Well, here's an interesting question we'd suspect many could
answer very quickly. The issue is, would the thundering
affirmations be correct? When approaching Microsoft, two favorite
labels when addressing its apologists are "FUD" and "astroturf,"
which don't address how to deal with reporters who might honestly
be trying to call it like they see it. A ZDNet columnist responds
to readers "who take the position that anything bad for Microsoft
is good for computing. "
"My responsibility, according to them, is to comfort the
afflicted and afflict the comfortable--beat up on Microsoft and
laud competitors, whether their products are better or not."
"That is a lofty journalistic idea, but I also give Microsoft
credit when I feel it's due, and that upsets some people. I'm not
pro-Microsoft nearly as much as I'm pro-user. And Microsoft--if
only by its sheer size and dominance--has made life easier for
"Remember when the productivity suite companies--Lotus,
WordPerfect, and Microsoft--were spending their time building file
formats and user interfaces so different from one another that you
couldn't easily swap files or go to a friend's computer and use the
software on it? That was certainly competitive--hypercompetitive,
even. But did it serve customers?"