Bonum Certa Men Certa

Why We Support Phoronix (Whereas Some Others Do Not)

Michael LarabelProbably the most important one-man operation other than Jonathan Corbet's LWN (which is assisted by other writers of Eklektix, Inc.)

Image credit: Intel

Summary: Some people try to characterise Michael Larabel as the 'bad boy' of Linux even though Michael is probably the hardest working Linux journalist out there

THE SITE Techrights is almost 13 now. Tux Machines is the same age as Phoronix (about 15 years) and not many GNU/Linux sites have lasted that long. Don't take them for granted. Much like in the early days of our site (the Boycott Novell days*), demonisation is abundant and prevalent (incitement against or slandering of the messenger/s). We know who's behind it as sometimes it becomes very visible.



In recent months we responded to so-called 'journalists' (of corporate media) who constantly paint Linus Torvalds as a rude 'bad boy', a naughty uncontrollable middle-aged man who needs to be tamed if not removed. Techrights too has suffered such treatment over the years. We wrote about the types who do this kind of thing as recently as earlier today. They only seek to destroy things and squash voices. They want to take away voices of people whom they don't agree with. They don't want to actually argue, logically; they just pursue muzzling of the other side.

"Phoronix is a good site. Google News started syndicating some months ago."Michael Larabel is almost being 'mobbed' by some news sites. Reddit editors dubbed it "blogspam" and for a long period of time -- possibly years -- blacklisted the whole domain (banning links to it; I was shocked when I first found that out!). LXer won't link to it since an old accusation of "sexism" (some post urging people -- mostly male -- to subscribe, however tactless it may have been at the time).

In our view, treating a site like Phoronix (or a person like Michael) as a 'nuisance' is offensive to the very notion of supporting GNU/Linux and journalism around that domain. Some people want that site mentally or technically blacklisted. And for what? It's ridiculous! That site does good, technical journalism in this day and age when it's becoming so rare. Pundits and marketing dunces shower us with shallow if not ridiculous articles about "cloud", "DevOps", "smart" things and so on. That's not journalism. These people are laughing stocks to a technical audience. They rarely know what they're talking about; they mostly repeat mindless buzzwords which they heard other pundits 'name-drop' (possibly composed by PR departments of large companies and passed off as 'prepared' articles to obedient media).

"Hard-working, around-the-clock writers, coders and profilers (benchmarking) are very rare and if we lost Phoronix it would be a colossal problem not only for Linux."Phoronix is, in my experience, usually quite credible. I've followed the site closely since its beginning and I've linked to Phoronix sites perhaps 20,000+ times. I spoke to Michael, who at times gave useful pointers to us (news of interest to us).

Phoronix is a good site. Google News started syndicating it some months ago. If people don't appreciate it enough, then this one too we might lose. It would be tragic as almost nobody else covers graphics and kernel news at the same level of depth (except perhaps LWN and sometimes -- until recently -- Linux Journal).

I've had some complaints about the occasional sensationalism that gets exploited by truly hostile press (hostile towards Linux) to attack GNU/Linux, as happened earlier this month (half a dozen articles used Phoronix to then attack GNU/Linux as a whole, using shallow headlines and no understanding of the intricacies).

"Support the sites that still support GNU/Linux. Do not take anything for granted."Hard-working, around-the-clock writers, coders and profilers (benchmarking) are very rare and if we lost Phoronix it would be a colossal problem not only for Linux.

Seeing that they added malicious surveillance to all their pages (Michael told me it's the publisher's idea or "came from above", the "boss"), and bearing in mind they rely on subscriptions -- like Liam Dawe relies on funding through Patreon to run Gaming on Linux -- it's almost forgivable and tolerable. It's still avoidable if one disables JavaScript -- truly a plague on today's bloated Web where 'surveillance capitalism' emerged as the prime business model.

We still can't believe we've lost some of the most important GNU/Linux sites this year, leaving a news vacuum that's difficult to fill. Let's make sure there aren't more high-profile casualties on the way. Support the sites that still support GNU/Linux. Do not take anything for granted. _____ * Only hours ago SUSE was promoting Microsoft, a day after the head of OpenSUSE had stepped down and weeks after the CEO of SUSE was replaced by a proprietary software hack from SAP.

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