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Microsoft Attempts to Quash OSS Recommendations 179

Posted by Zonk
from the can't-quash-what's-already-open dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Inside Higher Ed has a story detailing Microsoft's attempt to alter a report created by the Secretary of Education's Commission on the Future of Higher Education. Gerri Elliott, corporate vice president at Microsoft's Worldwide Public Sector division, complained about recommendations in the report to look into 'open source' and 'open content' at higher education institutions across the country. Elliott, who is on the voting committee, waited until the last minute and tried to have the report changed after a public vote. Although she does have a point that 'open source' is a development model, it still has collaboration at its heart. Can Microsoft argue against 'open' and win?"
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Microsoft Attempts to Quash OSS Recommendations

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  • by IntelliAdmin (941633) * on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:03AM (#16024103) Homepage
    Before: The commission encourages the creation of incentives to promote the development of open-source and open-content projects at universities and colleges across the United States, enabling the open sharing of educational materials from a variety of institutions, disciplines, and educational perspectives. Such a portal could stimulate innovation, and serve as the leading resource for teaching and learning. New initiatives such as OpenCourseWare, the Open Learning Initiative, the Sakai Project, and the Google Book project hold out the potential of providing universal access both to general knowledge and to higher education. After: The commission encourages the creation of incentives to promote the development of information-technology-based collaborative tools and capabilities at universities and colleges across the United States, enabling access, interaction, and sharing of educational materials from a variety of institutions, disciplines, and educational perspectives. Both commercial development and new collaborative paradigms such as open source, open content, and open learning will be important in building the next generation learning environments for the knowledge economy. Looks like one member was still not happy with the after and wanted "Open source" removed because of the possibility that it would enter them into a copyright debate.

    Windows Admin Tools
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Ksisanth (915235)
      "open content" (a "term which can mean different things and enter us into some copyright debate").
      Frankly, I'm surprised she didn't object to 'open learning', too.
    • by ronkronk (992828) on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:19AM (#16024225) Journal
      I'm South African, I haven't lived in SA for over 15 years, but I was an IBM mainframe operator there in the 80's and I still visit regularly and have family and friends there. The plus side of the racist white minority rule in SA is that the country got the best infrastructure in Africa, which it still has except that the current government caters to more than a small white minority and thus has other pressing problems as well to deal with.

      South Africa is the original home of Mark Shuttleworth and his foundation Ubuntu has an ongoing task in South Africa to teach and install Ubuntu in schools (Hint to Microsoft: It's one fuck of a lot cheaper than a Windows solution). I chat regularly with my mom down there who has a Windows PC. South Africa's biggest problem is a monopoly telecommunication company that refuses to allow competition or lower prices on internet access, thus ensuring some of the highest access prices in the world.

      However, if you go accross the border to the north, in Zimbabwe, which is in total financial ruin with an autocratic president who hates whites and the blames everyone but himself for the crap that is going on there, you'll find an infrastructure that was similarly built up by the original white minority government, but one that has almost no new investment since Mugabe came to power ensuring that growth in the IT sector there is non existent.

      And that is the case all over Africa, you have some countries which have fairly decent political systems, such as South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, etc and you have others which are either run by despotic tyrants, plagued by tribal warfare or thoroughly corrupt or a mixture of these.

      In those countries where there is a semi decent system, the education is usually quite good. In those which are chaotic the people are lucky if they can read or write and those who do know the internet, know it usually from an internet cafe.

      Linux has advantages due to its flexibility and low price. Claiming that teaching people Microsoft is better because there are more Microsoft trained people is only true if there really are trained Microsoft people around. Usually, the level of trained Microsoft people doesn't reach the level of even an MCSE, since we all know what an MCSE POS costs, so that advantage is null. Training people from scratch with Linux is in my opinion better since a basic grasp of Linux will enable someone to manage in extremely difficult circumstances where hardware and other constraints would make it extremely difficult to keep a system running with Windows.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Wellspring (111524)
      It was the MS rep on the committee both times. She finally gave in, but not without a fight.

      However, I'd say that the only reason this blew up was because she didn't notice the line in the first vote. Had she expressed her opinions then, we wouldn't even be hearing about the debate. But due to her corporate commitments, she didn't read the report until after she voted to support it.

      I bet that that PR types in MS are letting loose with both barrels on her over this. It's more a matter of inattention than str
  • Define Win (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Analogy Man (601298) on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:13AM (#16024176)
    Can Microsoft argue against 'open' and win?

    It all depends on how you define winning. Does it mean having a few senators and congressmen in your pocket? Does it mean having a public debate where it is clear that your position is correct? Does it mean spreading enough FUD that people are confused/fearful enough not to take an "undesirable" action?

    My interpretation of a Microsoft win is to perpetuate a perception that OSS is a hippy commune free for all not to be trusted by the government. It fits with the current mode of debate in DC. Adopt an rediculous position that cannot be supported with facts or logic and label anyone that challenges it a extremist fanatical zealot.

    • I think "winning" here might just mean: preventing governments all over the world from sending half of their IT budget to Redmond as pure profit, in exchange for the privilege of ... um... sending half their IT budget to Redmond.
  • And... (Score:4, Funny)

    by GillBates0 (664202) on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:14AM (#16024183) Homepage Journal
    ...out flies a chair out of the open Window.
    • by kimvette (919543)
      I'm surprised there isn't a flash game where you are Steve Ballmer throwing chairs at RMS, Linus, Jobs, etc.
      • I'm surprised there isn't a flash game where you are Steve Ballmer throwing chairs at RMS, Linus, Jobs, etc.

        Great idea. I think I'll write the game in flash. If only I knew flash. Maybe Java?

        Falcon
  • by Tomthemage (999375)
    Let's face it... M$ is not fond of open source. Does anyone honestly think they would allow something like that to pass without putting up some kind of objection? You open source people need to pick your battles.
    • by kimvette (919543)
      Not true; Microsoft does back/sponsor and contribute open source projects. Look at DotNetNuke, IBuySpy, Paint.net

      Of course, they only back projects which are absolutely married to Windows and not cross-platform code.
      • by Blakey Rat (99501)
        They've also worked with the Creative Commons community to add easy licensing tools to Microsoft Office products, where you can set your CC-compatible license by selecting a menu item and filling in a few fields, and Word/Excel will respect that license (at least as well as software can) when you pass the file on.

        I don't think Microsoft has anything in particular against open source, personally.
    • by canuck57 (662392)

      You open source people need to pick your battles.

      They are and Microsoft is loosing faster than they would ever admit. None Vista PCs, many will run Linux. Cash going out the doors to Microsoft is getting noticed in the board rooms. Cost presures either are going to make Microsoft get more cheaper, better, faster, more secure and loose DRM or the JQ public is going to move on. Many already are.

      Most "technology" gets cheaper, faster and more reliable. Windows is far behind this curve. Time for a chan

  • ....an argument about nothing. Do people actually read these reports when they are deciding what to do? This sounds like the public sector version of a "mission statement," and we all know how useful those are.
    • by mabhatter654 (561290) on Friday September 01, 2006 @12:04PM (#16024554)
      in this case it's is from a Federal agency... when somebody like MA wants to implement OSS in schools or offices they can point to this statement as "approval" for moving to OSS projects. M$ doesn't want ANY public recognition of OSS at the federal level. Imagine the effect if 1 State's budget for Office went to OpenOffice.org instead!!! That would cover their funding for several YEARS, but be a drop to Microsoft. The money would speed an OSS project up by 5 years or better... then still be FREE... MS can't let that happen at all costs.
  • Someone should define what they mean when they say OSS software, if they are meaning in the BSD way, MS has less of a legitimate beef. But if they are thinking GPL way, then I think MS probably has a very legitimate beef. If public money is used to push certain products, outcomes are presented for public use but you are not allowed use it, even though they paid for a portion of it; I think lots of companies probably would have a beef with it.

    If it's adopting licenses that basically directly prevent them f
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Rob T Firefly (844560)
      What's the legalese translation for "free as in beer?"
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:24AM (#16024277)
      Rubbish. The GPL might prevent companies trying to sell me stuff my tax dollars have already paid for once... If anything it's better than the (often blatantly ignored) rule that software developed with public money is supposed to be public domain and uncopyrightable in the first place (NASA gets, or at least used to get, this right, at least).

      Of course companies would "have a beef with it", but government is by the people of the people and for the people. And corporations aren't people, no matter what mere law says.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by the_B0fh (208483)
        It is not the law that says that corporations are people. It's not even the judges that say that. It's a fscking law clerk who put it down as such, and it became precedent. Bah.
    • by ultranova (717540) on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:25AM (#16024285)

      If public money is used to push certain products, outcomes are presented for public use but you are not allowed use it, even though they paid for a portion of it; I think lots of companies probably would have a beef with it.

      You mean like I'm not allowed to use Windows XP despite having paid a portion of the school's copy ?

    • by Bob9113 (14996) on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:28AM (#16024311) Homepage
      But if they are thinking GPL way, ... outcomes are presented for public use but you are not allowed use it, even though they paid for a portion of it;

      GPL covers only redistribution without providing source, not use. Proprietary software has all the same restrictions, and many more. You can read more about it, including seeing the actual license (something you apparently have not done), at http://www.fsf.org/ [fsf.org]
      • You do realize that to MS "use" is on redistributing something don't you? They'd have a really, really, really expensive R&D with hardly any return if they only developed for applications inside MS.
        • You do realize that to MS "use" is on redistributing something don't you? They'd have a really, really, really expensive R&D with hardly any return if they only developed for applications inside MS. And they can redistribute GPL software with the source, or they can choose not to use GPL software. What's the problem?
          • So you are saying that it's alright for the government to take money from you, make you pay for some research and basically say you can only have access to it if you use it this way? Tell me why the government should not be pushing completely unencombered licensing of research technology? Why should the government be forcing ideology down anyones throats, either closed MS or FSF approaches. Shouldn't it just be free to be used by anyone, in anyway shape or form?
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by yankpop (931224)

          I think you're still missing the point. If the government were to support the development of GPL software, the product would be available for use by everyone. Microsoft would have just as much access as anyone else. If they wanted to modify and redistribute the software, they'd be obliged to release the code just like everyone else.

          But no-one is forcing them to do that. They are still free to develop closed-source code and charge what they like for it. The only thing they aren't allowed to do is modify th

          • I don't think I'm missing the point at all, I think maybe you didn't read my post. Because the last line is almost what I said but let me modify it to what I was actually saying:

            The whole argument boils down to: no freedoms BAD (the status quo), some freedoms bad (the GPL), all freedoms good (unrestricted use of FOSS code, even to the point of taking it out of the FOSS realm by closing your source).
            • by yankpop (931224)

              I read your post. Obviously I did, if even you agree, but for one word, with my synopsis of your argument. And I still think your argument is misdirected. You place the GPL in opposition to the BSD license, and argue that it reduces users freedoms by comparison. I think, especially where Microsoft is concerned, it is more accurate to place the GPL in opposition to the status quo proprietary software license. The great majority of software in use today is closed source, and the GPL is a response to that. It

              • Maybe you should first put down your zealotry and reread this whole thread again, because you've ventured way, way off course. I've never said anything bad about the GPL for individuals, you want to release it under the GPL fine (heck I have).

                What I am saying is that for tax funded projects, there should be absolutely no restrictions against using it anyway I want if some of my dollars went to it. The GPL has restrictions and should *not* be the release license for tax funded projects, nor should closed s
                • by yankpop (931224)

                  I stand corrected. I did misread you, although I prefer to think that it was because the initial post might have been clearer, rather than my aspirations to zealot-hood. I'll have to think about this some more, but the idea that anything that is government funded should be released public domain does make sense.

                  Cheers,

                  yp.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by NeutronCowboy (896098)
            These arguments are DESIGNED to confuse people. MS is very well aware that what it is putting forth has no grounding in reality. However, they are just as aware of the threat that a government sponsored F/OSS project poses to their bottomline. Caught between advancing spurious arguments against a win/win situation for the general population and protecting their bottomline, what do you think these people are going to do?

            This is why I'm losing more and more respect for the executive section in companies - I'v
      • by canuck57 (662392)

        GPL covers only redistribution without providing source, not use. Proprietary software has all the same restrictions, and many more.

        Here is a recent experience many anti-OSS types and CIO's aught to read that supports this.

        Project A, open source, hires consultants and they don't work out. Fire consultants, with source get someone who can work out. No 0 day business conflicts.

        Project B, buys a closed source commercial product, they raised the price over 2000 percent 2 years in a row! (Company got bough

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by budgenator (254554)
      Someone should define what they mean when they say OSS software
      what difference does it make which liciense they use

      The commission encourages the creation of incentives to promote the development of open-source and open-content projects at universities and colleges across the United States, ...

      So if I write a VB script to average student grades and release to other instructors via a GPL it's going to hurt Microsoft? If I'm running Apache, PHP, MySQL and Moodle on single windows server when I have a site lic

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by NeutronCowboy (896098)
      Newsflash - companies have NO inherent legal rights. Only people have. As such, only people can have a legitimate beef, not companies. Your post unfortunately shows that corporations have already won one battle: the idea that corporations can have legitimate grievances that go beyond business contracts.

      Quite honestly, I think that corporations shouldn't even be allowed in the same room when public policy is being discussed. They can send an employee who can provide some professional insight, but that's it.
      • Should I just bend over now, or can I wait until there is a Department of Corporate Wellfare?

        What, and make it easier to see who collects that welfare? As it is now you have to hire an army of accountants to pore over the accounts of dozens if not hundreds of agencies, authorities, departments, and offices to see who gets what corporate welfare. And you want to make it easy?

        Falcon
    • by rs232 (849320)

      Someone should define what they mean when they say OSS software,

      .. distribution terms of open-source software must comply with the following criteria:

      .. The license shall not restrict any party from selling or giving away the software ..

      The program must include source code ..

      The license must allow modifications and derived works ..

      The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the program in a specific field of endeavor ..

      The rights attached to the program must apply to all to whom t

    • If public money is used to push certain products, outcomes are presented for public use but you are not allowed use it, even though they paid for a portion of it;

      Of course they are allowed to use it. With a BSD liscense they can take everyone's work, encapsulate it with a MS GUI and claim it's theirs - with a note in the copywrite saying "well not all ours - these guys helped". With a GPL liscense, they can wrap it in a MS GUI, but then they have to show everyone how to do the GUI too.

      I don't know about t

  • by Alioth (221270)
    Judging by Microsofts >90% market share on desktop operating systems and office suites, I would say that yes - Microsoft can argue against "open" and win, and has been winning for years, and is likely to continue winning against "open" for decades to come.
    • by jejones (115979)
      Non sequitur. They are (currently) winning, but that doesn't say anything about how. I think leveraging a monopoly had more to do with it than argument.
    • Ah yes, the ever present and bogus "Things Will Never Change" argument.

      Things are beginning to change and that change is accelerating. Like it or not "Open" is coming. The advantages are too great to be ignored.
  • It's here: http://malfy.org/ [malfy.org]
  • Uninformed Submitter (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Bob9113 (14996) on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:22AM (#16024262) Homepage
    Although she does have a point that 'open source' is a development model,

    No she doesn't. Not it is not. It is a collection of software licenses.
  • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:23AM (#16024270) Homepage Journal

    We're talking about government and academia, two worlds that produce mountains of papers and reports each year. Does anyone know if these reports from the Secretary of Education's Commission on the Future of Higher Education are ever given any attention by the leaders of colleges and universities?

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by tinkerghost (944862)
      Having writen a few grants, yes they are. If your grant request references this type of document & it's relevant, then you get brownie points on the scoring. All other things being equal, the grant that is trying to impliment a new policy/vision that's been officially endorsed will win - unless the reviewer is opposed to the notion of the grant of course :)
  • by MECC (8478) * on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:23AM (#16024272)
    Gerri Elliott, corporate vice president at Microsoft's Worldwide Public Sector division, sent an e-mail message to fellow commissioners Friday evening saying that she "vigorously" objected to a paragraph in which the panel embraced and encouraged the development of open source software and open content projects in higher education.

    Why does anyone take an MS VP 'opinion' over those of people actually working in higher education. Why is anyone even listening to her? What does she have to do with the process at all? What's her background in higher education? Why is MS a part of such a discussion anyway? Why would anyone not think that the only reason MS is involved is to find ways to extort more money out of higher education?

    Elliott, though. She thanked Duderdstadt for his suggestion but objected to his proposed inclusion of "open source" ("it's a method of coding software, and one of several available, period") and "open content" (a "term which can mean different things and enter us into some copyright debate"). She suggested language that struck those phrases.

    It's worth pointing out that the Internet itself is the result of an OPEN collaboration, not entirely unlike OSS, which is also an open collaboration. The right thing to do would be to let her "never sign" the report, and thank her for her 'input'.

    • Way to go, Dude! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by TopShelf (92521)
      But let's give it up for a fine effort by James Duderstadt [umich.edu], a past President of the University of Michigan, and a leader in the realm of applying developing technology to higher education.

      Here are the final two paragraphs of the article:

      Monday morning, Miller said the commission would go with Duderstadt's compromise language, which he called "an improvement in the draft" that "does not require and will not be put to a vote."

      Later that morning, Elliott gave in, writing: "I support Jim's paragraph as well."

      • by rs232 (849320)

        But let's give it up for a fine effort by James Duderstadt ..

        What are you on , Dude

        Miller said the commission would go with Duderstadt's compromise language .. that "does not require and will not be put to a vote."

        Let me spell it out, Elliott waited until the document was finalized precisely because she didn't want it going to a vote. In the process showing contempt for due process and her fellow commisioners.

        • by TopShelf (92521)
          Let me spell it out, Elliott waited until the document was finalized precisely because she didn't want it going to a vote. In the process showing contempt for due process and her fellow commisioners.

          Let me spell this out: you have no idea what Elliott's intentions were, you're just voicing your suspicions. Her response to the timing of response was as follows...

          And to Vedder's comments on her tardy response to the commission's report -- she was traveling during the August 10 meeting, and did not join via

          • by blueskies (525815)
            Those are Big Time issues in comparison. It's not surprising that Elliott would have missed the reference to open source.

            What, like MS doesn't provide custom searches for her that alerts her to any mention of open source, linux, gpl, etc in any document that she reads?

            Or is the technology being released the same time Vista is?
    • by jambarama (784670)
      You know what makes me mad? When big firms seem to find it more profitable to run a PR campaign, buy a politician, or influence a debate, than actually make a better product. This isn't just Microsoft, but I hate to see corporations competing on anything other than services/products. When they run a PR campaign (different from advertising), buy a law, or weigh in on a debate--and if they are successful--they are distracting from the real competition in the marketplace over goods and services. Call it "s
    • by cvd6262 (180823)
      I'm working on a project with a committee from the National Academies. Specifically, we're evaluating a facet of education (can't say too much, NDA etc.), but we still have a representative from Shell Oil in the bunch, along with several "independent consultants." That's just the way it works.

      Now, I believe, every single one of them is qualified to be there, but I have doubts about potential biases. It could be the same with this Elliot - She could be qualified, but be representing MS rather than the nation
      • So, it's perfectly reasonable that Elliot voted with[out] having totally read the draft, and then had to practically admit to it when it came out that her bosses were rightfully not satisfied with it.

        FTFA, she was traveling during the meeting & was unable to attend via video-conference. She 'did not have a change to fully read the document until recently'. Her vote was via proxy with one of the other members. So no, she didn't read it before hand, and the person she proxied her vote to, didn't have her

        • FTFA, she was traveling during the meeting & was unable to attend via video-conference. She 'did not have a change to fully read the document until recently'. Her vote was via proxy with one of the other members. So no, she didn't read it before hand, and the person she proxied her vote to, didn't have her bias against open source.

          I didn't see where it said who her proxy was so I don't know if s/he had a bias or not. Where did you get your info the proxy didn't have a bias?

          Falcon

          • 12th paragraph:

            And to Vedders comments on her tardy response to the commissions report she was traveling during the August 10 meeting, and did not join via teleconference as did several other panel members, including Robert Zemsky from Singapore Elliott said in her e-mail reply that she was completely offended by this personal attack. This has nothing to do with my corporate responsibilities, and [Miller] was well aware of my availability and access in August. (In Thursdays interview, she added that she

      • She said, "It was certainly never brought up in any of the meetings," even though she voted for the draft as is.

        If it was in the draft then it was her resposibility to bring it up in a meeting. It was also her resposibility to resign from the group if she didn't have the tyme to read drafts or participate. That is something that really bothers me about many bills congress approves. Many of them are so long they discourage congress from reading them. Of course that is how they want it, that way they

  • Billy Boy (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:39AM (#16024378)
    And this is why Bill Gates is represented as a Borg on Slashdot. When mid-level employees such as these are willing to go so out of their way to fight open source it's obvious the guys on top are pressuring them to do so. A lot of people think I'm strange for refusing to purchase any Microsoft product - even mice, Xboxes, cheap PCs running Windows, ect. I just don't want to contribute to a company whose goal is to control all software standards. They want every software technology - media, game development, networking, encoding, advertising, search, internet browsing, office software, ect. ect. to all be under their control. Then they can halt development and move on to their next project. I buy my stuff from companies which are financially committed to their products. When a company relies on a product for their bottom line they tend to care more about it. Employees at Microsoft know they have an infinite amount of money and no matter how half assed their products, people will buy them because the marketing people will sqaush any competition by making them look insecure next to the big bad Microsoft. Look what's happening to Sony right now. They've created what should be every nerd's dream - a new, complex processor, Linux, a killer GPU, free online service, and many many ports, HD so internet text can be read on T.V., and all the tradtional Playstation games - but everyone seems to think that Sony's out of touch with gamer. It's because Microsoft has people like Gerri Elliot who will do anything and everything to stifle competition. Why do you think Joe Shmoe thinks that there's no Mac software? In America, people respect money. Bill Gates is known as the richest, most powerful man in the world. Everyone assumes their competition is doomed to failure and doesn't buy because they're afraid M$ will just dominate the market anyway. Open source intitiatives like the one in the featured article are a way around this. We need to take note when Microsoft tries to cut off open source at a political level.
  • by hey! (33014) on Friday September 01, 2006 @11:57AM (#16024504) Homepage Journal
    The commission encourages the creation of incentives to promote the development of open-source and open-content projects [emphasis mine] at universities and colleges across the United States, enabling the open sharing of educational materials from a variety of institutions, disciplines, and educational perspectives.


    So, it doesn't look to me like this bears on Microsoft's products very much at all. They aren't saying ditch MS Office for Open Office, or ditch Windows for Linux. They aren't saying use open standard formats instead of closed proprietary ones. They aren't even saying you should prefer open source software development tools to proprietary ones.

    If I read correctly, what they're saying is that people should develop new courseware and let other people use and improve it. Which is pretty much the way scholarship works. The job of the scholar, as we now understand it, is to innovate. You can't expect every instructor to teach the same topic the same way, much less institutions. Scholars have to use other scholar's work and have to let their others use their work. The only rule is to give credit where credit is due. Scholars who don't let others take their work and improve on it, or tailor to their own purposes, might as well move to a cave at the top of a distant mountain. Sages they may be, but scholars they are not.

    This looks to me likea pointless, self inflicted PR wound.

    • by Ksisanth (915235)

      To me the change appears to emphasize something a bit different, from "encourag[ing] the creation of incentives to promote the development of open-source and open-content projects" to "the creation of incentives to promote the development of information-technology-based collaborative tools and capabilities . . . . Both commercial development and new collaborative paradigms such as open source . . . ."

      Maybe that's their problem, the promotion of anything other than commercial development?

  • This is clearly a PC (Politically Correct, not Personal Computer) attempt at slamming Microsoft by creating public outrage wherever possible. Now MS may deserve to be slammed over this. I'm only pointing out the tactic used here of attempting to stir up public pressure through exposure on Slashdot of an activity that outranged the submitter.
    • This is clearly a PC (Politically Correct, not Personal Computer) attempt at slamming Microsoft by creating public outrage wherever possible. Now MS may deserve to be slammed over this.

      No, this is clearly yet another attempt by MS to get a reversal is a democratically arrived at decision by a body on which it has a board member. Similar to what happened in Massachusetts when MS retrospectivly tried to get a reversal in the decision to move to the Open Document Format despite having a seat on the standar

  • ...something, the stronger it will become." I was originally presented with that concept through NLP in the frame of "not being able to not think about something." I think that Microsoft is doing themselves a HUGE disservice by trying to quash open source at all costs. The more effort they put into trying to make it go away, the more people are going to begin to wonder what the big deal is all about. The more people wonder about what the big deal is all about, the more people are going to look at OSS an
  • 'Later that morning, [Gerri] Elliott [of Microsoft] gave in, writing: "I support Jim's paragraph as well."'

    should read:

    'Later that morning, [Gerri] Elliott [of Microsoft] gave in, writing: "I will back down on this now, since it's more damaging to Microsoft to awaken the slumbering Higher Ed sector with a controversy than to let this go into a report that few decision-makers will pay attention to anyway."'

  • Wasted money (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mjjw (560868)
    I live in the UK and I for one know that I HATE seeing my tax money being spent on M$ Windows in local government and in schools when they could be using Linux for free.
  • by MrCopilot (871878)
    Microsoft attempts to quash OSS Reccomendations.

    Hunh, Thanks for that shocking news. Who'd have thought.

  • by rice_burners_suck (243660) on Friday September 01, 2006 @04:46PM (#16026767)
    Linux cannot do anything once it boots up. It just says: login. Whatever you type, it says: password. Then whatever you type, it just goes back to saying login again.

    Windows is much better. When it starts up, you get glossy graphics with beautiful windows. The start menu is just one click away. It's so easy to use. Not like this login/password nonsense of Linux. In fact, any user can go up to your Windows computer and do whatever he wants.

  • I wonder who was first to outroll a official Dirty Tricks [tm] department, the CIA or Microsoft..

    "CIA Handbook Of Dirty Tricks [Vol #1]" [no.net]

    Robert

186,000 Miles per Second. It's not just a good idea. IT'S THE LAW.

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