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Microsoft is Waging War Against any Country That Stands in Its Way

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Microsoft is Waging War Against any Country That Stands in Its Way
As Quora once pointed out, Microsoft has borne the moniker of “the Evil Empire” since the 1980s as it sought to create a near-monopoly for its Windows operating system (1).

Very often, it has not played very nice, using its size and muscle to influence politicians and journalists around the world, by enticements when it can, but with intimidation when it believes it must.

Microsoft is not the only company that uses these tactics, even in the IT industry(2). But the company has proven to be very good at them.

A website called Techrights recently accused Microsoft of, in essence, trying to control the British government where open-source standards and free software policies are concerned (3). These policies would cut into the company’s bottom line.

While the word “blackmail” has been bandied about, what Microsoft is doing in Great Britain to influence members of Parliament is not illegal, albeit unseemly. Unless the member being lobbied sees things Microsoft’s way, by giving its software preference, the company will start closing plants in his or her constituency.

Though these tactics have worked in the past, the government and media in Great Britain and other countries, India in particular, have started to resist.

Fake Journalists

Another piece in Techrights suggests that Microsoft buys favorable media coverage by hiring fake “journalists” who give the company favorable coverage (4).

Accepting money from anyone, whether it is a private company or a politician, in return for slanted coverage, is considered highly unethical in the journalism profession. The practice is more common overseas than in the United States.

Ironically enough, according to LUCID PRfolio, Apple Computer, Microsoft’s main competitor, takes the opposite stance and not only eschews paying for favorable coverage, but also is very transparent when flaws are discovered in its products (5). By contrast, when Microsoft discovers product flaws, it tends to downplay the implications.

Apple, as a reward for its honesty, has received harsh criticism in the media. CNet, an information technology journal, has been accused of accepting money from Microsoft and other companies in return for favorable reviews of its products. Thus, the line between independent journalism and advertising tends to be blurred.

windows 8 start screen

Microsoft Can’t Strong Arm China

One country exists where Microsoft and other IT companies are not able to employ strong-arm tactics. That country is China, a state that has both a totalitarian government and a huge market that Microsoft is keen to service. That means that Microsoft, as well as companies such as Google and Yahoo, are uncharacteristically keen to comply with the Beijing regime’s demands, especially in regards to censorship.

According to Reuters (6), a Chinese human rights group called claims that Microsoft is censoring certain search terms in its Bing search engine that the Chinese government believes to be inappropriate for its citizens.

One of the allegedly censored terms is “Dalai Lama,” the name of the Tibetan spiritual leader who is in exile because of his opposition to the Chinese occupation of his country. Microsoft has also been accused of censoring China’s version of Skype, an Internet telephones it operates.

For its part, Microsoft has denied the allegations of censorship, claiming that a software fault caused the effect that GreatFire,org believed was censorship. However, it is also clear that the Chinese government believes that control of information that its citizens are allowed to access is key to maintaining its grip on power.

With the willing aid of companies such as Microsoft, China has erected what has been called “the Great Firewall of China.” Just as the original Great Wall of China was built to keep out dangerous barbarians, the Great Firewall of China is designed to keep out dangerous ideas.

Ironically, the Chinese government has been able to suborn the help of companies such as Microsoft, which have flourished in the freedom of the West, in clamping down on freedom within its own country.

References & Image Credits:
(1) Quora
(2) TSW: Tech
(3) Tech Rights
(4) Tech Rights
(5) Lucid PR Folio
(6) Reuters
(7) Windows 8 Start Screen

Originally published on

  • ymcpa

    Sorry, Apple is transparent and rewards honesty? Try again. They are known to punish journalist by denying them early access to products and events if a journalist is too hard on them. They won’t send out new hardware for critical journalist to evaluate. Since get an early scoop on new apple hardware drives a lot of traffic to sites, journalist are rarely hard on apple. You constantly see article were they spend most of the article praising apple and their product and might bury a tiny paragraph where they mention deficiencies. The opposite is true when it comes to Microsoft articles where any deficiencies will be often included in the headline. As for being transparent, you see time and again that when a major issue is found, Apple will deny and ignore it until the press coverage get big enough that they will promise offer some minor fix. Apple is probably the least transparent company around. They never ask of comments and feedback from the consumer. An example is what happened to Final Cut, when apple decided to change it and the users hated it and decide to stick to the previous versions. There are plenty more examples of Apple deciding what’s best for consumers. The best recent example is Apple finally caving and releasing the large screen iPhone 6 and 6 plus. For years Steve jobs insisted that 3.5″ is the perfect size despite the fact that a large percentage wanted a large screen and were buying android phones for that exact reason.

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