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Linux Geeks To Take Over World

samzenpus posted more than 9 years ago | from the mountain-dew-for-everyone dept.

Editorial 511

B'Trey writes "According to this story by Rob Enderle of TechNewsWorld, Linux geeks are one of the most powerful forces in the world and are set to become the next Mob. Does this mean I get to wear a cool fedora and carry my distro CDs in a violin case?"

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You still won't get a date on Friday. (5, Funny)

grub (11606) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700843)


Does this mean I get to wear a cool fedora and carry my distro CDs in a violin case?

If your stick-on Vulcan ears don't interfere with the hat and if there's ample room in the violin case for your fake lightsaber... why not?

Re:You still won't get a date on Friday. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700884)

I for one welcome our new geeky overlords.
Oh wait, thats me! :)

Re:You still won't get a date on Friday. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700907)

"Insightful"? Wow, the mods must be just juiced tonight.

Re:You still won't get a date on Friday. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700942)

I want to mod up +1 Funny whoever modded this as +1 Insightful.

Re:You still won't get a date on Friday. (4, Informative)

1010011010 (53039) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701012)

No, it means Rob Enderle is a fucking moron. That's what his columns always mean.

Vroom vroom, Rob. Fire up your stupid Ferrari laptop and go from zero to troll in 3.4 seconds.

Re:You still won't get a date on Friday. (3, Informative)

sleeper0 (319432) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701052)

I like how he spends a few paragraphs talking about the idea of a software labor union and then apparently completely forgets about that idea instead focusing on how mad people writing letters got an article pulled. Maybe his next labor union will be formed by christians angry at broadcast TV?

Re:You still won't get a date on Friday. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701016)

In some ways it's worse than a dictatorship, if you think about it. Most people in nasty dictatorships have an all-to-clear a picture of exactly what kind of behaviors will get them 'disappeared.' It's not a guarantee or anything (you may be a government-critic's brother, for instance), but at least you have a sense of your position on the terrain.

In the United States the law is so hopelessly complex, the enforcement so arbitrary, and adherence to the concept of checks and balances is such a farce that very few people are entirely sure of the legality of all their actions. Or what the consequences would be. We have developed a culture of lawyers for precisely this purpose - we walk on pins and needles hoping to God we aren't crossing some local, state, or federal ordinance without realizing it.

To live in the United States without having a law degree or the money to employ someone with one full-time is to be a second-class citizen.
--Ryv

Re:You still won't get a date on Friday. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701041)

The way I see it, your IP is becoming more and more like your phone number. It's part of who you are and we're fast approaching the day that the two will be essentials for anyone living anywhere in the world. You'll need your digits so people can call you, and your IPv4 or IPv6 digits for other reasons, and it'll become the norm.

How would people react if the Bush, or any, administration claimed the right to be able to tap anyone's phone for any reason?

From the article:
The legal filing with the 2nd Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in New York comes amid a debate in Congress over renewal of the Patriot Act and whether to expand the FBI's power to seek records without the approval of a judge or grand jury.

And will they also seek the entitlement to search domestic residences without a warrant approved by an authority figure? Would I be far off in this seeming to be about the same? For those who lost their short term memory, and those who like repetition:

without the approval or a judge or grand jury

How do you respect a law like that?/p

Overlords (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700845)

I, for one, welcome [yimg.com] our Software Technical Union Derivative Standards (Studs) overlords.

sorry

Plan (1)

mathwizxp (888669) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700858)

Sounds like a plan. ;)

quick answer to the question (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700860)

No and No (but if you want to compile that way...

Before I RTFA: (1)

MrCopilot (871878) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700861)

become the next Mob. Does this mean I get to wear a cool fedora and carry my distro CDs in a violin case?"

No, no it doesn't.

Maybe Tux could though, Old School GoodFeathers Style

Re:After I RTFA: (1)

MrCopilot (871878) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700944)

from TFA Without strong leadership any organization with this much power can easily find itself with an image more similar to that of organized crime than one of organized labor (and, recall, the two have, historically, often appeared as interchangeable).

I for one, nominate a tri-bunal council compsosed of Linus, RMS, and that Moglen dude (he Rocks man).

Or an anarchosyndiclast commune, each taking in turn .....

Re:Before I RTFA: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701010)

The reason the Bush administration is concerned about legality in this matter is because they aren't going after individuals or impoverished nations filled with people the average idiot American distrusts and blames for gas prices.

They're stepping on the toes of large, multi-national corporations many of whom have major media holdings and could make life very, very painful for the US government. Translation: they ARE being watched on this one, so they have to cross the 't's and dot the 'i's.

--Ryv

This is a definite possibility (1, Troll)

Dancin_Santa (265275) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700862)

Outside of the Strong Force in the microsphere and gravitation in the macrosphere, I suppose Linux geeks could be somewhat powerful.

Except for Gentoo Linux geeks. They may have enough power, but it's all tied up at the moment. They'll be ready any day now. Oh look, a new package to emerge!

Re:This is a definite possibility (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701051)

Well, you see, the only people REALLY interested in being in power are the ones who, well, want to weild the power. I want to mind my own business so I don't run for office, they want to run everybody's lives so they put themselves in that sort of position.

It's really that simple.

Horray (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700865)

27 year olds living in their parent's basement rejoice!

Seriously... I am one.

And in other news... (1)

NinjaFodder (635704) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700866)

Bill Gates is now wetting himself.

Linux Geeks To Take Over World (1)

GET THE FACTS! (850779) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700867)

Not if I can help it!

GET THE FACTS! [getthefacts.com]

Re:Linux Geeks To Take Over World (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700955)

I haven't had my facts today. Thank you!

Umm... (4, Funny)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700869)

"Does this mean I get to wear a cool fedora and carry my distro CDs in a violin case?"

Sure, but the jocks are still going to kick your ass.

Re:Umm... (2, Funny)

Seumas (6865) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700909)

You know, I kind of resent the constant insinuations that geeks and jocks can't be one-in-the-same. I was an accomplished wrestler for a decade, but still maintained great grades, enjoy reading and writing, play two instruments and work in the software world (as an engineer - not a sales or marketing dork).

I'm as geeky as they come, without really being into Star-Trek, Star-Wars, comic books and anime (I like them, I'm just not nuts about it all). I think it does a disservice to geeks to suggest they can't be athletic or brawny and to athetes for suggesting that they can't be introspective and intelligent.

Hell, in my life I've been a jock, geek and a goth. By all means, I should be shoving myself in a locker and blowing myself up with a match and a portable propane tank. :)

I know you were just being silly and I'm not picking on you. I just felt like ranting, is all. :)

Re:Umm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700989)

I agree. This is merely a blatant attempt at the US govt (under the control of the power mad) to sidestep the courts.

If there is an actual case with actual charges all that has to be done is *file the supoena*. This administration is doing just about everything in its power to 'legalize' the ability to exercise power above the law.

There was once when the 'republican" party and the 'conservatives' meant smaller govt, less spending, and less intrusiveness.

I cant imagine that we need secret laws and skulduggery against our own people to fight the phantom menace

Re:Umm... (4, Funny)

evilad (87480) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700999)

That accomplished and you still don't have anything better to do than this?

That settles it, I'm _definitely_ not growing up.

Depending on the distro... (1)

microsoftlinux_user (778732) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700870)

for instance if you use Red Hat, you'd have to wear a red hat. Only if you use Fedora Core can you wear a fedora

Re:Depending on the distro... (1)

datadriven (699893) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700966)

So... I use slackware. Does tha mean I can go fishing now?

Re:Depending on the distro... (1)

Pantero Blanco (792776) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701022)

Maybe we should just wear really baggy pants?

Re:Depending on the distro... (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701036)

And if it's Gentoo, what are you putting in the violoin case? I guess I'll put my highland bagpipe; dunno what you lesser folk are bringing, but my four-reeded monster 0wnz0rz j00!

Re:Depending on the distro... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701061)

Yeah, and if you use Mandriva, you should look like THIS! Stay away from the children! [kde-look.org]

As long as... (1)

gibbo2 (58897) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700871)

...the fedora is red

If you say so. (0, Troll)

Seumas (6865) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700872)

Yes, because nothing says "prepared to take over the world" like being an unemployed (RIFd? Offshored? Downsized?) geek living off of top-ramen coding free software that you'll never make a dime off of, loading up on sugar and caffeine, in the glow of your monitor.

Why, just look at all the current legislation that clearly supports linux geeks taking over the world! (LA installing public crime-cams to catch.. get this.. DVD PIRATES.... Oh - and the whole DMCA thing... you can think of others).

Why yes, the world is our oyster. Or whatever.

Power to reproduce (3, Funny)

fembots (753724) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700875)

While all these powers are good, if one cannot successfully reproduce offsprings, any geeky genes are likely to disappear.

Re:Power to reproduce (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700961)

Wow first post out and already Facist is being used. Not that I disagre but.. Wow!

Re:Power to reproduce (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700975)

Does'nt this seem *too* close to a dictatorship

Hell yeah, it does.

not that the US is one, b

Give it a little more time... These things don't happen overnight.

Re:Power to reproduce (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700997)

"While all these powers are good, if one cannot successfully reproduce offsprings, any geeky genes are likely to disappear."

Slashdot: The Last Generation. *whoosh* *trumpets*

cool fedora (1)

slicer622 (579305) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700876)

just make sure its red.

Re:cool fedora (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700959)

the, "if you've got nothing to hide, why worry?" argument will probably win this one. but guys, c'mon. This descision will quash terrorism... don't you see...?

This isn't new... (1)

Cytlid (95255) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700879)

...I've been planning on taking over the world with Linux for years. Just a matter of time...

Re:This isn't new... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700963)

The bad part: "To expand the FBI's power to seek records without the approval of a judge or grand jury."

This means no oversight, and opens the door for all kinds of abuse. Giving the government a little grief? No problem, they'll just have to make life hard for you.

Re:This isn't new... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700988)

The most important thing is to make sure that with any additional powers granted there is enough oversight from a disinterested third party to insure said powers are used only within their intended scope for their intended purpose.

While I agree with the importsance of this, I'd like to point at the importance of questioning if a power is needed at all, and not granting it if such a need cannot be proven. Checks and balances can only work when they are not bogged down in burocracy and procedure to be effective. Too much power with a too big counterweight (oversight by 'uninterested' 3rd parties) easily results in a substational amount of burocracy.

Dictators (1)

Jarn_Firebrand (845277) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700883)

I for one welcome our new Linux Geek dictators.

Re:Dictators (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700962)

Execute order 66

Re:Dictators (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700992)

Yer all a bunch of commie pinko liberal America-haters. Our President is doing the BEST HE CAN to protect us from terrorism, and he NEEDS these powers.

Re:Dictators (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701069)

Let us not forget a key point:

Congress creates the bills, the President merely signs them into law.

Where is all the uproar about the Congressmen who voted for these laws? I see plenty of anti-Bush sentiment here, but where's the outrage towards *your* representatives who approve of this?

Get angry all you want at the occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, but don't give a free pass to the occupants of both the Hart and Russell Senate Office Buildings, they typically stick around a lot longer than a President.


A story without much of a point (3, Interesting)

Raindance (680694) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700885)

The article tells a good story about how Linux is at the center of a massive nexus of script-kiddies who are eager to destroy anyone standing in their way. And how unions are powerful things.

I don't think, however, that this has much to do with IT unionization.

There will always be vandals. There will always be workers who would benefit from a union. The story failed to connect these ideas.

Meh.

Re:A story without much of a point (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700991)

and of course the feds want to hide details of it from the public

I have read of this before, but it is very strange that in a democracy (?) laws for the popluation can be discussed/made by not letting the population know about them.

Does'nt this seem *too* close to a dictatorship - not that the US is one, but it increasingly is seeming that certain aspects are going in that direction

Re:A story without much of a point (2, Insightful)

CSMastermind (847625) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701024)

I'll agree with you on that point. I'd also like to point out that the author doesn't consider that fact that right now the collective group of linux users is more or less out of reach from retaliation. If they were to combine into a single entity they then could be easily attacked. That's why a comparision between them and the mob is more apporiate than them and a labor union. Here's to hoping that we get IT unions and that we don't suffer the same faults as airline workers when we do.

Headlins: -1 flaimbait (1)

a_greer2005 (863926) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700887)

I havn't even read the summery, i likely will but I just want to say that while for many on this site the headline is a wet dream, it is pure flaimbait.

Re:Headlins: -1 flaimbait (1)

hunterx11 (778171) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700954)

It takes even less time to read the summary than it takes to check the spelling in one's post.

Re:Headlins: -1 flaimbait (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701050)

hey, that's flaimbait!

Cool fedora (1)

77Punker (673758) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700889)

Or wear a cool Fedora Core? haha!

Re:Cool fedora (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701001)

After a quick browsing of the ISP records they could know a lot about us... It seems that you have been living two lives. In one life, you are Thomas A. Anderson, program writer for a respectable software company. You have a social security number, you pay your taxes and you help your land lady carry out her garbage. In the other you are an annoying slashdot troll under the alias "Anonymous Coward" and are guilty of virtually every computer crime we have a law for, including extreme comparisons of the Bush administration to fictional works such as The Matrix or 1984. One of these lives has a future... In all seriousness, though, I can't see how giving the government access to ISP records is going to beneficial to the people. Guess the Department of Homeland Security is getting bored and needs something to do.

Re:Cool fedora (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701034)

Wow talk about a mis-leading head line. If you read the article in Wired it says congress is debating this. This article just starts off biased and just gets worse fromt here. It is obviouse where the writer stands on this issue and what side of the political fense the writer stands on, but last time I checked the Patiot Act didn't pass with a narrow margin and it doesn't look like it is going to pass with a narrow margin again this time.

So for all you liberal's out there that say my guy would never vote for this, and Bush is evil because he did. Check the vote records for this back in 2001. It's all posted on the Library of Congress website.

Slackers can finally slack off... (1)

Tanmi-Daiow (802793) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700895)

yes, the slackware geeks can finally live up to their name...

Re:Slackers can finally slack off... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701000)

I'm not a bush basher generally. I'm not totally against the RIAA and MPAA.

But I must say, that this initiative is truely diabolical. My freedoms to surf the internet privately is clearly being breached here.

Are we going to see them applying the same interpretationist polcies that they use on television to the internet. I mean whos to say what constituits a "terrorist" website?

Goodbye my friends. I think 1984 has truely, and finally come alive, and its time for some of us to go underground.

Re:Slackers can finally slack off... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701030)

I'm sorry mods, but I can't see how that's insightful.

What does one thing have to do with the other?
It seems many of us are simply predisposed to attack anyone whose ideology is different from ours. Without thought.

Sadly, I think this is what our political leaders have taught us: shrill reponses to just about anything proposed by our enemies (those who don't align with our politics.) It is a scary, scary practice and one that is getting worse.

Disclaimer: I'm not saying I advocate the war or the topic. In fact, I've not even RTFA.

Re:Slackers can finally slack off... (1)

0racle (667029) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701038)

I already have for some time now.

begging the quotation (1)

learn fast (824724) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700898)

Flattery is like cologne water, to be smelt, not swallowed.

--Josh Billings

Re:begging the quotation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700998)

They're stepping on the toes of large, multi-national corporations many of whom have major media holdings and could make life very, very painful for the US government.

Your comment reminded me of a thought I had regarding the fines that everyone wanted Microsoft to pay for using its monopoly to crush competition. Before the USDOJ action, Microsoft was one of those rare companies that made no significant political contributions to either party. I'm sure this had more to do with their wanting to stay out of someone's crosshairs, but they only made token lobbying efforts as well.

After the judgement, they dump a ton of cash on both parties and they lobby every bill that may have an impact on their business operations.

They're paying their fine: one congressman at a time.

Linux Geek take over...THEN (1)

erik umenhofer (782) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700899)

the population slowly dies off because none of them know how to reproduce..due to lack of experience with the opposite sex..

Re:Linux Geek take over...THEN (1)

Joey Patterson (547891) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701070)

the population slowly dies off because none of them know how to reproduce..due to lack of experience with the opposite sex..

So, in a desperate attempt to keep Linux from dying, they resort to breeding baby penguins.

Author (4, Funny)

atomic-penguin (100835) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700902)

The author has a disturbing resemblance to Dr. Phil.

Re:Author (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700953)

It's not about getting information on terrorists when they email each other.

It's about getting blackmail data on government officials to force them to do what the Administration wants.

Mistranslated (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700904)

Apparently there was a mistake made translating the Bible. It originally said the "Geek shall inherit the earth". Makes more sense.

Don't cross the RootFather... (1)

MiKM (752717) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700910)

Bill Gates is going to be sleeping with the garbage files.

Re:Don't cross the RootFather... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701025)

...that no one will want to live here anymore.

You can get a fedora, (1)

Freaek (11909) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700917)

so long as it's red [brandfuelstores.com] ...

:D

Re:You can get a fedora, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700986)

I'm so glad that the "keep-the-government-out-of-people's-lives" party is in power.


Keep the violin (1)

awful (227543) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700926)

Much better to keep the violin in the case and download the distro of your choice as and when you need to.

Muhahaha!! (1)

pair-a-noyd (594371) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700929)

I have secretly placed a ring of 50 satellites in orbit around the planet, and from my space station, I will release a terrible rain of Linux discs upon the unworthy little worms and wipe out all traces of Windows(R) on earth!!

Love, Hugo.

Re:Muhahaha!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700950)

When did the Bush administration become concerned about legality? Their previous stances on issues including torture, sovereign right of nations, and the role of Article 2 power has been done without discussing it with anyone.

Now all of the sudden they are getting a read from the courts?

Fucking facists.

Re:Muhahaha!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700967)

This just brings things in parity with requesting library records. Except that ISP accounts can be used for more nefarious purposes than library books.

The most important thing is to make sure that with any additional powers granted there is enough oversight from a disinterested third party to insure said powers are used only within their intended scope for their intended purpose./p

Re:Muhahaha!! (2, Funny)

kflash15 (252578) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701023)

AOL tried it. So far, it hasn't worked.

Commentary, not journalism (4, Insightful)

ValourX (677178) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700941)

Enderle does not make phone calls and get facts; he prints opinions. Opinions are not required to be logical or intelligent, and they can run rampant with untruths and stupidity. There's nothing inherently wrong with publishing opinions and commentary.

The reason why this is a commentary and not an article is because there are few or no facts to back up the majority of what Rob Enderle says. I personally consider that unprofessional, even if it doesn't technically break the rules.

-Jem

Enderles just upset... (1)

ikekrull (59661) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700949)

That nobody cares about his crappy articles enough to even bother getting mad at the stupid allegations he makes, the bad analogies he draws, the frankly ludicrous conclusions he comes to and the unashamed shilling he does.

Maybe you should just come right out and call us all nazi nigger homo terrorists Rob?

Maybe that will give you the reaction you so desperately crave?

Real Simple, Rob (1)

DaGoodBoy (8080) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700951)

No one is forcing you to use Free / Open Source Software. I am sorry you are so threatened by customers stepping up and solving their own problems instead of giving their hard earned money to vendors that do not provide good products, do not listen to their customers and then feel threatened when the 'Open Source Community' commodifies their products. Guess who the 'Open Source Community' is, Rob? IT'S THE FARKING CUSTOMERS!!!

They are using Free / Open Source Software and spending time instead of money. Guess what? They are finding that it costs less and the vendors that should have been providing solutions were metering out features and bug fixes like crumbs to the hungry to extract the highest cost / benefit for their own bottom line. So if they want to play in the market now, they can play by our rules:

http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/ [gnu.org]

DaGoodBoy

yeah right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700952)

dorks!

Heh. (2, Funny)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700969)

"Does this mean I get to wear a cool fedora and carry my distro CDs in a violin case?"

I guess, but I'd recommend replacing that condom in your wallet once a year.

I predict a riot (1)

panaceaa (205396) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700970)

Mob??? My MANDRIVA vanity license plate better arrive before Linux geeks get all Reginald Denny on me!

The Most Powerful Labor Union in the World: Linux? (1)

kryogen1x (838672) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700976)

From TFA:

The Most Powerful Labor Union in the World: Linux?

Great, now Linux geeks are going to be called communists AGAIN.

It's kinda like Fight Club! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12700983)

It's kinda like Fight Club, a massive underground international club of people with all types of backgrounds and careers who can accomplish pretty much anything, including toppling large credit card company buildings. Except they're pastier, skinnier, hairier, and unemployed.

Enderle? Oh yeah that guy. (1)

Weaps (642924) | more than 9 years ago | (#12700984)

Wow, Enderle said all of that? Perhaps he's in the "can't beat 'em join 'em" crowd.

Oh wait, I just read the article. He likens linux geeks as the Mob, or at least the Trade Federation. Power beyond what you can imagine and all that.

Looks like he's afraid of the Power of, oh, I don't know...the People? Yeah, that must be it.

Domination and Revisionist History (1)

ignorant_coward (883188) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701003)

As Linux gains popularity, it's advocates are unleashing unto the world the same FUD and marketing shenanigans that Microsoft unleashed against Linux just a few years ago. RMS invented Open Source (of course!), Linux is the fastest, most complete, and best Opterating System for all tasks big and small, portability doesn't matter if Linux is the target platform, there are no ethical dillemas in Free Software, as it is the One True Way, and its critics are Enemies Of The State.

Obligatory Movie Quote (1)

Jarn_Firebrand (845277) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701073)

"The next person who says 'shenanigans' gets pistol whipped!"

Now who knows what that is from?

Google for Enderle before you react (1)

gvc (167165) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701007)

Enderle is the most quoted "analyst" ever. He has accomplished this status by virtue of his always absurd pronouncements. He has no credentials other than the ability to string inflammatory buzzwords together.

I don't need to make a case against Enderle. Google will do it for me.

Am I proud of this? (1)

digidave (259925) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701009)

I'm not sure if I'm proud of this or embarassed. I'm sure glad 'Linux' (as the article refers to all of us in the community) can put up a good fight, but I'd hate to think that DoS attacks and bad publicity are our best weapons.

Union? Linux? (2)

NineNine (235196) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701015)

This is one of the worst articles I've read in a long time. I couldn't even figure out what this guy was talking about. He starts talking about a union, then he says let's call it "Linux" for no apprent rhyme or reason.

That, and this guy, writing for an online mag I've never met, is a bit delusional about this massive mob of millions of Linux people who all work together.

But it's a great way to sell advertising.

Zoom zoom zoom... (1)

cswiii (11061) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701021)

... and we can be sure that Mr. Pretenderle will be chasing down those young linux whippersnappers in his beloved Ferrari [eweek.com] .

Heh. (1)

Cytlid (95255) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701026)

I actually RTFA, and I must say it's dumb. This sounds like more MS (or someother) funded FUD ... oooh Linux is bad because people DOS'ed SCO. Nice. All the people in a community are judged by the worse case scenarios. Almost akin to saying the president of the US must be a crackhead beacuse we have crackheads in the US. None of the consequences of the negative things that happened to people (ie SCO going out of business) were completely due to the fact that they were bogus, wrong, immoral, illegal or unethical?

My favorite line is the last one:

While this union forms it probably would be very wise to make sure the leadership is mature and benevolent because the one thing we don't need is another powerful criminal despot.

I bet the pre-edit had something like "like Microsoft" appended to it.

It would be nice. (3, Insightful)

jd (1658) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701028)

Geeks are frequently taken advantage of. Which is why many geek jobs got pushed onto overseas countries with less than minimal wages and few skills to speak of. If geeks had enough clout to be able to stand on their own two collective feet, sure, India may well have developed a high-tech industry to just the same degree in just the same amount of time, but nobody would have been impoverished over the deal.


The problem is, a good number of geeks are anti-union. Not for any clear reason, as unions originally formed in England in the times of King Charles (in coffee houses, no less, which is why he banned them), as a means of providing health insurance. Members donated money towards a fund, and when someone got sick, the union payed for the best care they could afford.


Today, there are health providers for that, working in a closed fashion, picking providers by means of a closed algorithm, choosing whether to pay or not by a closed review based on closed criteria you will never see. For some reason, many geeks find this preferable to a member-run union system, which could be as open as you liked.


Unions also guarantee that employees have reasonable rights. Not everything in the book, but reasonable rights. At present, equal rights at work is something that's put on a poster, but rarely practiced. With a union that is balanced in membership and structure, that could be reversed very rapidly. Of course, there are some who would object to equality and employment by merit, but I think most people are out of the Middle Ages at this point.


Of course, there are corrupt Unions. America is filled with them, where there is virtually no balance, little honesty or integrity, and just as much closed-mindedness as they were intended to defeat.


So? Are you telling me that the nation's brightest and best (cos to be a geek, you practically have to be!) can't build a better Union? They've wiped the floor with proprietary software, overwhelmed and "Turned" many corporate giants, but can't even come up with a working system to govern their own lives?


If the only Unions in history had been Evil Monsters, I might be sympathetic. But ignorance produced by closed-source attitudes is the very Evil that geeks are commited to destroying.

POWER (2, Funny)

CamilaAcolide (880871) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701035)

This is power that Microsoft, Oracle, IBM and many governments could only dream of having.

Got root?

Joking aside (4, Interesting)

Dancin_Santa (265275) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701039)

Let's look at the whole concept of an IT union. That's what the article is really trying to get at, though it seems to be unable to connect the dots.

Unions have historically been necessary in professions where the employees have been at a severe economic disadvantage to the employer. In such cases, the employee would suffer more greatly by being punished by the employer than by doing some odious task. A great example is the auto industry where thousands upon thousands of workers would be literally unable to support themselves if the factory left town. The management is able to use this knowledge and leverage it into forcing longer hours for worse pay upon the workers. It is only through unionization and the threat of collective/mass work stoppage that the management is kept in check.

In the modern age, unions have been a device to demand better treatment for worse productivity. They have ceased to be helpful guardians of employee rights and have become oppressive bureaucracies in their own right. This is not really a good direction, IMO.

If the primary goal of a union ought to be the protection of worker rights and the establishment of a partnership in which both management and the employees receive favorable outcomes. It should seek to balance the power of the employers with the needs of the employees.

However in the software world, the employees are not hamstrung by monetary concerns. Any Joe Programmer can pick up a cheap $200 bare bones PC and a copy of Linux and be programming the next great thing. He doesn't need management to do this.

So management, despite its seeming power, does not actually have very much leverage over any IT employee. It is not the case that if the company packs up and leaves town that the computer engineer is suddenly out on his ass. Rather, he still has the tools at his disposal to continue productive work on his own.

Because of this natural balance in the IT industry, it will never make sense to have an industry-wide union.

Somehow I feel less than frightened ... (1)

MarkTina (611072) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701042)

I've yet to meet a Linux geek who I'm frightened of ... actually I take that back, some tend to disturb me due to their devotion to a piece of software.

More Enderle FUD. (5, Insightful)

Jaywalk (94910) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701045)

Enderle has proven time and again that he is pro-Microsoft, anti-IBM and anti-Linux. He has as much as said so in his SCOForum [sco.com] speech. Furthermore, he has stated [eweek.com] that he feels SCO will win because the case won't be decided on the facts of the case. His "analysis" of Linux needs to be read in this light.

My read is that this is a pathetic attempt to link "Linux" and "union" in the minds of IT management. The article is absurd on it's face. It relys on a redefinition of the words "Linux" and "union" in order to make it work, thus rending the entire ridiculous screed meaningless.

"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean, neither more nor less."

"The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."

-- Lewis Carroll, "Alice Through The Looking Glass"

6 Reasons Firefox is shit (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701047)

Eat It [img223.echo.cx]

Handy-dandy color key:
Red - Firefox renders fonts like shit.
Blue - Shit widgets.
Green - No Cocoa spell-check.
Purple - Close tab button out of the way.
Yellow - Oversized shit
Aqua - Adblock fails

Dont givem the hits (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701054)

For several years a number of us have been anticipating the emergence of a Software Labor Union. The argument has not been whether it will emerge but what form it will take. The conditions for forming technology unions have never been better.

In many companies there exists a huge difference in compensation between the management (particularly the CEOs) and the folks that actually make and service the products. There is also an increasing tendency for executives to treat employees (particularly IT employees) as disposable assets, and you have what appears to be an increasing lack of respect for the competence of management in the industry.

Forming a union isn't easy, however. It has been some time since we have seen the birth of a major union because getting people to agree on the form, direction, and leadership of such an entity is very difficult. In addition, there are concerns about management response and few, during hard labor times, want to be seen as union organizers.

For a union to work you need a critical mass of people, you need a way to organize them as a resource, you need the power of threat, and you need effective leadership.
Linux: Critical Mass Requirement Met

For the purpose of this column I'm going to use the word "Linux" to refer to the group of people who support it and the open-source initiatives that surround it. The eventual name of the hypothetical union may use a derivative of this name or, more likely, a name related to open source Latest News about open source. Something like the "Open Software Union," or the "The Union of Free Software Professionals," or, my favorite, the "Software Technical Union Derivative Standards" (Studs).

Kidding aside, Linux and open source has penetrated most technical schools, government IT shops, and technology companies. Its membership, while not officially listed, is easily in the millions of people who believe in or support their version of the concept of open source, which Linux, to them, represents. There may not be a great deal of agreement on the terms, but the group can act as a group and has the tools to coordinate that action.
Linux: Organization Requirement Met

Those tools are based on the richness of the Internet, newsletters and blogs with RSS feeds, and more traditional technical publications the Linux faithful can be directed to act with some degree of confidence. The battle with SCO was a case in point: At no time in history has a technology firm been as thoroughly attacked as SCO has been since their litigation with IBM (NYSE: IBM) Latest News about IBM started.

SCO has experienced massive Denial of Service attacks, the company's customer base has been inundated, their funding sources have been strangled, their executive leadership has been threatened, and their ability to function has been almost completely eliminated. In what has been a massive and loosely coordinated effort, a multi-million dollar company backed by a strong legal team has been all but put out of business, and this couldn't have happened without some form of organization. Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) Latest News about Microsoft, with all of its resources, seems powerless against the massive engine represented by Linux, and its supporters often appear as an endangered species during a government-approved hunting season.

In addition, companies using Linux technology and not complying with the GPL Latest News about GPL generally face a combination of legal and public relations exposures more similar to what would happen if they faced a union than if they faced a company. Linux has showcased over and over again that, when threatened, it can move as a group to eliminate that threat.
Linux: Power Requirement Met
Let's take the most powerful software company in the world, Microsoft, and imagine a scenario where they had a problem with a negative article. Generally they could call and complain, they could (as Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) Latest News about Oracle has often done) pull all advertising from the site, and they could also make threatening comments (that they probably couldn't enforce).

Other than that, their options are limited, and the chance that they could actually have the column removed, let alone actually do damage to the author, is extremely limited. Even the U.S. government generally doesn't have the power to remove an offending piece unless it is totally inaccurate.

Linux faced a similar challenge recently and easily eliminated the direct threat, though the way they did it demonstrated both strength and a clear weakness. We'll deal with the strength in this section and the weakness in the next.

Here's what happened: A reporter named Maureen O'Gara wrote an expose on Groklaw's founder Pamela Jones (PJ). In it O'Gara implied, but did not prove, that PJ worked for IBM, and in building her incomplete case she did create a powerful argument suggesting PJ wasn't really who she appeared to be.

You can find the text of this article here. Although clearly incomplete, the column was approved by publisher Sys-Con Media, which also publishes 15 other technology titles. The publisher felt the column was accurate and stood behind it; much like they would have done had Microsoft, or even the U.S. government, disagreed and raised a stink.

However, in this case, Sys-Con folded and pulled the expose, which is why you can now only find a copy of it on Slashdot. It is amazing how powerful the response was. In a coordinated combination of attacks which included a broad DOS attack on Sys-Con and an e-mail attack on Sys-Con's advertisers, Linux effectively made good on a threat that is beyond even Microsoft's reach, and often beyond the U.S. government's reach. That threat is putting your company out of business if the desired result is not achieved.

What is even more amazing is the effort was so powerful it may have eliminated a sister publication as collateral damage. LinuxWorld may no longer be a viable publication after the voluntary departure of its entire editorial staff.

This is power that Microsoft, Oracle, IBM and many governments could only dream of having. The power to control the press and the skills contained in this organization are likely capable of disrupting travel, power grids and other broad national infrastructure Can your network transform your business? See how AT&T can help. systems if their demands are not met. No union has this kind of power today. However, power without leadership is just dangerous and often more dangerous to the very organization which has the power.
Linux: Leadership Unmet
The O'Gara/PJ saga also demonstrates the lack of mature leadership. In this instance the effort, while it clearly demonstrated the power, actually did more damage than good. The goal was to eliminate the offending article and in the process of doing it they actually made is massively more visible and more damaging. Were this Microsoft and a PR executive, in the process of killing a story Microsoft didn't like, it would give the story national coverage and paint Microsoft as the criminal. Microsoft would likely fire the PR executive, who probably would not find another PR job too soon.

In this instance PC Magazine picked the story up, Coronte, eWeek, CMP, and apparently Forbes has even picked it up.

This isn't containment. It is a disaster showcasing what can happen if power, any power, is used without concern for the consequences. While the O'Gara column probably would only have been read by a few technical people, this broad coverage has been read by the general business buyer, and so the story has evolved from being a mere piece about an obscure person running an obscure Linux Web site focused on killing an obscure company to one broadly showcasing Linux as made up by "fanatics and lunatics" (John C. Dvorak). This isn't a child running around with scissors. This is child running around with a nuclear bomb.

Without strong leadership any organization with this much power can easily find itself with an image more similar to that of organized crime than one of organized labor (and, recall, the two have, historically, often appeared as interchangeable). It shouldn't take long for someone to emerge as the leader of what is likely becoming a world power that could stand up to most governments.

While this union forms it probably would be very wise to make sure the leadership is mature and benevolent because the one thing we don't need is another powerful criminal despot.

Earth to Rob Enderle (1)

xoboots (683791) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701057)

SCO has experienced massive Denial of Service attacks, the company's customer base has been inundated, their funding sources have been strangled, their executive leadership has been threatened, and their ability to function has been almost completely eliminated. In what has been a massive and loosely coordinated effort, a multi-million dollar company backed by a strong legal team has been all but put out of business, and this couldn't have happened without some form of organization.

SCO's problems are due entirely to their own malfeasance. Don't FUD on me.

This is WAR! (4, Insightful)

Calibax (151875) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701062)

Enderle seems to have declared war on Linux. There is so much wrong with this article that it's hard to know where to start commenting or when to stop. Linux supporters are not terrorists (in the main), but the article clearly portrays them as such.

At no time in history has a technology firm been as thoroughly attacked as SCO.

In 2003, SCO started a lawsuit against IBM, began spreading FUD, and demanded $699 for every copy of Linux. Their lies have been attacked, as they should be. SCO's business has suffered because of this, but that's just collateral damage. If you offend a lot of people, a large number of them will respond negatively.

their executive leadership has been threatened, and their ability to function has been almost completely eliminated.

That's what happens when you attack a community. But it was wrong to make physical threats. Please don't imagine that because someone made a threat then all people against SCO must all be terrorists.

In addition, companies using Linux technology and not complying with the GPL generally face a combination of legal and public relations exposures

EXACTLY. People who commit civil torts should face legal sanctions. Why is the article suggesting it's wrong to enforce a licence? Should Microsoft or IBM not enforce their licences?

Let's take the most powerful software company in the world, Microsoft, and imagine a scenario where they had a problem with a negative article. Generally they could call and complain

And that's pretty much what happened - a large number of people complained to the publisher and the advertisers. It is their right, isn't it? It's not mob rule to complain when someone pisses you off.

The O'Gara/PJ saga also demonstrates the lack of mature leadership.

There was no leadership... just a large number of individuals who expressed their views on MOG's article. Linux folks don't need no stinking leadership. Linux isn't a union or a political party.

Without strong leadership any organization with this much power can easily find itself with an image more similar to that of organized crime

I really can't see anyone organizing Linux folks on anything other than a technical level. Too diverse, too independent, too spread out across the globe, too focused on technical issues, too apolitical probably.

I have to wonder if this is just another round in the MS/Linux war. Enderle seems to have picked his side - the one with the money - and is attacking the enemy to the best of his ability. Fortunately, that's not a big threat.

Active forces against any of that... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12701064)

Without my tinfoil hat getting in the way, but with 23 years in the technology, business and corporate world, there are great forces being applied that will prevent any of this to pass. For one, business has money to spend, and they will spend massively rather than placing themselves in the hands of the uncontrollable. And, they will never do anything at all, unless they can be in control. So much much so, they'll spend a lot of money to do so. Repeat. Second, if Linux people really push any issue, business will win; if the unions could be broke, so could the OSS philosophy, over time, with deliberate effort on their part by bribes, token benefit increases, or simply sponsoring someone who can be controlled: they would win again.

How can this be? Because for the most part, the OSS side don't necessarily like a really protracted fight; business people wake up every day to do exactly that.

Always wrong (1)

mr_tap (693311) | more than 9 years ago | (#12701071)

This is from Rob Enderle who has been described as Wrong more often than a broken clock [appleturns.com] and "Guys in Suits Who Smoke a Lot of Crack and Still Make Six Figures" poster boy [appleturns.com]

Previously statements include:

  • in 10/2002 - Macs with be using x86 by end of 2003
  • in 10/2004 - Xbox 360 will use Intel and not PPC (Microsoft told him personally!)
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