Apparently, some people take pride in attacking Free software. With statements such as “we would like to strike similar patent deals with all the Linux vendors, but we had to start somewhere” or even “the Free Software movement is dead. Linux doesn’t exist in 2007. Even Linus has got a job today,” Bill Hilf is no popular figure these days. In fact, in a very controversial fashion, Bill has just announced that Microsoft will soon invade ‘our side’ (“the Free World”, as they called it in Forbes Magazine) even further.
In his keynote at OSCON, Microsoft General Manager of Platform Strategy Bill Hilf announced that Microsoft is submitting its shared source licenses to the Open Source Initiative.
This will definitely corrupt the meaning and value of “Open Source” (if it passes). Have a look at this other observation made at OSCON:
Hilf’s response was… priceless. “I get a lot of e-mail.” “People like to subscribe me to crazy newsletters and spam.”
So essentially, Bill escaped the question and actually admitted that he is loathed. This is by no means the first time that he angers the Linux community. There is reason to suspect that a lot of Microsoft’s recent anti-Linux strategy came from this man, who apparently replaced and inherited the place of Martin Taylor. Martin quit Microsoft last year, having spearheaded the anti-Linux propaganda (“Get the Facts” and all the rest). Propaganda and Big Lies aside, what is even worse is terrorisation.
Personally, I am getting a little fed up. I am not alone in assuming that Bill Hilf, along with the division that he manages, has resorted to nothing more than distortion, extortion, embrace-and-destroy strategies and — shall I say — corporate terrorism. I am not the only person to have come up with such as assessment. Here are a few articles that concur.
Microsoft, no longer the technological leader in the Computer Desktop market, is taking on a terrorist role in its attempt remain in power at all costs.
That headline is designed to grab your attention. Sensationalistic as it may be, it also happens to be true, if what you mean by ‘terrorize’ is to provoke fear.
The efforts of Microsoft to pressure the Linux community over alleged and unspecified patents is akin to “patent terrorism”, according to a local executive for Sun Microsystems.
Do not let yourself be terrorised and be aware that the RICO ACT might have validity here. But, who will ever challenge Microsoft in court? They also have the support of the American government. Selected citation follow (just to prove the point).
- US politicians go to bat for Microsoft
- Report Says Nonprofits Sold Influence to Abramoff
- Microsoft Finds Legal Defender in Justice Dept.
- Politicians in Microsoft’s Pocket
- Politics and tech companies: follow the money
- Feds seek formal extension of Microsoft antitrust deal [until 2012]
Decide for yourself if you are looking at an above-the-law monarchy or what has essentially become a ‘country’ within country.