11.05.09

Are Microsoft Employees (Technical Evangelists) Using Spammers in Twitter?

Posted in Marketing, Microsoft at 8:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Microsoft “technical evangelist” (euphemism for AstroTurfer on the company’s payroll) appears to be operating some kind of bot programme that smears Boycott Novell

A CERTAIN pattern has gone on for far too long to be ignored. The target is Boycott Novell, so it ought to be finally brought up.

For those who require some background, we wrote about the subject several months ago when it had heated up greatly. We wrote about this in:

To tell the story very briefly, a Microsoft “technical evangelist” (TE) [1, 2, 3, 4] called Jonathan Wong came to this site with some “perception management” [1, 2], never revealing that he was a Microsoft employee until after he had been exposed. Then he wrote a post against us, quoting known anti-GNU/Linux people as a source of supposedly disgruntled people who have a problem with Boycott Novell. That was months ago. Since then, about a hundred times or more and almost at regular intervals, some Twitter accounts have been boosting his post. Here is an example just from the past few days:

Twitter results

See the similarity of the twits and the weird account names. In one case, two different accounts have the exact same avatar. This stream of twits has been going on like this for months. Those twits always come from accounts without a description and not a single person is following anyone else, which makes the characteristic of some kind of bot accounts. Jonathan Wong describes himself as “… a social media aficionado who loves to use social media tools to procrastinate optimize his own personal information stream.” Maybe this is why Microsoft hired him.

More on Microsoft in Twitter

  1. More Microsoft AstroTurfing (aka ‘Technical Evangelism’) in Twitter
  2. User “Microsoft Incentives” Wants to be Your Friend, Too
  3. Microsoft’s Twitter AstroTurf Continues
  4. Who is Pumping MSFT and Pimping Microsoft in Twitter?
  5. Microsoft Hires Federated Media for Twitter AstroTurfing
  6. Does Microsoft Still Create Twitter Accounts for Guerilla Marketing?
  7. Microsoft’s AstroTurfing, Twitter, Waggener Edstrom, and Jonathan Zuck
  8. Microsoft Twitter Bots, FTC Blowback, and Paid-for Vista 7 Glorification
  9. Microsoft Feeds Hundreds of Korean Bloggers to Promote Vista 7
Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

This post is also available in Gemini over at:

gemini://gemini.techrights.org/2009/11/05/msft-spammers-in-twitter/

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

4 Comments

  1. dyfet said,

    November 5, 2009 at 9:58 am

    Gravatar

    I also noticed someone systematically votes every article a 1. This site may at times be irreverent, and certainly it is not a style I would have personally chosen, but I am also so very glad we (the community) have this resource and that Roy has provided it for us.

  2. your_friend said,

    November 5, 2009 at 10:38 am

    Gravatar

    It looks like Microsoft is trying to create a false impression of free software negativity about Boycott Novell. Astroturfers have filled Ubuntu forums and other places with troll posts and have created collections of their own nonsense to link farm as Wong or one of his TE friends has. You’ve obviously caught some spambots and “The Currious Case of the Armchair Theorist” has been pushed up to the third Google result for “Boycott Novell”. The second result is some smear article about a “den of paranoia.” The fifth result a FSD point to an interview that comments accuse of being an attack. There are other results on the first page that talk about “hatred” and other things. Someone that was unaware of this astroturf and link farming might form a negative opinion of Boycott Novell.

    You should sue Microsoft for this. Wong can claim to not be the spammer but that is irrelevant if another TE is doing the spammning. Microsoft seems to once again have been caught paying people to libel and may have done much more. A good lawyer could build a case to track down the identities of the above spambots and get the appropriate warrant in the US. If the bots point back to Microsoft, or some PR firm under their direction, a solid libel case can be built against the guilty party. A damaging lie has been built by selective quoting, publication and dishonest promotion of those publications. In any economy, that kind of nonsense can mean the difference between a good start to a career and ruin. In a down economy it is even more damaging. Ralph Nader started his career as a public advocate through a similar slip up on the part of the now bankrupt GM.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    The case of Fox versus Van Jones is an interesting one.

  3. uberVU - social comments said,

    November 5, 2009 at 9:30 pm

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by ealexhudson: #boycottboy gazes into tealeaves, sees pattern: http://tiny.cc/2u8Kr I took 2mn to check each a/c, all valid – quelle surprise. D’oh!…

What Else is New


  1. Links 14/5/2021: KDE Plasma 5.22 Beta and GNOME 40 in Gentoo

    Links for the day



  2. Audio: “Unjust Computing Clamps Down” by Richard Stallman

    The FSF has finally uploaded the LibrePlanet talk of Richard Stallman



  3. Links 13/5/2021: KDE Gear 21.04.1 and LibreOffice 7.0.6

    Links for the day



  4. The EPO's War on Justice and Assault on the Law -- Part 4: The President of the Boards of Appeal

    A deeper look into the ‘sausage factory’ that is EPO tribunals certainly helps us understand the inherent bias of many decisions, including a recent decision on European software patents like a controversial simulation patent



  5. Judging the Judges

    Today we shall take a closer look at Carl Josefsson, a person who shall become a figure of interest if he sends EPO courts to the United States in clear violation of the EPC (looking to rubber-stamp an unlawful decision already made before this case even started)



  6. When EU Authorities Tell You to Complain to the EPO Itself About EPO Privacy Violations...

    “Kafkaesque” at the EPO; Kafka could do a whole novel about the flirtations with or affairs of ‘justice’ at the EPO



  7. The Need for Reliable Governance at Freenode

    Why the current and high-profile (albeit somewhat covert) owner of the network, who seems to care about Free software (it has made him very wealthy), should put the whole thing in reliable hands and not attempt to 'monetise' it in any way



  8. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, May 12, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, May 12, 2021



  9. Andrew Lee of Private Internet Access/London Trust Media Increasingly Owns and Controls Freenode (Updatedx2)

    The details about Freenode ownership and control are explained in a resignation letter urging users to move to another network



  10. [Meme] eBPF is Not Microsoft's, But It's Certainly Googlebombed by Microsoft

    eBPF isn't Microsoft's. But sites that work closely with Microsoft keep mentioning that term as if Microsoft created it and champions it (typical tactics).



  11. Links 13/5/2021: OpenSUSE Leap 15.3 on Finer Hardware, AMI Dabbling in Free Firmware

    Links for the day



  12. The EPO's War on Justice and Assault on the Law -- Part 3: The Current Line-up

    The composition of the Enlarged Board for case no. G 1/21



  13. System76’s First Keyboard Packs in Plenty of Surprises

    Putting the genie back in the bottle is hard, and moreover the corrective post from Joey Sneddon may cause a bit of a 'Streisand Effect'



  14. Links 12/5/2021: HAProxy Data Plane API 2.3 and Mousepad 0.5.5

    Links for the day



  15. IBM is Destroying Red Hat, Squeezing Red Hat's Work for Cash, Laying Off Staff, and Asking Staff to Resign

    Layoffs are not a new thing at IBM (hardly so in the past couple of decades or more), but they're oversensitive about the Red Hat agenda



  16. [Meme] Longing for the Original IP Kat...

    It would be nice to see more posts critical of injustice at the EPO, as we've just noted



  17. The EPO's War on Justice and Assault on the Law -- Part 2: Just Another Pro Forma Rubber-Stamping Exercise?

    Half a decade after Benoît Battistelli ‘kidnapped’ and then defamed judges (it started in 2014) António Campinos has done nothing to restore lawfulness at the EPO, as controversial referral case G 1/21 shows; in fact, they recently approved European software patents after pressure from Campinos himself



  18. Why I'm Using Just a Landline and Recalling My Richard Stallman (RMS) Interview on Working Locally or How the Signal Processor in Phones is a De Facto Back Door

    A longer-than-expected rant about what mobile phones have turned into and a look back at (or listen to) what Richard Stallman (RMS) told me way back in 2013



  19. The European Campinos Award

    The campinos (peasants) of Europe shall gather around for another ceremony championing farmers and nurses... or not



  20. Personal Thoughts About the EPO 'Kangaroo Court' Scandal

    Some unscripted and unedited thoughts about the current EPO scandal/series, which shows intervention such as stacking by António Campinos, continuing the tradition of Benoît Battistelli with his attacks on justice itself



  21. Doing Justice by Reporting Injustice

    Europe's second-largest institution, helped by Europe's largest, is engaging in a massive attack on the very concept of the Rule of Law and incredibly enough the so-called 'press' (or 'media') doesn't report on it



  22. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, May 11, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, May 11, 2021



  23. Links 12/5/2021: New Audacity and Musescore Owner Named, Microsoft May Lose "JEDI" (Trump's 'Bailout Package')

    Links for the day



  24. The EPO's War on Justice and Assault on the Law -- Part 1: Rumours of a Kangaroo Court at EPOnia

    EPO's President Benoît Battistelli viciously attacked judges and slandered judges; António Campinos adopts a more 'soft power' approach, but nevertheless the impact is the same



  25. Bill Gates Exposed

    While publishers like ZDNet worked hard (on Microsoft's budget) to distract us from real scandals many nefarious things were happening; are we witnessing the fall of Gates?



  26. Welcome to ZDNet's 'Linux' Section...

    ZDNet, which defamed RMS to help distract from Bill Gates scandals, is doing what the sponsors (IBM, Microsoft, Linux Foundation) pay for



  27. Europe's Second-Largest Institution, the EPO, is Partly Based in the United States

    The EPO has outsourced its operations, including its 'courts', to the United States; this seems to be the so-called 'New Normal'



  28. You Look for Linux News and Instead It's Microsoft Noise and Openwashing

    Imagine trying to go about doing your own 'business', only to be confronted by paid-for plugs (sponsored) by the people trying to undercut/undermine your business; welcome to "Linux" in 2021



  29. Links 11/5/2021: Maui 1.2.2 and Tor Releases

    Links for the day



  30. The Next Generation of Free Software (or Software Freedom) Activism, Tackling Newer Problems

    New challenges as labour rights and human rights are further eroded, thanks to 'high' 'tech' with its very 'innovative' 'features'


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts