the fight,” says the New York Times on the same day as the Cyanogen deal, “spending more on lobbying here than any European company.”
The timing cannot be a coincidence. The report from the New York Times is titled “Microsoft, Once an Antitrust Target, Is Now Google’s Regulatory Scold” and it serves to demonise Google at a very strategic time. It says “Microsoft has founded or funded a cottage industry of splinter groups. The most prominent, the Initiative for a Competitive Online Marketplace, or Icomp, has waged a relentless public relations campaign promoting grievances against Google. Icomp hosts webinars, panel discussions and news conferences. It conducted a study that suggested changes made by Google to appease regulators were largely window dressing.”
Microsoft is still using lots of proxies, some of which we wrote about before, and it is giving politicians the wrong impression that Android (Free software) is ‘abuse’. This is clearly a proxy fight which blends with the “Embrace, Extend, Extinguish” (EEE) manoeuvre that Microsoft has made famous. Fight back or be extinguished. █
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Summary: There are signs of relinquishing Microsoft’s control over Yahoo! after Marissa Mayer worked to end the company’s suicidal/abusive relationship with Steve Ballmer’s Microsoft
Firefox and other bits of software have become tools of spying by Microsoft because Yahoo! had essentially turned into a Microsoft proxy when it comes to search in several countries (I recently saw that happen in the UK, not just the US). We chronicled Microsoft’s hijack of Yahoo for many years. It was entryism.
“Microsoft can try all it wants to pretend it’s about “choice” after destroying Yahoo as a search contender.”Several years ago it seemed like Microsoft was destroying Yahoo! altogether (reducing the number of options for searchers while it was falsely described as ‘choice’ because of Google’s dominance), but with Mayer entering Yahoo! there are some signs of hope. According to this new report, Yahoo’s “Mayer had reportedly plotted to end the relationship [with Microsoft] as recently as February.”
Microsoft’s booster Peter seems to suggest that Yahoo is distancing itself from Ballmer’s gang, whereas a more objective source says that the latest development “means that Yahoo could, for example, augment the results with those of Duck Duck Go or Wolfram Alpha.”
In conclusion it says: “It now appears that Yahoo is looking to make itself distinct from Bing by having the freedom to sell its own advertising and make searches more its own.
Microsoft can try all it wants to pretend it’s about “choice” after destroying Yahoo! as a search contender. If Yahoo! ever manages to become independent from Microsoft again, that would really be something. █
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Humans do lie, press should do better
Marion Jones lied repeatedly
Summary: Poor fact-checking by relatively large media/news sites results in Microsoft’s patently false claims being repeated uncritically
IT is widely known by now that Microsoft works closely with intelligence agencies that conduct mass surveillance and Microsoft's top privacy chief, Caspar Bowden, got fired by Microsoft for suggesting that Microsoft should protest itself and users of Microsoft software from such mass surveillance. Only a fool would actually believe that Microsoft is interested in privacy.
Nevertheless, some utterly poor reporting, if not complete nonsense, was published the other day, relaying a lie from Microsoft’s “chief security officer” (the fake one, not the one they fired). He tried to frame NSA leaks as a blessing to Microsoft despite the fact that Microsoft repeatedly said that it had hurt Microsoft’s business (and rightly so).
What kind of authors (or ‘journalists’) are they if all they do is quote officials and won’t do the most basic fact-checking?
The other day we wrote about Microsoft’s boosters (propagandists masquerading as journalists) framing the shutdown of Microsoft's defunct proxy "Open Tech" as something else, much like framing layoffs as “reorg”. Darryl K. Taft, another occasional Microsoft booster, repeated these talking points, but we were more surprised to see Michael Larabel doing more or less the same thing. He wrote: “The latest open-source play at Microsoft under Satya Nadella’s leadership is bringing the MS Open Tech subsidiary formally back within the organization, establish a Microsoft Open Technology Programs Office, and other efforts to make Microsoft more open and engage in open standards.”
Why is Phoronix acting like a marketing avenue or a parrot? Microsoft does not engage in open standards, it promotes OOXML and it was attacking ODF as recently as last year. It is adding spyware to Android, it is attacking GNU/Linux on many fronts and the list goes on and on. Here is a reminder of how Microsoft attacks GNU/Linux and Free software:
Some older posts about this ‘unit’ (malicious proxy and Trojan horse which Microsoft called “Open Tech” in an Orwellian fashion) include:
Writers should at least make an attempt to objectively assess Microsoft’s statements, not just reprint them as if Microsoft always says the truth. Such negligent writing leads to a lot of bad things, albeit some writers (like Microsoft’s boosters) make a career out of it. █
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“Linux is a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches,” Microsoft’s long-serving CEO Steve Ballmer once said. Not much as changed except pretense (face change).
Summary: Microsoft dumps its proxy (misleadingly named ‘Open Tech’) and other attacks on Free software persist from the inside, often through so-called ‘experts’ whose agenda is to sell proprietary software
MICROSOFT’S long-term assault on GNU/Linux is in some ways worse than ever before. Changing Ballmer’s face with another is about as effective as swapping Bush for Obama. Things are only getting worse, even if it’s branded differently. The attacks on users’ rights (DRM, blobs, spying) have exacerbated. It’s just not as visible as before (like the infamous “Get the Facts” marketing campaign), it’s more subtle or altogether covert.
There are concrete sign of Microsoft’s strategy to destroy FOSS from the inside (entryism) not quite succeeding, which leads to a Plan B, like infecting Android with proprietary spyware, controlling GNU/Linux through Azure, etc.
“For Microsoft, “Open Tech” shutting down is somewhat symbolic, even poetic.”“So,” some people ask, “what’s new at the ‘new’ Microsoft?”
There’s nothing new except worsening levels of aggression.
Microsoft’s ‘Open Tech’ proxy is shutting down, anti-Android lawsuits expand (or threats of lawsuits, based on the latest reports from Taiwan), new bribes are reported (e.g. Cyanogen), antitrust by proxy (against Free software) is succeeding… welcome the ‘new’ Microsoft, the Microsoft that’s more aggressive than the Mafia led by Steve Ballmer.
For Microsoft, “Open Tech” shutting down is somewhat symbolic, even poetic. It’s almost as though Microsoft gave up pretending to be “Open”. The Microsoft “Open Tech” proxy (assimilation strategy) is dead, says Microsoft’s Mouth (people have left it for quite some time, even senior people). but Microsoft’s Mouth (the booster Mary Jo Foley) released quite a misleading piece which is essentially hogwash and PR, pretending that shutdown is “rejoining”, like “reorg” meaning layoffs.
Is there no point keeping this Trojan horse in tact? Is Microsoft not interested in “Open”? Or is there no point pretending anymore? Microsoft has been aggressive against Linux as of late, as we wrote in the following series a month ago:
We also wrote about Microsoft ‘Open’ Technologies in the following older articles:
Meanwhile, alas, Microsoft is googlebombing 'Open Source', which helps fool some politicians. As we put it yesterday, Microsoft's plot to associate Windows with 'Open Source' is proving effective, despite being just a Big Lie. Shame on IDG for continuing the googlebombing of “Windows Open Source” in an article by Mac Asay. We are also saddened to see an article from SoftPedia about Black Duck, the Microsoft-linked source of FUD (anti-copyleft). Another publication giving them marketing space is always bad news because it’s anti-FOSS really, disguised as pro-FOSS. It is part of the latest marketing blitz from Black Duck, relying on the so-called “Future of Open Source Survey” [1, 2, 3], which has been annual propaganda for many years. Why do journalists continue to waste time on this? It’s not an analysis, it’s just marketing for Black Duck’s proprietary software.
Speaking of Black Duck, it recently hired a top executive from Veracode and Chris Wysopal, CTO of Veracode, continues the FUD over FOSS security (article from yesteday); he does it after Veracode did the “Heartbleed” recall/birthday in the same site a just over a couple of days beforehand (14th of April), as we noted with concern at the time. IT Pro Portal seems to be thinking that some Microsoft-connected firm giving a name and logo to a FOSS bug is such a major event that we need to celebrate its anniversaries, too. If they wish to see real security problems, then they should speak about Windows in terminals, ATMs, etc. The new report titled “New malware program ‘Punkey’ infecting point-of-sale systems” does not even call out Windows, almost as if this fact is just irrelevant.
These so-called ‘analysts’ are — more often than not, to not risk overgeneralising — little more than frauds, like so-called ‘counter-terrorism experts’ whose goal is to scare people (e.g. through the corporate media or parliamentary avenues) in order for them to sell their ‘services’.
The 451 Research is now using some biased yardstick to help generate favourable press for Microsoft, but that’s another point and another topic, probably worth raising another day. 451 Research staff always refused to tell me whether Microsoft paid them or not (they answered all my other questions) — a denial which in itself spoke volumes. █
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Fooled by Microsoft into treating Free/libre software as ‘abuse’
Summary: Microsoft’s vicious war on Linux (and Android in its current incarnation) takes more sophisticated — albeit illegal (as per the RICO Act) — forms
Using all sorts of proxies, such as TurboHercules a few years ago in Europe, Microsoft loves to attack the competition at a regulatory level. It even bribes some journalists (or lobbyists in disguise) to produce complementary dirt with with to bamboozle politicians and regulators. This is not new; this is not surprising. This is same old Microsoft. It’s an extension of AstroTurfing, which culminates in legal actions.
To quote this article from a few years back [hat tip Will Hill]:
Thomas Vinje, the founder of the European Committee for Interoperable Systems (ECIS), … “They have learned how to play the game in Europe,” Vinje said of Microsoft, which itself has been the target of antitrust regulators there. Microsoft has invested huge amounts in attacking its rivals, including Oracle and Google as well as IBM, in Brussels in recent years, he said.
A lot of readers must have heard by now about antitrust fire aimed at Google, or more specifically at Android. Google is the wrong target of course; as pointed out in some responses, there are perhaps 1,000 types of Android devices and over “18,000 Android Phone Models in the Wild,” according to Google (not exact quote). There’s no monopoly here and the code is Free software, so it’s not the same as Windows (where only one company controls the source code and controls the end product). As Google can defend itself just fine and we are not some kind of lawyers (having to speak to other non-technical lawyers), we are going to spare the counter arguments for now and instead focus on Microsoft's role in such action (Microsoft loves to hide behind proxies when it attacks Android).
“Using all sorts of proxies, such as TurboHercules a few years ago in Europe, Microsoft loves to attack the competition at a regulatory level.”A few days ago we wrote about a couple of lawyers staging action against Android apps in a lawsuit which they portrayed as a public action. Their goal, based on the article, was to push Microsoft apps into Android. They dropped their action only after Microsoft had managed to use patent extortion against Samsung to put Microsoft spyware inside Galaxy devices (the most widely used Android devices) and based on this new report, “Microsoft royalties dispute was settled in February and was swiftly followed by the bundling of Microsoft apps” (i.e. extortion by Microsoft leading to a ‘compromise’). The Microsoft-friendly The Verge does not tell the whole story. Microsoft is still a deeply criminal company that attacks Android/Linux and Free software using patents; by using threats of litigation it violates the law. This is clearly a crime based on readings of the RICO Act.
“And the EU concentrates anti-trust action on Google,” bemoans Will Hill. This could certainly be used as a timely decoy while Microsoft ‘rescues’ us from ‘evil’ Google. Do not forget how Microsoft actively attacks GNU/Linux, as we noted in the following series a month ago:
More extortion from Microsoft, much as we expected, is now going beyond Samsung, confirming what happened with Samsung in February and proving us right all along. Quoting the British press (yesterday): “A new report claims Microsoft hasn’t been offering Android device vendors any money to bundle its mobile apps on their phones and slabs; rather, it has offered to reduce the tolls it collects from the mobe-makers.
“Citing sources among supply chain players in China and Taiwan, DigiTimes Research says Redmond has offered to cut its patent licensing fees if Android vendors agree to ship their kit with Microsoft apps preinstalled, including OneDrive, OneNote, Skype, and in some cases Office.”
Here is the original report. It says: “According to Digitimes Research’s latest findings from Taiwan’s and China’s smartphone/tablet upstream supply chain, in exchange for hardware players to pre-install its software applications such as Office, OneDrive or Skype onto their Android-based devices, Microsoft is offering them discounts on the patent licensing fees it charges their Android devices.”
In less surprising news, which again proves us right all along, Microsoft and Cyanogen officially join forces. “After many rumors claimed that Microsoft would either buy or invest in Cyanogen,” says BGR, “the two companies on Thursday confirmed that they’ve formed a strategic partnership.” (Cyanogen is confirmed as a Microsoft Trojan horse also elsewhere, so it’s not merely a rumour)
So Cyanogen is now a Microsoft proxy. See our previous analysis of it. We got it 100% right, even months in advance. Microsoft is now advancing to yet more victims.
Rupert Murdoch gave money to Cyanogen and his Android-hostile newspaper is now attacking Android using the European probe, invoked to a large degree by Microsoft’s proxies network, which had lobbied Europe to launch antitrust action against Android for several years now.
To summarise what we have here, first there is blackmail from Microsoft, which says it “loves” (to extort) Linux. Microsoft is apparently so ‘nice’ towards Linux that it now seeks to preinstall Microsoft spyware or will sue those who resist, using software patents which it refuses to even name. “And now install our apps on CM and we will extort you less with software patents,” said Jesse Bufton. At the same time we have Free software facing antitrust charges due to a lot of Microsoft lobbying, as Glyn Moodt noted. “Part of a long predicted attempt to make free software illegal,” wrote Will Hill, “Calling free software cooperation, “dumping”.”
Here are some more articles about it [1, 2, 3]. Someone (maybe FSFE representatives) should explain the European regulators what Free software is and how it works. Currently, Microsoft lobbyists and proxies deceive them into the ludicrous idea of Free software ‘monopoly’.
Android is eating Microsoft’s lunch and getting Microsoft’s money (even in money processing machines), so no wonder Microsoft lobbies/begs so hard for the European authorities to harass Android, or by extension Google. Anybody who still thinks that Microsoft has become kinder is clearly not paying attention. Lawsuits by proxy, regulators misled, patent lawsuits etc. are no kindness.
The Mafia says, “do as we say and our “protection money” demands will vanish/decrease” and in very much the same way Microsoft now deals with Android backers. These are the tricks of a cartel, which under RICO Act rules should be considered a crime. If Google’s motto was “do no evil”, then Microsoft’s motto should be “always be evil”.
Will Hill remarks on the idea that Microsoft will treat more gently companies that put Microsoft spyware inside Android “They simply won’t ruin them today,” he stresses, “with lawsuits and breakage in Windows and other Microsoft properties.”
As long as Microsoft is connected to (and serves) evil monopolistic/imperialistic apparatuses like the NSA don’t expect it to be subjected to laws such as the RICO Act. Microsoft is now just subjected to the law of rule (by surveillance, espionage, back doors etc.), not the rule of law. Microsoft is a political company and like the country it is strongly connected to (staff overlap), it uses blackmail to get its way and always enjoys impunity. Google does not deal with an ordinary company when it competes with Microsoft; antitrust complaints not over privacy but over Free software, and a few other things by extension. This has become a political battle because Microsoft cannot win technical battles. █
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“If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth.” ~Joseph Goebbels
Summary: A look at the latest headlines which can lead to a false perception that Microsoft is now in bed with ‘Open Source’
A couple of days ago we wrote about Microsoft’s successful attempts to associate Windows with "Open Source" (Free/libre software renamed) so as to get chosen by politicians who pursue “Open Source”. Mono has become a key part in the plot to openwash .NET and Windows development (proprietary), whereas something which we called googlebombing has been used to give the impression that Windows is going “Open Source”. Even more than a week later (it started with Condé Nast’s Cade Metz) there are still headlines along those lines. One GNU/Linux proponent says that “Linux is not going anywhere, no matter how progressive Microsoft thinks it will become.” He (Nestor) said, quite correctly in fact, that the “power of the Linux platform doesn’t reside in the fact that it’s open source, although it does play an important part. It’s all about the community of developers who want to make things better, and most of the time they don’t want anything in return, other than recognition for their work. This is not something that you see in the Windows dev community that aims to make money.” The headline is a bit loaded; it says “Why It Doesn’t Matter for Linux If Windows Becomes Open Source” as if there is actually a chance of it happening; this serves Microsoft’s googlebombing strategy. So does Nestor E. Arellano, who ended up reposting the Microsoft openwashing from J. Peter Bruzzese, the Microsoft MVP who recently became IDG staff too (for Microsoft promotion). IDG is openwashing Windows and so do other circles. Without opening up a single line of code Microsoft has now left many people with the impression that Windows is “Open Source” or is going “Open Source”. How cleverly-implemented a propaganda campaign.
“Without opening up a single line of code Microsoft has now left many people with the impression that Windows is “Open Source” or is going “Open Source”.”For those who think that Windows is “Open Source”-friendly, read this new rant from ownCloud. Despite SUSE/Novell roots, the project is dumping Windows. In its own words: “The Windows Server platform has caused a lot of headaches and has required many work-arounds. For one, there is only support for 32bit PHP on Windows Server, so it is not able to reliably deal with files larger than 2 Gigabyte – a pretty fundamental limitation. On top of that, the Windows platform suffers from file name encoding problems that can not be dealt with properly, causing file syncing problems especially with the client and occasional file operation fails, broken user avatars and even issues with the handling of encryption keys – all things that have the potential to lose user data.”
Here is an article about it which said: “On April 15, the development team behind the powerful ownCloud self-hosted cloud server, have announced that the upcoming ownCloud Server 8.1 application will no longer support the Microsoft Windows operating system.”
So, not only is Microsoft Windows not “Open Source”; it is also hostile towards or compatible with “Open Source” applications. The world does not need “Open Source” Windows. It doesn’t need Windows at all. █
“I would love to see all open source innovation happen on top of Windows.”
–Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO
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Summary: Windows maintains its reputation as a back doors haven, but the media is still not highlighting the severity of this issue, instead focusing on accidental bugs in Free software, even very old (and already fixed) bugs
AS our previous post stated, there is an effort to keep insecurity debates around Free software, even if by going a whole year back to the "Heartbleed" brand. “More branded bug FUD” can be found here, according to a reader of ours. So why are journalists still so stubborn and so eager to keep us talking about Free software as the risk when Microsoft deliberately makes its software insecure as if the priority is to keep remote access (by anyone) in tact (some countries now recognise this)? Why are there no brands for Microsoft's critical bugs these days? Free software is a big threat to the Security State, not to security, so a large number of moles can be suspected or even assumed. How many SSL flaws have already affected Microsoft and how many of them got “branded” in the same way as the OpenSSL bug? Some journalists don’t even name Windows, to spare Microsoft the embarrassment.
“Some journalists don’t even name Windows, to spare Microsoft the embarrassment.”Another back door/bug door in Windows has just been found. As iophk told us yesterday: “No logo or name?” No, it’s Windows. Remote access by anyone is a given any day.
As this article noted the other day, “Microsoft abruptly ended advance notification of security patches in January.”
In other words, Microsoft does not even inform those affected by serious bugs anymore. And in other news (yesterday), “HTTP ‘pings of death’ are spewing across web to kill Windows servers” (not the first of this kind).
To quote the article: “The SANS Institute has warned Windows IIS web server admins to get patching as miscreants are now exploiting a flaw in the software to crash websites.”
“For Microsoft,” says an IDG report, “the vulnerabilities just keep popping up, and appear to be surfacing more quickly than ever before.
“Like last month, Microsoft issued a fairly large number of security bulletins for April Patch Tuesday—11 bulletins addressing 26 vulnerabilities. Last month brought 14 bulletins from Microsoft, covering 43 vulnerabilities.”
Remember that Microsoft does not even report all the vulnerabilities. It games the system by making up bogus numbers (silent patches). █
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Pretending to be a journalist, actually a Microsoft ‘asset’
Todd Bishop meets his maker
Summary: Microsoft’s attempt to assimilate (to confuse) bears some fruit and the Microsoft-linked media plays a considerable role in it
SOME READERS of ours, commenting on a recent headline, were not yet familiar with the term Google bomb, which was mentioned here over the weekend. When we say that Microsoft is “Googlebombing” (iophk’s interpretation of it) we mean to say that it is trying to make proprietary software come up (highly ranked) in search results for “open source”. It’s rebranding or reinvention by confusion and ambiguity.
Microsoft’s booster Todd Bishop (we have written a lot about him over the years, including financial support from Microsoft) continues this ugly campaign by openwashing a Windows font (yes, font!). Well, to be accurate, this font isn’t even a part of Windows, but it doesn’t prevent Bishop, who literally meets and chats with the highest-ranked Microsoft officials (like Brad Smith the other day), from spreading these misleading headlines in Microsoft-linked media, only to be repeated by other Microsoft boosting Web sites.
“It’s rebranding or reinvention by confusion and ambiguity.”We have grown rather tired of seeing Microsoft’s reckless and shameless attempts to associate itself with the competition. That’s how Microsoft hopes to devour the competition. We were disappointed to see complicity — not merely a waste of space — in Linux Journal today. It’s about .NET. Linux Journal is labeling it “FOSS” despite the reality which very is different, as explained here repeatedly before. Those who insist that Microsoft .NET is “Open Source” should try to fork it (not possible), then redistribute. Good luck with the patents. Phoronix also helped the openwashing of .NET a day or so ago. Microsoft is using other people’s code to openwash .NET, so Michael Larabel jumped into the trap and made a story out of it. “They also intend to improve LLVM’s support for C#,” he writes. This is more like an “embrace and extend” approach. Microsoft is trying to make Free software merely a client (or tool) of proprietary software. What’s there to celebrate?
Based on what Martin told us yesterday in the IRC channels, Microsoft is now pressuring governments in Europe to adopt proprietary software with data in NSA PRISM (Azure) by pretending it’s Open Source. The “look but don’t touch” interpretation of ‘Open Source’ by Microsoft is, based on sources, now being used to bamboozle governments in Europe. If people who demand Free software (“Open Source” they say) don’t understand what it means — let alone understand technology on general — then they’re easy to fool. The pressure (lobbying) from Microsoft in Europe is capable, combined with enough openwashing and Googlebombing (misleading headlines), surely fools EU politicians. Microsoft is reportedly (the reports are not in English) using back room (closed doors) deals in East Europe to sell back doors (pun intended) to the EU, reminding us that Microsoft is still fighting very hard against Free software and GNU/Linux. Microsoft is also fighting very hard to keep it all secret, bias the media, and so on.
Don’t be Microsoft’s “useful idiot”. Microsoft is not a friend, it’s a predator. █
“I would love to see all open source innovation happen on top of Windows.”
–Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO
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