EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS


Another Part of Microsoft Dies: Encarta

Posted in Microsoft at 4:10 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Another day, another dead Microsoft product/service


Summary: MSN Encarta is axed by Microsoft

SOME WHILE ago it was adCenter Analytics and this time it’s MSN Encarta which goes right into the Microsoft Graveyard. As a debt-saddled [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] company-to-be (or not to be), they simply have no choice. From Microsoft’s own mouth:

On October 31, 2009, MSN® Encarta® Web sites worldwide will be discontinued, with the exception of Encarta Japan, which will be discontinued on December 31, 2009. Additionally, Microsoft will cease to sell Microsoft Student and Encarta Premium software products worldwide by June 2009. We understand that Encarta users may have questions regarding this announcement so we have prepared this list of questions and answers below. Please keep reading if you would like more information about these changes to Encarta.

Joe credits the destruction of this biased ‘encyclopedia’ to the rise of the GFDL-compatible Wikipedia, thus symbolising the triumph of Freedom of knowledge.

The decision to cut Encarta also comes as Microsoft looks to cut costs. The company has discontinued several products this year, including its Train Simulator game. The news was first reported by Ars Technica.

Britannica is already trying to imitate the Wikipedia model; they too realise that their business model is becoming obsolete, so they could become the next victim.

The revolution won’t be televised. It will be covered by the people… in Wikipedia. Freedom did have clear competitors in the past.

“It’s a good thing we have museums to document that.”

Bill Gates

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one


  1. twitter said,

    March 31, 2009 at 9:34 am


    Traditional newspapers are rushing after this story but getting it all wrong. They dig up some interesting traffic stats but their perspective is grounded in the past and they are too terrified to “connect the dots” and see the publication revolution that’s clear to free software advocates. Some mention M$’s financial troubles but most articles are stuck in the world of paper.

    The New York Times did a little research to deliver some interesting traffic statistics,

    In January, Wikipedia got 97 percent of the visits that Web surfers in the United States made to online encyclopedias, according to the Internet ratings service Hitwise. Encarta was second, with 1.27 percent. Unlike Wikipedia, where volunteer editors quickly update popular entries, Encarta can be embarrassingly outdated.

    That’s from the usual source of flawed web statistics, but it’s nice the NYT bothered to look.

    The Christian Science Monitor tries to “connect the dots” between encyclopedia and newspaper business models. They noted that paper encyclopedias used to cost $1,000 or so but did not mention that Wikipedia has an interesting and growing news section.

    The Wall Street Journal, which resisted online publication with all of it’s fancy font might until it became another division of Fox News, does a nice job of looking back. They quickly summarized the history of Encarta and Wikipedia and actually tried to interview people from those places and Britanica. M$ declined to answer any useful questions, Wales said, “We’re not in a business where we’re trying to put anyone out of business,” and Britanica admitted to having their ass kicked by Encarta in the 90s.

    None of these organizations understand the nature of electronic publishing. Some come close and talk about push vrs. pull or reduced costs and how well collaborative efforts seem to work. The whole thing remains frightening and unreliable black magic to them. Tom Wolf once famously derided his peers as “Little Mummies” but it’s beyond that now. They are like Neanderthals rejecting cooked meat because they fear fire. The usual nonsense about vandalism is repeated, sometimes from vandalized Wikipedia articles, but the larger message of freedom is lost on them. I imagine them typing these articles with great difficulty on their Macs or Windows PCs, completely ignorant of the larger revolution that powers Wikipedia and their more enlightened peers. “Who needs more when you are happy with what you have got?” ask the heavy toothed monsters in their filthy caves even as chunks of their world collapse on them, “Beware fire and light, they will hurt you!”

  2. David Gerard said,

    March 31, 2009 at 2:35 pm


    We’re already asking Microsoft about freeing what they can for Wikipedia’s use. And if they do, we will say lots of nice things about them. We’ve had some major successes freeing up image repositories of late. A lot of their content is licensed, but apparently they do have clear ownership of quite a bit.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Microsoft is busy killing access to knowledge at the moment.

    Jose_X Reply:

    This comment http://boycottnovell.com/2009/03/31/encarta-dies/#comment-61327 belongs on this thread and should be fixed as follows:

    “touch” should have been “tush” [slang definition tush(3) here http://www.answers.com/tush ]

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    I remember Microsoft cursing Wikipedia just over a year ago. it was not a ‘formal’ statement, though.

    And let’s not forget Waggener Edstrom.

  3. Jose_X said,

    March 31, 2009 at 3:08 pm


    >> And if they do, we will say lots of nice things about them.

    Lying and touch-glossing should not be endorsed.

  4. David Gerard said,

    March 31, 2009 at 3:45 pm


    Interesting story – I’d never heard that Windows 2000 was literally unbuildable after the permatemp apocalypse.

What Else is New

  1. Confirmed: Benoît Battistelli is Crushing the Enlarged Board of Appeal (EBoA)

    New information surfaces regarding communication between the Administrative Council (AC) and Mr. Battistelli, who wishes to crush anyone whom he views (or is merely perceived) as a threat to his totalitarian reign

  2. Patent Trolls Roundup: MPHJ, Kyle Bass, Acacia, Intellectual Ventures, Unwired Planet, Core Wireless, Vringo, and Unified Patents

    An outline of recent developments in the US and even in Europe, focused entirely on patent trolls, patent parasites, and actions against them

  3. EPO Staff is Happy, Says EPO Propaganda Still in the Making

    The Benoît Battistelli-led institution is so misguided so as to actually expect people to believe that EPO staff feels happy, despite increased awareness of staff suicides, protests, lawsuits, etc.

  4. EPO Management is Running Out of Time as More Media Remarks on Its Abuses

    The terrible policies and the atrocious behaviour of the EPO's management is gradually becoming too widespread an issue, leading to a lot more media coverage and with it public scrutiny

  5. Links 12/10/2015: Linux 4.3 RC5, Parsix GNU/Linux 8.0 Reviewed

    Links for the day

  6. Microsoft Still Rigging and Gaming Statistics by Taking Over or Registering Dead/Inactive/Parked Domains by the Millions

    Microsoft continues to game Netcraft's figures and graphs by amassing effectively dead domains, making itself (and IIS/Windows) look a lot bigger when it fact Microsoft only perishes on the Web, having long ago lost the game to GNU/Linux with Free/libre software on top of it (notably a L.A.M.P. stack)

  7. Benoît Battistelli's Group of 'Loyals' Crushes Not Only the Independent Boards But Also 'Unwanted' Directorates-General

    Having 'infiltrated' most key positions at the EPO, Benoît Battistelli now ejects everything that remains potential threat to his unquestionable total domination

  8. Many New Losses for Software Patents in the US, Courtesy of Alice Case/§101

    The United States' supposed leadership in software patenting grinds to a halt as more software patents simply die in the courtrooms and patent lawyers try hard to overcome this new debacle of theirs, usually by misleading current and prospective clients

  9. Leaked: EPO Prioritises Work for Large Foreign Corporations, Discrimination Not Accidental But Centrally Planned

    Canon, Philips, Microsoft, Qualcomm, BASF, Bayer, Samsung, Huawei, Siemens, Ericsson and Fujitsu receive V.I.P. treatment from the EPO, despite most of them not even being European

  10. Links 11/10/2015: Kate/KDevelop Sprint, Blender 2.76

    Links for the day

  11. European Pirate Party MEP Julia Reda Says TPP Will Bring Software Patents to Europe and Other Continents/Countries

    The Wikileaks "TPP Leak," says Julia Reda, suggests that, based on the patentable subject matter section, signatories must add software patents

  12. Don't Look at Linux For Sexism, Look at Microsoft (Although Microsoft Hides the Newest Lawsuits)

    A look at the broader scale of discrimination against women and how widespread a phenomenon it is inside Microsoft, the arch rival of Linux

  13. Links 10/10/2015: IBM's Linux-based LC Family, KDE Frameworks 5.15

    Links for the day

  14. Benoît Battistelli's Office Accused of Institutional Harassment Against EPO Staff in New Letter to the Administrative Council, Calling for External Investigation

    A probe by an external and independent entity is sought with the aim of looking into systematic harassment against EPO employees who simply 'dare' to point out gross violations by their managers; staff protests at EPO headquarters in the Netherlands and Germany are scheduled

  15. Responses to Software Patents in India Though Guidelines for Examination of Computer Related Inventions

    India's famous skills, which revolve around software services and software development, are under attack by new laws which strive to grant foreign corporations de facto monopolies on software, even inside India

  16. Mobile Linux (e.g. Android) Still a Victim of Software Patents, No Peace in Sight

    A look at recent developments in the fight against mobile Linux (notably Android these days) and whoever is behind the patent attacks (not always as obvious as people are led to believe)

  17. Bad News for the EPO's Judicial Independence and Due Process in Next Week's Administrative Council (AC) Meeting

    A quick update about what's expected to happen next week when the Administrative Council holds a two-day meeting

  18. More Back Doors Found in Microsoft's Entrapments (Proprietary Software)

    Security flaws and even blatantly obvious loopholes for surveillance are identified in several of Microsoft's so-called 'products', which turn users (and their data) into the real product (to be sold to private companies or shared with spies)

  19. NASA Gives Back What It Took Away in the Form of Patent Monopolies for Private Gain

    Criticism of NASA's habit of clinging onto patents when it is actually the public which pays for everything

  20. The Coup D'état of Benoît Battistelli Follows an Imperialist Model, Threatens Opposition and Dissent

    SUEPO, the staff union, and boards that are independent from the EPO are both under attack and are constantly threatened by Benoît Battistelli and his goons

  21. Links 8/10/2015: Manjaro Linux Releases, Linksys WRT1900ACS, FOSS at NHS

    Links for the day

  22. Links 8/10/2015: KDE Plasma 5.4.2 Released, Linux Drama Queens

    Links for the day

  23. EPO Staff to Disrupt Administrative Council Meeting With Public Demonstration That Raises Awareness of Abuses

    The perception of collusion between the Administrative Council (AC) and the European Patent Office (EPO) leads to staff actions demanding investigation of illegal Board of Appeal (BoA) suspension/s (among many other things)

  24. OIN Turns 10, IDG Floods the Web With Puff Pieces That 'Normalise' Software Patents

    The Open Invention Network (OIN) commissions or helps produce puff pieces in the corporate media because it has an anniversary and corporate interests to push forth (including the idea that software patents can coexist with Linux)

  25. Hypocrite Forks the Linux Kernel Because of Cultural Characteristics That He Himself is Guilty of

    Forking of Linux is misleadingly reported in the media because of a couple of very loud people, who are not even quitting their jobs

  26. Željko Topić Attacks EPO Staff for 'Daring' to Legally Challenge the EPO's Management Over Its Gross Abuses in Europe

    Benoît Battistelli's right-hand man, Željko Topić, is under the false impression that yet more threats against staff of the EPO will help contain the crisis rather than further inflame it

  27. Media Reports Based on New Patents Suggest That Microsoft Continues to Attack Google and Android/Linux, Trying to Tax and Delete Android

    Reports and patent applications serve to show that Microsoft not only tries to infiltrate ("embrace") Android to put its apps there ("extend") but ultimately to delete ("extinguish") Android

  28. Commenters Provide Possible Explanations for Mr Van der Eijk Being on Unlimited Sick Leave

    Rumours are swirling around Wim Van der Eijk's absence, suggesting that he too may be a victim of Benoît Battistelli's iron fist

  29. Links 6/10/2015: Linux 4.3 RC4, HP OpenSwitch, Wind River Linux 8

    Links for the day

  30. With Software Patents in Europe (and Pushes for the Same Thing in Australia and India) Patent Trolls Now Come to Europe, Attack Android/Linux

    Worst-case scenarios are becoming a reality as Android backers officially attacked by patent trolls using standard-essential patents in London, England


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time


Recent Posts