Home Messages Index
[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
Author IndexDate IndexThread Index

Re: Confession of a Microsoft Shilling Advocate

Verily I say unto thee, that Sinister Midget spake thusly:
> On 2008-12-27, Erik Funkenbusch <erik@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> 
> claimed:
>> On Fri, 26 Dec 2008 20:25:54 -0800 (PST), 
>> nessuno@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx wrote:
>>> On Dec 26, 8:12 pm, Erik Funkenbusch
>>> <erik@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

>>>> The thing you fail to realize Roy, is that *YOU* egage in 
>>>> exactly the same behavior you pretend to loathe.
>>> You mean....writing letters to the editor using the names of dead
>>> people
>> You miscarachterize the event.

Oh give us a break, Erik. Microsoft are a bunch of morally reprehensible
scum, and you know it. Even their former chief Technology Evangelist
(a.k.a. shill supervisor) knows it, but apparently you know something he

"miscarachterize"(sic) ... LOL!

>> The letters were written with the people's permission while they 
>> were alive

And this then justifies Microsoft's fake grass-roots campaign?

I see.

[smacks forehead]

>> they were then sent to them to sign, but dying before they could 
>> sign them and mail them.

Why didn't the Vole just send them a pen and a blank piece of paper, or
better yet ... send them /nothing/ except the humble request to support
them by writing their /own/ letters in their /own/ words?

Was there something deficient about these people that they couldn't
write their own letters (other than the obvious fact that they were
dead, of course)? After all, these people were chomping at the bit to
"support" Microsoft by joining this "grass-roots" campaign, they must
have been eager to express their glowing sentiments in the own words.
Why would Microsoft deny them that "privilege"? Why would they need to
hire Tobacco and Gun lobbying firms to spam these people with fake

I can just picture the scene now. I'm sitting at home when I receive a
call from New Media asking for my permission to use my name in a letter
of support for (let's say) Sproggit & Co. Other than asking if they were
calling from Nigeria, I think I'd be inclined to ask why I couldn't just
write my own letter. In fact no, I'd just hang up, and possibly report
the incident to the police.

Why anyone would actually agree to such a thing, I have no idea. Oh but
wait ... lemme guess, were they being /paid/ by any chance? Wouldn't it
be absolutely delicious to discover that, in addition to orchestrating a
fake grass-roots campaign ... with /dead/ people no less, that Microsoft
were actually /bribing/ those "grass-roots supporters" to do this too?
It would hardly be the /first/ time the Vole had ever bribed anyone,
after all, I mean it's practically a daily occurrence at Redmond HQ.

Someone is definitely trying to "miscarachterize"(sic) this scam, Erik,
but it isn't Roy ... nor the Seattle Times (whom he is simply quoting,
after all) ... nor the Los Angeles Times (whom /they/ are simply quoting).

So why are you attacking the messenger ... with a
counter-mischaracterisation, no less?

I smell the aroma of freshly cut astroturf coming from your general
direction, Erik.

>> Family members crossed out

Is that the threat Microsoft made to coerce you to astroturf for them,
or is it just a hobby?

>> the dead relatives name and signed them in their own names.
>> The actual account is here:
>> http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=20010823&slug=microlob23
>> "Utah officials found two of the pre-fab letters bore the typed 
>> names of dead people. Those names had been crossed out by family 
>> members who signed for them"

'And another letter came from "Tuscon, Utah," a city that doesn't exist.'

Your finger must have slipped when trying to copy that bit.

> Here's some more for you if you think that was the extent of it:

No need for other links, it's right there in the article that Fuddie
kindly provided:

Letters purportedly written by at least two dead people landed on the
desk of Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff earlier this year,
imploring him to go easy on Microsoft for its conduct as a monopoly.

The pleas, along with more than 100 others from Utah residents, are part
of a carefully orchestrated nationwide campaign by the software giant
that may be backfiring. Microsoft sought to create the impression of a
surging grass-roots movement, aimed largely at the attorneys general of
some of the 18 states that have joined the Justice Department in suing

The Microsoft campaign goes to great lengths to create an impression
that the letters are spontaneous expressions from ordinary people.
Letters sent in the last month are on personalized stationery using
different wording, color and typefaces, details that distinguish
Microsoft's efforts from lobbying tactics that go on in politics every day.

State law-enforcement officials became suspicious after noticing that
the same sentences appear in the letters and that some return addresses
appeared invalid.

"It's an obvious corporate attempt to manipulate citizen input," said
Rick Cantrell, community-relations director for the Utah attorney general.

"You can just tell these were engineered. When there's a real
groundswell, people walk in, they fax, they call. We get handwritten


Microsoft referred questions about the new campaign to the company
running it, Americans for Technology Leadership (ATL), which gets some
money from Microsoft, but won't say how much. ATL was founded in 1999 as
a spinoff of the Association for Competitive Technology, another
pro-Microsoft group.


The letter-writing exercise is part of a larger Microsoft plan to sway
Congress and encourage prosecutors to pursue a settlement in advance of
a court hearing on how the Redmond company should be punished for
illegally maintaining its monopoly on computer operating systems.

The maker of Windows and other software also has stepped up campaign
donations, becoming the fifth-largest "soft-money" donor to the national
^^^^^^^^^               ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Republican and Democratic parties in 1999-2000.

To assist it in the grass-roots campaign, Microsoft turned to two of the
nation's top political-advocacy groups: Boston-based Dewey Square Group,
co-founded by Al Gore campaigner Michael Whouley, and Phoenix-based
DCI/New Media, led by Republican strategist Tom Synhorst. DCI has worked
for both the tobacco industry and the National Rifle Association.

Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch said he got about 300 of those.
"It's sleazy," Hatch said. "This is not a company that appears to be
 ^^^^^^^^^^^                        ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
bothered by ethical boundaries."

Microsoft are gangsters. Fact.

What does that make people like Fuddie, an "associate" or an "empty suit"?



| "At the time, I thought C was the most elegant language and Java
|  the most practical one. That point of view lasted for maybe two
|  weeks after initial exposure to Lisp."   ~ Constantine Vetoshev

Fedora release 8 (Werewolf) on sky, running kernel
 09:16:32 up 52 days, 16:59,  4 users,  load average: 1.69, 1.70, 1.52

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
Author IndexDate IndexThread Index