Strictly speaking, there is no new news. M. Surkan sent me a short "Thanks for your time" note and headed elsewhere. However, his little forays into Linux didn't go unnoticed. As a matter of fact, it really generated quite a bit of news...
Quite a few LUGs allowed him to post to the list, with varying results - most replies were the typical "It's about Freedom" and "Beat it", which warms my heart. More than a few people honestly tried to work up a reply.
A few days ago, I received a letter from Michael Surkan of Microsoft. At first I suspected it to be spam, but a little bit of checking reveals that there really is a Mike Surkan working for Microsoft and that he has contacted other LUGs.
From firstname.lastname@example.org Fri Dec 19 01:42:11 2003 Return-Path:
Delivered-To: email@example.com Received: from mail2.microsoft.com (mail2.microsoft.com [22.214.171.124]) by willum.dreamhost.com (Postfix) with ESMTP id 392E62BD4B for ; Thu, 18 Dec 2003 23:42:10 -0800 (PST) Received: from INET-VRS-02.redmond.corp.microsoft.com ([126.96.36.199]) by mail2.microsoft.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.1041); Thu, 18 Dec 2003 23:42:07 -0800 Received: from 188.8.131.52 by INET-VRS-02.redmond.corp.microsoft.com (InterScan E-Mail VirusWall NT); Thu, 18 Dec 2003 23:42:06 -0800 Received: from red-imc-01.redmond.corp.microsoft.com ([184.108.40.206]) by inet-hub-01.redmond.corp.microsoft.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.0); Thu, 18 Dec 2003 23:42:00 -0800 Received: from win-imc-02.wingroup.windeploy.ntdev.microsoft.com ([220.127.116.11]) by red-imc-01.redmond.corp.microsoft.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.1069); Thu, 18 Dec 2003 23:42:02 -0800 Received: from WIN-MSG-10.wingroup.windeploy.ntdev.microsoft.com ([18.104.22.168]) by win-imc-02.wingroup.windeploy.ntdev.microsoft.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.1069); Thu, 18 Dec 2003 23:41:40 -0800 X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft Exchange V6.5.7122.0 Content-class: urn:content-classes:message MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: multipart/mixed; boundary="------------InterScan_NT_MIME_Boundary" Subject: posting to Linux mail list Date: Thu, 18 Dec 2003 23:41:11 -0800 Message-ID: X-MS-Has-Attach: X-MS-TNEF-Correlator: Thread-Topic: posting to Linux mail list Thread-Index: AcPGA3klMW0YejQJRz6/xsvnIMroqw== From: "Michael Surkan" To: , X-OriginalArrivalTime: 19 Dec 2003 07:41:40.0193 (UTC) FILETIME=[8A2D4510:01C3C603] Status: RO I am a program manager in the Microsoft networking group, doing some research around how we can improve our operating systems. My goal is to help us identify capabilities, improvements, and features that Microsoft should be focusing on to help our customers over the next 5 years or so. I am particularly interested in hearing from Linux users, and get their input about what they feel should be priorities. =20 I was wondering if you would mind if I posted a message on your Linux mailing list (firstname.lastname@example.org) asking for feedback? I want to ask for people to e-mail me directly if they would be interested in taking an on-line survey I have put together (sorry, I don't want to post the survey URL directly to the public). =20 If you don't feel this is an appropriate use of your list, that's fine. Of course, I am always eager to hear your thoughts if you wanted to share them. :-) =20 Thanks, Michael Surkan =20 P.S. If it's ok for me to post to your distribution list, what is the best way I should do that? Is there an e-mail address you recommend I use? =20 http://norlug.org/mailman/listinfo/norlug =20 =20
At least he was nice enough to ask.
I turned him down. There are a number of reasons why, but they mostly boil down to this: There is no incentive for us to give Microsoft our time and advice. They could never reciprocate. They're not interested in making the computing world better, they're only interested in making their next quarter revenues. That's fine, I'm not anti-business. But business is business and Freedom is Freedom; they want free beer and I want free speech. I have definite goals in using Linux and helping someone who's bosses (for example) fund SCO contradicts that.
With that in mind, I urge everyone not to help Surkan or any Microsoft middle manager who comes with hat in hand, looking for a free handout. You have better things to do with your time.