06.16.08

Gemini version available ♊︎

Microsoft ‘Buys’ Parts of the Open Source Movement – Part Deux (Updated)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Microsoft, Ubuntu at 8:10 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Towards Redefining Free Open Source Software in the Darnest of Ways

Here we go again. SourceForge is one recent example of Microsoft's strategy that involves capturing "open source", which it maliciously compared to communism in the past, and thus becoming one of its leaders. There are many other examples like unsuccessful attempts around the OSA and even OLPC. It becomes quite an abomination when Microsoft then redefines open source.

The latest news is about yet another Microsoft sponsorship of a project that so far seems to revolve around champions like Firefox, Ubuntu and other direct competitors of Microsoft.

Microsoft has become a sponsor of The Open Source Census, a project started earlier this year that aims to track and catalog the use of open-source software in enterprises worldwide, the group announced Monday.

[...]

It is important to balance open-mindedness with skepticism when thinking about Microsoft’s open-source strategy, according to one observer.

Here is what Glyn Moody had to say about this.

Call it the “loving to death” strategy: Microsoft entwines its tentacles around more and more of the open source world until it becomes almost – almost – an indispensable part of it. Result: the person on the Clapham omnibus is confused about what is and what isn’t open source….

What Moody calls “loving to death”, Linux Today’s Managing Editor recently called “killing with kindness”.

To exemplify this further, a trollish article that we alluded to the other day is now being dissected by MTG, who shows us how “open source” gets exploited and misused not just by Microsoft.

So apparently the Boy Scouts of America are all Gun Ho about open source. Computer World explains us that they have launch their BSA Open Source Initiative.

[...]

Since a recent experience with Microsoft got me worried about people using terms out of context, I thought I’d browse through the open source BSA site to find out more. Especially worth reading (and source from most of the quotes) are the pages named classroom and history.

Redefinition/spinning is an issue we’ll be seeing more of in the future. Why is Bruce Perens not up there in OSI policing and defending the integrity of this ever-mutating sibling of Free software?

“There are fewer communists in the world today than there were. There are some new modern-day sort of communists who want to get rid of the incentive for musicians and moviemakers and software makers under various guises. They don’t think that those incentives should exist.”

Bill Gates, 2005

Update: Some more analysis of this sponsorship is starting to appear now, including some key observations from Mary Jo.

And note the mention of license compliance here — a hot button for Microsoft, the company which has alleged that open-source software violates more than 200 of Microsoft’s patents. The Census discovery tool doesn’t search for open-source software on Linux boxes only; it also scans for open-source installed specifically on Windows machines.

Microsoft officials are emphasizing that Microsoft wants to know about open-source adoption levels and trends because the company is interested in helping its customers’ Windows systems better interoperate with open-source systems. I’m sure that Microsoft also wants a better understanding of where/how open-source software is gaining traction in enterprises in order to better fight it.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

5 Comments

  1. PitaGuy said,

    June 16, 2008 at 10:58 am

    Gravatar

    Microsoft is falling like a rock from the tech field…I guess they have lost a *huge* market share to mac/linux/openoffice

    They are struggling for survival…

    There is no Windows 7 coming anytime soon to save them.

  2. PitaGuy said,

    June 16, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    Gravatar

    From groklaw … [PJ: Um. They want to figure out who to sue over their stupid patents they allege are being infringed? You think? Learning from history and past Microsoft paid-for studies, I'd also predict that we will see a headline that Novell is winning in adoption rates, thus "proving" that it was right to sell out and sign a patent deal with Microsoft. A secondary finding could be that enterprise use of Linux otherwise is slowing, compared to a healthy Microsoft, I've no doubt. Thanks, Mary Jo, for letting us know Microsoft is funding this "study", so we can ignore the results. I naturally hope no one joins the study, now that Microsoft is sponsoring it.]

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 16, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    Gravatar

    Yes, it figures. Whatever Microsoft Microsoft touches turns to <put your phrase here>.

  4. Michael said,

    June 17, 2008 at 12:05 am

    Gravatar

    I think PJ is grasping a bit there. Why would they sue? It just doesn’t make sense. Not as much sense as just getting a good grasp on just how much free software is out there and where it is used. With that sort of market research they can work out which projects to target for co-opting, or even which products the free software is displacing.

    That would surely be more useful to them – even if it just used for FUD – than suing anyone – at least until the reach the SCO stage.

  5. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 17, 2008 at 12:13 am

    Gravatar

    There are independent opinions that align with that of PJ. CEO of MuleSource says;

    My guess? I think Microsoft wants access to the results both so it can understand open source but also so it can start to consider legal actions against the most popular products and the companies that develop them.

    I’ll apologize in advance if the motives are completely altruistic but if the past is any evidence, we should really avoid giving this kind of information to Microsoft with no benefits attached to open source.

    Either way, the factor of FUD (not just strategy) applies here. The message might be something like: “If your company uses FOSS, Microsoft is on to you.” It’s the notion of visibility. Bear in mind that each time Windows Update is invoked, Microsoft receives a list — via the network — of all the applications that you have installed. It has gone on for many years and Microsoft uses that list to compete better.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Links 25/09/2022: EasyOS 4.4, KDE Reviewed

    Links for the day



  2. Microsoft is Trying to Eliminate POP3 and IMAP for E-mail (Attack on Commodity or Standard Protocols)

    Microsoft is trying to decommoditise (read: control) E-mail by shutting out people who use standard protocols; how long have we got before E-mail becomes a surveillance-intensive walled garden?



  3. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, September 24, 2022

    IRC logs for Saturday, September 24, 2022



  4. YouTube (Alphabet Gulag) Keeps Censoring Videos About Free Software and GNU/Linux

    YouTube (the Alphabet/Google Gulag) seems to be weeding out discussion of software freedom; it's a longstanding issue reported by several GNU/Linux-centric channels over the years



  5. Links 24/09/2022: pgAdmin 4 v6.14 and ONLYOFFICE 7.2 Released

    Links for the day



  6. Links 23/09/2022: KDE Weekly Outline and UbuntuDDE Remix 22.04

    Links for the day



  7. IRC Proceedings: Friday, September 23, 2022

    IRC logs for Friday, September 23, 2022



  8. Geminispace Roughly Quadrupled in Size (and Grew a Lot in Terms of Number of Capsules) Since We Joined It Last Year

    Despite the media's apathy (pretending that Gemini does not exist or does not matter), Geminispace continues to expand and we have 42,703 pages in it



  9. [Meme] Getting Promoted (or Hired/Recruited/Absorbed Directly Into Top Management) by Knowing “The F***ing President”

    The EPO‘s own numbers indicate that as a female it's incredibly hard to get promoted at the EPO; the insiders’ joke is, you need to be a former colleague of Benoît Battistelli/António Campinos (or even a spouse) to get promoted



  10. According to EPO Data, Women Have No Place at the EPO (Unless They Fancy Being Underpaid)

    The European Patent Office, accused by a former president who was female of an “alphamale” issue, treats women poorly; incidentally, she wasn’t just the only female president in a ~25 year period but also the only non-French president in that same period (EPO diversity is a sad farce)



  11. Links 23/09/2022: PeerTube 4.3 and GNOME Report

    Links for the day



  12. Links 23/09/2022: EuroBSDcon 2022 Ahead, PowerDNS Recursor 4.5.11, 4.6.4 and 4.7.3 Out

    Links for the day



  13. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, September 22, 2022

    IRC logs for Thursday, September 22, 2022



  14. Links 22/09/2022: ExTiX 22.9, Rust 1.64.0, Weston 11.0.0, New Mesa, and OpenCL 3.0.12

    Links for the day



  15. Microsoft Will Soon be Unlisted in Netcraft's Web Survey (Due to Minuscule, Negligible Market Share)

    A few hours ago this was released by Netcraft; it seems clear that Netcraft’s tables already omit Microsoft in all except 2, where Microsoft is placed last and rapidly loses share (it’ll fall out of sight soon)



  16. Links 22/09/2022: GNOME Builder 43.0 and Hype Over Ubuntu Wallpaper

    Links for the day



  17. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, September 21, 2022

    IRC logs for Wednesday, September 21, 2022



  18. Linux Foundation 'Europe' a Front Group for Patent Trolls and American Monopolies

    About 90% of the Linux Foundation‘s money is spent in the United States (see IRS filing); it’s not global but a front for American corporate interests so adding ‘Europe’ to the name is misleading to say the least; it enables hostile interference in Linux’s name (the lobbyists like to claim to be speaking for those whom they’re against by hijacking words/names)



  19. The Life of Linux Will Be Shortened by a Misguided Adoption of Rust

    There are currently loads of puff pieces (mindless corporate fluff, no technical considerations) about Rust coming to Linux in the sense that Linux will become dependent on a monstrous shebang controlled by Microsoft proprietary software; a lot of developers very well understand the risk, but it feels like nobody wants to face the mob (for saying out loud that the emperor is naked)



  20. Pale Moon's Greed and Corrosive People (Boosted by Microsoft) in “FOSS” “Communities”

    Reprinted with permission from Ryan



  21. The EPO's Local Staff Committee The Hague (LSCTH) is “Requesting Immediate Action”

    Despite relatively quiet weeks there is no calm at the EPO; the quality of patents continues to fall and staff isn't being properly rewarded for the work



  22. [Meme] EPO Abuse Continues, Managers Acting Deaf

    EPO management continues to gaslight and abuse staff, even in direct violation of the EPO’s rules and legal contracts



  23. Links 21/09/2022: GNOME 43 and i3 4.21 Released

    Links for the day



  24. Official Ubuntu Blog Has Just Promoted Microsoft Windows+Systemd

    When people try to install Ubuntu on their PC (if they can get past the illegal technical obstacles) Canonical recommends Microsoft's proprietary software and it also keeps promoting Windows (WSL); what sort of deal/s has Canonical signed with Microsoft? Ubuntu is fast becoming a ‘filthy’ distro like SUSE after Novell signed the deal with Microsoft.



  25. Links 21/09/2022: Debuginfod in Ubuntu

    Links for the day



  26. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, September 20, 2022

    IRC logs for Tuesday, September 20, 2022



  27. Links 20/09/2022: OpenJDK Java 19 and System76 Thelio Puff Pieces; More Debian-Private 'Leaks'

    Links for the day



  28. Links 20/09/2022: Darktable 4.0.1, SuperTuxKart 1.4 Release Candidate, and Gajim 1.5.0

    Links for the day



  29. IRC Proceedings: Monday, September 19, 2022

    IRC logs for Monday, September 19, 2022



  30. Links 19/09/2022: Firefox 105 and OpenMandriva on Ampere Altra

    Links for the day


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