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Can Microsoft Ever Be Accepted by the Linux Community?

Sep 15, 2009, 15:32 (10 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bruce Byfield)

[ Thanks to James Maguire for this link. ]

"Buying a stairway to heaven
If the last few years have shown anything, it is that Microsoft cannot buy its way to acceptance (assuming, of course, that it consistently wants to). Microsoft has spent what for other companies must be a small fortune buying online ads to sites such as Newsforge, sponsoring Linuxworld, and donating to projects like Apache, yet all of it is largely wasted.

"A few purists may decry such tactics, but, for the most part, the community is willing to accept the money without changing its attitudes. About the only result of such funding has been to give the Microsoft-haters ammunition and to make the rest of us regard the company as bumbling in its tactics and ignorant of the community it is trying to influence.

"What Microsoft has so far failed to understand is that money has only limited currency in the community. Few people involved in FOSS are so otherworldly that they refuse a regular paycheck or will turn down a sponsored flight to a development conference. But, beyond a very basic point, money matters surprisingly little in the community. More than cash, what matters is commitment to the community ideals."

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