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Author Topic: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal  (Read 5599 times)

nubcnubdo

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open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« on: November 01, 2007, 11:24:00 am »

This letter from Francois Bancilhon of Mandriva Linux says it all.
http://blog.mandriva.com/2007/10/31/an-open-letter-to-steve-ballmer/

A follow-up to the open letter asks for specifics
http://blogs.zdnet.com/BTL/?p=6845
« Last Edit: November 02, 2007, 07:57:51 pm by nubcnubdo »
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tomh38

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2007, 02:54:55 pm »

Maybe Steve told the Nigerians that if they could just free up money for 17,000 Windows licenses, he would be able to get to his frozen assets from when his uncle was Secretary of the Treasury of the State of Washington. and then he could give them hundreds of millions of dollars each for helping him out.
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larkl

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2007, 03:02:22 pm »

Seems like if the Nigerians wanted Windows, they would have just put the same copy on all 17,000 PC's ;) 
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GrannyGeek

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2007, 05:30:44 pm »

I have to say that Ballmer is playing business hardball, but Bancilhon doesn't mention anything that is illegal. Mandriva will get its money. It's not getting cheated; it's not getting a raw deal.

Who knows what Ballmer offered? If he wants to give Nigeria 17.000 free copies of Windows, I don't think there's anything illegal about that. Bribes and extortion are another matter, but there is no evidence. I wish Linux advocates didn't spend so much time spinning conspiracies. It makes us look like nut jobs.
--GrannyGeek
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rbistolfi

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2007, 05:50:51 pm »

Quote
If he wants to give Nigeria 17.000 free copies of Windows, I don't think there's anything illegal about that.

I agree this is obscure and Mandriva arguments are not rock solid, but that could be interpreted as a monopolistic practice. The only apparent reason MS would do something like that is to prevent Mandriva or other companies to gain some market. I know this is subjected to a point of view, because that is business about, to gain markets against others, but the way of doing that is suspicious and perhaps illegal in some countries. Someone could say Linux distributions gives the OS for free too, but I think there is no way to put that as a monopolistic practice. Linux is defending itself since years. I do not know if there is International anti monopolistic laws, I doubt it, so everything falls in ethic and opinions.

Quote
I wish Linux advocates didn't spend so much time spinning conspiracies. It makes us look like nut jobs.

There is some true in that too.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2007, 05:53:34 pm by rbistolfi »
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tomh38

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2007, 07:11:38 am »

GrannyGeek

Just because something isn't illegal doesn't mean it's all right.  Also, we Linuxers don't have to make up conspiracy theories about Microsoft, since they have done plenty of really nasty things over the years which are a matter of public record. Halloween documents, anyone?  Also, there's this recent business about software patents which open source software supposedly violates, none of which patents Microsoft has yet specified.  You don't have do be a conspiracy theorist to see FUD in that strategy - and getting Linux companies to pay protection money which doesn't actually protect them from anything may not be illegal either, but I can't see how anybody could justify it as ethical.
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Megamieuwsel

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2007, 10:41:46 am »

Quote
and getting Linux companies to pay protection money which doesn't actually protect them from anything may not be illegal either,
Where I live, that's called "fraud"...
Or "extortion", depending on how you phrase it.
Both are HIGHLY illegal....
« Last Edit: November 02, 2007, 10:43:21 am by SuSE-Refugee »
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tomh38

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2007, 10:54:02 am »

SuSE-Refugee

Is saying "We might go after you legally for patent violation of patents we say we have but aren't naming," and "Of course if you sign this mutual patent licensing deal we won't go after you over these patents we say we have" fraud and/or extortion?  I'm not a lawyer, so I really don't know.  Maybe somebody who has a legal background could help out here.

Of course this whole Nigerian thing is a different story.  I kind of doubt Microsoft did anything illegal here, but I don't know.  Right now it looks like the only people who would know would be the Nigerian government and the people at Microsoft who did the deal.  I do know a few things though:  I don't like Microsoft, I don't trust them, probably never will, and wouldn't want to be in the same room with Steve Ballmer, especially if a chair were present.
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nubcnubdo

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2007, 05:15:35 pm »

I guess it's easy enough for Ballmer to pull a stunt like this in the Third World, acting with the arrogance of a 19th century robber baron. I'd like to see M$ try this in Europe where there is a governing body, not to mention public opinion, to oversee unfair trade practices and monopolistic behavior. This affair suggests that M$ will do whatever it can get away with in order to squelch competition.
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Lyn

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2007, 02:26:30 am »

I guess it's easy enough for Ballmer to pull a stunt like this in the Third World, acting with the arrogance of a 19th century robber baron. I'd like to see M$ try this in Europe where there is a governing body, not to mention public opinion, to oversee unfair trade practices and monopolistic behavior. This affair suggests that M$ will do whatever it can get away with in order to squelch competition.

Unfortunately this has been done quite a bit in Europe, at least in the UK where various local authorities have looked at going to replace systems with Gnu/Linux based solutions and then have found that Microsoft will come in and undercut any deal offered by the Linux vendor and as part of the deal imposed a secrecy clause that forbids disclosure of the bid amount.    Some local authorities have cottoned on to this and threatened to go the linux route and then got nice discounts.   I think some of these deals certainly would stand investigation but as yet no one has wanted to rock the boat.   There is such a thing as free competition and there is abuse of a monopoly position, with predatory pricing to preserve that position.  However proving it is quite another thing.  On a brighter note look at what the Autonomous Governments in several of the Communities of Spain are doing... each producing a localised version of Gnu/Linux, installing it extensively in their administrations and throughout schools and giving a copy of it to each citizen.   Really heartening.
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carsten

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #10 on: November 03, 2007, 01:05:50 pm »

Hy,
shame on the Nigerian officials.
A few of them have been bribed and the citizens have to pay for it (twice, as they have deal with Mandrake Mandriva and with Mikrosaft). Nigeria should be carefull with it few resources and not waste it in this way. Hopefully somebody in Goverment can put this on a hearing and the misfits will be executed, preferably with a blunt teaspoon.
Carsten
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BlueMage

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2007, 01:55:13 am »

A tad harsh, don't you think?  It's only an operating system.
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tomh38

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #12 on: November 04, 2007, 04:00:48 am »

Hey Blue Mage, I think Carsten was making a joke ...

Just as I was making an (albeit lame) joke on the infamous Nigerian 419 scam which GrannyGeek apparently interpreted as a conspiracy theory.

Doesn't anybody have a sense of humor (or humour if you prefer) around here anymore?
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BlueMage

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2007, 07:24:10 am »

Normally, yes, but I've seen too many linux zealots (and that's really the only term that's applicable) who seem to genuinely believe these sorts of things, so it's becoming a bit difficult to pick who's joking and who's serious.

Also, lack of body language, facial twitching, etc, that comes with communicating over a series of tubes.
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tomh38

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Re: open letter to Steve Ballmer: raw deal
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2007, 07:33:46 am »

BlueMage:  I hear ya, it is hard sometimes to tell when people are joking over teh intertubes.  But really, nobody got my reference to the 419 scam?  I'm bummed.

Hey, wait a second ... are you making fun of my facial twitch!?!  ;D
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