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Daniel Lyons of Forbes Admits Being Snowed by SCO

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the very-glad-this-is-over dept.

403

certain death writes "Daniel Lyons of Forbes Magazine has admitted to being snowed by SCO, regarding their lawsuit over Linux and SCO code. He specifically mentions Groklaw's role in the case, and regrets his early articles giving the company the benefit of the doubt. 'I still thought it would be foolish to predict how this lawsuit (or any lawsuit) would play out. I even wrote an article called "Revenge of the Nerds," which poked fun at the pack of amateur sleuths who were following the case on a Web site called Groklaw and who claimed to know for sure that SCO was going to lose. Turns out those amateur sleuths were right. Now some of them are writing to me asking how I'd like my crow cooked, and where I'd like it delivered. Others in that highly partisan crowd have suggested that I wanted SCO to win, and even that I was paid off by SCO or Microsoft. Of course that's not true. I've told these folks it's not true. Hasn't stopped them. The truth, as is often the case, is far less exciting than the conspiracy theorists would like to believe. It is simply this: I got it wrong. The nerds got it right.'"

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I, for one... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688871)

...welcome our new amateur sleuth overlords!

Re:I, for one... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688881)

Don't taze me. --Sco

Thank you, Daniel (5, Insightful)

Iphtashu Fitz (263795) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688909)

It's nice to see at least some journalists out there in this day and age are willing to publicly admit when they are wrong.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (2, Insightful)

frup (998325) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688927)

I think it's more like changing sides when the battle turns foul.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688985)

I think it's more like changing sides when the battle turns foul.
That's right, it's not ok for a man to admit he was wrong. If he does change, call him a flip flopper. Under no circumstances can people ever change. I'm sure you never incorrectly assessed a situation either or have ever been wrong.

People like you make me fucking sick.

No, it's not. (5, Funny)

FatSean (18753) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689459)

If I've learned anything from recent Presidential elections, changing your opinions due to new information is a sign of weakness. One must make a choice and ride it all the way down.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (3, Insightful)

hey! (33014) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689089)

I think it's more like changing sides when the battle turns foul.


Is this my cue to call you a f***tard?

Re:Thank you, Daniel (3, Funny)

Achoi77 (669484) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689277)

looks like your 5 digit UID says you do :-)

Start with Dan, end with Congress... (0, Offtopic)

Grog6 (85859) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689399)

Dan is a fucktard, for sure.

But did you notice the loss of one of our Constitutional Rights today?

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1)

veganboyjosh (896761) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689447)

(Score:3, Insightful)
by hey! (33014) Alter Relationship on Thursday September 20, @04:18PM (#20689089)

Is this my cue to call you a f***tard?


It would appear so.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (4, Insightful)

jgarra23 (1109651) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688961)

Thank goodness and yes, you are right and Mr. Lyons gets kudos for being wrong and admitting it but he brings up a good point which drives me batty- that conspiracy theorists seem to think that the truth is much more exciting than it is, I've long thought that it was silly to accuse him(Lyons) of being paid by SCO or anyone else and I really wish these "theorists" would think before they speak as their words ruin reputations and cause problems where there should be none and make them look like the jerks they (the theorists) usually are. I have a better name for them, libelous mukrakers.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (5, Insightful)

Em Adespoton (792954) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689303)

I give him kudos for admitting he was wrong; I give him a tsk tsk for the way in which he did it. He labels the group at Groklaw as "amateur sleuths" which, in my book, implies that he is a professional sleuth. Why, then, did the "amateur sleuths" who are a collection of individuals, ranging from slashdot geeks in basements through to paralegals, lawyers, software architects, engineers, and probably even a few journalists and PIs, do due dilligence, while he plainly states that he did not?

I have to admit that I stopped thinking of him as a viable journalist shortly after he started covering this case. In his article, he mentions that he based his writing on what SCO told him, and that he'd been burned once before by not bothering to cover the whole DOS lawsuit. If I had been in his shoes, I would have immediately done a search on Unix, and found out about the BSD/AT&T lawsuit, and how that turned out. At which point, I would have (had I not already known anything about the situation) thought, "Hmm. Sounds like there might be another side to this story," and, being a technical journalist for a financial rag, used my contacts at, say, IBM, or even some uninvolved third party like Red Hat or Novell to try and get a full picture before reporting.

Corporate Feed Reporting has got so bad nowadays that unless I see evidence in the first paragraph of an article that it is either an opinion piece, or that the reporter has consulted multiple parties, not just copied and pasted some text out of some document provided to them by some other party, I just skip over the rest of the article and do a search on the topic for an article that at least clings to a shred of journalistic integrity.

An idea I came up with after reading this yesterday:
Why not apply a rating system to journalists similar to that being used on Wikipedia by the UCSC crew [ucsc.edu] ? A journalist's rating is affected by whether they follow journalistic procedures in their writing, who they sell their article to (separate rating system for publishers based on the ratings of journalists who publish throgh them), accuracy of factual reporting, whether they include large blocks of text found to be non original, etc.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689533)

"Hmm. Sounds like there might be another side to this story,"

It's been a while since balanced reporting that explores both sides of an issue outsold a one-sided rant. He's a professional, which basically means he does this to make money, so his first concern is selling the story with some truthiness on the side.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689581)

I give him a tsk tsk for the way in which he did it. He labels the group at Groklaw as "amateur sleuths" which, in my book, implies that he is a professional sleuth.
I think you're reading all this wrongly. My reading of that section is that he's saying that he wrote an anti-Groklaw article in which he labelled them as amateur sleuths (which would thus be one of the things he's retracting). And I don't exactly see why his describing them as amateur sleuths should in any way be taken as a claim that he's a professional sleuth; all the label implies is that he believed in the existence of better investigators, not that he believed himself to be among their number. (Isn't he like more of an analyst than an investigative journalist?)

Re:Thank you, Daniel (3, Insightful)

EreIamJH (180023) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689639)

Exactly. He says he was snowed by SCO, but it seems to me that he chose to be wilfully ignorant. The key omission from his article is any explanation as to why he chose to ignore the analysis provided at Groklaw. He's like a man at the races guessing which horse is going to win based on something superficial like the colour of the jockey's shirt.

Seems to me he's a 'sound bite' journalist - he sees his job as merely copying down a juicy sound bite instead of actually researching a topic. That said, it could also be that he's too lazy to do the research, or too thick to understanding the technical analaysis at Groklaw.

Probably all of the above.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1)

turing_m (1030530) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689513)

If he was wrong, much better of him to just say so without qualifications.

The truth is rarely what gets written in the papers, whether it's papered over or just omitted. No one doing a back-room deal is going to either admit it or publicize it, but loads of back-room deals still happen. That by definition is a conspiracy - an agreement to perform together an illegal, wrongful, or subversive act.

The quest to understand what's actually going on in the world requires taking facts, drawing inferences and discussion. Just because some journalist doesn't like it should not stop the general public from trying to get a better understanding of the world than they would through picking up a random glossy magazine or newspaper. If an otherwise intelligent person appears to be taken in by a poor argument, people are right to be suspicious.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (5, Insightful)

arth1 (260657) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689009)

Um, why? It's not like he could deny it...

And his rudeness in persisting to call those who were right "nerds" says a lot more.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (2, Insightful)

EvanED (569694) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689121)

Um, why? It's not like he could deny it...

He could have just not written about it more, or tried to argue that the court came to the wrong conclusion, or something like that.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (2, Interesting)

rumblin'rabbit (711865) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689343)

I agree. Only nerds are entitled to call nerds nerds. Next time he has his computer devirused he might find a few key files corrupted.

More seriously, I sent in a letter to a local newspaper a few years ago criticizing them for constantly referring to software developers as nerds, like it was some terribly witty and original joke. I asked them if it was also their practise to refer to lawyers as shysters.

The letter never got printed. On the other hand, their use of the term "nerd" seemed to stop after that.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689043)

Except that it has nothing to do with "nerds" or "amateur sleuths". It had to do with people who knew Unix, knew its history, knew how systems like Linux and Minix were developed, and laid out the facts. It was skunky little financial journalists who, whether paid shills or not, chose to believe the unsubstantiated claims of McBride and SCO's lawyers, who, from the very beginning, refused to question the fact that these guys were never willing to actually demonstrates alleged infringements, and who got capital to fund their lawsuit in mysterious ways.

Perhaps in the future these fine financial journalists, when dealing with matters surrounding technology, should do their fucking jobs and talk to the actual fucking people who know about the fucking technology, as opposed to a pack of fucking litigous bastards whose business model amounted to extorting licensing fees.

I don't think any better of this piece of Wallstreet crapola than I did ten minutes ago. It's impossible now for him to defend his indefensible position, so why the fuck should anyone give him the time of day on it.

Makes you wonder just how lacking in due dilligence and basic investigative techniques this particular cadre of journalists are. Okay, they're not liars. They're just fucking retards.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1, Interesting)

Quarters (18322) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689129)

And just what would you call someone who knows Unix and its history and knows how Linux and Minix were developed you're a nerd. If you fit in to that category you're a nerd.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (5, Funny)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689279)

As I said in another post, reporters don't have to be maritime engineers to report on ships sinking. This reporter works for Forbes, so I wouldn't expect him to know anything about the history of Unix. However, when the note crosses his desk talking about SCOX suing IBM over allegations that SCO's copyrighted Unix code leaking into Linux via AIX, he should do his utmost to learn about these things called Unix, Linux and AIX. That's his job. The fact was that he, like a lot of the Wall Street crowd, don't like open source, and so, rather than being a reporter, he became nothing more than a shill. If he was too stupid to even bother getting paid by SCO, then I'd say that's even more points against him, because if you're going to be a biased prick, then at least be a corrupt biased prick.

He made up his mind, then decided the "facts". (4, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689443)

He made up his mind that SCO was right ... and then he actively opposed any facts contradicting him.

He belittled Groklaw and PJ (and he is still doing so) for digging up the real facts while he kept repeating the "smoking gun" claim of SCO as a "fact".

I could have accepted that INITIALLY, but as Groklaw collected more and more facts from the EXPERTS (the people who WROTE *nix) there is no way anyone who didn't have an agenda could have still believed that SCO had a case.

Yet he kept right on supporting SCO ... until they filed for bankruptcy and received a delisting letter.

Re:He made up his mind, then decided the "facts". (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689535)

That's precisely my point. His apology is worthless. It's rather like saying "That guy's house is on fire" while the cleanup crew is bulldozing the smouldering ashes. It wasn't just that he took SCO's side, it's that he had an anti-open source agenda from the very beginning, and with that, never once bothered to go to some of the opposing parties and ask them. You would think, since this so heavily involved Linux, that a call to Linux Torvalds would have been a very basic bit of due dilligence. He never showed any desire to actually be a journalist. His was an editorialist, and I think it's a damning indictment of financial reporting nowadays that there seems to be no difference in their minds.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1)

644bd346996 (1012333) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689435)

And just what would you call someone who knows Unix and its history and knows how Linux and Minix were developed?
Professionals, perhaps?

Re:Thank you, Daniel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689179)

Mod parent up please. It is good Mr. Lyons regrets it now, but unless journalists do their fucking due diligence before writing articles, what is the difference between them and the debt_rating_agencies/stock_analysts/etc. who keep a high rating till the outfit files for bankruptcy or bankruptcy protection. By that time, the damage is ALREADY DONE and they are part of it.

ps: Yes, it is FUCKING due diligence, because shock words should be used rarely, and to shock -- and this is one of those times.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689225)

It had to do with people who knew Unix, knew its history, knew how systems like Linux and Minix were developed, and laid out the facts.

Yah...a nerd. Sorry, but that's what those type of people are relative to the general population. It's definitely not a bad thing, just the way it is. It's not a bad word.

He didn't just use "nerd" (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689567)

He used something along the lines of "amateur sleuth". And when he used "nerd", it was meant as a bad word -- do you call a mechanic a "motorhead"? No, you call him a mechanic, and if he's designing cars as well as fixing them, you call him an engineer. In other words, you call him a fucking expert.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1)

Stringer Bell (989985) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689453)

Perhaps in the future these fine financial journalists, when dealing with matters surrounding technology, should do their fucking jobs and talk to the actual fucking people who know about the fucking technology, as opposed to a pack of fucking litigous bastards whose business model amounted to extorting licensing fees.

Holy shit. Bitter much?

Re:Thank you, Daniel (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689569)

I suppose bitter describes it. His pat apology with its backhanded insults doesn't cut the mustard with me. When he publicly admits "I failed as a journalist. I was not reporting in an unbiased fashion and never even bothered to ask some of the guys who were deeply involved in Unix since the olden days, or some of the guys like Linus Torvalds who develop and maintain the kernel."

Now that would be an apology. This "nerds" and "amateur sleuths" isn't an apology, it's an insult and an indication that he probably doesn't even know how he went wrong.

Thanks Daniel, youre not a liar.just a fuckin tard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689519)

How is this going to change the fact that people think he is a retard?

When Laura Dildo and Read Enderle ever admit they were wrong are we going to say they arent retards?

This wasnt one article they made a mistake with.
Once is a mistake.
After that the slope to mental retardation is pretty quick.

Did Bonds just happen to juice once or was it a pattern?

Re:Thank you, Daniel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689287)

Umm...the article was a backhanded insult, you'd have to be an idiot not to have read it between the lines. What he's basically saying is that as ridiculous as we are, SCO turned out to be even more ridiculous, and he is admitting only to being surprised by that fact.

I suppose if you want to thank him for it, go ahead. Personally I still think he's a shill.

If you believe him. I don't. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689347)

Personally, I don't believe Mr. Lyons, and view this so-called apology as an obviously self-serving attempt to try to restore some credibility in the face of reality. And it's a bit belated at that. It also strikes me as somewhat half-hearted.

The main reason why I have my doubts about Mr. Lyons is that it really requires one to suspend belief in his ability to do any critical thinking at all. According to his tale, he was wined-and-dined by some management types at SCO and took their every word as gospel. And when evidence was gathered (copious amounts at that), he dismissed it as being "amateur", without giving a glance (let alone real thought) at the actual evidence.

He was only interested in promoted one single story - SCO's.

So, we're faced with a choice. Either he is extremely naive, and cowtows down to anyone in an authority position, or he actually is intelligent and knows what he's doing. Now, granted that many journalists (and U.S. citizens, alas) tend to blindly take the word of someone who looks like they are an authority without giving it a second glance.

But honestly, Mr. Lyon's strikes me as an intelligent person, being quite capable of doing what a reporter should do; and that is to evaluate both sides of a position, and relate the facts (or at least, both arguments when the facts are in doubt).

Now, granted even intelligent people make mistakes. But to continually ignore the mounting evidence, let alone the opposite views, for so long, and with such a sustained effort, is truly staggering. If he isn't a complete idiot, then he screwed up completely here.

In short, one is left with the choice of him being a complete idiot or a complete screwup when it comes to journalism. Sorry to be so blunt, but that is the logical conclusion.

Curiously, what I don't see from him is (as others have mentioned) what he has learned from this. Which implies that he has learned absolutely nothing, and we can expect to see more of this kind of behaviour in the future.

So forgive me if I'm not quick to accept his so-called apology at face value. He's given every indication that it's fake, self-serving, and intended to advance his career. All at the expense of "The Truth". And I see no indication that we can expect anything better in the future.

Re:Thank you, Daniel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689457)

I'd just like to know where a writer for FORBES gets off calling OTHER people nerds?

Re:Thank you, Daniel (1)

sjwest (948274) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689601)

Indeed but writing english should not be the only reason your employed.

Hacks today take the the easy route - heres a three paragrapgh press release, aha problem solved. - the other side ? there isnt one.

English is the cure to all the problems, its a shame that the 'complex' technical stuff eluded him. Forbes was spouting a line recently that the Judge on the case (Kimbal?) was not qualified and a jury was needed.

btw: Forbes 'legal expert' also needs help.

He's only... (3, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688917)

He's only a journo who got it wrong.

I wonder about the investors who will now lose pretty well everything they banked on the crapshoot.

Then there's also the poor employees who will undoubtably suffer as they seek employment elsewhere. I'm quite certain most of them don't say a lot of bad things about Darl publicly with their names attached, but they have some real feeling of betrayal all the same.

So a journo got it wrong, not like he's Dan Rather being lead down the garden path and left there by CBS researchers and management.

of course he doesn't have a crapshoot for $70 million either...

The employees? (3, Interesting)

tkrotchko (124118) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689107)

I seem to remember SCO released all its technical employees several years ago. Towards the end, they consisted of a handful of people who just handled the books and the lawyers.

Really, there has been no SCO for a long time.

Are you kidding?!?!? They're HIRING! (1)

bADlOGIN (133391) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689381)

http://www.sco.com/company/jobs/ [sco.com]

You to can go to India now and be considered "senior" but
only if you have "BS degree in computer science with at least 2
years of relevant experience, no more than 4 years experience."

Stuff like that is too priceless to be made up.

Please Indian outsourcers, keep considering people with 2-4 years
of experience "senior". It makes the rest of us with real
senior experience in the US, UK & Europe who are merely good, look fucking great!

Re:He's only... (4, Funny)

hey! (33014) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689127)

He's only a journo who got it wrong.
*gloat*

I wonder about the investors who will now lose pretty well everything they banked on the crapshoot.
*gloat*gloat*

Then there's also the poor employees who will undoubtably suffer as they seek employment elsewhere
*glo.... Aw crud.

Re:He's only... (5, Interesting)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689199)

I wonder about the investors who will now lose pretty well everything they banked on the crapshoot.

They knew the rules, they gambled and lost. Had they done even the weakest analysis of the SCO case, they would have passed. Such is life for those that wish to play that game.

Then there's also the poor employees who will undoubtably suffer as they seek employment elsewhere.

Any of their employees that didn't have a vested interest are already gone. Those that are still around have profited very well indeed by sucking the life out of SCO and shilling for Microsoft. They have been well compensated and will move on to the next scheme. Perhaps they can find employment in the Patent Troll industry.

So a journo got it wrong, not like he's Dan Rather being lead down the garden path and left there by CBS researchers and management.

Yes, and now he wants to redeem himself and hope everyone forgets that he trashed Groklaw and the Open Source Movement. I have no sympathy for him anymore than I will when Laura Didio admits she was wrong.

They were not investors.... they were speculators (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689285)

Investors carefully assess their investments and expect a reasonable rate of return.

People who bought SCO during the Darl Days knew it was a long shot at getting a hefty slice of IBM. At best they were speculators. At worst they were greedy vultures. Nothing worth feeling sorry for.

Re:He's only... (2, Insightful)

sfjoe (470510) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689421)

I wonder about the investors who will now lose pretty well everything they banked on the crapshoot.

Don't feel too badly for the investors. Last I looked they consisted largely of insiders and speculators. This isn't an Enron that took people's retirement savings through underhanded machinations.

you're glad it's over (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688921)

but i'm glad i wasn't aware it started. seriously, unless u had already known about this article is 0% interesting. "the nerds were right"? of-fucking-course they were, didn't he goto highschool?

Re:you're glad it's over (4, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689047)

but i'm glad i wasn't aware it started. seriously, unless u had already known about this article is 0% interesting. "the nerds were right"? of-fucking-course they were, didn't he goto highschool?

Some writers dwell on words they've written. Some don't care and are already on to something else.

Where I went to college was a small college paper. Someone I knew wrote for it and as there's a thing as "lead time" -- that amount of time between when a writer turns something in and it is published, during which anything can (and often does) happen. She wrote something scathing, including mispelling the college president's name. Before the issue came out it was revealed the president had nothing to do with it and for the most part there really was no scandal. When the paper came out and I asked her how she felt about it she was "meh, whatever." Maybe it did bug her she listened to the wrong source or didn't bother to quiz the president directly, but she didn't appear to lament it one bit.

This bloke is doing his mea culpa, so he's of a different cut of cloth. There's all kinds, just like there's all kinds of people who run a business, from Warren Buffet to Darl McBride.

Speaking down to us? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688933)

Although the majority of the crowd here knows better than to take it that way, it's a amusing to see the term "nerd" used in a derogatory fashion once again. How very 1980's of him.

-foo

Courage. (4, Insightful)

Mr. Flibble (12943) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688937)

I like this guy, he is willing to admit he made a mistake, furthermore, he made it in print. Albeit online print.

If we only had more journalists willing to do this about other things... Like Iraq, WMD etc. It takes courage to admit you were taken in, I applaud this.

Courage nothing (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689137)

Fuck him. He stood up and openly ridiculed the informed opinions of many thousands of IT professionals who actually understood the issue and knew that SCO was full of shit and doomed to fail. Even as he backpedals, he manages to insult us further, calling us "the nerds", and "an amateur pack of sleuths", as if our lowly science degrees and years of experience in the industry are nothing compared to his ability to write shitty blog-worthy articles about his own ignorance.

I say we lash him to the rigging and let him go down with the ship along with McBride and co.

Took it like a trooper... (4, Insightful)

Captain Sarcastic (109765) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688945)

Daniel Lyons thought that SCO had a case at first... or at least had enough nuisance potential that someone would eventually blink and pay them off.

So he thought wrong. So did the people who thought the CueCat would be a tool found on every household computer.

As far as I see it, he's taken his lumps, and he's ready to go on with life.

Works for me... so am I.

I respect a man who can admit he was wrong (4, Insightful)

earthforce_1 (454968) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688949)

I hope everybody shows class and doesn't rub his nose in it. It was probably a very hard admission to make. You didn't see Maureen O'Gara admitting she screwed up, incredibly she is still holding a candle for SCO. Rob Enderle just claimed he hadn't been following the case in a long time.

Re:I respect a man who can admit he was wrong (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689021)

As an aside, what of Laura DiDio?

IMHO, Lyons is a lot like a passenger on Titanic who loudly denies to his fellows that they're any mortal danger about the whole iceberg thing...

...until the ship's nose goes under and he realizes that there aren't that many open seats left in the lifeboats, that is.

I give him props for saying something about being wrong, but I still have reservations as to why he did it (to save his rep is what I'm thinking. Sucks to have that kind of prognostication on your resume'...)

/P

Re:I respect a man who can admit he was wrong (1)

earthforce_1 (454968) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689561)


Well for the first hour or so after the impact, most people milling about on the upper decks of Titanic didn't think they were in any danger either, and didn't want to leave the big, warm luxurious ship to get into small lifeboats on a cold night. The panic happened during the final hour when it became obvious the big ship was doomed.

Re:I respect a man who can admit he was wrong (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689425)

What the hell? What he wrote was complete garbage. If we was "snowed under" by SCO, then either because he was a complete idiot, or because he knew that a little bit of investigating would have stood in the way of a "good" article.

We knew that he was wrong months ago. Everybody did. Saying "I was wrong" when he wrote articles three years after SCO made itself a laughing stock in the DaimlerChrysler case, months after their "million lines" of code that iBM supposedly copied shrunk to unproven claims of about 120 lines, three years after SCO's case against Novell where it was obvious from the start that they didn't have a chance in hell (and the SCO idiots didn't even manage to get their claims right in that case in their first sttempt, forgetting to claim special damages); saying "I was wrong" when SCO has just lost their Novell court case completely and the bastards try to keep Novell from getting the money that SCO stole by claiming bankruptcy, all that is nothing that deserves any kind of respect.

What about his personal attacks against Pamela Jones? Did she get any apology from him? Didn't think so. And even when he says "I was wrong" he can't help himself but call the people at Groklaw "nerds". Even now he has to be insulting. There is a point where a reputation is just irrevocably destroyed. Daniel Lyons is way beyond that point.

Re:I respect a man who can admit he was wrong (1)

theurge14 (820596) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689497)

I hope everybody shows class and doesn't rub his nose in it. It was probably a very hard admission to make.

Well, it shouldn't be, especially for a reporter who which like all reporters should, make an attempt to be objective. When someone grudgingly admits mistakes, it means that their pride is getting in the way. Some people might even call that bias.

What about the attitude? (5, Insightful)

irtza (893217) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688957)

Its one thing to admit your wrong. This may redeam character but not credibility. With a history of being wrong and smearing those with a different view, he sets a precedent as being an unreliable news source and despite whatever appologies are given - a liability to Forbes as a trustworthy news source. He would have to work to regain credibility with people checking the facts against what he said. It would be easier to just move to another source of information. If this is merely an attempt to regain face in the journalist world, it will fall flat with any critical thinker

One step further, for someone writing on the technology field - it doesn't serve his purpose to put out condescending statements like "the nerds got it right".

Re:What about the attitude? (3, Insightful)

crankyspice (63953) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689319)

With a history of being wrong and smearing those with a different view, he sets a precedent as being an unreliable news source and despite whatever appologies are given - a liability to Forbes as a trustworthy news source. He would have to work to regain credibility with people checking the facts against what he said.

SCO's case was at least strong enough to survive early motions to dismiss, despite IBM's high-powered team of lawyers working to debunk the SCO version as thoroughly as possible. That a judge, after years of discovery and motions, was able to finally decide authoritatively that SCO was in the wrong and the geeks/nerds/whatever had it right, doesn't mean the case didn't, at some point, appear to have at least some merit. Saying "journalist shoulda checked his facts better" misses the point, I think -- if the facts were that blatant the litigation would have been over in 3 months, not 3 years. I can forgive him for not seeing through something it took a learned and experienced jurist some time to get through.

Sucks to be you, Dan-O... (3, Insightful)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688963)

...after all, the mountain of Pro-MSFT shilling you've done all this time certainly doesn't help your case either.

'fessing up to being wrong? but how much of that is just to save your reputation, and how much is true 'oh, man, I messed up...' sentiment?

Forgiveness? Heh. Please. Any fool with two neurons would've figured out that SCO was shoveling manure a long, long time ago... and wouldn't have waited until their buddy was on the gallows platform before shouting long and loud about how he'd deceived you.

You've made your bed, Mr. Lyons. Now lie in it. /P

Best analogy today. (2, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689559)

Congratulations!
Indeed when his buddy was standing upon the gallows, only then did he cry (and loudly) about how evil his buddy had been for deceiving him and abusing his naive trust.

It shows his true character.

If Microsoft ever files a patent suit against Linux, do you believe that Lyons will not be the first and one of the loudest proclaiming the righteousness of Microsoft's claim?

Daniel who? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688979)

Also, can we please have more SCO news. So verrry interresting...

Next Up... (2, Funny)

corby (56462) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688983)

Apology accepted, Daniel.

Laura DiDio, it's your turn.

Re:Next Up... (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689595)

Unlike Lyons, Dido and most of the other "journalists" that wrote anti-linux articles HAVE been taking cash or deals with MS. For example, DiDo was seen after writing those articles doing a number of items with MS launches, etc. I suspect that Lyons really is really just an average journalist and simply stepped out of his element. But DiDo and Others are nothing more than lobbyists for MS and Sun.

Idiot (4, Insightful)

Creamsickle (792801) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688993)

It was bafoons like this fellow that ever gave this ridiculous case any kind of credibility in the mainstream media. Even in admitting he was wrong he feels the need to disparage those who got it right. "The nerds got it right"? Anyone with half a brain got it right, Lyons. It wasn't about "amateur sleuths" or "nerds" or whatever other nonsense you feel you have to spout to make yourself look better. At least one part of what he said is true:

The truth, as is often the case, is far less exciting than the conspiracy theorists would like to believe
The truth was, simply, that some people (like Lyons) were idiots with their heads up their asses, and some people actually knew what they were talking about. End of story.

Re:Idiot (2, Insightful)

hey! (33014) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689153)

It was bafoons like this fellow that ever gave this ridiculous case any kind of credibility in the mainstream media.

my irony sense is tingling...

Props to Lyons (1)

TimHunter (174406) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689007)

It's not often that a journalist will publicly admit to being wrong. Now I'm waiting for similar apologies from Laura Didio, Maureen O'Gara, and Rob Enderle. I won't hold my breath, though.

AKA: Fake Steve Jobs (4, Interesting)

Teese (89081) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689019)

just so you know

Fake Steve Jobs gives a fake appology (3, Informative)

Picass0 (147474) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689029)

Sorry Dan. Too little too late. The most you can hope for is the SEC overlooks your pumping of this stock.

"The nerds got it right.." (1)

pickyouupatnine (901260) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689031)

Perhaps we oughta come up with an equally stupid name for those who like using the word "nerd" in a derogatory way.

Re:"The nerds got it right.." (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689233)

"The retard got it wrong" -- how's that?

How about "empty suit"? (1)

ulatekh (775985) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689351)

That's usually how I insult such people.

He did bring some of this on himself (3, Insightful)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689063)

If he felt this way from the beginning, he should have been clearer. He should have made it clear that he thought SCO was little more than a sophisticated shakedown artist--the Jesse Jackson of software companies if you will. I remember there being a distinct gloating tone to the articles when I read them back then. He seemed happy that OSS developers were going to possibly get their comeuppance. He struck me as one of those stereotype dumb businessmen who cannot tell the difference between the professionals who make real OSS work like the people behind the Apache projects, and the rabid zealots, most of whom are inconsequential morons.

No one except SCO should have been rooting for SCO, or even saying nice things about them. They are a parasite on capitalism. Regardless of his feelings about OSS development, he should have been honest about SCO, and admitted that they were just trying to extort their way into profitability.

What worries me... (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689065)

is that SCO filing for bankruptcy was necessary for him to admit his mistake.
That's not being mistaken, that's being IRRATIONAL and STUBBORN. We can afford that, we're hobbyists - but he's a journalist. Now I'm starting to wonder if he has committed OTHER mistakes.

If?!? [n/t] (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689203)

n/t

Re:If?!? [n/t] (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689271)

Perhaps I should clarify. I don't know the guy - in fact, this is the first time I heard about him. So that's why I said "if".

A Very Funny, and Brief, Translation (1)

segedunum (883035) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689073)

For four years, I've been covering a lawsuit for Forbes.com, and my early predictions on this case have turned out to be so profoundly wrong that I am writing this mea culpa. What can I say? I grew up Roman Catholic. The habit stays with you........In June 2003, a few months after SCO Group sued IBM over the Linux operating system, I wrote an article that bore the headline: "What SCO Wants, SCO Gets." The article contained some critical stuff about SCO but also warned that SCO stood a chance of winning the lawsuit.........But I still thought it would be foolish to predict how this lawsuit (or any lawsuit) would play out. I even wrote an article called "Revenge of the Nerds," which poked fun at the pack of amateur sleuths who were following the case on a Web site called Groklaw and who claimed to know for sure that SCO was going to lose. Turns out those amateur sleuths were right. Now some of them are writing to me asking how I'd like my crow cooked, and where I'd like it delivered.
Oh shit. I backed the wrong side!

I thought he has a point (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689083)

At the time at least.

I felt it was ludicrous that SCO would invest so much in this if they didn't at least have a chance of winning.

I must say I'm quite pleased to look a little stupid in this respect.

SCO was a stalking horse... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689361)

...nothing more. They acted as a front for "other parties" to try and damage Linux as much as possible for a few years while other "products" were still being developed and were way behind schedule already.

That's my take on it anyway, mostly because after the first salvo from SCO, they wouldn't show the code. That was the biggest clue early on, just like balmer's 235 infringing patents crap. Seen a list yet?? Nope, me neither. Notice the similarities of the claims, and the common denominator corporation?

The swine need to be investigated and whomever (we can guess, and my guess is obvious) funded and ran this operation needs some serious pokey time, but we know that isn't going to happen, because the fix got put in in a big way a long time ago. When you have tens of billions in cold hard cash, a few bags missing here or there can be hidden pretty easily, one might think anyway.1)

1) Above is speculation and is no way to be considered cold hard fact, other than the tangential publicly available details. YMMV, closed track, always check with your hairdresser or bartender before making financial or legal decisions, and etc.

RTFA (4, Informative)

steveha (103154) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689095)

I know it's pretty common to skip reading the fine article, but in this case, don't miss it.

He explains why he was fooled by SCO; for example, how Caldera won a settlement against Microsoft, which led him to believe that the SCO Group (successor of Caldera) might actually win. But he doesn't try to dodge the blame; he takes on the blame due him and apologizes.

With only about seven posts up so far on Slashdot I've already seen a couple that snipe at him for IMHO unfair reasons. He's a reporter, not a computer expert, and he was fooled by some slick con artists. Don't hold him to an unreasonable standard, unless you have never ever been wrong about anything yourself.

He apologizes very nicely and pokes fun at himself (the article is very entertaingly written). So, read it and enjoy. And please, reserve your vitriol for the actual villains of the piece, the SCO Group itself.

steveha

Re:RTFA (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689211)

With only about seven posts up so far on Slashdot I've already seen a couple that snipe at him for IMHO unfair reasons. He's a reporter, not a computer expert, and he was fooled by some slick con artists. Don't hold him to an unreasonable standard, unless you have never ever been wrong about anything yourself.


That's right. He's a reporter. And a reporter doesn't have to be a goddamn expert on aeronautics to report on a jet crash, or an expert on maritime engineering to report on a ship sinking. Neither does a reporter have to be a kernel programmer to report on a company claiming they were ripped off by Linus Torvalds and other Linux kernel developers. In all causes, a journalist is supposed to check his sources, supposed to talk to both sides, supposed to, through the process of investigation, become something of an expert. He doesn't need to know jack-shit about fork(), but he should know something about the history of Unix. With that kind of knowledge, he would have soon enough realized that there was a con going on. SCO wasn't slick. They weren't clever at all. If some "amateur sleuths" could recognize right from the word "go" that this was a scam, then that suggests that he's just an idiot, and the question becomes what is Forbes doing paying idiots?

The apology comes to late. If this guy, and his fellow SCO-whores had been doing their jobs, investor money might have been saved and a stock scam might have been prevented. All it would have required was making some phone calls to guys like Linus to get the scoop.

This guy, and all his cohorts, are shameful embarassments. They should be fired, not given kudos because, after the fucking company they were giving editorial blowjobs to has crashed and burned, they're shamed into admitting how stupid they were.

Re:RTFA (1)

maz2331 (1104901) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689375)

fork(him);

Re:RTFA (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689243)

Will you feel the same way about Laura Didio when she admits she was wrong? He's "only" a reporter, but if he can't manage to make even the weakest analysis of the SCO case, he would not have been bad-mouthing Groklaw, Open Source, and IBM's case. He deserves no sympathy.

What Apology? (3, Insightful)

HaeMaker (221642) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689331)

Funny, I don't see an apology. Just complaining about the pile of....feedback he is receiving from the community.

Re:RTFA (2, Insightful)

Eberlin (570874) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689473)

Though I'll give him some credit for doing a mea culpa, here are a few things I have a problem with (as also expressed by the other slashbots already)

1) It took him a while to say what we've known all along -- that SCO got this wrong. I mean doing this after SCO files for bankruptcy is like vocally backing a sports team and then doing a complete 180 after that team gets slaughtered. He had what, 4 years to change his mind? Why just now?

2) The man is a journalist -- not an expert as you pointed out. As a journalist, why form an opinion without asking the experts? You know, do a little research like we were taught in grade school. He's not an expert...let alone a journalist if he isn't going to dig in.

3) Yes, the actual villains are the SCO group -- but they wouldn't have had much weight if any of these people didn't trumpet their case. Others have pointed out Enderle, O'Gara, and Didio as well. These were the people that PHBs and the like were listening to, not the so-called "nerds" who got it right. These folks share a responsibility in the FUD-slinging that went on.

4) I don't think I'm holding the man to unreasonable standards. I think admitting one's mistake in a timely manner isn't unreasonable. I'd like to think journalistic integrity shouldn't be unreasonable...especially if you're a journalist.

5) It's a tough sell when you end up wrong on an issue against a lot of zealots. I think he'll continue writing and the PHBs will continue to read his stuff. "Awww, he apoligizes when he makes a mistake. That makes him even more credible!" As for me, I'm taking anything these particular folks write with all the salt in Costco.

Still sarcastic (3, Interesting)

Roadmaster (96317) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689101)

Does anyone else read " It is simply this: I got it wrong. The nerds got it right" like a high-school jock saying "damn nerd beat me again"?

Mr. Lyons, let's rephrase it to say "I fucked up big time; and everyone else with half a brain COULD see the facts but I couldn't".

Also, downplaying the fact that the journalist made a huge mistake by saying "I got it wrong, big deal", is in itself a tremendous blunder; as someone whose most valuable skill is his reliability, knowing that he fucked up big time in something so obvious should ring sirens for anyone currently paying this guy money to write.

I bet you work for CMP! LOL!

Being a Nerd != Being Stupid (1)

thewiz (24994) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689113)

We appreciate that you are man enough to apologize.

BTW: We're having 1,000 humble pies delivered to your house.

Re:Being a Nerd != Being Stupid (1)

Hotawa Hawk-eye (976755) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689449)

BTW: We're having 1,000 humble pies delivered to your house.
That ... that's a whole LOT of pie, if they're similar to the ones in this story. [consumerist.com] (If that link's broken, try here. [opensourcecu.com] ) Wouldn't it just be better to drop them all on Darl?

Here's the problem, Danny (1, Flamebait)

Trailer Trash (60756) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689157)

You're one of these two things:

1. A Microsoft shill
2. A complete mouth-breathing idiot

Seriously. There were very few people who fell for this. You read Groklaw, so it should have been obvious that there was something to what everybody was saying.

The only people who really feel hard for this were you, Enderle, Maureen O'Gara, and, of course, the Didiot. Of those three, we know that at least the Didiot's company gets paid for "research" by Microsoft, and she even appeared in a video on their web site, and of course Maureen worked for a pro-Microsoft fake news site. I don't know about Enderle. But the point is that there was money to be made.

So, if you're not a shill, that leaves "idiot". Take your pick, buddy, I'd rather not be either one. But then, I review the facts heavily before taking sides in a case like this.

Critical mistakes and rebuilding respect (4, Insightful)

st1d (218383) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689177)

Not entirely sure I buy the bit about it being a mistake, but perhaps he could have avoided the whole deal if he wasn't so eager to paint F/OSS advocates as amateurs. As a journalist, commentator, analyst, or whatever he's supposed to be, he lives on his reputation. Maybe next time, he might value his reputation (i.e., paycheck) enough to check BOTH SIDES of the argument in an unbiased manner. Maybe spend some time with a psychologist, examining why he has an innate desire to see the little guy lose, a community of volunteers destroyed by a failing corporate interest, and puppies being tortured.

Either way, he'd like it all to go away? After insulting millions of F/OSS users? I don't think that's going to happen anytime soon Daniel, sorry. The apology is a nice start, the roman catholic rosary is another option, and a whole lot of honest stories about how this community has built itself up from what many have said was a shaky foundation, to become a force even mighty MS has found itself bending to. Maybe some NICE ARTICLES about the people who have worked so hard to make sure that the code is clean, and so on.

You wanna win your respect back? The apology is a pleasant change, now get to work earning respect!

Well then why... (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689249)

I got it wrong. The nerds got it right.

Well then, maybe Forbes should hire some actual nerds to write about technology than leaving it to bozos like him that usually "got it wrong". There are journalists out there with a much better track record who probably write just as well. There may even be one or two who will listen to all sides of a technology story and not just go with whatever corporate spin say.

Oh, I forgot. This is Forbes. The business "PRess". They are so objective and truth-seeking. You're still a shill whether or not you got paid by SCOX or MSFT, Lyons.

he can shove his name calling up his ass (0)

justdrew (706141) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689339)

the frat boy can knock it off with the name calling next time he wants to talk.

As God is my witness... (3, Funny)

HaeMaker (221642) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689357)

...I thought this turkey could fly.

Personal Attacks (1)

arthurpaliden (939626) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689371)

Now all he has to do is apologize for all the personal attacks against those very same 'nerds' that he made in his articles for the same period.

You know the end is near..... (1)

budword (680846) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689373)

When the spin begins. When even those who are a little slow can smell the winds of change enough to start some damage control, you know the fat lady is about to step up to the plate. (I can't think of any other metaphores to mix in there, but maybe my grammer nazi overlords can think of a few.)

Wow thats incredible (1)

Tweekster (949766) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689391)

Most journalists won't ever admit they are wrong. Well most people wont either. he flat out admitted it.

Nice, I dont mind if someones wrong, but they should man up and admit it.

Re:Wow thats incredible (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689589)

He has still to explain why he didn't try to contact anyone else. I'd say it's a useless reporter who uses the complainant in a lawsuit as the sole source of information. He can apologize all he wants. When he's man enough to explain why, no matter how "slick" SCO was, he didn't phone Linus Torvalds to get his take and maybe some tips on where else to look for information, then maybe I'll consider him sufficiently apologetic. For now, he's just a rat jumping off the ship and trying to blame someone else for his own stupidity and dishonesty.

It takes a big man... (1)

downix (84795) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689405)

It is big enough for someone to admit when they have had poor judgement. It takes a bigger man to do so with not only such humility and grace, but with a touch of humor to boot. Hats off to you good sirah, you have shown that not only are journalists human, but that, on occasion, they will even own up to it.

I gotta be honest (1)

Sgt_Jake (659140) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689483)

I did not see that coming. huh.

Reloading (1)

tthedford (1147021) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689499)

I think reporters in the media today are mostly about broadcasting lies for which ever cause has the most money and/or power. This reporter is probably just attempting to reload his public integrity somewhat so he can spew another round of nonsense.

What a load (1)

Perp Atuitie (919967) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689565)

of defensive bullshit. It wasn't about getting it wrong. It was about getting it wrong based on looking at the evidence and insisting that it meant the opposite of what it obviously showed. SCO never showed a single line of code or anything else that had been "infringed". Notice how he changes the subject to bad people attacking his integrity. But it's one of the few rational explanations left when somebody watches a a dog running by and insists that it's a crack pipe. He may not have been bribed, but he clearly let his own pro-corporate prejudices persuade him that black is white.

Note to Daniel Lyons (2, Insightful)

huckda (398277) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689591)

when the subject matter is Nerdy...listen to the Nerds, NOT the businessman's PR representatives who took you out to lunch to give you the "scoop".

wasn't he supposed to wear (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689629)

a tin foil hat with "FSF" emblazoned on it, while intoning into the gang of microphones, "I have no real position in the vi vs. emacs debate, but let's face it, have used both I can say that either one of these world class tools beats the pants off Microsoft Word!"

A deal is a deal!
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