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Microsoft Now Suddenly Cares About Privacy Rights, Constitution
After Their Above and Beyond NSA Cooperation is Exposed
by Karl Bode 08:35AM Wednesday Jul 17 2013
As recent leaks made clear, Microsoft was the first in line to participate in the government's PRISM spying program. What's more, the company went above and beyond what was asked of it, not only delivering access to user data, but aiding the government in intercepting Skype communications and even helping the government break Microsoft encryption. Of course now that the program has been exposed and Microsoft in particular has been singled out as a government snooping BFF, the company's going to great lengths to express how concerned they are about government over-reach.

Like the other companies caught up in the PRISM scandal before it, Microsoft is now asking the Obama administration for the right to detail just what kind of information has been asked of it. In a blog post by the company that uses meticulously-crafted sentences to deny much of what Snowden's leaks have clearly illuminated, Microsoft insists they're now very, very concerned about the Constitution:
quote:
The world needs a more open and public discussion of these practices. While the debate should focus on the practices of all governments, it should start with practices in the United States. In part, this is an obvious reflection of the most recent stories in the news. It’s also a reflection of something more timeless. The United States has been a role model by guaranteeing a Constitutional right to free speech. We want to exercise that right. With U.S. Government lawyers stopping us from sharing more information with the public, we need the Attorney General to uphold the Constitution.
Yes, it's true that the government's new snooping laws demand companies turn over a significant amount of data and not talk about it, but it's also clear from leaks in recent weeks that Microsoft went well above and beyond what was demanded of it. That's in contrast to Yahoo, who appears to have tried briefly to fight for consumer privacy rights, well after Microsoft was already part of PRISM. To gleefully help an over-reaching government at every turn and then turn around pretending they're incredibly concerned about user privacy and the constitution (much like AT&T did when they were caught being equally hyper-cooperative) has the disingenuous stink of empty damage control.

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cableties
Premium
join:2005-01-27

Microsoftee

Call me surprised.
360 Microsoft.

Doing 180's on their Xbox One.
Windows 8 needing start button so there it is in 8.1

Some how, Microsoft is the picture of its software: release it broken then patch it later.
--
Splat

kickass69

join:2002-06-03
Lake Hopatcong, NJ

1 recommendation

Re: Microsoftee

Thing is, people wanted the Start Button back with the Windows 7 Start Menu attached to it not just the button.

badtrip
I heart the East Bay
Premium
join:2004-03-20
Albany, CA

1 edit

Re: Microsoftee

Win8 is such a massive turd. It's not that win8 doesn't do things win7 and below did, but MS completely changed how the interface interacts with the user. Why change something that wasn't broken since 1995? In win8 you turn the computer off under a popout "settings" icon! C'mon, now! I had to actually google how to turn off my win8 laptop the first day! I was so frustrated about that.

I wasn't buying a xbone anyways as my xbox360 red ringed after only a few games. My only wish is that game devs start making games work on linux out of the box. If they did that, I'd drop windows 8 like the turd it is.
Rekrul

join:2007-04-21
Milford, CT

1 recommendation

Re: Microsoftee

said by badtrip:

Win8 is such a massive turd. It's not that win8 doesn't do things win7 and below did, but MS completely changed how the interface interacts with the user. Why change something that wasn't broken since 1995?

Because when something has been the same for X number of years, companies feel that they have to change it. It's some kind of unwritten law that keeping things the same is bad, change is good. Even if that change confuses and frustrates people.

Somewhere along the way, Microsoft forgot that the purpose of a computer operating system is to manage the hardware and to provide a base for running software. Windows became an "experience". Using Windows became an end unto itself, rather than as a way to run the software that you buy. Instead of the operating system supporting the hardware and third-party software, now the hardware and third party software support the OS.

Think about it, an OS used to be written for existing hardware. Now you have to upgrade your hardware to make it fit the OS. Fast enough processor, more memory, bigger hard drive, etc. They keep claiming that each version of Windows is more efficient than the last, but each one has higher system requirements than the last. How can version B be more efficient if it needs twice the resources of version A to run?

Not to mention Microsoft's "F*** it" approach to backward compatibility. They seem to believe that everyone who owns a computer is perfectly fine with chucking their entire software collection in the trash and buying all new software every time a new version of Windows comes out. Granted, this affects games more than apps, but even then, there are a lot of programs that won't work on Vista/Win7/8. Just off the top of my head, you can't use Outlook Express on anything past XP. Not that OE is anything great, but it's a Microsoft program and even that won't work on the latest Windows, so what does that say for third-party software compatibility? You can't use any version of Nero Burning ROM less than a specific version of Nero 9, keeping in mind that Nero 7 was the version where it started to become bloatware. Win7 64-bit removes the ability to run 16-bit programs. No problem, since those programs are old and outdated, right? Well, except for all the installers that were made with a 16-bit executable, like most all the Lucasarts games. So even if the program itself will run in 64-bit, you can't install the damn thing.

Of course why would anyone care about old software when they have the glory that is WINDOWS to bask in?

dib22

join:2002-01-27
Kansas City, MO
said by kickass69:

Thing is, people wanted the Start Button back with the Windows 7 Start Menu attached to it not just the button.

Well said... and we would like our windows back as well

Fullscreen8® is great on tablets and televisions... but not so great on a PC.
dra6o0n

join:2011-08-15
Mississauga, ON

Re: Microsoftee

They might as well gave us a Windows 7.1 rather than a 8.
elefante72

join:2010-12-03
East Amherst, NY
Its still not a real start button, it just gets you back to the main metro interface.
In any case windows 8 is the biggest POS O/S release ever from them. Im now starting to thing Bob was a good release

Got the rents a new laptop, and Win 8 lasted 10 minutes. They couldn't even begin to figure it out, even after I showed them. When I thought of the stupid decisions that were made and the more effort it took--except getting to live tiles with ads--I realized just how bad this O/S is.

The good news is because it is SO BAD that Win 7 will be supported for at least another 10 years until hopefully I can get my key apps on Linux or something new and not have to worry. Heck in 10 years PCs will probably be dead, so no matter anyways and I guess that's MSFT point of releasing a tablet O/S for desktop.

As to spying, the US Govt is MSFT biggest customer, so it's no surprise that MSFT does what the boss says.

»bgr.com/2013/06/27/windows-8-1-s···useless/

Note: AES 256, Blowfish, et al encryption can in 2013 allow citizens to have 100% security and private communications, yet almost all of our communications are in public and in the clear. Until that changes it will easy for the govts, criminals, or companies to get at that data...

Karl Bode
News Guy
join:2000-03-02
kudos:42

1 recommendation

Re: Microsoftee

I don't mind the core WIndows 7-esque Windows 8 experience (after I added Start 8 by Stardock start button), but I LOATHE the whole Metro thing. Like somebody duct-taped a dead hamster to my OS. It's such a fractured, bizarre experience I can't comprehend why so many reviews seemed to think it was ok....

workablob

join:2004-06-09
Houston, TX
kudos:4
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 recommendation

Re: Microsoftee

said by Karl Bode:

I don't mind the core WIndows 7-esque Windows 8 experience (after I added Start 8 by Stardock start button), but I LOATHE the whole Metro thing. Like somebody duct-taped a dead hamster to my OS. It's such a fractured, bizarre experience I can't comprehend why so many reviews seemed to think it was ok....

I agree. The OS is great but they flubbed the User Experience.

I have been running 8 at work since RTM with Start 8 and It's as good as if not beeter than Win7.

But they REALLY screwed the pooch on the UI and putting that same garbage on Server 2012 just compounds the blunder.

Blob
--
I may have been born yesterday. But it wasn't at night.
Expand your moderator at work
Angrychair

join:2000-09-20
Jacksonville, FL
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 recommendation

said by Karl Bode:

I don't mind the core WIndows 7-esque Windows 8 experience (after I added Start 8 by Stardock start button), but I LOATHE the whole Metro thing. Like somebody duct-taped a dead hamster to my OS. It's such a fractured, bizarre experience I can't comprehend why so many reviews seemed to think it was ok....

You know why the reviews were so positive... Because reviewers that don't give positive impressions suddenly lose their contacts and credentials to keep getting the stuff they need to review to sustain their living.
b10010011
Whats a Posting tag?

join:2004-09-07
Bellingham, WA
Reviews:
·Comcast Formerl..
Because most are little more than paid shills. But they get paid in getting new hardware/software first. Too many bad reviews and you might find yourself lower on the list of who gets it first.
--
Bellingham Scanner Kicks Ass! »bhamscanner.kicks-ass.org/

Karl Bode
News Guy
join:2000-03-02
kudos:42

Re: Microsoftee

said by b10010011:

Because most are little more than paid shills. But they get paid in getting new hardware/software first. Too many bad reviews and you might find yourself lower on the list of who gets it first.

Yeah I've seen that first hand quite often. Seems like there's way too many brand focused journalists whose entire life seems focused on blowing smoke for one brand. I've yet to see one that thinks this is in any way gross, either.
NefCanuck

join:2007-06-26
Mississauga, ON
Reviews:
·voip.ms
Agreed regarding the Win 8 "user experience"

It's on the new Lenovo Yoga I bought (with no way to downgrade to Win 7 that I can see) and dear god in heaven Win 8 looks like it was programmed for computer users who have trouble typing *email addresses*

The kicker? It still won't help those users...

I mean hiding the way to turn the system *off*??

Bravo MS.... Bravo

and then this whole "let's give the government every byte of user data that we have on them"

NefCanuck

FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

1 recommendation

said by Karl Bode:

I don't mind the core WIndows 7-esque Windows 8 experience (after I added Start 8 by Stardock start button), but I LOATHE the whole Metro thing. Like somebody duct-taped a dead hamster to my OS. It's such a fractured, bizarre experience I can't comprehend why so many reviews seemed to think it was ok....

The metro interface was designed for tablets w/o keyboards where it works ok. But shoehorning it onto desktops was a mistake.
--
"If you want to anger a conservative lie to him.
If you want to anger a liberal tell him the truth."

Steve B
Premium
join:2004-08-02
Auburn, WA
I have to agree, Karl. I do OS upgrades for new features and security. However, this was the first time I absolutely hated the OS and regretted upgrading my Windows machine. I also installed the Stardock's Star8 button. I also added the other software, I forgot what its called, where any Metro apps will open up in a window within the desktop UI. That way, I can avoid leaving the desktop UI all together.

Karl Bode
News Guy
join:2000-03-02
kudos:42

Re: Microsoftee

Let me know if you remember what that app is. The fact it tries to go to metro when I want to view a photo or PDF is another annoying "feature" I've not spent the time to learn how to disable.

Steve B
Premium
join:2004-08-02
Auburn, WA

Re: Microsoftee

said by Karl Bode:

Let me know if you remember what that app is. The fact it tries to go to metro when I want to view a photo or PDF is another annoying "feature" I've not spent the time to learn how to disable.

Its called ModernMix. Go to Stardock's website and take a look.
en103

join:2011-05-02
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
said by Karl Bode:

It's such a fractured, bizarre experience I can't comprehend why so many reviews seemed to think it was ok....

Most reviewers have an interest in seeing PC/Microsoft sales. I.e they work for a company that directly / indirectly sells PC/laptop/tablets and its accessories/apps/services, and want more sales or are afraid to tell the truth due to their company or parent companies relation to Microsoft and its sales.
dra6o0n

join:2011-08-15
Mississauga, ON
Actually the only reason why they go to 8 is to have all the users from 7 having to be forced to pay up to upgrade.

Because microsoft can abandon win7 once later versions of windows comes out, like how XP stopped being supported.

badtrip
I heart the East Bay
Premium
join:2004-03-20
Albany, CA
So they are just putting an icon in the spot you click to get to the metro interface? What a 1/2 ass solution. I absolutely hate metro, it is a jarring transition from desktop in the workflow. Whoever thought up metro for a desktop should be fired.

kickass69

join:2002-06-03
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
According to Microsoft, Windows 7 Extended Support ends on January 14, 2020.

»windows.microsoft.com/en-us/wind···ifecycle
Kamus

join:2011-01-27
El Paso, TX
said by elefante72:

Its still not a real start button, it just gets you back to the main metro interface.
In any case windows 8 is the biggest POS O/S release ever from them.

Oh please... win8 is an upgrade in every respect to windows 7. The only thing they should have done to make it better is get rid of that tablet interface when using it in desktop mode. That i'll concede was a very poor choice. Why would people want big buttons made for fingers when using a mouse?

But other than that, i have no complaints. And besides, in 8.1 they'll finally give people a choice when it comes to that.

btB

@rr.com
said by elefante72:

Its still not a real start button, it just gets you back to the main metro interface.

It certainly isn't a fake start button 8.1. The button is real. What it does not have is a start menu. Anyway, you can always set 8.1 to display the Apps View. I find it hard to believe that Apps View is too difficult for the average user to understand that. If for some reason you cannot comprehend Apps View, install an alternative Start Menu.

I disagree that reviews have been positive for 8. They all have been harsh. Hell, half of reviewers and 90% of the public still think that Metro is just an GUI over Windows 7. The public thinks reviewers are actually in the pocket of Microsoft because Google, Apple, and Linux supporters like to spread their hatred for anything Microsoft whenever possible. Actually, I think it is the opposite. Almost all of the reviewers who cover multiple platforms have been brainwashed to hate anything Microsoft.

You know, I could literally make up anything bad to say about Microsoft and those people would never even question it. In fact, they would all believe it and spread it as the truth.
Rekrul

join:2007-04-21
Milford, CT
said by elefante72:

Heck in 10 years PCs will probably be dead, so no matter anyways and I guess that's MSFT point of releasing a tablet O/S for desktop.

Except that there are a lot of things that you can't effective do on a tablet. Video editing, large games (stuff like Call of Duty, at least not without dumbing it down), word processing, etc.

I have virtually no personal experience with tablets, so last week, my friend brought his Android tablet over to let me play with. What a frustrating, annoying experience that was. He has a whopping 16GB of storage space on it, with no way to add more. He had a couple emulators for older computers/game consoles on it, but we couldn't figure out how to get the Amiga one to work properly. He showed me a little bowling game, which looked nice, but trying to accurately swipe your finger down the center of a 7" screen to precisely aim the ball was a nightmare. He showed me a version of solitaire and it was a royal pain trying to pick up a partial stack of cards to move them, since you only have about 5-10 pixels showing between the stacked cards.

Tablets might be nice for a bit of casual use while you're on the go, but I can't imagine replacing a traditional computer with one. Compared to a computer (excluding Win8), using a tablet's limited interface feels like you're trying to write while wearing boxing gloves.
b10010011
Whats a Posting tag?

join:2004-09-07
Bellingham, WA
Reviews:
·Comcast Formerl..

Re: Microsoftee

said by Rekrul:

I have virtually no personal experience with tablets, so last week, my friend brought his Android tablet over to let me play with. What a frustrating, annoying experience that was. He has a whopping 16GB of storage space on it, with no way to add more. He had a couple emulators for older computers/game consoles on it, but we couldn't figure out how to get the Amiga one to work properly. He showed me a little bowling game, which looked nice, but trying to accurately swipe your finger down the center of a 7" screen to precisely aim the ball was a nightmare. He showed me a version of solitaire and it was a royal pain trying to pick up a partial stack of cards to move them, since you only have about 5-10 pixels showing between the stacked cards.

Tablets might be nice for a bit of casual use while you're on the go, but I can't imagine replacing a traditional computer with one. Compared to a computer (excluding Win8), using a tablet's limited interface feels like you're trying to write while wearing boxing gloves.

I ave to agree with your tablet experience. I got a tablet for my birthday, not a cheap one either, an Asus Transformer TF700.

My over all opinion, tablets SUCK!

Even something as simple as browsing the web is infuriating to the point that I have to turn it off before I end up just smashing it.

I could not imagine trying to do any real work on a tablet.
--
Bellingham Scanner Kicks Ass! »bhamscanner.kicks-ass.org/

fatpipe

join:2011-10-02
Austin, TX

Oh Microsoft, you are such a Whore!

Meh! Microsoft is like a whore that is sorry she got caught boning the neighbor and now she claims, "We were just playing!"

Too little too late Baby! I won't be using Bitlocker Drive encryption on my drives any time soon!

Next!

tshirt
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast

It certainly is possible to be...

...both concerned about privacy and still cooperate "to the fullest extent" (or however the MS legal staff interpreted the requirements of the various FISA orders over time.)

Recognize a very small subset of the 90,000 plus MS employees were even aware of the FISA activity, and that had it been put to a vote (not how any business actually functions, they need to be faster /more efficient than a representive democracy) there likely would have been years of discussions and delays by which time a new version would be out, requiring an entirely new method.....
Kirby Smith

join:2001-01-26
Derry, NH

... dead hampster duct-taped ...

Nice one, Karl.

k
biochemistry
Premium
join:2003-05-09
92361

Still

I still prefer Windows XP.

plk
Premium
join:2002-04-20
united state

1 edit

First nail in Microsoft coffin

I think this deal with the N^A will spell the end of M$ dominance of the world market. I can see China building their own OS and requiring all it's citizens to use it. I would love to see statistics of how it changes in other countries after this. The N^A had to be thrilled about all the bootleg copies of windows around the world.

Will we see China and others firewall off their Internet or start their own Internet? I'll Leave that question for another thread.
Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL

Re: First nail in Microsoft coffin

said by plk:

I think this deal with the N^A will spell the end of M$ dominance of the world market. I can see China building their own OS and requiring all it's citizens to use it. I would love to see statistics of how it changes in other countries after this. The N^A had to be thrilled about all the bootleg copies of windows around the world.

Will we see China and others firewall off their Internet or start their own Internet? I'll Leave that question for another thread.

that will be good for the US as they can't take our jobs when our software can't run on china os

tshirt
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast

Re: First nail in Microsoft coffin

said by Joe12345678:

said by plk:

I think this deal with the N^A will spell the end of M$ dominance of the world market. I can see China building their own OS and requiring all it's citizens to use it. I would love to see statistics of how it changes in other countries after this. The N^A had to be thrilled about all the bootleg copies of windows around the world.

Will we see China and others firewall off their Internet or start their own Internet? I'll Leave that question for another thread.

that will be good for the US as they can't take our jobs when our software can't run on china os

WHAT JOBS if we have NO access to that market?
There is a reason MS sells a very cheap version of windows in ASIA, and then works with those gov't to slow piracy rates, (while most like providing language specific NSA backdoors to their gov'ts in return)
You only need half of those (soon to be) billions of computer users to pay a few dollars a year to add up to a lot of money. Boeing and MS and a lot of other US companies will gladly trade some of the profit for a chunk of the market.

meeeeeeeeee

join:2003-07-13
Newburgh, NY

I hate to say it...

But ever since Bill Gates discovered girls and ran off to sprinkle his billions on the world, Mickeysoft seems to have lost all sense.