03.12.21

Why the Latest EPO Series is Very Important and Also Difficult to Publish

Posted in Deception, Europe, Free/Libre Software, Law, Mail, Microsoft, Patents, Servers at 8:55 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: The video talks about some of the background surrounding our latest series and efforts to undermine, silence and demonise Techrights (deliberate distortion of our stance); it proceeds to discussing the first part, one of almost 20 in total

PUBLISHING articles about EPO corruption has never been easy because this institution, Europe’s second-largest, is run by Mafia-like entities (e.g. Serco [1, 2]) and their facilitators. Corrupt officials like Benoît Battistelli and their appointees, including António Campinos, would usher in and profit from such corruption. Never mind their attack on the actual law, e.g. lobbying for European software patents while bullying and defaming judges.

The video above is about Part I, which was split into two. Yesterday’s IRC logs reveal some of the difficulties going ahead with this series. Much disruption is caused by outside forces known for their track record of trolling. They exploit the fact that we don’t censor and ban anyone in IRC (free speech is important to us, as freedom of expression is needed for true journalism).

Later today we’ll publish Part II, which concerns Microsoft and a big scandal at the EPO (connected to Microsoft leveraging racism at a time of soaring violence against Asian-Americans). Copies of key documents have meanwhile been disseminated through IPFS. Spreading wide makes us more robust/resistant to censorship attempts.

09.29.20

Under IBM’s Leadership Red Hat Becomes a SPAM Marketing Operation, Sending Mass Mails Without Authorisation and Making It Impossible to Unsubscribe

Posted in IBM, Mail, Marketing, Red Hat at 5:07 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Here we go again, days after they said it would stop

Red Hat spam

Summary: Red Hat seems incapable of respecting people’s inboxes; it subscribes people to things which they never ever subscribed to and makes it impossible to unsubscribe; what has Red Hat become or succumbed to?

THAT Red Hat hired its external PR people to work directly for Red Hat (from inside Red Hat) is no secret. We could name some of the people in question because they mailed us, first from E-mail addresses outside Red Hat and later from redhat.com addresses (after Red Hat had hired them). With new leadership comes another culture and IBM is an aggressive marketer, as we noted a decade ago and again several weeks ago. Master liars. Deniers. World-class cheats.

“With new leadership comes another culture and IBM is an aggressive marketer…”Shame on you, Red Hat. Even after unsubscribing (see screenshot, unsbscribing from something never subscribed to in the first place) they still spam today (E-mail from the morning shown at the top), much as predicted last week. Marketing people have no financial incentive to decrease the scale of their spamming operations.

Shame on IBM and shame on Red Hat, too. Red Hat should have remained an independent company, but in this ‘G[I]AFAM’ era there consolidation in ‘tech’ (grand scale of Pentagon-connected and sometimes Pentagon-funded oligopoly, optimised to serve ‘Global Empire’).

09.24.20

Red Hat is Spamming People in Order to Promote Its Sites and Its Products, Subscribing People to Mass-Marketing Lists Without the Recipients’ Consent

Posted in IBM, Mail, Marketing, Red Hat at 6:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

In the name of “engagement” (newspeak like the Linux Foundation‘s E-mail “blasts”, in their own words!), Red Hat turns into a spammer, apparently Windows-powered too

Need to stop SPAM

Summary: “Engagements” from Red Hat; have the IBM-led marketing people gone overboard, subscribing lots of people to marketing spam without bothering to ask for consent?

SO-CALLED ‘engagements’ have made Red Hat a bit of a marketing/spam firm, looking to promote its self-promotional articles by sending unsolicited mail spam to a lot of people (who knows how many) starting earlier this week.

“Come on, Red Hat. You can do better than this!”I don’t have any real grudge/issue with Red Hat (their CEO did an interview with us); I’ve often linked to OpenSource.com (many thousands of times since the site’s birth more than a decade ago), but I have a serious grudge when it comes to spam, or mass-mailing people without any solicitation or consent. IBM has routinely done those sorts of things to us, even as recently as last month.

Days ago we received this:

Red Hat email earlier

How quaint. We never subscribed to this.

Never ever gave that E-mail address to anybody at Red Hat either, so they must have looked that up somehow. What. On. Earth…

Then again this morning:

Red Hat email

Where does this come from and how does one unsubscribe (having never subscribed in the first place)?

Red Hat spam

OK, unsubscribed now. From something never subscribed/asked for in the first place! Time will tell if that took effect; maybe it’s as effective as attempting to remove systemd.

What’s behind this aggressive marketing operation?

Red Hat Engage

Is that you, Windows? Hiding behind another layer (security by secrecy/obscurity)?

Come on, Red Hat. You can do better than this! Stop trying to become what you used to be against.

04.27.15

Patients’ Data at Risk as NHS Reinforces Its Microsoft/Accenture Stockholm Syndrome

Posted in Europe, Mail, Microsoft at 3:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Privatising the NHS and compromising privacy of every Brit with foreign entities

Accenture
CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikipedia

Summary: The worst privacy violator in the world and the firm behind LSE failures are pocketing as much as £0.35 billion of British taxpayers’ money to acquire access to very sensitive data of British people

IT IS being reported in the British media that the NHS, which is gradually moving to adopt more and more Free/libre software, has just given a contract to Microsoft minion Accenture (article by IDG). £0.35 billion are to be spent on mail alone; that’s just crazy! That’s a big — even colossal! — mistake for the NHS to make when budget is tight and the Conservatives try to kill or privatise it. A lot of money for Microsoft/Accenture means that a degree of privatisation is happening here. “The same crew that did in the stock exchange,” iophk notes regarding the role played by Accenture. The article says “NHSmail has almost a million registered accounts and 730,000 active users. It has been running on Microsoft’s Exchange platform since 2009. Accenture is yet to confirm which IT systems it will use.” What a ripoff. £0.35 billion for less than a million users? What a heist! They should have gone with Free software and a British Free software consultancy. But since Conservatives like Cameron insist that encryption is such a nasty thing, no wonder an insecure proprietary alternative might be sought. Need PRISM (and by extension the NSA) be mentioned here?

Several days ago an article was published titled “The NHS must embrace open source to improve”. No doubt that’s true. The article says: “This is according to CIO at Bolton NHS Foundation Trust Rachel Dunscombe, who we recently caught up with to learn more about the transformation facing the UK healthcare system.

“Dunscombe told us that she is a strong supporter of open source in the NHS because it removes many of the risks presented by using proprietary products.”

The risks presented by proprietary products are not just to budget (disproportionately high cost) but also to patients. There have been stories about unencrypted data leaks and this new report from the British press [via Slashdot, which amended the post], calling out Windows, recalls Stuxnet and shows how using Microsoft Windows yourself helps your enemies (espionage): “Malware probers Tillmann Werner, of Crowdstrike, and Felix Leder, of BlueCoat, say the clever cyber-spy tool – said to have put back Iran’s nuclear program by two years – was on the brink of failure thanks to buggy code.

“Stuxnet had to remain undetected to the Iranians or else it would have blown the operation. Unfortunately, a programming blunder would have allowed it to spread to PCs running older and unsupported versions of Windows, and probably causing them to crash as a result. Those blue screens of death would have raised suspicions at the Natanz nuclear lab.”

And Windows continues to be used in British healthcare. This is insane. Another report from IDG in the UK helps Microsoft pretend to care about privacy (see “Microsoft moves to address customers’ concerns about cloud control and transparency”) while it’s actively providing the NSA with back doors, such as those which enabled sabotage in Iran.

If the NHS is serious about money savings and about privacy of patients, then it must immediately drop Windows and other Microsoft traps. As this British report from the other day serves to remind us, Windows ‘sales’ still are falling, largely due to GNU/Linux. It says that “Microsoft has weathered a tough three months, and despite signs of growth in cloud computing, Redmond saw its sales dragged down by dwindling demand from consumers.” Now recall the article above, “Microsoft moves to address customers’ concerns about cloud control and transparency”. Microsoft now wants the NHS to give Microsoft its data, using buzzwords like the ‘cloud’ nonsense. It is clear that the NHS should reject all that and just self-host using Free/libre Open Source software instead. It would cost far less than £0.35 billion and be more reliable, secure, etc.

06.28.14

Microsoft E-mail Infrastructure a Sure Way to Lose Access to E-mail, Lose Messages, and Get Abused

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Mail, Microsoft at 5:52 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Bush daughters

Summary: How the increased reliance of proprietary software for E-mails breeds abuse at the higher levels while hurting those who are vulnerable

COMPANIES and individuals who rely on Free software for their E-mail needs rarely lose any mail. The protocols, the software and the failovers are generally robust. They are well tested and widely used. There is usually redundancy built in and the costs of this redundancy is low.

When one relies on Microsoft for E-mails one can end up in prison and deported, as this recent case taught us. Microsoft’s E-mail infrastructure is ripe for surveillance abuses even by Microsoft itself. Blunders relating to lost mail often trace back to Microsoft and it’s too easy to see why. Any business that uses Microsoft for storing and relaying E-mail is settling for an office is almost as bad as Microsoft Office. It boggles the mind; why do people put such trash in offices? It’s a Trojan horse to communications. Most mail filtering and antivirus products are used specifically to tackle Microsoft issues (zombie PCs and Windows malware). Free software overcomes many of these complications and it is more efficient, economic, and robust.

“Free software overcomes many of these complications and it is more efficient, economic, and robust.”The other day offices that rely on Microsoft for mail came to a standstill. Any office that “relies heavily on Microsoft Outlook,” as the article put it, was unable to get anything done. “LOL,” wrote a reader of ours, “rely and Microsoft in the same sentence”.

This reader previously drew our attention to the way Microsoft’s broken mail software saved the Bush family from embarrassment (deleting evidence). Spot the pattern here. Here is another new report about Microsoft mail going down pretty badly and staying down for a whole business day. “In outages this week,” says the Microsoft-friendly site, “Microsoft’s online Exchange service was down for nine hours, crippling Office 365 and hosted Outlook accounts across North America and Mexico, just after its unified communications service also crashed.”

Microsoft’s hosted services can only be as reliable as the underlying software, which is simply not reliable. Why would anyone at all want to use hosted Microsoft services? Downtimes are just too frequent and we used to cover them regularly. Watch a Microsoft-affiliated site (Fool.com) thinking that Ubuntu users will give Microsoft their files for hosting. Only a fool would do that, or one whose goal is to have the files spied if not altogether lost.

Then subject of lost E-mail is very hot at the moment because of stories relating to the IRS and NSA, Microsoft’s special ally for well over a decade. Here is some of the latest:

During a hearing held yesterday by the House Oversight Committee, Committee Chairman Darrel Issa said that it was “unbelievable” that the IRS had lost the e-mails of former IRS official Lois Lerner. While Congressman Issa is not generally ignorant on tech issues, he’s clearly not familiar with just how believable such a screw-up is.

“A retention policy designed to ensure that mail is lost” is what our reader called it. Maybe they too used Microsoft, but it is hard to tell for sure. IRS recently signed a big Microsoft deal, so it is a Windows shop (we covered this at the time, only months ago).

The bottom line is, Microsoft’s E-mail infrastructure breeds abuse. It is easy to claim that some “computer crash” (read: Windows issues) made evidence of crime disappear and when one who is vulnerable uses Microsoft for mail it is clear that those in power will be able to retrieve a lot to be used against the individual. Proprietary software tends to work against its users and in favour of the software ‘masters’. E-mail is a great example of this.

07.16.13

Zimbra: The Microsoft Competitor That Got Thrown Around and Now Finds Relative Independence Again, in ASP.NET-Connected Company

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Mail, Microsoft at 3:54 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cannot find a home, struggles to find its identity

Toilet

Mailbox down the drain

Summary: How a Free software Exchange/Outlook challenger became an obscure option with no FOSS identity

According to this report from VAR Guy, the Zimbra shuffle continues:

VMware (VMW) has sold Zimbra, its Microsoft (MSFT) Exchange alternative, to Telligent. The VAR Guy isn’t shocked, considering VMware has been selling off non-core assets and Zimbra’s website had barely been updated this year. But what exactly does Zimbra’s sale mean to VMware and its channel partners? Here’s the analysis.

Zimbra was already in the hands of two Microsoft-inflitrated companies, Yahoo and VMware, and it never really made the impact it deserved to make. Back in the days it was marketed as FOSS, but this is no longer the case. The above article says that “Telligent — which focuses on enterprise social software — has acquired Zimbra. And going forward, Telligent will be known as Zimbra. Telligent CEO Patrick Brandt will lead the combined company. It sounds like Intel Capital, NXT Capital Venture Finance, BDCA, Hall Financial Group and VMware will each invest in the new Zimbra — which offers a “unified social collaboration suite built for the post-PC era.””

“Zimbra is no longer what it claimed to be, but some FOSS-backing companies like Red Hat use it.”This is interesting. So the company will be known as the product it just bought? Either way, no word is said about Free/open source software, which was the key proposition of this company way back in the days. The new owner is, according to Wikipedia, “previously a founding member of Microsoft’s ASP.NET team and helped build and run the Microsoft ASP.NET community.”

That’s reassuring, isn’t it?

Kolab would be a good option for those seeking a Free software option in this area. Zimbra is no longer what it claimed to be, but some FOSS-backing companies like Red Hat use it.

05.14.13

Microsoft is Attacking Boston Over Brand Ideology

Posted in FSF, Google, Mail, Microsoft at 2:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Boston

Summary: Another hypocritical attack of Microsoft against Google, this time in Boston

THE home of the Free Software Foundation (FSF) and the principal battleground for Microsoft's anti-ODF wars in the US is going to abandon Microsoft. Relation expected, right? Microsoft, as we saw before, is getting all nasty about it.

Well, “despite the Anti-Google FUD-slinging” Boston will ditch Exchange: “Faced with the choice of saving serious money or buying a load of FUD, the City of Boston has become the latest enterprise customer to dump Microsoft Exchange in favor of Google Apps.

“The thing to do is not to learn from Boston’s government branches but from the Boston-based FSF.”“And the city’s 20,000 employees won’t be the last to make this move until Microsoft either closes the cost chasm or comes up with a scarier story.”

Here is more: “THE CITY OF BOSTON has switched its 20,000 employees from Microsoft Exchange to Gmail in a move that will save $280,000 a year.”

Neither choice is acceptable. They are both proprietary and not privacy-respecting. So on what grounds does Microsoft attack Google? The same was done by Novell and Microsoft in California. They are all hypocrites because Microsoft itself is trying to do exactly what Google is doing.

The thing to do is not to learn from Boston’s government branches but from the Boston-based FSF. What they need is encrypted, self-hosted, FOSS-based mail. Later in the week we shall write about some newly-discovered Microsoft surveillance. Microsoft is a lot worse than Google when it comes to privacy.

01.27.12

Microsoft Looks for New Ways to Tax All GNU/Linux Servers, Red Hat Included

Posted in Dell, Mail, Microsoft, OpenSUSE, SLES/SLED at 12:33 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft on track to global Linux tax?

Track

Summary: Microsoft’s Linux internment and Microsoft Linux (SUSE) in the news; a little bit about GroupWise too

MICROSOFT has been creating its own internment pen for GNU/Linux users and it is looking to hire a mole to handle operations and lure some innocent sheep in.

As Microsoft boosters put it, Microsoft has Red Hat customers in sight. Microsoft already taxes Red Hat Linux (servers) at Amazon and now on its own turf it is trying to take this extortion further. Aiding Microsoft’s efforts we have had SUSE for a while, but fortunately Dell is moving away from that (although not to the right system, feeding Oracle instead). From a new page:

How Dell Migrated from SUSE Linux to Oracle Linux

Switching the underlying operating system on a single server is not trivial. Neither is dealing with the related conversion and compatibility issues. Imagine what’s involved in switching the operating system on thousands of servers spread globally across an enterprise, like Dell just did.

The good news here is that Dell itself won’t pay Microsoft tax (for its own systems), but at the same time Dell is actively promoting Microsoft-taxed Linux for OEMs solution, which troubles us a bit. It’s a signed deal which has the VAR Guy arguing about SUSE Studio:

Dell Servers Embrace SUSE Linux, But SUSE Studio Is Real Story

[...]

No doubt, Dell has relationships with multiple Linux distributions — including SUSE, Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Canonical Ubuntu. But SUSE apparently is the “first Linux vendor” in the Dell OEM Technology Partner program.

Sort of makes you wonder: Is something deeper brewing between Dell and SUSE? Hmmm…

This is just another reason to actually avoid Dell, but Joe Brockmeier, the former Novell employee, is promoting this. VAR Guy, who has also been close to Novell over the years, goes ahead and promotes GroupWise, which sane Web sites say nobody cares about anymore (and they are right). To quote:

No One Cares That Novell Has A New Version of GroupWise

Today Novell released its 2012 version of its email software GroupWise, and the announcement was greeted by most with a big yawn. GroupWise? Seems so last century. (Actually, the last updates to the software were for version 8 back in 2008-2010.) According to one analyst, “GroupWise has 10,000 customers and is used by 47 of the 50 US state governments.” It has been a distant third to Exchange and Lotus Notes for a while, and many GroupWise customers have switched over to Google Apps in the past several years.

GroupWise is proprietary and it distracts from Free/Open Source options that work equally well or better. GroupWise — like SUSE — is a solution in search of a problem, much like OpenSUSE when it looks for other people’s work again (trying to ape Linux Mint in this case). SUSE over the past 5+ years has been just a product for Microsoft to tax GNU/Linux through. It lacks technical merit/advantage and the latest release of OpenSUSE — as put in this new review — “was released too early. Period.” Boycott Novell and boycott SUSE.

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