CyberTech Rambler

October 4, 2005

To Brian Jones of Microsoft: Please don’t start personal attack

Filed under: Uncategorized — ctrambler @ 11:36 am

Dear Brian,

I am disgusted when I read the second last paragraph in your blog “Some background information on the reasons we have moved to an XML format as the default in Office “12” “:

“[On the Massachusetts ETRM affair] The official himself had also been the CEO of an open source company just before taking office. So, just before he left office (yes, he just took off), he fired off his shot gun with this new policy while running out the door without really thinking through all the implications. Starting to get a picture of what happened? It’s actually even a bit uglier that than, but I won’t bore you with the details.”

While, the first sentence is fair disclosure. The rest of the quote is an uncalled for personal attack on Formal Secretary Kriss (Your pathetic attempt at portraying this is not a personal attack by not naming the official is just plain disingenuous, given the fact that Microsoft named him in one of its letter to the state. [Go to Microsoft Letter to Massachusetts on ETRM and search for the “depart”].

In my opinion, the State of Massachusetts handling on this affair is more than open. I doubt it is not up to American standard of Open governance, but it is definitely more transparent than most other governments. Their reason for not choosing Microsoft’s XML Schema (Data “Sovereignty”) is well thought, documented and argued for. Rather than addressing the that issue head on, you had chosen, repeatedly, to reframe the question in a different, unrelated way.

You claim that the situation is uglier, please advise us. We want your side of the story. Others (IBM and Sun, to name a few) had chosen to tell their side of the story, and I think its only fair that Microsoft should present their side of the story. Through your blog, particularly as exemplified by the paragraph which the quote originated from, Microsoft obviously had a different view of the process. Moreover, you cannot claim that the situation is uglier *without* explaining how it is. Otherwise, this is an unsubstantiated slur on everyone involved in the process.

Nobody, including me myself, is well placed to make any judgment on this going affair. Let’s just document the whole affair as-it-is, put forward all our views and let future historians be the judge.

And by the way, interest in this Microsoft vs Massachusetts affair is waning, it would just had just gone away if you haven’t stir it up again. It is interesting to note that Microsoft had kept mum and have not prepared a robust official response. Rather, they had chosen to use less official channels such as blogs to air their view. I note with interest that you choose to attack Secretary Kriss after he left office eventhough you had plenty of time to do so when he was in office. Does this signal another round of lobbying by Microsoft in the hope that the new secretary overturn this decision?

Sincerely,
CyberTech Rambler

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