05.21.09

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Personal Abuse from Novell

Posted in Microsoft, Novell at 9:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Playing with paint

Summary: Smear campaigns from Novell employees

Employees of Novell have not been posting comments from their PCs at work ever since we publicly showed that they used to do this. It does not, however, prevent them from doing this in other Web sites where there is less supervision or control. Groklaw famously argued that SCO preferred Slashdot (as opposed to Groklaw) because SCO was able to send its spinners to Slashdot without getting caught (and potentially exposed) by Pamela Jones and Mathfox.

Apart from personal abuse, of which there is plenty at the moment, there is also intimidation and hate (Web sites got flooded with slander and smears about me around the time of those DDoS attacks). In addition, as we know that Novell.com IP addresses are leaving anonymous comments not only in this Web site but in other Web sites too, it was interesting to find the following in Digg just two days ago. The managing editor of LinuxToday, for example, wrote:

I’ve seen a number of troll campaigns against Roy on my site. Mostly one or two people posting multiple comments from the same IP address and using different names on each comment (Like duh, people! Who do you think you’re fooling?), sometimes even from Novell.com addresses. (Like duh again, sheesh!) It’s rare when any of them attempt any kind of factual rebuttal using their real names, or at least disclosing their Novell affiliations. Love Roy or hate him, stooping to these tactics doesn’t do much for their credibility.

ps- I haven’t seen anything that even hints that Novell management have anything to do with the trolling or other attacks, and I think that is the least likely explanation. There are plenty of thin-skinned fanbois.

It is really pathetic when they go personal. They should counter the points, not the person. Additionally, disclosure would only be fair if they comment as Novell employees. Companies are, after all, just embodiments of their employees.

Microsoft is doing similar things and then there is the verge of AstroTurfing. Days ago I received this message: “Microsoft XBox 360 (XBox360Free) is now following your updates on Twitter.” We have already written a lot about Microsoft’s Twitter AstroTurf [1, 2, 3, 4]. Perhaps tweeting about something that says “Microsoft” just triggers Microsoft bot accounts that want attention from people who might co-follow. And maybe this one example is not directly affiliated with Microsoft, but other examples are confirmed.

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8 Comments

  1. Chris said,

    May 21, 2009 at 10:33 am

    Gravatar

    Dear boy,

    just let me say that I find it totally hilarious if you feel harassed cause of some “smear campaign” – after all “smear campaign” is how most people would classify this site.

    However, regarding the “fight the arguments, not the messenger” topic: I think it is fair to say that it is a total waste of time to try to argue with you – which people proofed over and over right on this site. You are simply avoiding the point over and over and the one time I was bored enough to force you on it you even admitted that you have absolutely no intention to show the objective truth but simply your own strange POV.

    So, how you can still expect people to “argue” with you is plain beyond me.

  2. Butthead said,

    May 21, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    Gravatar

    Apparently, you fail to notice your site is a smear campaign against Novell.

    I think perhaps if you applied to yourself the rules you preach onto others, your site would not be here.

    Toodles.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Is Novell a person? Does it have feelings?

    Gentoo User Reply:

    The person attacking Novell is a person, although he still uses the royal “we”, which is of course wrong – unless you’re referring to your hanger-ons on IRC that glorify everything you do.

    I’m fuzzy on what you expected would happen when you crossed the line from “Boycott this company because they have a deal with Microsoft, patents, etc” to personal smears, gleeful predictions of layoffs and doom for the people who work there.

    Whatever happened to those massive Novell layoffs, btw? The ones that your “informant” told you about?

  3. amd-linux said,

    May 21, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    Gravatar

    “Is Novell a person? Does it have feelings?”

    I hope not – he/she wouldn’t feel good, as a once pretty bride now in the arms of ugly Sauron and dying….

    BTW, I wouldn’t allow any comments on this site that like the ones above which are just angry attacks – as long as they are just stupid accusations without actual content or arguments, they are a waste of storage, IMHO. If you answer or even publish them, you might encourage them.

    Keep on your good work – I am not always 100% your opinion, but it is very important to have a second voice together with Groklaw.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    BTW, I wouldn’t allow any comments on this site that like the ones above which are just angry attacks – as long as they are just stupid accusations without actual content or arguments, they are a waste of storage, IMHO.

    The fact that unlike many other sites (e.g. Groklaw) we never censored anything is actually a strength. We hide nothing. The same goes for IRC where we tolerate some very abusive characters.

    Keep on your good work – I am not always 100% your opinion, but it is very important to have a second voice together with Groklaw.

    Thanks. This weekend we’ll try to sort out the remaining hosting issues. In the mean time we just try to keep out of trouble.

  4. Needs Sunlight said,

    May 22, 2009 at 7:19 am

    Gravatar

    Actually, smear campaigns are common from MS.

    What @Butthead and @Chris failed to take into account was the difference between documented offenses listed here and the the name calling and other ad hominems coming from MS boosters. Unfounded accusations and personal attacks are smears.

    It’s possible for a company and a product line to suck. Get over it.

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