Microsoft, Wikileaks and the nobility of lies

David Gewirtz asks whether  the latest Wikileaks data dump could bring on World War III, because it shows (again) how what we say publicly isn't what we know privately.Savio Rodrigues thinks Microsoft's role in the Novell acquisition could do it great harm, because it shows the company (again) saying one thing about Linux while doing another.

David Gewirtz asks whether  the latest Wikileaks data dump could bring on World War III, because it shows (again) how what we say publicly isn't what we know privately.

Savio Rodrigues thinks Microsoft's role in the Novell acquisition could do it great harm, because it shows the company (again) saying one thing about Linux while doing another.

What these stories share is the idea that there is comfort in lies.

There is some comfort in white lies. The famous Geico ad where Abraham Lincoln tells his wife the dress does indeed make her look a little fat is one example.

But what about big business lies, like the one about Microsoft caring about Linux and open source on behalf of customers (as opposed to profit)? We know it's not true.

Whether we think it acts defensively regarding Linux (as I do) or offensively (as some talkbacks will say below) everyone knows Linux is a threat to Microsoft and that the company has to respond.

Why we should pretend to one thing when everyone knows we are doing the opposite has always struck me as strange. Open source recognizes this instinctively.

Open source cuts through the lies by simply revealing the code. Everything beyond that is detail. Fun to write about, and argue about, but in the end detail.

Whether the revelations of Wikileaks causes World War III or not, the Internet will continue to offer the source code of business and political life.

For this I am thankful.

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