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PPLive|Synacast Puts Microsoft (Employee) in Charge; More AstroTurf Sightings

Binoculars
Troublemakers Inside€®



Summary: Microsoft remnants enter another company; Microsoft PR/MVPs look to cause trouble in ODF and online fora

IT ONLY makes sense to keep track of companies which are likely to serve Microsoft. This week we find that Synacast has tactlessly chosen someone from the very heart of the Microsoft ecosystem to become its CEO:

The Chinese P2P video vendor Synacast, better known under the name of its video platform PPLive, will announce next week the appointment of former Microsoft exec Vincent Tao as its new CEO. Tao joined Microsoft in 2005 via the acquisition of his mapping startup Geotango, which provided the technology for Virtual Earth. Since then, Tao has acted as senior director for Microsoft’s online services division.


Will PPLive (the video platform) support standards, open formats, and platforms like GNU/Linux?

Speaking of negative influence, we wrote about Wouter van Vugt a few days ago. It was only later found that:



Wouter van Vugt is a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (see banner at the side). Also notice how much time he spends ridiculing Microsoft's rivals. Maybe that's how he becomes an MVP. From the front page alone:

"The story of Lotus Symphony [bashing]"

"Validity to schema is not an ODF conformance requirement"

"Some more un-guidance from the ODF Alliance"

"Why Linux Sucks"

What a true gentleman...



Right now he says that he is "Having fun reading the ODF specification." Surely he's just preparing to attack it in public, all on behalf of the company that brings home his bacon. Open document formats sure scare a company like Microsoft and its faithfuls, to whom the use of a proprietary format like OOXML may be a matter of commercial life or death. Office is Microsoft's most profitable product and one of the few that are actually profitable.

Microsoft keeps up its appearance by means of AstroTurfing. CNET has this new exposition of a shill for NBA, but watch the comments:

NBA PR man admits he's anonymous commenter



[...]

You just don't what Microsoft brought into this subject.

[...]

It seems as if Microsoft employees comment regularly in Microsoft's favor on this board. How may times have we read how great Visa is, or how good Windows 7 will be?

Why shouldn't people working for other corporations do the same? Honesty and truth have nothing to do with business and marketing. Only money counts.

[...]

I find it very hard to believe that Microsoft would stoop so low as to actually pay people to support their view on any internet forum.

NO company is that bad. Paying people to do that could be considered dishonest.



Oh, yeah? Well, Microsoft employees have already admitted that Microsoft is doing this. We wrote about this back in January.

In addition, Microsoft is paying professors to write papers against competitors. So, responding to "I find it very hard to believe that Microsoft would stoop so low," well... Microsoft stoops much lower. It bribes and bullies professors to protect its image. It does not take much effort to research and find this out. It's not even a secret.

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