10.22.08

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Hey, Zonker (of Novell), Microsoft is “Evil” Too, You Know?

Posted in Apple, Google, Microsoft, Novell, OpenSUSE at 12:14 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microvell

WE HAVE always treated ZDNet with a fair deal of disdain (maybe even contempt) due to questions of ownerships and an army of Microsoft-friendly bloggers who project so-called ‘Wintel’ affinity. We alluded to some of this before (e.g. [1, 2]) and perhaps the gist of it would be that they give room — in the form of actual blogs — to Microsoft employees, Windows book writers, Microsoft analysts, and Linux bashers (sometimes in the form of trolling and provocation). We don’t wish to name names or point any fingers, but here is one example.

Blogs are almost everything that ZDNet has got left after the bankruptcy of Ziff Davis, sometimes known as “Ziff/Gates”. Much of the rest of the content — actual articles that is — gets imported from sister sites like CNET and from Reuters. So again, it’s all about blogs.

Their “open source” blog has been run by a Windows user for years, their front page contains an obscene amount of Wintel articles and whitepapers, as do the advertisements, which makes perfect sense given financial roots (not complete though) in Microsoft. According to a Microsoft employee (unconfirmed and unverified identity), Microsoft also encourages its employees to leave feedback in that site, in the form of TalkBacks (rarely with any disclosure).

Anyway, leaving that old baggage aside, we already wrote about ZDNet's appointment of a Novell employee (Zonker), who is now running their “community” blog. Do not expect this man to criticise Microsoft much. Being a Novell employee, he gets a portion of his wage from Microsoft. He needs to be nice and polite to Mr. Softee, never mind the past.

This issue of Novell in the press was raised here before. It’s part of the ‘campaign’ to paint a nice picture of Novell. Why else would Novell hire a media person like Zonker to become the community leader of OpenSUSE?

Sadly, bringing us to the actual news in this post, Zonker is not just avoiding criticism of Microsoft, which is threatening communities at this very moment. Instead, just a few days ago, he posted a provocative item under the title “Apple knows best? Don’t you believe it!” As we stated earlier today, Microsoft has many reasons to love such coverage. It need to portray Apple as “equally evil” in order to make Microsoft seem reasonable. So to summarise, what we see here is a Novell senior painting Apple — not Microsoft — as the bad guy. Novell employees sound more like Microsoft employees every day.

Also posted by Zonker shortly after the item on Apple was this about Google: “Google: Evil or just overworked?

We wrote about this before. It’s a bad headline. Should he not leave it to Microsoft to bug Apple and Google, with the potential of legal harassment?

Why does Zonker not write about the ways Microsoft is attacking communities, including the Free software community? Has he forgotten where he came from? Or are those cash infusions which Microsoft gives his new employers affecting his honesty and selection of topics?

Novell is a Microsoft partner in every sense of the word. That, for example, is why Novell even attacks Sun and OpenSolaris while treating Microsoft as though it’s a cuddly parent [1, 2, 3]. We shall write more about this in the next post.

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9 Comments

  1. Josh Bell said,

    October 22, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    Gravatar

    @Roy: I have no idea why Zonker doesn’t write critically about Microsoft. But to paint Novell as the reason is a stretch. The ZDNet blog isn’t an official Novell blog. He can write what he wants and about who he wants. None of his posts have anything to do with Microsoft.

    I think you sometimes see conspiracies where there are none. He’s writing a blog about what he wants to write about. You write about what you want to write about but you always seem to come back to everything is Novell’s fault and the facts don’t back that up.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 22, 2008 at 2:14 pm

    Gravatar

    companied still comprise people and his disclosure at the bottom does play a role.

  3. colin said,

    October 22, 2008 at 2:46 pm

    Gravatar

    So your message for Zonker basicall is
    “you don’t hate enough”

    Very telling.

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 22, 2008 at 2:53 pm

    Gravatar

    No, the message is that Novell people ceased to see (or speak out) about a company that looted the industry, including Novell.

    “Pearly Gates and Em-Ballmer
    One promises you heaven and the other prepares you for the grave.”

    Ray Noorda, Novell

    Novell is now inviting people to get devoured rather than warn them about it.

  5. Ian said,

    October 22, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    Gravatar

    For what it’s worth, there doesn’t seem to be a gag order on Novell employees in regards to Microsoft, at least from what I’ve experienced. I’ve heard, first hand, Novell employees make negative remarks.

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 22, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    Gravatar

    I’m sure that this is the case. However, given the watering down of Novell’s Web site (it’s a lot more Microsoft-friendly now) and the words from ‘more official’ Novell figures, I don’t expect too much truth.

  7. Josh Bell said,

    October 22, 2008 at 7:43 pm

    Gravatar

    @ Roy: Not sure I agree with you. I looked on a few Linux websites very few mention much about Microsoft other than being able to use Samba to access files on Linux servers or to access files on a Windows server.

    As with many things you won’t believe something is the truth if you don’t like what is being offered.

    It’s very interesting to me that you blame Zonker’s disclosure but if he didn’t disclose that he worked for Novell you would be all over him for that. It’s a catch-22 and you know it. Zonker can’t talk about MS because he works for Novell but if he didn’t disclose that he worked for Novell then he has an agenda since he didn’t disclose. It’s a circular argument.

  8. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 22, 2008 at 7:51 pm

    Gravatar

    I was not complaining about disclosures.

  9. pcole said,

    October 22, 2008 at 10:08 pm

    Gravatar

    When money comes on the table, ethics fly out the door.

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