Archive | February 9, 2005

Jeff Gannon, who are you?

Laura and I heard about this on Emily Rooney’s “Beat the Press” edition of Greater Boston last Friday, but the implications are deeply disturbing. Some man, using a pseudonym, was not only posing as a journalist with approval of the White House but (follow the links) was likely not the person he was claiming to be. What is going on in the White House?

Dan Gillmor on Grassroots Journalism, Etc. reports:

‘Reporter’ Gannon is Gone. The “Jeff Gannon” saga took an ugly turn. Gannon, you may recall, was the White House “reporter” of questionable bona fides — apparently a Republican operative whose main role was to ask friendly questions of the president and his spokespeople, a countervailing force to what the Bush administration plainly believes is an overwhelmingly liberal White House press corps. (That view of the suck-up brigade is laughable, in my view, given the half-baked, credulous coverage the administration has enjoyed.)

“Various bloggers have been investigating Gannon, and one of them turned up some news that led him to silence himself.”

“Timothy Karr has some details. See also Daniel Conover’s analysis, in which he notes: “It must be clear now that blogs and websites are providing the bulk of significant real-time reporting on MSM matters. Those of us who work in the MSM and care about these issues turn to these “non-official” sources to get the scoop on our industry, and I don’t expect that to change any time soon.”

“Fair enough. But this episode should give people a queasy feeling. The scandal is the administration’s contempt for the public, and the lack of journalistic credibility this person demonstrated, not whatever he was doing on the side.”

MSM = Mainstream Media, for those not up on the latest TLA — Ted

What is the marketplace effect?

InfoWorld: Application development reports “Judge questions impact of Microsoft settlement. WASHINGTON – A U.S. district court judge on Wednesday praised Microsoft for efforts to improve technical documentation for its communications protocols, but questioned the effect in the marketplace of her final judgment in the U.S. government’s antitrust case against the software giant.”

Microsoft kills another word: interoperable joins innovation

Computerworld News reports “Microsoft’s Gates vows ‘interoperable’ software. In a lengthy letter to customers yesterday, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates spelled out a new mission for his company’s software: better interoperability. ”

That’s just silly. Microsoft got into the market interoperating with IBM LAN Manager, then Novell networking. Until Microsoft actually shows they are acting differently, this is just a rehash of “Embrace, Enhance, Extend, Extinguish.” Microsoft is using their marketing machine to kill the meaning of another word, just as they distorted the “right to innovate” to mean “using monopolistic practices to dominate a marketplace and crush competition,” they are trying to redefine “interoperate” to mean “Microsoft can access everything but no one can access them.”

Recently, Microsoft was embroiled in a controversy over theopennessof their Office XML. (HINT: Don’t bother, go with’s soon-to-be-OASIS-standard format. Tools are out there.) The resolution was for Microsoft to issue a new license for their XML that effectively limits others to read and not write the format, and also a poison-pill requirement that software contain a clause specifying the technologies are licensed from Microsoft, a requirement which prevents the formats from being used in GPL software.

It is interesting to note that Microsoft is trying this tactic. Let’s see what happens next.

Fat Tuesday followed by Patch Wednesday

Computerworld News reports Thirteen patches planned in next Microsoft security update. “Microsoft has telegraphed its plans to release 13 security patches as part of its regular monthly security update next Tuesday.”

Details on MS05-04 through -015 include critical patches to prevent remote code execution in Internet Explorer, OLE, COM, the DHTML editing control, the License Logging system, PNG processing, the Windows Shell, Sharepoint, ASP.NET and Microsoft Office. Microsoft Bob appears to be unaffected. It is the seventh week of 2005.

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This work by Ted Roche is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States.