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Linux Voodoo: An Open Letter to Steve Ballmer

Nov 20, 2004, 09:00 (10 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Chuck Talk)

"The banner headline hit the web with a loud crack: 'Steve Ballmer, Chief Executive of Microsoft, has warned users who do not use his company's software, that they would someday be sued.' I was amazed that a company as rich as Microsoft seemingly cannot fathom ideas such as freedom, free trade and competition. It seems that a nascent operating system such as Linux, which you have alternately labelled 'a cancer,' 'viral' and other defamatory terms at various points of its evolution, is truly something you fear. The comment, as reported, simply serves to underscore and highlight that fear.

"Threats, no matter how veiled, when spoken in front of such a large audience by such an important man, are meant to cause fear, uncertainty and doubt. Some reporters have claimed that you have claimed it was not meant as a threat, and that you were misquoted. Well, no matter how you couch it--the quote comes across as a threat. Threats from a company such as Microsoft come across to the public as being the behavior of a bully..."

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