Whilst Chaks reads this and considers a response, let me appologize to CJ! (please read the article for more info)
Whilst Chaks reads this and considers a response, let me appologize to CJ! (please read the article for more info)

Firstly check out the previous post for Neowins editor’s reply, where he answers honestly questions put to him and his site.

So now we move onto the whole purpose of this series of posts to ask Chakkaradeep (a reporter for Neowin) what he meant by his implication of OpenSUSE having a unique feature which could not be found in other distros, and the reasoning behind his choice  for OpenSUSE. (as a Microsoft products champion’r IMO)

But before we delve further into this topic, I and Openbytes would like to appologize to CJ and anyone who was offended by me capitalizing the letter W in Neowin.  It appears the subtly of that was lost on CJ (please read their comment on “the usual SUSEpects post) as it appears that this capitization is cause enough for CJ to call me a hypocrite.  Sorry CJ, I make sure I make future posts a little more clear in the future, just for you.   Its funny this evenings theme (which I started over on Twitter) was “Cave quid dicis, quando, et cui.” which if you dont speak Latin, translates “beware what you say, when, and to whom”  I think in both CJ’s case while they thought they were being clever and Chaks when he thought Id blindly accept his OpenSUSE implication, is very relevant.

So Chaks has given the following responses to my repeated challenge when he returned this evening:

“I tweet my personal experiences.If you dont like them,ignore.People like to do what they like.This is getting silly!”

Id certainly agree there, why not just answer the question or admit that OpenSUSE doesnt offer anything unique and explain why (as a Microsoft products champion) you chose that particular distro.

He then went on to post:

The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer’s or Neowin’s view in anyway”

Talk about getting silly! What was the point of that?  The question wasnt about his personal experiences per-say it was the motives and justification behind them.  As I say to anyone who tries (IMO) to fudge away an answer in these circumstances, why post on a public forum if you dont want to stimulate debate?  I can quite believe Neowin has no motive and the views are your own, thats why I asked YOU the question, I want to know the justification for your personal experiences.  Another “convenient” little fact here, recently Chaks posted about the Apple Mac…to report a fault with it.  He was quite happy in this instance to discuss the fault (with me I add) was this a coincidence and no inference should be drawn here?  Ill let you decide.  I make no judgement on this.

So then he adds on Twitter:

There you go,my last tweet was for everyone, especially for @_Goblin

Thanks for that, but why didnt you use that sentence to simply justify yourself and end this?

He then posts:

“Yes,keep it a healthy discussion,people will start discussing with you”

Now im sorry, but I can neither explain or answer that since I dont know what he means.  Maybe if chaks responds here he can explain.

And finally he posts with (at time of writing this)

This is going weird,as I said If you dont like, ignore and move on,please dont spam”

So you were happy to discuss your “faulty Mac” but not this?  OK. Ill let other people decide whats going on here.  In addition to Chaks appearing to be in desperate need of experience of anything other than Microsoft products, it also appears he needs to learn what spam actually means, below is a snipit of a definition from: http://spam.abuse.net/overview/whatisspam.shtml

Spam is flooding the Internet with many copies of the same message, in an attempt to force the message on people who would not otherwise choose to receive it. Most spam is commercial advertising, often for dubious products, get-rich-quick schemes, or quasi-legal services. Spam costs the sender very little to send — most of the costs are paid for by the recipient or the carriers rather than by the sender.”

I dont see how any of that applies to me, but maybe if Chaks chooses to reply then he can enlighten me.

Now we move onto arguably the most important piece of information to come out of this.  According to Marshalus (Neowin) the site recieves review/trial/gift (or whatever you want to call them) which they apparently send back or give away.  Now firstly I would ask, why is this not made clear?  If I had recieved gifts from say Canonical what would you think of my opinion if I hadnt declared it? and furthermore how do we know that these review products are infact “given away” Who are they given to?  Whats the procedure for documenting the recipient?  Does Chaks recieve any of these items?  All these are questions which need to be answered, because without disclosure IMO it sheds a very different light on the opinion and writings of supposedly “impartial reporters” we’ve seen this gift subject before havent we?

Please visit this blog, where the blogger has also recieved a gift to “give away or return” and read his story.

“The original email from Edelman made it seem more like a gift, which is why it think there was this big uproar about ethics and integrity.” http://laughingsquid.com/microsoft-sent-a-free-laptop-with-windows-vista/

Now what I want to know is, how many sites are receiving these loans/gifts? Why in all the articles I have read on Neowin was this not mentioned?  How do we know where these loans/gifts actually end up?

It would be arrogant of me to think that Ive found one of a small number of sites that receive these gifts/loans, so the only other alternative would be that its far more widespread (IMO)  Can we ask for disclosure from Microsoft (and indeed any other company) how much is spent and how widespread this activity is?

It could be suggested (to any site dedicated to a certain companies products that receives gift/loans) that there is no incentive to be impartial.  I wonder what would happen if a site dedicated to Microsoft products posted a favorable review of a Linux distro or Apple Mac?  Its an unfortunate question to ask because no matter what the truth, for me I would always be dubious of a poster writing favorably about a gift/loan they have recieved for free (especially if they dont declare it)

I wonder if Chaks can answer if he recieves freebies?  Since we’ve seen an example of it in the past havent we?  I refuse to mention that persons name but that particular person (and the allegations) are featured here, on Boycott Novell and also frequently mentioned on Microsoft Watch in the comments sections.

Whilst we wait for a possible Chaks right of reply, Ill try to help him (as he may even now be frantically searching the net for a unique feature of OpenSUSE) “OpenSUSE is a unique Linux distro because………..”

“Its the only one that uses a green reptile for its logo” – there you go Chaks, since you seem to rely on help from others to answer for you, I thought Id help you out aswell.  I await your reply.

Goblin – bytes4free@googlemail.com

UPDATE – It appears that I am now getting hits from the Neowin site (a forum post) Since Im not a subscriber there (and no intent to be one) I am unable to read what is being said, ergo reply.  I give Chaks the oportunity to respond openly.  If he is commenting on that particular thread and not here, I put it to him that it is because he cant answer my questions directly.  This goes back to what I say all the time.  Free and open speech.  If people want to comment and challenge me I welcome that, if they do it behind “closed doors” then I see that as a little bit immature, and is what you saw when you were at school when you went to whisper with other children in the corner of the playground. (IMO)

UPDATE 12/04/09 – I awoke today and checked the site expecting one of two things.  Either a torrent of abuse and baseless counter argument/claim by many except Chaks or the dreaded silence.  People are certainly interested because the hits from Neowin are still registering.  I live in hope that someone can answer for Chaks since he seems unable to.  Talking of which our intrepid reporter has now “gone private” on his Twitter.  Sounds like a reporter who has a conviction in his own opinion, doesnt it?  Where have we seen this before?  Remember the Andre Da Costa incident involving the free laptop?  What happened?  He went “private” IMO after he was unable to answer the difficult questions put to him.   Unfortunately for Chaks (and the many “reporters” who have IMO a half knowledge) I wont start the challenge until I have at least one “friend” within the persons Twitter.  So Chaks rest assured your Twits are invisble to my _Goblin twitter, unfortunately they are not invisible to me.  A fruitless excercise Chaks and IMO does nothing to strengthen your already weak and poorly thought out posting.

I still count Chaks as a sucess With his Twitter private no casual reader can be misled by implications like his one about OpenSUSE.   Accountable reporting Chaks, its a lesson you could well do learning!