09.11.19

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Web Site Called Linux.com Still Exists Only or Mostly to Promote Anti-Linux Firms and Openwashing

Posted in Deception, Free/Libre Software, FUD, GNU/Linux, Marketing, Microsoft at 5:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Snyk is an anti-FOSS company (or snake), but the Web site called Linux.com is promoting it

Snyk, Microsoft and Swapnil

Summary: As the Linux Foundation transitions into the Public Relations (PR) industry/domain we should accept if not expect Linux.com to become an extension of PR business models; the old Linux.com is long gone (all staff fired)

THE silence surrounding the layoffs in Linux.com (all staff writers and all editors fired) is rather mysterious, especially when one compares that to outpouring eulogies for Linux Journal (for the second time in about two years because it got ‘bailed out’ the first time). Do people not care about Linux.com? It has been around for over 2 decades, as a news source for nearly 2 decades (compared to 25 years of Linux Journal). Why was Techrights the only site/blog that mentioned these layoffs (which were totally not necessary)? That very much resembles what happened to European Patent Office (EPO) coverage. What compels people to not take note of totally noteworthy and newsworthy events?

Linux.com passed through some hands over the years. We chronicled that in some screenshots extracted from the Wayback Machine. It was around the time we published The 'New' Linux.com Sometimes Feels Like a Microsoft Promotion Site.

The shift in focus is hardly surprising. Might even say it was “well overdue” or “just a matter of time…” (like removal of any remnants of “community” from the Linux Foundation).

“The shift in focus is hardly surprising.”Remember that it was only in ~2000 (i.e. 9 years after Linux became known or came out to the public), based on publicly-accessible interviews, that Jim Zemlin ‘discovered’ this thing called “Linux” (never mind GNU; it had already been ‘erased’ from history after years of revisionism).

No, he didn’t actually use it.

He’s a marketing person.

He discovered “Linux” was hot and as a marketing person (people who look for ‘buzz’) he decided to exploit the brand.

Zemlin isn’t technical, by his very own admission (made upfront in an interview with Swapnil; he doesn’t want to be asked technical questions); he has been quiet and has been keeping a low profile lately; not hard to guess why…

Zemlin just leveraged the “Linux” trademark to create his “marketing firm”; the site of Zemlin’s firm now makes it very clear that this thing called “Linux” Foundation isn’t about Linux anymore. He also consults non-Linux companies ‘on the side’.

“Zemlin just leveraged the “Linux” trademark to create his “marketing firm”; the site of Zemlin’s firm now makes it very clear that this thing called “Linux” Foundation isn’t about Linux anymore. He also consults non-Linux companies ‘on the side’.”“Seems Black Duck FUD against copyleft has found a new home at Linux Foundation,” Simon Phipps wrote two and a half years ago (it was already getting that bad), referring to a Microsoft-connected firm similar to Snyk. Snyk and Black Duck are both connected to Microsoft. They’re also connected to the Linux Foundation and the sole editor of Linux.com (see screenshot at the top). This sort of selection of editor is a perfect fit for Linux Foundation sponsors such as VMware and Microsoft, which he's openwashing and whitewashing (reputation laundering). Hardly surprising that after firing all the site’s staff — people who actually promote and use GNU/Linux — they’d put such a person in charge to dish links (sometimes to his own Web site or Microsoft’s sites).

Look at Linux.com right now. Top of page? There’s a special feature… linking to a Microsoft PR agent in ZDNet, connecting Stallman to Microsoft. Why was this put at the very top? My wife and I remember when the site used to be about Linux (like the name of the site and the domain name); we fondly followed this site as a source of news for many years. The wife says it would be better to just suspend or shut down Linux.com than to run it like that. The site actually used to be about GNU/Linux. It’s sad to say this, but Linux.com does more against Linux than for it (archives of the site, i.e. old articles, notwithstanding or not accounted for).

“It’s sad to say this, but Linux.com does more against Linux than for it (archives of the site, i.e. old articles, notwithstanding or not accounted for).”We’re meanwhile concerned about the openwashing site of Swapnil. That site is copy-pasting-editing press releases to manufacture fake ‘articles’ (example from last night; compare text to this press release; another article from last night was entitled “Red Hat Quay 3.1 Features Repository Mirroring”; it’s just ‘copypasta’ of a press release, mildly edited to make this fake ‘article’ seem original).

This amounts to integrity zero. Just what’s expected from a courier of Jim Zemlin and his openwashing PAC (essentially a tax-exempt PR firm). If they had lost their tax status (having become something else over the past decade), Big Sponsors like Microsoft and VMware would have to increase their ‘contributions’ (lobbying, buying seats etc.), right?

Linux.com after all staff got fired is not a news site. They link to openwashing press release (example from last night) and won’t produce original articles…

A salad of ‘marketeering’ nonsense. How shallow. This is what’s killing genuine journalism.

“A salad of ‘marketeering’ nonsense.”Swapnil’s site is a PR and ‘copypasta’ mill… which sometimes receives links (by Swapnil himself) in Linux.com. Last night Swapnil promoted a Microsoft proxy that attacks Linux. In Linux.com as if the site is an enemy of Linux and ally of Linux enemies. It linked to a puff piece from Globes (financial press in the firm’s country). His site then prepared some ‘PR’ for them in his Web site; so did some other media sites, e.g. [1, 2] (readers alerted us about these promotions of a FUD firm, with “open source” in the headline).

GNU/Linux advocates, users and developers ought to feel very much entitled to be furious at the “Linux” Foundation, which is misrepresentation of their interests… for a profit. This same so-called ‘Linux’ Foundation works against the licence of Linux and outsources lots of stuff to Microsoft (GitHub). One day GitHub will shut down (it’s inevitable) and many developers will lose ‘their’ platform against their will.

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