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228 comments

Ahh. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18196646)

See something you don't like? Suppress it!

Go ahead, mod me down, fuckers. Your mother is a Java programmer.

Re:Ahh. (2, Funny)

Evilest Doer (969227) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196908)

Go ahead, mod me down, fuckers. Your mother is a Java programmer.
Oh yeah! Well, your dad thinks Windows 3.1 is an operating system! And your mother likes coding in BASIC! And I'm not even going to begin with what you and your sister do every night in the basement with that Amiga!

Re:Ahh. (5, Funny)

644bd346996 (1012333) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197078)

Actually, my mom does like coding in BASIC. My grandmother was more of a punch-card woman, though.

Re:Ahh. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197504)

My mother plays Gameboy.

No, that's not a dirty thing at all.

Dell laptops cost MORE w/ no OS than w/ Windows! (5, Insightful)

billybob2 (755512) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196924)

Dell is paying consumers to use Windows! The exact same Dell Latitude D520 Notebook costs $48 MORE if it comes with no operating system than if it comes with Windows.

The laptop loaded with Windows XP [dell.com] costs $699, while the same laptop and configuration loaded with no operating system [dell.com] costs $747. Note that you must change the following two hardware options on the web page showing laptop without an OS so that they match the hardware options found by default for the Windows laptop: Hard drive=60GB 5400RPM and Modular Bay Optical="8X DVD".

So it seems that Windows has a negative price tag as far as Dell is concerned! It looks like Dell is still subsidizing Microsoft for every Windows-free laptop they sell. I'm getting my laptop from System76 [system76.com] -- they sell excellent quality Linux laptops, desktops, and servers. They also have a great support team [ubuntuforums.org] that cares about Linux and open source.

Re:Dell laptops cost MORE w/ no OS than w/ Windows (2, Interesting)

cyberkahn (398201) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197220)

"they sell excellent quality Linux laptops, desktops, and servers."
Just curious. Have you already purchased systems from them? How did you come to this conclusion?

Thanks

Re:Dell laptops cost MORE w/ no OS than w/ Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197430)

Maybe he knows someone who has bought from them already? Maybe thats how he found out about System76. I found out about them from a slashdot post but I haven't purchased anything from them. Maybe he got one of their desktops already and is shopping around for a Laptop?

Re:Dell laptops cost MORE w/ no OS than w/ Windows (2, Funny)

Evilest Doer (969227) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197538)

So it seems that Windows has a negative price tag as far as Dell is concerned!
So, by the "logic" of the Mafiaa, if I pirate Windows, then I am actually increasing revenue for Micro$oft!

Re:Ahh. (3, Interesting)

mdkathon (579667) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197154)

Is it not Dell's right to remove anything that they feel is negative coverage on their own website? As much as I want to get behind this "damn the man" smear job (not). I'd like to think that fellow Slashdotters understand that it is not in Dell's interest to try and make Linux available to the masses. It's a headache from a support standpoint. Though their management may be a little heavy handed for our liking we cannot blame them for not allowing participants of IdeaStorm to cross-link to articles criticizing Dell for not having Linux as a choice. We can install Linux if we want to. We can also choose hardware vendors that support Linux. Do we need to whine and complain as well?

Re:Ahh. (4, Insightful)

jc42 (318812) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197700)

Is it not Dell's right to remove anything that they feel is negative coverage on their own website?

Yes, of course they have the right to suppress whatever they want on their own stuff. In fact, we should expect this from most organizations run by humans.

But many of us would really like to know when this is happening. It tells us a lot about the trustworthiness of their information. If an organization (corporation, government, whatever) wants our trust, they should make their information handling "transparent" and visible to us. Otherwise, we'll just infer that they have something to hide from us.

Nobody with a grain of sense ever trusts any organization that hides or suppresses information about their inner workings. (And yes, this does mean that I don't trust very many organizations. We have words for someone who does. Words like "naïve" and "sucker". ;-)

Re:Ahh. (1)

FlyGirl (11285) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197704)

Last time I looked, just because someone has a right to do something does not mean it is right to do so.

As far as I can tell, the writer of the article never claimed that they did not have a right to remove the article, just that it was contrary to their stated reasons for running the site in the first place and that it might be a political backfire for them with the linux community.

Or, in summary, you may have a "right" to call me an idiot, but it's not a great idea if you are trying to get me to buy something from you.

Ideas or Criticism (5, Insightful)

Ogive17 (691899) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196670)

I didn't read the article because for some reason it's blocked at work (we have odd filters), but it's possible the post containing the link didn't meet the requirements.

If I asked for some ideas, I would be open minded about what I received. If I got complaints instead with no ideas (not sure if the link gave suggestions or just complained), I would also remove them to try and stop the forum from becoming a flame war.

Re:Ideas or Criticism (5, Informative)

jimstapleton (999106) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196796)

Synopsis: Dell would make some buisiness models "Linux Ready", and look into other models. They would pick SUSE as their distro of choice.

Roughly the idea storm post I read (not the article, but it linked to it), someone decided to complain that.
1) Dell wasn't providing Linux support for all models NOW
2) Dell wasn't given a guranteed time frame or even a gurantee on making all models "Linux ready" or "Linux preinstalled"
3) Dell picked SUSE, the Linux that pays MS.

The persond didn't use profanity and wasnt exceptionally inflamatory given how ticked off he seemded, but at the same time, he was complaining that he wasn't handed the sun and moon on a silver platter right now.

addendum (1)

jimstapleton (999106) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196988)

Note: I don't agree with the censorship at all, but I do think that particular post was unreasonable. Given the low voting rate, I suspect a lot of others positive to the idea of Linux on Dells felt this way to some extent also.

Re:Ideas or Criticism (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197216)

Having yet another checkbox to click on dell.com is hardly "the moon on a platter".

The mechanics of putting an arbitrary alt-OS in place is trivial. The certification wouldn't even be that hard. They probably have a small horde of interns and people higher up in the food chain that have already been asking to do the legwork for this.

The choice of distro doesn't even really matter. It just serves to confirm that the machine will infact work with Linux and would serve as a quick sanity & compatability check before the customer wipes Dell-Linux for the distro of their choice.

Having been exposed as insincere, Dell is just trying to avoid looking like complete Gates towelboys.

Re:Ideas or Criticism (1)

FireFury03 (653718) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197418)

The choice of distro doesn't even really matter. It just serves to confirm that the machine will infact work with Linux

It confirms that it works with _that distro_ - if that distro happens to ship with various non-Free drivers then that won't do you a blind bit of good if you want it to work with a completely Free distro.

Re:Ideas or Criticism (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197654)

You make it sound like non-free drivers won't work on a zealously free distro like Debian when this is clearly not the case.

Are you intentionally spreading misinformation or are you just clueless?

Though the truth is... (2, Informative)

Kludge (13653) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197474)

The truth is that Dell could be giving him Linux today. Dell makes excuses about having to ramp up support. Dell has sold Linux before, they know how to do it. We bought a box from them. The support came from Red Hat, not Dell. The reality is that Dell wouldn't even be doing the OS support! They farm it out to Suse or Red Hat or whomever.

Oh, but they have to guarantee hardware compatibility. Heck, I can do that in an hour or two. I build boxes all the time with info I get off the internet.

The truth is that they're not going to make Linux easy to get if at all. M$ owns their asses.

Re:Ideas or Criticism (2, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197552)

he was complaining that he wasn't handed the sun and moon on a silver platter right now

Amen to that. For example, on 2) how could Dell possibly give a timeframe on that without doing a huge job figuring out if there were drivers for all the hardware they ship. Perhaps there are many that simply can't do it, because there's no driver, there's IP issues and whatnot which means there's not going to be a driver unless Dell dedicates own staff to reverse engineer it. As for 1) and 3), why would they overload their support staff taking on a ton of hardware and distros all at once and for a market of unknown size? It doesn't make business sense or technical sense.

With all that said: The best way to make someone look a fool is to let them shout it from the rooftops. I wouldn't take it down, I'd rather let it stand as an example of irrational and unreasonable demands.

Re:Ideas or Criticism (1)

Aequo (923926) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197744)

It's not faux Linux just because the company that founded it have some kind of business deal with Microsoft. Sure, Microsoft is evil, but what the hell has that got to do with openSUSE? I know it's cool to be anti-SUSE and pro-Ubuntu (particularly on slashdot), but face it: it's an excellent, openly-developed, mature distro, and Novell have contributed far, far more significantly to open source than Shuttleworth. The PR machine that is Mark Shuttleworth may sponsor a bunch of high visibility things but it's Novell that are out there employing open source developers full time.

Why is this under YRO? (5, Insightful)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196698)

So they deleted a post critical of them. The post then appeared on a private blog without risk of legal reprisal. No **rights** were violated unless this was allowed in the TOS, and even then those are rights granted by Dell at their site, not legal rights. It's stupid, tacky and self-defeating. I don't think anyone thinks this was a smart move on Dell's part, but it's not real censorship like what we fear. He is free to post the same post, 5x more vitriolic (provided it's all still true), anywhere he wants.

Besides, who in their right mind thought this was something more than astroturfing on Dell's part?

Re:Why is this under YRO? (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197236)

I don't think anyone thinks this was a smart move on Dell's part, but it's not real censorship like what we fear.
IMO, the post wasn't really an idea.

The only 'idea' out of the post was "Comply with the DOJ and give everybody a fair shake Dell."

The rest was just a mild rant.

Overstatement (4, Insightful)

iamacat (583406) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196714)

It seems pointless to seek ideas and feedback if you're going to ignore and delete the opinions you don't like.

Why, does asking for opinions imply that you agree to follow and publish every one of them? They might have had a different kind of feedback in mind, like new models with a different hardware feature set.

Re:Overstatement (3, Insightful)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196772)

does asking for opinions imply that you agree to follow and publish every one of them
Probably not but I've always seen coverups (selectively and somewhat ambiguously deleting posts) as disingenuous.

You know... (5, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196758)

To the degree that the goal is to persuade Dell to support Linux, reinforcing the impression that Linux users are a bunch of hypersensitive crackpots who think the world owes them everything seems counterproductive.

Re:You know... (1)

melikamp (631205) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196856)

Nod. I do not see what the big issue is here. Sure, pre-installing beats certifying, but the latter is not a "double-shunning of the linux community". I would definitely go for a certified GNU/Linux computer without OS. That is a big step forward compared to an uncertified PC with Windows. For one, any recent enough distribution is almost guaranteed to pick up the hardware. Secondly, it opens up a new market for distribution-specific installation/support groups, which is how it is supposed to work in the free software world anyway. No hardware manufacturer should be expected to support 30 different distributions that are out there.

Re:You know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197000)

Wow, you just repeated your own mantra to the rest of Slashdot. Way to go you overbearing and unattractive Porsche driving fuckface.

GO AWAY.

Re:You know... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197296)

Linux users are a bunch of hypersensitive crackpots who think the world owes them everything

Now, you've hit the nail on the head.

I know this is going to get modded down but I'm being very honest: The Linux community is turning into it's own worst enemy. Have it shoved in your face with all the fanatical zest of a religious cult visiting your home at 6am on a weekend morning is going to turn many many people sour to the message before it ever gets told.

How many companies that are dealing with Joe Sixpack users really want to be aligned with a fringe group like the Linux community? Not many.

Re:You know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197582)

I wish I had mod points and you weren't an AC.

Par for the course (1, Interesting)

Hrodvitnir (101283) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196764)

This is the way of corporate and web relations nowadays. Lets sum up in a list, shall we?

1. Corporation screws customers
2. Someone on the web blogs about it
3. Social networking sites pick up on it
4. Semi-mainstream media and maybe even real MSM pick it up
5. Corp backpedals
6. Everyone forgets about the transgression
7. Profit! (for the corp)

We don't even need ellipsis. We've been through this enough to know where the profit comes from at this point.

Re:Par for the course (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197502)

Just an off-topic FYI:

Ellipses are "..."
Parenthesis are "( )".

Re:Par for the course (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197546)

Soliciting feedback in this can be a lose-lose situation.

Let's just look at your statement. How did Dell exactly "screw" anyone? Back that up with fact. What should have been a good move from Dell turns into a lot of fanboy whining and starts putting a message out there for others that Dell isn't listening even though it is trying.

What it sounds like happened here was that the business wanted feedback from their customer base and potential future customers. That should be a win. However the fanboys and zealots get wind of the option and start flooding in. As soon as things don't occur in someone else's expected timeframe or to the letter the way they requested it then suddenly they are being "screwed." Guess what, it's a business. There are costs involved and legal ramifications and coordination that has to take place and probably sign-off between 15 different departments and 6 different companies.

Things won't change over night, Dell didn't promise anything. They didn't say "Hey, tell us what you want and we'll ship it tomorrow."

Pointless? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18196780)

Why is it pointless to censor people making you look bad on your own website?

Re:Pointless? (1)

saskboy (600063) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197410)

Because if you leave comments open to anyone, and ask for their honest opinion, then you owe it to the commenter to leave their feedback in view with everyone else's, so long as the comment is lawful.

To demonstrate, I invite Slashdotters to head over to my site [abandonedstuff.com] and make me look bad if you think that I really am bad in a justifiable way. So long as you're making *me* look bad, and not making yourself look like a dick who is mean, I'll leave the comment in place. I may even leave it if you're just making yourself look bad.

YRO should be changed to URF (2, Insightful)

80 85 83 83 89 33 (819873) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196782)

really, when was the last time that YRO had a positive story?

Re:YRO should be changed to URF (1)

way2trivial (601132) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197002)

let's look shall we?
http://yro.slashdot.org/ [slashdot.org]
Dell Censors IdeaStorm Linux Dissent no
MPAA Fires Back at AACS Decryption Utility no
RIAA Announces New Campus Lawsuit Strategy no
Patent Office Head Lays Out Reform Strategy maybe
Politics: Canada Rejects Anti-Terror Laws YES

so the last time was Feb 28th.. oh wait- that was yesterday!

plus, positive is all in the spin of the matter at hand.

the last one could just as easily been written as- Canada decides to allow terroists more privacy...

Right place, right time (5, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196804)

I once went to a restaurant and ordered a steak, medium-rare. I know a lot of people would rather have their steaks cooked well-done, grey all the way through. I'm not one of them. I like the tenderness that a little undercooking provides. The blood filling the plate is a delectable gravy to be sopped up with some bread. There really isn't anything I like better than a thick slab of ribeye cooked crispy on the outside and pink all the way through.

You can imagine my surprise when they delivered a mash of ground beef and some wretched oil-soaked fries on the side. I said to the waitress, this isn't what I ordered. She was unmoved. I demanded that I talk to a manager. This little pissant 20-something comes out and asks me if there is anything he can help me with. I shoved the order in his face and asked him if he thought it was a steak, medium-rare.

No, sir.
Then why the hell did you serve it to me? Are you telling me I can't order my meal the way I want it and expect a modicum of service?
Sir, this is Burger King. You can have it your way, within the bounds of our menu.

I suppose I should have gone to the steak restaurant if I wanted steak.

Re:Right place, right time (0, Flamebait)

dfghjk (711126) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197060)

The red juice from a steak is not blood. Burger King does not have waitresses. If you are trying to cast Dell as analogous to Burger King then you're gonna have a hard time convincing anyone. You may not like the taste of Dell's "food" but they made of living off of "made to order" configurability. Dell pioneered that.

Amusing though, and a point that should be made as long as you don't look too closely ;-) I like Burger King and Dell made me a lot of money.

Re:Right place, right time (4, Insightful)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197200)

The red juice from a steak is not blood.

Uh, yeah it is. What the hell do you think it is?

If you are trying to cast Dell as analogous to Burger King then you're gonna have a hard time convincing anyone. You may not like the taste of Dell's "food" but they made of living off of "made to order" configurability. Dell pioneered that.

His analogy's spot on. Burger King's motto, as he put it, is "have it your way." Now they at least assume that what you might want is at least roughly the same as most of their other customers, so if you come in and want anchovies on your burger you're SOL. Same with Dell. Yes, they do configure it for you, but there are limits to it and one of the limits they've chosen to set is they're not dealing with Linux for consumers. Quite frankly, I don't blame them.

So I'd say the original analogy is correct. If the company in question simply doesn't sell what you want, buy from someone else. I really don't get the furor, it's not like Dell is the only computer manufacturer. And any Linux geek worth his/her salt is going to want to install their own thing anyway.

If it's just about not paying the MS "tax," let's make that it's own issue.

Re:Right place, right time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197400)

It's not blood. It's cellular fluid, the liquid within the muscle cells. It leaks out when the cell walls are ruptured from cooking.

Re:Right place, right time (1)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197784)

It's not blood. It's cellular fluid, the liquid within the muscle cells. It leaks out when the cell walls are ruptured from cooking.

Horseshit. That "red stuff" is present before cooking, and the red color is from hemoglobin.

Re:Right place, right time (1)

greginnj (891863) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197614)

So I'd say the original analogy is correct. If the company in question simply doesn't sell what you want, buy from someone else. I really don't get the furor, it's not like Dell is the only computer manufacturer. And any Linux geek worth his/her salt is going to want to install their own thing anyway.
If Linux eventually takes over the desktop, it won't be because everyone becomes a Linux geek. Isn't the fact that a significant sampling of people a) want Dell hardware and b)can't or won't install Linux on it themselves a sign of increasing desktop penetration (or at least market demand for it) of Linux?

Re:Right place, right time (1)

Moofie (22272) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197456)

That moist "splat" sound was the point, hitting you in the forehead. Nice catch.

Seesh People.. better things to do? (5, Interesting)

blantonl (784786) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196816)

I think it is important for everyone to understand that First Amendment rights don't exist on Websites, blogs, and message forums. Those that own those communication platforms are free to delete or censure anything they feel necessary to maintain the spirit and intentions of both the supporting business and the site as a whole.

What exacerbates the issue is whenever a moderation activity takes place against either the open source community, or the Linux community, the reaction is swift, dramatic, and overdone. OMFG my post was removed.. it is a conspiracy!!!

So what! Dell removed a post on a site that was soliciting user input. Aren't there bigger problems in the world?

If I asked you to come in my house, and provide me feedback on how my living room looks, and you responded "that's the biggest piece of crap I've ever seen," then I would probably censure you and throw you out.

Re:Seesh People.. better things to do? (1)

GlitchCog (1016986) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197120)

If I asked you to come in my house, and provide me feedback on how my living room looks, and you responded "that's the biggest piece of crap I've ever seen," then I would probably censure you and throw you out.

If you were trying to persuade me to pay you money to hang out in your living room, rather than in your neighbor's living room, I would expect you to listen well to what I have to say and not ignore it because you don't like what you're hearing.

By the way, the complaint is that your expensive couch is uncomfortable. There is a comfortable couch, available at no cost, begging to be used. Use it, even if you have to rearrange the furniture a little.

But you're completely right about the owners of websites being able to do whatever they want to the information on them. It's just a stupid move for the above reasons.

Re:Seesh People.. better things to do? (2)

Moofie (22272) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197564)

"There is a comfortable couch, available at no cost, begging to be used. Use it, even if you have to rearrange the furniture a little."

OK, but to bring your analogy back to point, there are people who think that Linux is a really, really ugly couch.

Plaid. With pet stains.

Ugh.

Re:Seesh People.. better things to do? (4, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197258)

If I asked you to come in my house, and provide me feedback on how my living room looks, and you responded "that's the biggest piece of crap I've ever seen," then I would probably censure you and throw you out.

That's very rude of you. You ask someone to come over and give you their opinion for free, which you will then profit from by having a nicer house, and you kick them out because you don't like what they said?

Given our current property laws, that is certainly within your rights. It is also within my rights to stand at the edge of a property waving a large sign saying "Rude person lives here."

As always, freedom of the press only applies to those that own a press. Otherwise, you are free (for now) to go find a street corner and shout at passers by.

I get the feeling that even complaining about this issue pisses off a lot of authoritarian-types. It seems there are a number of people in the world who really, really want everyone else to stop complaining about anything that might hurt the profits of a business. We should all just lie back and think of England.

Businesses have a right to do certain things that piss us off. That does not mean that we have no right to complain about it. And the mere existence of other, larger problems in the world also does not remove our right to complain about this one.

Much Ado about deleting a Troll Post? (5, Interesting)

Silentknyght (1042778) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196818)

Did you read the post that was deleted? It's a brief post that came off as if it was written by an angry teenager. It smacked more of a personal attack than a cool-tempered, well-written, logical argument.

There has to be some moderation of flame-bait and trolling posts on any forum. Moreover, the post was deleted probably by an overzealous moderator, rather than through some evil Dell mastermind with a conspiracy against linux.

Re:Much Ado about deleting a Troll Post? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197194)

I agree. It seems that the basic concept of the site is being abused: the top idea when I just checked was the Linux idea and it had been promoted by thousands of people. Great. Except that there are five other ideas promoting the exact same thing within the first five pages of ideas -- some are pretty snarky, some are not.

The Linux idea is there and is "promotable" through the site mechanism and it is currently the number one promoted idea -- hardly seems like "censorship".

Dell should remove some of the dupes (heh) and the users should try to use the site in the way that it was intended and not as a gripe session about the evils of Dell.

sigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18196822)

Dell is within their rights to sell systems preloaded with whatever Microsoft thinks consumers should run.

Consumers are perfectly within their rights to purchase the hardware they want.

As a Linux (or *BSD) user, what I want is simple: hardware that will work. I don't expect any hand-holding, and I wouldn't trust *any* vendor's pre-loaded software, since I have no way to know where it came from. When I shop for hardware, I open the box to see what the actual chipsets are; sometimes, I buy several, since I know the vendor might change the hardware later. All I really need is a vendor who (a) uses chipsets for which drivers are available, and (b) lists the chipsets on the outside of the box (or webpage, or whatever). Vendors can't even do this much, so I've learned not to expect anything from them, and they don't seem to care about the lost sales from my 2% of the market.

Put another way: would it really violate Dell's Microsoft OEM agreement to divulge the chipsets they've built their hardware on? Or are they afraid they might tip their hand to the competition, who would go out and design hardware around those same chipsets? The whole thing is mighty stupid, if you asked me (which you didn't).

Dell runs a business, not a fanboy site. (1)

cybrthng (22291) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196860)

The irony of the Dell+Linux camp is every linux fanboy swears up and down dell sucks and they would never buy one but at the same time think Linux is self defeating if Dell doesn't pre-install it.

What is it? why let the tempers flair? If you can't be sincere about something without sounding immature, irrelevent and childish what is the sense of Dell even catering to you or justifying your actions by supporting them on their systems?

Its dells forums, its dells channel of communication. They can do as they see fit and the irony of this entire debate merely shows the lack of responsibility on behalf of people who are trying there damndest to think they're the best for reasons that mean NOTHING to a corporation or its clients.

Justification for Deletion (2, Insightful)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196870)

I didn't see the original post that was deleted, but in general, you'll find, especially on public boards, that criticisms don't always fit under the category of ideas. Constructive criticism would do well on a board called IdeaStorm, but if you are simply saying "Your implementation sucks," it's not much of an idea.

Again, didn't see the deleted post.

Amen (1)

cybrthng (22291) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196946)

It does no one good to support a half-cocked agenda.

Re:Amen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197164)

Can I have another amen to that?
It was about IDEAS not opinions, if you have an OPINION you are more than welcome to come to Slashdot, an authentic center for opinions.
NO ONE, I say, no one would delete posts from an Opinion Center

The post was posted wrong (4, Informative)

twifosp (532320) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196886)

Look people this is not some grand case of censorship, it's moderation pure and simple and that is something Slashdotters should be able to appreciate. The site, idea storm, is a website soliciting ideas. It is NOT for posting criticisms and off-topic crap.

This is the equivalant of a slashdot moderator moderating a post -1 off-topic or -1 troll. With the obvious exception is that there is no ability to read at -1 on dellideastorm.

Ideas and suggestions are one thing. Posting an off-topic criticism is another.

Note: I do not agree with the choice to remove the post. But I also understand the reasoning behind the decision.

I swear, the bias and overeacting around here is as bad as fox news lately. Censorship... please. China has censorship. This little Dell forum moderation is peanuts compared to REAL censorship. Get a grip, Slashdot.

stop being twits (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18196888)

funny how most linux users seem to be the largest group of complainers. they complain about everything.

vote with your feet (1)

swschrad (312009) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196896)

if you don't think Dell does it for you, go Apple, whitebox, closet scraping, whatever for your next peecee. if they don't catch on, they don't deserve to be around. witness compusa.

Not ignoring... (1)

posterlogo (943853) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196934)

"It seems pointless to seek ideas and feedback if you're going to ignore and delete the opinions you don't like."


Clearly they saw those criticisms, so I don't think they're being totally ignored. I'm willing to bet they're well noted as the concerns of a vocal minority. And there's the rub... Dell doesn't HAVE to do jack sh*t just to appease a few Linux activists. Their main business is going to remain, for quite a while, wintel machines. As to their website, it's their website, they can do whatever the hell they want. Don't like it? Don't buy from them. Easy enough.

Re:Not ignoring... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18196984)

No, you clearly do not understand. If Dell doesn't bend over backwards for the Linux community that means that there is opression. Boo hoo, poor Linux. Linux could be number one if we could just cram it down everyone's throat.

Re:Not ignoring... (1)

teh_chrizzle (963897) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197374)

Dell doesn't HAVE to do jack sh*t just to appease a few Linux activists. Their main business is going to remain, for quite a while, wintel machines.

teen angst ramblings aside, dell has been fingerfucking with linux for years. i think this is why the story intrigues so many people. most dell desktops will run linux with no difficulty, and have done so for years. my first linux machine was a dell 486/66 and i have installed different distros on probably two dozen dell optiplexes over the years. i even had one of those 10 pound inspiron 7something laptops that ran linux just fine as long as you didn't want to dial up to something. dell has wanted to do more with linux (on servers and desktops alike) for years, but doesn't have the balls to confuse it's corporate/consumer userbase. there is also danger of upsetting microsoft.

they know that the vast majority of the people they sell computers to don't know the difference between windows and office, let alone the difference between linux and windows. they also know that MS will respond unkindly to any largescale linux involvement.

we all know that dell isn't agianst linux. that's not the issue. the issue is the decade or so of teasing that dell does, snuggling up to linux but never making a real commitment.

Misunderstanding Dell Idea Storm. (1)

random coward (527722) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196942)

If the site was to gather Ideas to help Dell meet customer's needs and improve
their quality then it is indeed a failure.

If the site was to show Microsoft that the biggest gripes their customers have are with
Microsoft's products on Dell's systems and therefore Dell should be getting the products for free
or be payed to install them, then the site was a success.

Showing evidence that the second is the case on the site in question destroyes the leverage with Microsoft so must be removed. Remember Dell used to every year float the rumour of switching to AMD during their negotiations with intel and kept the lowest prices on intel parts for darn near a decade doing so. But intel had much more leverage with Dell than Microsoft does. For that decade AMD didn't have the capability to produce the volume Dell requires. There is no equivalent problem for Dell to move away from MS.

Microsoft needs dell more than dell needs microsoft. Corporate customers negotiate their own licenses with MS. Dell could stop selling any MS product and ship Linux to their home users and Microsoft loses huge. Dell is just afraid to support Linux on their systems. As it is now its easier to blame MS than to have to actually support a customer.

Calm Down (1)

chill (34294) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196972)

Is there a pattern? The article mentions one deleted post, but there are several on the Dell site that are not exactly flattering, to say the least. Lots of people just went off on an anti-Dell rant, and had nothing constructive to say at all.

Dell is right, in that it'll take a lot of work to get everything ready. If they sell it, they have to support it. That means training both sales and support staff; verifying what hardware has Linux drivers; etc. There is a LOT of work for them to do.

I've always thought Dell underestimated the Linux market. I know the last place I worked ordered about 10 Dell rack servers per month, without O/S. Debian was installed when we got them. However, Dell has two options on their order form: "No OS Installed - Microsoft Windows" and "No OS Installed - Red Hat Linux". Both are just there for "counting" purposes, since you don't get either OS with either option. It defaults to the Microsoft option, and I know our ordering personnel never bothered to change it. That skews their stats towards Windows and away from Linux.

I hate to say it (1)

Valdez (125966) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196978)

...but I don't think it's too far fetched to say that the post wasn't "censored" due to it's content, but due to it's tone. Maybe next time don't come out swinging with speculation... I believe the IdeaStorm website was meant to offer a forum for valuable feedback, not Dell-bashing because they don't offer your favorite pet OS.

That being said, you also have it look at it from Dell's perspective... if a very vocal minority representing a tiny fraction of your customer base offered up an "idea" and stuffed the ballot box to make it look larger than life, how seriously would you take it?

Frankly, my mom could care less if Linux came on a Dell... and if it did, she still wouldn't buy it because it probably wouldn't run AOL.

If she did buy it thinking she was saving a few bucks, she'd probably be rather upset that she couldn't find anything, it was completely different than what she used at work, and she could no longer sign onto her AOL email to send me another freaking hallmark eCard for St Patricks Day.

Happens all the time on company-sponsored forums. (1)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 7 years ago | (#18196990)

Apple's discussion groups, to name one, just because I'm familiar with it.

"Censorship" is the wrong word because it refers to the removal of information by government officials, and as far as I know neither Apple nor Dell is the government, yet. (Not even Microsoft is the government. Yet.) I don't think the Terms and Conditions of company-sponsored forums generally include a Bill of Rights. Nor do they generally promise that you will be able to read everything that anyone else has posted.

Infuriating? Sure. Surprising? No. The forums are there to boost the company, and whenever any Forum becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the Corporation to alter or to abolish it.

(Remember Prodigy in the good old days? They would remove forum items as being "off-topic." Any attempt to discuss why the items were removed would be removed as "off-topic." Any attempt to criticize Prodigy in any way would be removed as "off-topic." And when users tried to get around the forum restrictions by organizing mailing lists, Prodigy promptly changed the previously-free email to twenty-five free emails per month, and a significant charge--$0.25 each, IIRC--for any beyond that!)

Re:Happens all the time on company-sponsored forum (1)

Anon-Admin (443764) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197134)

You really should understand the word Censorship and how it is defined.

Read Wikipedia [wikipedia.org] or Websters [m-w.com]

Censorship does not require government. It is the removal of information from the public, or the prevention of circulation of information, where it is desired or felt best by some controlling group or body that others are not allowed to access the information which is being censored.

It qualifies!

Re:Happens all the time on company-sponsored forum (1)

ThosLives (686517) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197362)

An odd thought though:

Is all censorship bad?

For instance, what do you call the removal of incorrect information from the public eye (say, on Wikipedia)? Technically that's censorship, but nobody complains.

I think the issue is not about pure technical censorship, but oppressive censorship that actually infringes on people's rights - which typically can only be done by governments.

Re:Happens all the time on company-sponsored forum (1)

Anon-Admin (443764) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197746)

think the issue is not about pure technical censorship, but oppressive censorship that actually infringes on people's rights - which typically can only be done by governments. And religious organizations, Social Groups, Big Corporations, and many other groups. It is not hard to censor in the definition you are attempting to create. From NEC paying news papers not to publish information (Yes, First Hand Knowledge) To pharmaceutical removing data to reduce or stop lawsuits, to Religious organizations using their large groups of believers to remove books from the library. It does not take a government to censor. It only takes a group of people who can exert influence over others. For instance, what do you call the removal of incorrect information from the public eye (say, on Wikipedia)? Technically that's censorship, but nobody complains. Now you are mixing Editing with censorship. Wikipedia (by the nature of the design) allows everyone the ability to edit the information. A history is kept and you can look at the changes. I do not have a problem with editing. If Dell had removed the post and stated why they removed it or moved it to an area for complaints I would not have a problem with it.

troll (4, Insightful)

melikamp (631205) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197020)

The editors are feeding a troll again. Dell did not open this forum to get educated about the freedom of speech. They wanted people to tell them how they can "improve [their] products and services". Pretty clear, is it not? An inflammatory comment about their way of supporting GNU/Linux does not belong there. Read TFA, the author makes it sound like Dell is spitting on the GNU/Linux community by opting to (gasp) certify the hardware rather than install and support some random distribution.

Why is it "pointless"? (1)

mi (197448) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197038)

It seems pointless to seek ideas and feedback if you're going to ignore and delete the opinions you don't like.

It certainly is annoying to those, who posted the removed feedback, but it is not at all pointless for Dell to do so. They've received it and read it. They may remove it to make themselves look better (or try to, rather), or they may simply want to filter (what they perceive as garbage) out.

Their point may have've been to get ideas they would like — removing others may make sense.

Re:Why is it "pointless"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197348)

Why is it "pointless"?

Because the site was obviously spammed with votes from Linux fans.

Seriously, what serious computer user actually wants a Dell?

Dell customers want Linux? Riggghhht... and later monkeys might fly out of my butt!

Tag this 'kdawsonisashittymod' (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197076)

You know you want to. Remember the radix sort story?

I can't see why they bothered (1)

hey! (33014) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197112)

The post in question is a semi-incoherent rant. If I didn't want to offer Linux, I'd keep it up and point to it, saying, "this is what we'd have to deal with if we supported Linux."

If he simply said that Dell reneged on a promise; or that it was making a mistake by not offering Linux preinstalls, I could see a nefarious PR motive behind dropping the post. But it sounds like it was written by a manic depressive who's of his meds.

Re:I can't see why they bothered (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197300)

Obviously you've never encountered a genuine manic-depressive (medicated or otherwise).

Huh? (2, Insightful)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197146)

It seems pointless to seek ideas and feedback if you're going to ignore and delete the opinions you don't like.

Maybe it's pointless but everybody does it all the time. Half the time, if I say, "hey, what do you think of X?" I'm looking for, "X is really great, you did a good job on it." It's psychological, don't tell me you don't do the same.

Dell deleted a post linking to an article that criticizes its handling of the 'pre-installed Linux' issue.

Sounds to me that they deleted a post linking to a whiny bitch. Let's try this little summary mixer;

"It seems pointless to submit ideas and feedback to Dell if you're going to write a whiny article because they don't do exactly what you want."

Besides, Dell is a huge corporation. They're investigating a process to get their hardware approved by Linux distributers. For a huge corporation, that's a major undertaking... I'm sure whoever wrote that whiny article was looking for, "yes sir, we'll have those on shelves tomorrow!" as a response.

There are still no Linux laptops from anybody real (2, Interesting)

Animats (122034) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197186)

The reason this matters is that there are no Linux laptops available from any vendor bigger than a garage shop.

Yes, there's Linux Certified [linuxcertified.com], in the same building with Mr. Chau's Chinese Fast Food [yelp.com] in San Jose. And there's System76 [system76.com], whose address is a Pak Mail in Denver. [pakmail.com]

If you're selling hardware that may have to be maintained or replaced, you need to be bigger than that to play.

Of course, once upon a time there was VA Linux, but we know what happened to them. [wikipedia.org]

In Other News... (1)

sparr0w (902739) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197248)

Slashdot posts frequently modded down to "-1, Flamebait", many /. users cry censorship... ... oh wait ...

Re:In Other News... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197576)

Slashdot posts frequently modded down to "-1, Flamebait", many /. users cry censorship... ... oh wait ...


Not only that, but one single negative karma point can completely gag a member, denying them the ability to post at all.

Bang on, buddy, Bang on.

I always get a kick out of the pot calling the kettle black.

(IP address changed for this post to allow posting more than once every 20 minutes... of all the asinine restrictions this is the most absurd...)

Haha (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197274)

"Hey Dell thanks for considering Linux support but if you don't let me clog up your forums with whatever crap I choose to spew out and roll out Linux exactly the way I want you to I'm going post inflammatory articles about you on Slashdot and try to turn the community against you!"

And people wonder why the major PC vendors have zero interest in supporting the Linux community.

Hardly. (1)

slashkitty (21637) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197324)

Look at the ideastorm homepage. It's almost all opensource and/or linux posts. If they were censoring, there wouldn't be any. Maybe they just deleted a duplicate post?

You're surprised? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197364)

Look, guys, this is DELL. Do you honestly think a company that rivets its cases shut is a good candidate for open source? I'm not a bit surprised that they charge more for an OSless box than a Linux box, or that they would remove a critical posting on their blogsite.

Like most of you, I'm the support guy for friends (who are in turn support guys for my leaking roof needs, auto reapir needs, etc. What are friends for if not to help?).

So anyway, Mike's wife bought a Dell a few years back for the teenaged kids to do homework on. Despite their lack of a broadband connection, being out in the sticks (one of Mike's hobbies was raising hogs), it didn't take very long for the computer to be filled with all kinds of malware. So Mike calls me, of course. MIke's hogs are yummie...

I FDISK the hard drive, reinstall Windows, and add Zone Alarm and Firefox and an anti-spyware program and suggest that they buy some AV software.

Several months to a year later, it's right back where it was - needing a reformat and reinstall. But by this time I'd fixed Jeff's eMachines PC by making it dual boot, with Mandriva 2005 on one side and XP with networking disabled on the other side. Jeff's computer never gave anybody any trouble after that (until a power surge fried it. Damn it, Jeff, I told you to spend ten bucks on s surge suppressor, you cheap dumbass).

So I figure I'd do the same to Mike's Dell as I'd done for Jeff's eMachines, make it dual boot with networking disabled on the Windows side.

But Mandriva wouldn't install - Dell had a non-standard partition with Dell tools on it that Mandriva's installer choked on. Try as I might, I couldn't get Mandriva to install on that box.

Being the obstinate (to the point of obnoxiousness) nerd that I am, I figure I'll drag out a spare hard drive, install Linux on that, and be done with it.

That's when I discovered the rivets. I have been badmouthing Dell to everyone I talk about computers with ever since. "I'm buying a computer," they say, "which one should I buy?"

"Anything but a Dell" is my answer. "If you buy a Dell and it breaks, you have to throw it away, I can't fix it." Yes, that's not 100% true; I could drill the rivets out and put screws in, but fuck 'em. I refuse to work on a Dell any more, at least until they change their policies. If I find that company X has a non-standard partition next to the Windows partition and has its case riveted shut, the answer will be "anybody but Dell or X".

-mcgrew (MRC="sanctify"

Re:You're surprised? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18197714)

Jeff's computer never gave anybody any trouble after that (until a power surge fried it. Damn it, Jeff, I told you to spend ten bucks on s surge suppressor, you cheap dumbass).

Are you really so dumb to think that this works? heh. No one should take advice from you about PCs.

Let the market solve the problem (1)

Linux_ho (205887) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197436)

Sooner or later, Dell will either conform with consumer demand, or they will lose market share. Yes, Microsoft will continue to put up obstacles, but there's still enough competition in the hardware market that they can't control things forever. If you want evidence of this, take a look at the recent results of HP's choice to support Debian [internetnews.com].

Anyway, I don't blame them for deleting a troll post.

Deleted post was just a rant, but still... (1)

bzipitidoo (647217) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197586)

The deleted post didn't have any suggestions. All it did was rag on Dell for apparently flip-flopping on preinstalls of Linux.

However, deleting the post was a mistake. It opens the door to accusations of insincerety, cover ups, astroturfing, and so forth. It could show Dell hasn't enough respect for freedom of speech, or is too arrogant and sure of themselves. No, of course they own the site and have every right to do anything they want with it. But that doesn't mean they should, or no one will visit. or believe in the sincerety of the posts. If Dell thinks it's okay to delete that post because it wasn't really suggesting anything, or was not constructive, what else might they in their sole opinion judge deserving of deletion? Filtering spam is one thing, but this post however unconstructive it was, was not spam. Why couldn't they set up another forum for rants or whatever, and simply move the post there? If whoever decided to delete that post ran for public office, I would not vote for that person, would you?

This incident suggests that Dell picked the wrong people to moderate their new forum. They sound like the sort of people who come down too heavy on the enforcement because they feel it's safer for their own jobs. They see how easily Mr. Dell could have them fired if the tone of the forums turns into mindless Dell bashing even if Mr. Dell never said or implied he would do any such thing, and how very difficult it would be for the deletion of a post from some random disgruntled poster to cause the same. These same people would certainly not be above a little astroturfing either. The boss wants this forum idea to work, and they're going to MAKE it work! So much for the credibility of that forum.

Dell say yes to linux ??? (2)

jag7720 (685739) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197590)

What about this interview
http://www.desktoplinux.com/news/NS3822185143.html [desktoplinux.com]

Dell replied, "We love Linux, and we're doing our best to support the Linux community. We see lots of opportunity there. If the Linux desktops could converge at their cores, such a common platform would make it easier to support. Or, if there was a leading or highly preferred version that a majority of users would want, we'd preload it." In the end, "we see [the Linux desktop] as a customer-driven activity. If customers want it, well, Dell will give it to them." One company has not played a role in Dell's Linux decisions. "Microsoft has not talked to us about Linux. If they did, I wouldn't care. It's none of their business," concluded Dell.
It seems we have our answer.

inflammatory idea (1)

NRISecretAgent (982853) | more than 7 years ago | (#18197758)

I didn't read the post (getting better at this /. thing) but I'd imagine that an inflammatory article wasn't particularly helpful to the idea process... in fact in my experience, something like that generally means the person is lacking in the idea department but has to say something anyway. In this case it seems the equivalent of suggesting the variable "dog" for a program about banking. Next thing you know you have a bunch of clutter and comments about a dog that just aren't necessary and just slow the programming down. Personally I'm quite alright with them removing something totally useless from their idea board.
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