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Smears Against Boycott Novell

Posted in Boycott Novell, Deception, FUD, Microsoft, Mono, Site News at 11:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Dispelling and exposing the FUD tactics where trolls get treated as spokesmen (or spokeswomen) of this Web site

A LOT OF Internet trolls have been attacking our Web site via comments and IRC recently. Some weeks ago, DDoS attacks began as well (they still return occasionally, the last time being 3 days ago) and there is personal abuse. But the last thing we need is people spreading criminal accusations against us, so here are some urgent clarifications.

Jo Shields, the Mono packager from Debian and Ubuntu, has just had Linux Today publish a guest post. We won’t delve into the details, but there are some serious smears against our site in there. To give examples, Shields says:

Many of those who advertise themselves as anti-Mono are, quite frankly, frightening. Calling for the deaths of Microsoft employees (see comments on Boycott Novell)


It says “see comments”, but there is no link. Which one among ~20,000 comments would it be? Who said such a thing? There is nothing there but the cold insinuation that we are some kind of a site that wants to kill people.

Nice, eh?

Shields carries on by saying that we are “trying to have people who make positive comments about Mono fired (see recent comments on Ubuntu mailing lists)…

That has absolutely nothing to do with us. For those who have not been following this, someone who chose to link to our site caused a big mess in the Ubuntu mailing lists and now we are getting accused of being responsible. Why? Because the poster linked to our site as source/proof. We were also seen as accountable for Boycott Novell protests in India — ones which we didn’t even know about after they had happened.

“There is nothing there but the cold insinuation that we are some kind of a site that wants to kill people.”We quickly addressed this issue last night (upon the request of a victim) and since there have been lot more issues with IRC logs recently (sites that hate us sending anonymous trolls to fill the logs with hateful, nauseating, racist garbage), it then serves as weapon against ‘us’ (trolls who enter the IRC channel) which they themselves plant through feedback mechanisms. In a ways, voices are being hijacked. We have reasons to believe that it’s this type of behaviour that led Bruce Perens to closing down his good Web site, Technocrat.

As one of our readers points out, Winston Churchill once said: “You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.” But we — and by “we” it’s reasonable to refer to editorship — never “called for the deaths of Microsoft employees.” And if Mono folks, or supposedly one who represents them in this case, descend to such disgusting unsubstantiated accusations, then where to go from here? Shields’ last comment in this Web site said: “Fuck it, and fuck you.” I did not do anything to provoke such language, but this is the stuff we need to deal with for daring to write critically about Mono.

“It’s [Windows is] an operating system, not a religion.”

Ted Waitt, then CEO of Gateway.

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  1. eet said,

    June 12, 2009 at 12:22 pm


    How can there be smear against a smear campaign?!??

    Jose_X Reply:

    Are you implying there you don’t see (m)any reasons to boycott Novell?

    Do you find Microsoft’s behavior acceptable?

    Do you think mono has no special patent risks or that software patents aren’t a problem?

    Could you tell me what percent of the material posted here in the last 30 days would qualify as “smears”?

    Can you explain why Jo didn’t provide links (and quotes)?


    This comment by Robert Osfield covers a lot of reasons for rejecting mono (or related issues): http://www.linuxtoday.com/news_story.php3?ltsn=2009-06-12-010-35-OS-CY-DV-0035

    Just one single page about Microsoft: http://boycottnovell.com/2009/02/08/microsoft-evilness-galore/

  2. max stirner said,

    June 12, 2009 at 12:53 pm


    Shield’s prior appearance on the comments was absolutely hilarious!

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    More insulting than hilarious.

  3. aeshna23 said,

    June 12, 2009 at 1:14 pm


    I liked the irony between the quote at the end suggesting Windows is not a religion and the religious warfare that you are talking about. Mac and Linux have a much greater percentage of true believers than Windows, but there are the devout Windows users. (I’m not trying to ironic here.) And not only are there Windows zealots, these zealots have explicitly identified their goal of global domination with Muslim jihad. In Islam, jihad permits the believer to do any evil, tell any lie, murder any innocent in the name of Islam–and this has been stated repeatedly by Islamic religious authorities throughout the centuries and denied only by enlightened Western folk who think Islam should be what they fantasize it to be. It’s hardly surprising that BoycottNovell is experiencing nasty attacks from the Windows faithful. Let’s just hope it doesn’t get any worse.

  4. carsten said,

    June 12, 2009 at 1:55 pm


    “Calling for the deaths of Microsoft employees”

    The death of their cash cows would be enough.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    People can always find more ethical jobs. In fact, Microsoft destroyed many companies by breaking the law. This means that it had left many ethical companies and their employees and families rather helpless and perhaps without income.

    Many people would agree that Microsoft’s financial death would be beneficial to IT and the economy in general. But nobody wished people death; that’s a figment of Jo’s imagination or wishful thinking. It’s substanceless daemonisation.

    aeshna23 Reply:

    I agree with Roy, but what’s needed isn’t simply the end of Microsoft, but of the end of software patents. Else, we’ll be in situation at the end of Animal Farm.

    Needs Sunlight Reply:

    Take it a step further and look outside the IT sector. How many people need to be fired, downsized or layed off to pay for the next round of upgrades for MS prodocuts? How many are fired, downsized or layed off because because some ideologues replaced a working web site with MOSS so that sales and productivity plummet leaving less money for salaries? etc. You get the point.

    Just because the sabotage is done with a computer and a smile doesn’t mean that it is less harmful to society.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Companies like IBM and Apple also pose a risk. This is a cultural/attitudinal issue of control. Neither company wants to allow people to control their own computer (DRM, TPM, no source code, etc).

    Needs Sunlight Reply:

    Interesting that the MSFTers are now acknowledging that lives are at stake.

    We still haven’t had any (public) resolution to the electronic incursion into a US Army base in Afghanistan, courtesy of MS activitist gaining acess to the base and paving the way for the intrusions. Screwing with command and control in a combat zone does cost lives.

    We still haven’t had any (public) resolution to all the lost data, corrupted records, and system outages in hospitals both public and private as a result of MS products in the production environment.

    We still haven’t had and (public) resolution about the tens of billions of dollars of damage cause by *each* *single* *Windows worm*. As of two months ago, Conficker by itself had already run up a double-digit bill. Sure it would cost a few people some money to upgrade to non-MS products and systems, but would the overall bill come to $10 billion? A lot could be done for $10 billion. Why should it be spend cleaning up a mess caused be idelogical-driven forcing of perennially defective designs into places they neither belong nor qualify for.

    When stating “calling for the deaths of Mcirosoft employees”, it looks like Jo Shields is drawing (his/her) own conclusion as to how hard (his/her) movement would resist military intervention to put down the M$ threat.

  5. neighborleed said,

    June 12, 2009 at 2:06 pm


    HI there all,

    The attacks are what they are, and as long as we live and breath and can reason and still have the rights given to us by god and the US constitution, then it doesn’t matter what they throw out there long as we take and have the time to counter them.

    It gets old sure, as does various life in life, but then any cause worth fighting for can be , and we do so for those otherwise just unaware .

    @eet, or whomever you choose to masquerade as this week/year/century/eon,

    See definition #3 of smear at:

    Microsoft and its supporters through mono etal, are the ones trying to ruin what they deem as a ‘cancer’ , along with its shills who think free software, that really IS free and void of patents is less important than software that is not free and has patents, and oops..doesn’t have ECMA’s to offer a PROMISE not to sue over..read the ITwire articles lately eet ?

    You should if you have not:

    If you aren’t aware of such things, well now you are, because an education is liberating because it empowers us against against disinformation ( or their software); even though ubuntu would try to shut that debate off,- here its alive as it would be in any living breathing democracy where fair debate is allowed.


    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    It would be helpful to have a debate about issues that matter. I look forward to answers — not smears — from Mono proponents.

  6. a turd said,

    June 12, 2009 at 3:40 pm



    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    That’s where our policy of “never censor” poses an issue. Later on, the likes of Shields use that to mine evidence against us.

  7. freeasinfreedom said,

    June 12, 2009 at 7:07 pm


    Lots of luck getting a reasonable debate on this, Roy. The original question was “Why should Mono be in Ubuntu by default?” I agree with the suggestion to remove it from the default install image, but make it available like any other GPL app in the Ubuntu repos. A lot of people have reservations about patent issues, Microsoft pulling out the rug, and forcing Mono into Linux distros, so it seems like the most sensible approach. Then Mono apps and dev tools are there for whoever wants them, which is more reasonable than forcing the users who don’t want it to remove it.

    It is noteworthy that anyone who questions Mono is subjected to a barrage of longwinded replies on how wonderful Mono is and how nobody should object to it. You don’t get answers to direct questions without pushing hard, like “what’s wrong with no-default, in-repos?” The real answer, after you sort through many non-responsive word torrents, is they very much want it included by default no matter how many people object. You’ll get a lot of noise about how it’s necessary because Banshee, Tomboy, and F-Spot are unique best-of-breed apps. No, they’re not. Amarok and Rhythmbox are very good, Digikam is first-rate and superior to F-Spot, and Tomboy? A note-taking app? That hardly seems essential, and alternatives are Basket, Gnote, and several others. And again, the question is what goes into the default; nobody is deprived when the repos include everything.

    Jo Shields posted a fact-free hostile diatribe– “they invited people who don’t think Mono causes AIDS to justify themselves.” Nice attitude.

    Check out the infamous Josselin Mouette’s blog on Tomboy being included in the upcoming Debian Squeeze
    “The reason why Tomboy was not included in the default Lenny installation is not because of stupid software patents. If we gave a shit of inapplicable software patents, we wouldn’t be shipping MP3 decoding software by default. If we gave a shit, we wouldn’t ship Mono in main, regardless of what is in the default installation. We don’t give a shit of where is Mono coming from, as long as it is free software.”

    Nice little community you have there, Debian, thanks very much.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Someone warned me about Mouette’s attitude almost a year ago, but I kept quiet. It was for a variety or reasons not worth bringing up (jar of worms to open).

    twitter Reply:

    Mouette is both vulgar and wrong. Debian has and does care about mp3 patent problems. They did not ship encoding software for all of the possible layers and tweaks and might still avoid them. His comparison is also false because there’s a huge difference between mp3 rights holders like Lucent and the only mono rights holder, Microsoft. M$ constantly brags about how they are going to “outsmart” GNU/Linux and they have already launched lawsuits over the even more bogus FAT patents they hold. Finally, Jo Shields himself gives the best argument against mono inclusion – it’s all about the desktop. It’s easy enough to switch an mp3 encoder if there’s patent problems, users won’t ever notice. Swapping out someone’s music player or their email application or even their whole desktop environment is far more disruptive.

    The free software world in general and Debian in particular, is not about to walk into Mr. Ballmer’s trap. Mono is not about to become a language of choice, so that “all free software innovation happens on top of Windows.” Debian is not about to load up their default desktop with second rate mono programs that may be yanked in a visible and ugly way. In fact, Debian Testing is making significant improvements in KDE ease of installation. There are also plenty of Gtk desktop environments to go to, such as XFCE. If Gnome does not protect itself from the obvious mono traps, the rest of the free software world can and will.

    Sabayon User (Sabayon == Gentoo, kthx) Reply:

    Swapping out someone’s music player or their email application or even their whole desktop environment is far more disruptive.

    Wait. You spent years on Slashdot telling everyone that users should simply switch to Linux and get away from “Windoze”. That it wasn’t a big deal, that they would be far happier and in some cases wouldn’t even notice.

    But here we have tragedy – tragedy, I say – because someone’s music player needs to be replaced?

  8. twitter said,

    June 13, 2009 at 12:28 am


    Replace “mono” with “windows” in this quote and Jo’s direction is clear:

    Rational minds can dissent on questions of Mono, but until there are adequate replacements for Mono applications …

    Jo can waste as much of his time and energy as he likes on mono, .NET and all of that, but his tireless, ignorant and insulting push is irritating. His disrespect for the rest of the free software world is as apparent as his hypocrisy in accusing BN of telling developers and distributions what to do. Clearly, what BN has said makes sense and people are listening. It is sad when coders are suckered into studying and coding to M$ non-standards, even when it’s done in an obviously better free environment. M$ has never been an innovator and all of their better ideas were better implemented elsewhere first. It’s a crime when such junk is shoveled into otherwise fine free software distributions, a crime almost as odious as university classes being taught with .NET and other EDGIware. Rational distributions are moving to protect themselves from this push and rational users continue to ignore Novell. Perhaps that’s why Jo and friends are so shrill.

    It is interesting the Jo Shields would slander Boycott Novell first and foremost, when Roy has answered his more reasonable questions and unreasonable assertions better than anyone else. BN has consistently promoted software that’s technically superior to mono stuff. Amarok is better in most ways than Banshee. There are better note taking applications, etc, and there are plenty of languages better suited to the purpose than mono. BN’s news links are a great resource that Jo obviously does not take advantage of. If he did, he’d be more aware of the richness and originality of the free software world. BN has also done an excellent job of analyzing and reporting the threat mono represents to free software distributions. Jo’s long rants about why software patents are invalid do not magically take back specific threats made by M$ executives. His assertion that a financially failing M$ would be afraid to act on their pattent suits is particularly amusing after M$’s recent FAT patent assault on GNU/Linux GPS navigation system maker, TomTom. Finally, the Thomas Jefferson quote is appropriate. Joe might like to flatter himself by comparing mono to C and Windows to Unix, but there are no real ideas behind these ugly M$ hacks and both deserve the greatest of ridicule.

    Needs Sunlight Reply:

    Nor do Jo’s long rants about why software patents are invalid magically make Mono and C# a quality product, no matter how much they may wish to compete with Java.

  9. eet said,

    June 13, 2009 at 3:48 am


    By god, a nice little bunch of members of the American Rifle Association you’ve got yourself there, Roy! They will follow you into the mountains when civilization as we knew it ends (i.e. for your guys: when Ubuntu comes with Banshee). Good luck! Roast me a groundhog out there!

  10. paul said,

    June 13, 2009 at 3:54 am


    While I do not necessarily agree with boycotting Novel, neither do I covet the distro. I used to be a huge Suse fan and still think it is a fine distro. I just like the Debian distros better for the desktop. I also use Cent and Redhat for servers.

    Novel made a deal Novell felt was good for Novell. I see absolutely nothing wrong with this. Novell wants their Linux to be the one that best integrates with Microsoft. Nothing wrong with that. They should be FREE to chose how and whom they do business with.

    By the same token, no one should be forced to use Novell or Microsoft. No one should be forced to use Mac, Solaris, AIX, etc. The IT world is about freedom and trying to create the best products for their users and the users needs. For me, that means !=Windows for the most part, since I see MS Windows as inferior and insecure. Does that mean everything about Windows is bad? No, for a Desktop OS that has to go no where near a network and/or where security is not paramount, go for it! But if security and stability are important, Windows is not a very good option, at least for me.

    I do not like the perpetuation of MONO, since I see it as opening a door for MS that should remain as closed as possible. MS is a predatory company who will stop at nothing they can get away with, to crush all competitors and take away choice. Those who love choice should not be helping MS in any way whatsoever. That may seem contradictory, but remember, I am speaking of the right to pursue and make deals, just as we are talking about choice in our OS, hardware, and applications.

    Death threats?? I have never seen these, but I would not be surprised. There are nuts everywhere.

  11. Marcus Koze said,

    June 13, 2009 at 4:23 am


    Regarding the “death threats”, I was wondering whether Jo refered to my reply to eet (http://boycottnovell.com/2009/06/09/mono-critique-for-ubuntu/#comment-65907). If that’s the case, Jo is clearly either on the payroll of the micromoft alliance (should i call that “the Axis forces ?!”) or else… don’t know, at least a firm believer in that mono thing.

    What i said there is that what micromoft keep on doing around the world and the law representatives simply being (corrupted, perhaps) spectators in a lot of cases makes me dream of a fantasy world in which i’d be the absolute ruler and punish such actions within the radical margins that matches the degree of immorality they plunge into.
    (i’m not sure if the terms i used are 100% correct, you know my english issues, do point them out if any and i’ll try to clear it out).

    Other than that i haven’t seen any other such “death threats” around, may Jo’d be so kind and point them out or else shut the hell out. meh…

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    There were some trolls in IRC who said all sorts of things, but it’s hardly something to characterise this site by.

  12. eet said,

    June 13, 2009 at 4:42 am



  13. David "Lefty" Schlesinger said,

    June 13, 2009 at 5:32 am


    I’ll be posting a lengthy blog entry about my part in this situation after the weekend, now that I’m back from sabbatical. Suffice it to say that I don’t think Roy’s claims are accurate, and I’ve got evidence in hand to support that contention. Expect to hear a /lot/ more about this.

    I’m the “victim” Roy mentions, and it seems clear to me that he has been, behind the scenes, at least supportive of this “victimization” and at worst, an instigator of it.

    eet Reply:

    Looking forward to your report, keep us posted.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:


    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    I had absolutely nothing to do with that chap. His name sounded familiar to me because he insulted Ubuntu people about a year ago and I urge you you see my responses to this (it’s all public) because he’s pissing me off when he shows up and does that. I don’t follow Ubuntu mailing lists myself, but others do and it’s the second time this happens AFAIK. He gives a bad name to the site.

    The fact that he opposes Mono is something that I cannot deny agreeing with (that’s what I meant by “like”, though it lacks context), but as someone whose opposition tried to pull the “report you to your boss” stunt several times before, I’m utterly disgusted by his behaviour and I sympathise with you.

    If there is anything else I can do to discourage that person from trolling the mailing lists and harassing you, let me know. There is not so much I can do. I was never in touch with him until you asked me to, at which point I grabbed the E-mail address from the mailing lists.

    Am I responsible for every Dick and Harry who merely links to my site and falsely claims being associated with me? I didn’t even know about it until someone told me (Tony Manco, who lurked in the Ubuntu lists).

    Sabayon User (Sabayon == Gentoo, kthx) Reply:

    If there is anything else I can do to discourage that person from trolling the mailing lists and harassing you, let me know.

    From the blog post:

    I liked what you do, but try to distance yourself from the site to give it credibility. Make it look like a personal gripe while the site keeps it polite.

    I was going to write something witty here, but I’ll let these two quotes stand as they are.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Not at all.

    The reason you are thinking this is because that “Fink” character lied to you, pretending that I had a connection with his appearance on the list (that appearance being something which only came to my attention when someone had notified me). There was never any connection with whatsoever (past or present), but apparently you threatened legal action and then he lied to throw accusations at someone else.

    While criticism of Mono is not something I’m against, abuse against people is intolerable. And to criticise a foul-mouthed person who was basically saying positive things about us is not easy and it can also lead to attacks on myself.

    This whole thing had nothing to do with me. If you look at the IRC logs from the past 2-3 days you’ll see that I took offence in what he did. Here is yesterday’s log for example.

    eet Reply:

    Whenever there is any threat of real legal action, you shy away and act all innocent. This has been the very same with your intolerable personal accusations of corruption against GNOME board member Jeff Waugh. When he himself noticed what you were doing and showed up here, you acted as if nothing had happened and took it all back because he threatend to take legal steps.

    You are not innocent, you are but a lier and a coward.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    “Wait for it…”–Gary Burghoff as “Cpl. Walter ‘Radar’ O’Reilly” in /M*A*S*H*/

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    I have nothing to do with this. Don’t play into the hands of the person who tried to cause trouble in the first place.

    twitter Reply:

    Well, well.

    I’m the “victim” Roy mentions, and it seems clear to me that he has been, behind the scenes, at least supportive of this “victimization” and at worst, an instigator of it.

    I’ll take that as your second confession, Mr. Lefty, of your instigation of this little incident.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:


    It is actually a complicated story. Some troll called “Mark Fink” claims to have spoken to me (he never did, unless he used some fake name), then he disrupted the Ubuntu mailing list and attacked David.

    It’s really quite disgusting what he did (apparently contacting David’s employer).

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Uh huh. Roy was so “disgusted”, he wrote Mark to tell him “I liked what you do, but try to distance yourself from the site to give it credibility. Make it look like a personal gripe while the site keeps it polite.”

    That doesn’t actually sound “disgusted” to me, Roy. It sounds “complicit”.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    It was not said in reference to the abuse against you.

    You already know that.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    By the way, David, it’s worth noting that you only quote a followup to the followup (without context). Had you bothered to give an honest story you’d share my first message to Fink ever — the one I sent after you had asked me to step in. I denounced him.

    You should not be proud of yourself, David, for attacking the wrong person using false accusation and selective ‘evidence’ to support this false accusation. You’re too blinded by a misguided vendetta whose victim is a scapegoat.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Well, I know that’s what you claim, Roy, but I think you’re a smart enough guy to write what you mean. There’s not a hint even of dismay, much less “disgust” in that little note of yours to Mark, and all of your “explanations”, (which have been numerous–I’ve never seen so many separate exclamations of “Wait! OMG! Did he say that? I didn’t see that!” over a single 4-sentence email in my life.

    What I have seen on this site, among other things, is a deliberate effort to “out” the personal details of someone who offended you by supporting OOXML, and an obstinate refusal on your part to correct a complete misstatement of fact regarding the editing of a Wikipedia entry which distressed you. In the latter case, you actually haven’t corrected it yet: you changed the style to “strikeout” but left the misidentified person’s name up there, completely available to search engines (erroneous identification intact). The cherry-picking of comments with which you disagree for red notifications which seem nothing more than clumsy attempts at character assassination are yet another story. You may not “censor”, but you certainly “editorialize”.

    So, I’m honestly not sure why I should believe you, Roy. What I’ve seen seems to speak pretty clearly, and what it’s saying is that you’re not interested in people’s privacy and you’re not especially interested in getting the facts right.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    How much do you know about Albert’s smear campaigns?

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Had you bothered to give an honest story you’d share my first message to Fink ever — the one I sent after you had asked me to step in. I denounced him.

    If you sent such a message, Roy, I wasn’t included in its distribution. It’s a little late to trot it out now, I think.

    And let’s be clear, Roy: I never asked you to “step in”. I told you that Mark was your problem, and it was your credibility he was taking into the toilet. The comments around this incident show that quite clearly.

    It’s not as though I didn’t warn you, well in advance of Mark’s forwarding me your message to him (the only example of any correspondence between the two of you that I have). I suggested, early on, that you publicly distance yourself from Mr. Fink’s statements and activities, in an unequivocal way. You didn’t do that. Instead you posted a mealy-mouthed, undirected posting on “Manners”–and I commented on that at the time.

    It was only after I received a copy of your email to Mark and asked you directly what the meaning of it was–a good while after, in fact–that you finally decided that you didn’t “like” what Mark was doing all that much after all. I suppose it’s different when it’s your ox being gored, hm?

    I’m using all the evidence I have available, Roy. It’s your word here versus what you wrote to Mark. Again, no disgust, no dismay, nothing but “I like what you do” in terms which would certainly seem to encourage Mark to keep it up.

    If you meant to limit your praise to his Mono-bashing (and which part did you “like”? The outright misstatements of fact? The character assassination? The name-calling? I’m seeing little to like in any of it), I’m sure you could have worked out a way to get that qualification in there, along with the word “but”.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    How much do you know about Albert’s smear campaigns?

    Not a thing, and I’m frankly uninterested. (How much do you know about European Union privacy laws…? Not much, I think…)

    If you’re trying to stake out the notion that “two wrongs make a right”, I’m the wrong guy to attempt it with, I’m afraid. (Three rights do make a left, however.)

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    And let’s be clear, Roy: I never asked you to “step in”. I told you that Mark was your problem, and it was your credibility he was taking into the toilet.

    Why is it my problem? Am I supposed to track what every arbitrary zealot who reads this site says about the site (even falsely) in other Web sites? I preferred not to attract attention to his flames while in IRC we were pissed off by him. See the logs.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    How much do you know about Albert’s smear campaigns?

    Not a thing, and I’m frankly uninterested. (How much do you know about European Union privacy laws…? Not much, I think…)

    If you admittedly haven’t followed the OOXML corruptions, then I urge you to research first. You don’t know what hAl did.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Why is it my problem? Am I supposed to track what every arbitrary zealot who reads this site says about the site (even falsely) in other Web sites?

    Only if you care about your credibility, as I told you early on. And this isn’t “every arbitrary zealot”, this is a long-term and regular contributor to this site (looks like about 2.5% of the comments here are Mark’s, and that’s a lot for one “contributor”), as well as someone who’s clearly driven a lot of traffic there, and with whom you’ve been shown to have had direct communications in the past. Frankly, I’m not seeing a lot of credibility worth caring about at this point…

    You don’t know what hAl did.

    Guess what? I don’t have to “know what hAl did” to know that what you did was unethical and showed a complete lack of integrity as well as a complete lack of respect for the privacy of others. It’s, frankly, shameful behavior.

    The point is that what’s happened to me, with your apparent approval, is really nothing new at all around here.

    (I can’t help but notice that you’ve provided no justification for your ongoing (mis-)identification of the editor of the Wikipedia changes you found annoying.)

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    It’s not about Wikipedia. This is why you need to research this subject.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    This article is “not about Wikipedia”….?

    Why is Jimmi Hugh’s name still on there when you’ve known for some time that you were in error here? I’m guessing that Mr. Hugh’s willingness to defend himself, in terms that made you look (again) to be rather lacking in integrity, offended you, so you took the passive-aggressive route of “correcting” your errors via strike-through, leaving them there for every spider on the net to index…

    In particular, the refusal to actually remove this paragraph, which is both incorrect as well as outright character assassination:

    The person responsible for this censorship is a man by the name of Jimmi Hugh, whom I believe has a particularly infamous reputation on Wikipedia. One source describes him as “a shameless character with some kind of pro-Microsoft agenda.”

    seems amazingly egregious.

    Jose_X Reply:

    >> Only if you care about your credibility, as I told you early on. And this isn’t “every arbitrary zealot”, this is a long-term and regular contributor to this site (looks like about 2.5% of the comments here are Mark’s, and that’s a lot for one “contributor”)

    The figure appears to have come from misjudging google results. Everyone makes mistakes.

    “Mark Fink” gets many hits on google for this site because the story from a few days back that has his name in the title appears on the side bar of all of those google hits (ignoring the 17 legit hits). Google indexed a bunch of pages from this site within the last week, apparently.

    Googling for ” ‘Mark Fink says,’ site:boycottnovell.com” gave me only 17 hits. That phrase is what cues in a comment by that person.

    I verified some of this, but obviously did not follow the link to all 1000 hits. If anyone thinks I made a mistake, reply.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Jose, that (maybe) addresses one of the points I’ve made. It doesn’t address many other issues raised here and on other threads:

    - Roy’s email itself, expressing nothing but encouragement for Mark’s efforts; Roy’s sole concern is that Mark’s efforts be distanced from the site more
    - documented instances of Roy and Mark Fink directly interacting in comment threads, including Roy offering to allow Mark to edit a page here
    - reports of Mark Fink posting under other aliases on this site
    - the certainty that Mark’s flame-wars, which have been multiple but which have always referenced articles on boycottnovell.com, have driven some significant traffic here, a fact of which Roy can’t possibly be ignorant


    - at least one clear instance of Roy’s direct and willful invasion of someone’s individual privacy
    - at least one clear instance of Roy’s unwillingness to actually correct a clear mistake in his “reporting”, leaving in both the error and a bunch of associated defamation regarding the erroneous target of this “report”

    So, regardless of how big a contributor is, Mr. Fink’s clearly an ongoing and regular one here, and his activities in support of this site (via his various flame wars) must be well-known to Roy. That’s really the clincher for me: if I see a spike in traffic on my web site, which gets nothing like the traffic this site does, I know within a couple of days at the most what’s going on, or at least where it’s coming from. Should I assume that Roy does less…? That he doesn’t get onto Google Analytics regularly and discover that there’s suddenly a bunch of traffic coming from places like






    Really. Really? Sorry, I don’t think my imagination’s that good. All in all, what I’ve been seeing around here does not, frankly, encourage me to take Roy at his word.

    Roy Bixler Reply:

    I disagree with your assessment of “Mark Fink” as a “regular” here. I read this site regularly and have never heard the name “Mark Fink” until this brouhaha came up. I understand that you’re angry at what happened, but keep in mind that Roy S. has also had the same things done to him by some of his detractors. He’s hardly likely to condone doing that to someone else.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Roy Bixler writes, He’s hardly likely to condone doing that to someone else.


    That being the case, why is it that Jimmi Hugh’s name still appears prominently on the article which incorrectly accuses him of “censoring” a Wikipedia entry, even though Ray knows for a certainly that this is wrong? Why does it still refer to Mr. Hugh in terms like “infamous”, “troll”, etc., especially when these derogatory characterizations are only attributed to an unidentified “source”,..?

    That seems pretty clear evidence to me of Roy’s having little regard for the actual facts and of his being entirely willing to propagate misinformation if it serves whatever he imagines his purpose to be.

    Got a better explanation?

    Roy Bixler Reply:

    I was not speaking to the “Jimmi Hugh” case. I was referring to “Mark Fink”, whom I suspect of being someone whose intent was to troll and cause divisions. It looks like he succeeded in that admirably and you are acting exactly as he intended you to act. That’s a pity. You probably won’t agree, but my opinion is that “Mark Fink” does not represent this site.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Because he doesn’t.

    And the fact that he lied to David and said they I sent him just serves to show that he’s a troll.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    I was not speaking to the “Jimmi Hugh” case.

    No, nobody is. Which I find pretty odd.

    …to show that he’s a troll…

    Well, Roy, Mark’s clearly lied; in my estimation, your treatment of the Jimmi Hugh thing shows you to be about as much of a liar, in my view.

    So, how do I pick between the statements of two liars? One of them providing a PGP-signed letter telling the other liar that he “likes” what he’s doing while simultaneously telling me how “disgusting” he found the whole thing helps. That little inconsistency doesn’t help your cause, either, by the way.

    So, Roy, feel free to explain to me how your dealings with Mr. Hugh (and your complete unwillingness to even acknowledge it as a subject of conversation) should encourage me to view you as having a strong regard for the truth…

    Roy Bixler Reply:

    If you really want my opinion of “Jimmi Hugh”, here it is. I feel that was definitely one of the weaker stories of this site and I wouldn’t have drawn the same conclusions of “Jimmi Hugh” as Roy S. did. I would say that he was neutral and was in good faith trying to apply Wikipedia rules to the article in question. However, my opinion is worth what you paid for it.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    There’s a “Wikipedia rule” that says, when there’s misinformation and outright defamation in an article, you leave it in…?

    I really have to suggest that calling someone you’ve wrongly identified as having “censored” an article–and you know you’ve wrongly identified–”infamous” and “shameless” isn’t “neutral”, it’s “displaying a complete and reckless disregard for the truth”.

    And if by “weaker”, you mean to say something like “more incredibly and egregiously irresponsible”, then I’d have to agree…

    Roy Bixler Reply:

    I think you’re very confused. You act as if you’re replying to Roy S. when you are not. To take your tone: are you going to correct that inaccuracy? Are you being deliberately obtuse? Do you have problems with English language comprehension? Do you have problems with writing and thinking clearly? Never mind. Don’t bother. Those were only rhetorical questions. This whole discussion is clearly a waste of my time. I am done here.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Well, one of us is confused. I’m pretty confident it isn’t me. You might want to go back and read my comments again, slowly. There’s one in which I reply to both you and Roy S., but I distinguish between the two by including quotes from your comments. The comment to which you seem to be responding is clearly related to your previous comment.

    If this is all getting to be too much for you to keep up with, try not to fret over it.

    Roy Bixler Reply:

    I was responding to you where you ask a sarcastic question about Wikipedia rules.

    Yes, it is a bit of a pain to keep up with this because you keep jumping to conclusions and you make your fair share of inaccurate projections. That is why I’m quitting this discussion. I don’t think it’s a good use of time. Good day to you, sir.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    (In case anyone’s inclined to be confused, this comment is directed to Roy Schestowitz…)

    A couple of further examples of Roy’s apparent problems with truth versus his agenda turned up.

    Roy insists that Yardena Arar and Harry McCracken were “bribed” by Microsoft for participating in a Vista preview (and they’re both technology writers-are they to refuse assignments because they might upset Roy?) in which they were loaned laptops with Vista preinstalled, laptops which they both stated that they returned.

    Roy continues to insist that this “isn’t what he heard”, accusing the two of having received “$2000 gifts” from Microsoft.

    Do you actually have any legal counsel, Roy? Because this sort of thing seems to be treading awfully close to honest-to-gosh libel, in my estimation: it’s false, you know it’s false, it’s damaging to the reputations of those against whom it’s directed (and deliberately so, as you make quite clear), and yet you continue to repeat and propagate it.

    Why is that?

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Hm. There’s a comment on this page at FSDaily from “schestowitz” which reads (emphasis mine), “I think that Mark Fink posting to the Ubuntu mailing lists claiming that there was anti-Ubuntu thingie going on left people with the wrong impression.” This was posted not quite a year and a week ago.

    So, Roy, you’ve felt impelled to distance yourself from Mark Fink in the past and yet you “never heard of him” before a couple of days ago…? Hm. That’s the sort of thing that would stick in my mind.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Please stop lying. What I said was that I never engaged with him (turns out that in a site comment I replied to him and did not recall this because we get a lot of comments), but I knew from a distance what he was up to after he had abused the Ubuntu mailing lists last year.

    Stop changing the facts and you’ll find that your accusation is bogus. You’re attacking a scapegoat and turned this into a personal vendetta.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    I’m sorry, Roy, but I don’t see where I’ve changed the facts, and I certainly don’t see where I’ve lied. The FSDaily comment I quoted, mentioning Mark Fink by name, 1 year and five days ago, is most certainly there, it most certainly has your name on it. Yet you told me you’d “never heard of him” before this latest fracas came up a couple of days ago. If you’re looking for lies, I’d suggest you’ll find one pretty easily, lurking in the gap between “never heard of him before a couple of days ago” and “knew from a distance what he was up to” more than a year ago.

    Please feel free to detail what you imagine I’ve lied about and what facts you think I’ve changed. Please try to be specific. I warned you that persisting in this vein was going to be damaging to your credibility, but I can’t honestly say I envisioned you grabbing a shovel and pitching in to quite this extent.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Show me where I said “never heard of him”. When you posted your first communication with me I showed you that he trolled the Ubuntu mailing list about a year ago.

    Stop changing the stories.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    By the way, stop gaming the ranking system with a second IP. it makes your efforts to discredit look pathetic.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Roy, in the comments to this entry, on June 11th, 2009 at 7:41 pm, you posted the following: “I’m deeply sorry for that. I don’t know who Fink is.” (My emphasis.)

    Not that you’d “never been in contact with him”, that you didn’t know who he is. Am I supposed to still view this as having been a truthful response…?

    If you meant, “I’m aware that there’s a person calling himself Mark Fink out there who regularly incites flame wars on various email lists, pointing back to my web site each and every time, but no, I don’t know him personally”, you’d have been better off saying so. This simply seems more and more duplicitous.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    (And by the way, I’m working from home today, on NAT/PPPoE on ADSL. I barely have one IP address, let alone two…)

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    See? You lied.

    You said I had said “never heard of him”. False. I didn’t say such a thing.

    Now you quote me as saying “I don’t know who Fink is.” True. I’ve no idea who this person is. I know the name, I don’t know who he is and whether it’s even a real name.

    In my first message to you (IIRC) I even showed you that I was aware of things he did a year ago.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Oh, I see. All right, Roy, whatever you say. Again, people can look at the evidence and make their own judgments, I’ve certainly made mine:

    I believe you were dishonest from the first instant, that you in fact have been in contact with Mr. Fink before, that you approved of his efforts at harassment and even encouraged them, and that your calling what you do “journalism” is preposterous.

    It’s certainly been instructive.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    You have neither proven dishonesty on my part, nor have you justified your false claims that I had anything to do with the abuse against you. All you did was cherry-picking of quotes to daemonise me by obscuring context. You’re leaving the only guilty perp out of it.

    It must be annoying to you that some sites criticise software that you like. And all you’re doing right now is slowing such sites down by making false accusations and provoking for response. At this stage, you and Fink are both trolls in my eyes. Neither of you is welcome here.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    I’m wrongly accused here. I’ve said this many times before.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Yup, you’ve indeed said this many times. Not enough for me to believe it, given the history around this, nor when I take into consideration the kind of egregiously intrusive and unreasonable behavior I’ve detailed above.

    It’s easy to claim being wrongly accused, but it’s a lot more difficult to get rid of the evidence of the kind of thing which you’ve done on numerous occasions which would lend support to a belief that you’re probably not all that “wrongly accused” after all.

    Sorry, I call ‘em like I see ‘em. And I note that there’ve been no substantive responses to the issues and questions I’ve raised… (Jimmi Hugh was clearly “wrongly accused”… Much good it did him, eh?)

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    As you’ll see in comments, it was based on information someone sent me — information that later on turned out to be inaccurate because two people — not one person — were involved.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Oops. This is a reply to another comment. It’s improperly nested.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Oh, please, Roy, let’s not waste my time completely, okay?

    I didn’t ask why you got it wrong; I did ask why, knowing that it’s wrong, the article continues to blame Jimmi Hugh for this purported “censorship”, as well as referring to him as “infamous”, “shameless”, etc. You know as well as I do that “strikethrough” is simply a visual adornment, it doesn’t make text invisible to search engines, etc.

    What’s it still doing there, six months after the fact?

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    The comments there clarify by adding the views of each side.

    David "Lefty" Schlesinger Reply:

    Roy, if you keep up in this vein, I’m going to feel forced to choose between your being deliberately obtuse and your having some distinct problems understanding the meaning of simple English sentences.

    Let me be clear: I am not talking about the comments. I am talking about the article. This article. The one with the title which reads “Microsoft and Jimmi Hugh: Wikipedia Censorship or Just Vandalism?” The one which contains the paragraph reading

    The person responsible for this censorship is a man by the name of Jimmi Hugh, whom I believe has a particularly infamous reputation on Wikipedia. One source describes him as “a shameless character with some kind of pro-Microsoft agenda.”

    You know you’re wrong, yet not only does the accusation remain, but also the (unsourced) defamatory characterizations of Mr. Hugh as being “shameless” and “infamous”.

    Is this what you think “journalism” is about, Roy? As I said, it doesn’t say good things about your commitment to the truth. A complete removal of the inaccurate information and character assassination, as well as a separate article, pointed to by the original, offering the details of your mistaken reportage and a full apology to Mr. Hugh might have done that. But that’s not what you did, is it?

    (In fact, if I google “Jimmi Hugh”, the third result is an instance of this erroneous article. So which “each side” are you talking about here? The side that deals in truth, and the side that refuses to admit and correct its errors in a meaningful way…? Which side do you see yourself as being on here, Roy?)

    G. Michaels Reply:


    You might want to rein in your little trolls. Again, I don’t believe you are involved with this “Fink” fellow, but your relationship to “twitter” and his status within your cadre are well-established facts.


    This “twitter” person who insists on insulting you while Roy looks on (in amusement no doubt) is one of his close collaborators and another one of those weird extremists that flock to him. He hides behind a screen name like most of the other BoycottBoys, but his real name is William H. Hill of Baton Rouge, LA. He’s a notorious “nymshifter” that maintains a gaggle of accounts on Slashdot used to shill, disrupt and generally shit all over that community. He ended up here after being laughed out of Rob Malda’s turf. Just so you know who you’re dealing with. This pattern of Roy being nice and amiable while one of his collaborators insults you is one that I’ve seen repeated time and again whenever someone ends up here trying to defend themselves from smears or baseless accusations. It’s a well-rehearsed routine.

  14. Mirco Bauer said,

    June 13, 2009 at 6:47 am


    “Jo Shields, the Mono packager from Debian and Ubuntu…”

    Please don’t discredit other members of the Debian Mono Group. It’s a team maintaining the Mono runtime and needed/used components around it.

    The Uploaders field reflect who maintains a package inside a team: http://packages.qa.debian.org/m/mono.html

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Mirco Bauer,

    Agreed. I will be careful.

  15. rich said,

    June 13, 2009 at 3:00 pm


    The DDOS and the smear campaign could be related. The DDOS could be to used to overwhelm the Boycott Novell web site while the smear campaign could be used to dirty up the Boycott Novell reputation.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    The DDOS and the smear campaign could be related.

    Not to Mono.

    Frankly, the most rabid opposition to us comes from haters of Linux.

    Sabayon User (Sabayon == Gentoo, kthx) Reply:

    Not to Mono.


    There you published a quote from one of your friends that equates the people who allegedly DoSed your site to Mono supporters. Since you published it as is, and without any clarifications, one must assume that you agree with it.

    The one thing you can truly count on is your posting volume, which quickly sweeps away your many blatant inconsistencies. And anyone who dares mention them is quickly attacked and accused of “nitpicking”.

  16. Dann said,

    June 14, 2009 at 1:50 am


    I’m a big fan of Ubuntu, since 6.10 when I started to use it.
    It’s been a major learning tool for me and I used it during college where Windows machines are the norm.

    I feel honestly insulted by the way the Ubuntu folks are handling the mono issue. Albeit both sides may have done some unpleasant things, acting with such immaturity is giving me second thoughts about using their OS build.

    Perhaps once a company becomes so large, it starts to abuse those who nurtured it. It would sure explain Apple and Microsoft’s behavior.

    I’ll be checking out Slackware, Debian, and Arch soon.
    It looks like I’ll be going it alone.
    There’s nothing more I hate than dis-information and deceit.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    I’ve used Ubuntu since 4.10. Some people wrongly think I have a grudge against Ubuntu. It’s more like concern for that whom you love.

  17. Chris said,

    June 16, 2009 at 2:30 pm


    Let me just say that I find it absolutely hilarious that you, boy, start to cry cause of some imaginary “smear campaign” against you – after all that whole little site of yours pretty much can be used as a definition of “smear campaign”.

  18. neighborlee said,

    June 18, 2009 at 9:57 pm



    I really hope you simply misspelled that and meant ‘roy, start to cry cause’..and not BOY because otherwise that would read rather nasty because he does have a name.

    Next, Roy’s site is rather large and to say the entire site is a smear campaign is rather irrational of you, given I don’t see you leveling a debate about each and every point made here, but feel free to do so.

    FOSS deserves better than this, the ordinary people who use it and developers who work so hard creating it might also agree,to recommend against bitterness , divisiveness and generally depend on working together constructively for for all of us.


  19. eet said,

    June 19, 2009 at 3:10 am


    On a more general note:

    As long as the main concern of some Linuxers is not Linux but the actions, actual or alleged, of their competitor, we as a community are in a sorry state.

  20. Chris said,

    June 19, 2009 at 10:48 am


    I just had quite a good laugh reading http://opensourcetogo.blogspot.com/2009/06/when-zeal-becomes-zealotry-tawdry-tale.html

    I think it’s a nice example how boy & friends interact and who is more likely to run a “smear campaign”.

    Just read it and make up your own mind.

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