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Re: [News] Linux Laptop Owner Fights for 'O/S Tax' Refund

[post re-ordered]

"Roy Schestowitz" <newsgroups@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message 
> ,----[ Quote ]
> | Instead of fretting about getting a refund for a nice box with that
> | legacy system that bogs down and crashes for no reason every other
> | week, I would encourage users to save their money a little longer until
> | they can afford the nicer boxes with no operating system, or that comes
> | with a modern, robust system, such as GNU/Linux, already installed.
> | After all, we sure don't want to encourage the folks at Microsoft to
> | develop more shoddy software. It's kind of like buying a Yugo because
> | it's cheap. It's cheap for a reason, and you get what you pay for.
> `----

    From a marketting standpoint, I don't think pushing the "you get what 
you pay for" idiom is effective when advocating Linux.

    If you want Linux, I don't see what the big deal is with buying a 
system, not caring whether or not Windows is preinstalled on it, and if it 
is, to reformat the haddrive and install Linux on it. If the user wants a 
"nicer box", then go ahead and save up for that nicer box. But if the user 
doesn't need or want the nicer box, I don't think the user should have to 
pay a premium just to get an empty machine without Windows preinstalled on 
it. It just doesn't make sense.

> http://soupofchicken.blogspot.com/2006/10/battle-continued.html

    I'm not sure I approve of this blogger's methodology. First of all, the 
blogger clearly states he is "attacking" the corporations, rather than 
actually trying to simply solve his problem of getting a laptop with Linux:

He [the Microsoft representative] did also give me a phone number for 
Microsoft that I can contact them on, should I have further queries. Wheres 
the fun in that? I like the idea of electronic mail. Your attacks and 
responses can be so much more planned and constructed... It also gives you 
oodles of extra minutes to rant about stuff that isn't completely relevant, 
but worth mentioning nonetheless. In conversations, people get weirded out 
by this type of approach, and thats why email wins hands down.

    Anyway, I think Microsoft's response was very fair, and the responder 
seems to have went out of their way to look up a phone number to help the 
blogger with their problem. This is more than I'd expect of anyone:

[Micro] responded! In a very well laid out and put together email, he told 
me that Microsoft themselves cannot influence who sells what product with 
which product, but he did tell me that Toshiba would have to answer me, and 
also furnished me with a contact number for them.

    However, it is unfortunate that MS has not responded to the bloggers 
question about the EULA. I'd expect them to do so.

    The way the blogger phrases his e-mail, it's as if he takes pleasure in 
publicly displaying the battle. It seems like he *DOESN'T* want Toshiba to 
solve his problem for him, as that would end the battle. Instead of getting 
to the point, he adds "irrelevant rants" (that's his own description of his 
e-mails), such as in this e-mail to Toshiba:

It's sad that so many hectic measures have to, and had to, be taken to
ensure that these multi-nationals that you talk of, follow through
with their WRITTEN licence agreements that they supply with their
products. It's a sad day, when you have to be forced to take a company
to court, just to get them to honour the promises that they make to
you, when you purchase their goods. *sigh*

It is weird to have a situation like this, where I am pre-empting the
entire process, by establishing the process that I will follow through
with BEFORE I purchase the notebook. I understand that it is a strange
case and request to deal with, but I need for you to assure me that
Toshiba will honour it's agreement that is made with me the second
that I purchase the notebook, and I also need to be assured that
Toshiba will honour the agreement that they have with Microsoft, in
facilitating a return for refund, for the unwanted software.

Again, as I said to [Rect], thank you all for your time. I really do
appreciate your response and interest in this case, and request that
you make a concerted effort to accomodate me in this strange (though
it shouldn't be strange) situation.

    Why can't he just say "I want to buy a laptop without Windows on it. How 
much will that cost?"

    Toshiba has implied that they are willing to sell him a laptop without 
Windows at the same cost as a laptop with Windows (I've inferred this from 
the "car and radio" analogy the Toshiba representative presented). To me, 
that's reasonable, and the blogger is being unreasonable by demanding more. 
It's like ordering a cheeseburger without onions from McDonalds and 
demanding a rebate for the value of the onions.

    Toshiba is offering certain goods and services at a given price. The 
blogger doesn't find these offers appealing and is attempting to negotiate a 
different offer. Toshiba seems to be uninterested in this offer. So now the 
blogger is whining about it on his blog, trying to smear Toshiba's 
reputation with emotionally charged phrases like "siding with other 
multi-national companies like Microsoft and Intel".

    I think the blogger should drop the theatrics. Just what problem is he 
trying to solve? Does he want a laptop with Linux installed on it? If so, 
there are plenty of vendors out there willing to take his business. Does he 
specifically want a *TOSHIBA* laptop with Linux installed? Okay, *I* will be 
willing to sell him one. However, it's going to be more expensive that 
ordering the laptop from Toshiba directly, as all I'm going to do is order a 
laptop from Toshiba, reformat it and install Linux on it. I'm going to 
charge the blogger the cost of the laptop, the cost of shipping it to me, 
the cost of labor of installing Linux on it, and the cost of shipping it to 
him. Or does he just want people to read his blog by making a lot of noise? 
Well, mission accomplished, I guess.

    - Oliver 

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