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Cogs can think.

I'm a mere, tiny, insignificant cog in a whole clockwork of stupidity.
The little cog that wanted to break free, I am.

Explanation

This is going to be a very boring blog post. You can stop reading this now if you're not interested in OSNews. In this post I will explain everything about the "dispute" between me and Kelly McNeill, managing editor of osViews.com.

OSNews is anti-Mac

All this started with an email (in forwarded nature due to me forwarding it from my iBook to my Linux box) from Kelly to the osnews-crew mailinglist, in which he claimed that OSNews was deliberately having an anti-Apple stance, and he listed the last four Apple newsitems in a big and bold font. He then listed a few newsitems in that email that should've been posted on OSNews.

I kindly replied, explaining why the newsitems he listed in that email weren't posted. The 'Amazon top seller's list'-item was deemed inappropriate because a top seller's list doesn't mean anything, especially if it's from a site that is mostly US-only. The item on Apple's 64bit breakage *was* posted on OSNews, just first as an item they broke 64bit support, and shortly after in another item that they had fixed it. The iPod patent thing has little to do with operating systems; other than that, Andrew submitted a similar item the day before (I wouldn't have posted that item either, but hey, Andrew has the right ti post whatever he wants, I'm not responsible for that. It's called diversity and that's a good thing). Finally, I didn't post his last suggestion because I've grown weary of analysts; they usually say a lot of fantastic stuff, but it rarely turns out. Other than that, th eitem was about hardware, not about OSs.

So, a decent justification of why I dismissed those items. Yet, the tone was set. OSNews "goes out of [its] way to only report negative things about [Apple]". Right. That's probably why me, David, Andrew and Eugenia all use Macs.

Then, Kelly started submitting the exact same newsitems he posts on osV to OSN. Now, I turned almost all of them down. While I for each item obviously had specific reasons to put them down, the general reason was that osV is a very biased site. Almost all content on osV is anti-MS and pro-Apple. Also, most of the items aren't newsworthy anyway, pro-Apple/anti-MS or not. A few examples:

Example I
Example II
Example II
Example IV

Now, obviously, not all items on osV suck; that might be because some of the items I post on OSN, gets posted a few hours later on osV. It's just that the items that Kelly submits to OSN, suck. I cannot help it.

He then got another crazy idea in his head. I'll get to that shortly.

Original content

During this, another thing played. osV, just like OSN, sometimes publishes original content. Now, that's a thing I applaud. However, the original content on osV is, well, quite often very low. Two times in a row, osV published very bad articles, full of factual errors and mistakes. The most notable one was about BeOS-- this article got submitted by Kelly to OSN-- and Andrew, not very knowledgeable about BeOS, put it up on OSN's frontpage. A few hours later, when I read the article, I was shocked. It was so full of errors, it just wasn;t funny anymore. Anyway, I wasn't the only one who saw that, as many people in OSN's comment's section thought the same. As a consequence, the article was removed from osV. I let the item on OSN stay up, and asked the people to simply start a discussion on BeOS and Zeta. This happened.

Another article from osV with a lot of factual errors made it into OSNews (about QNX, I believe). This was the drop for me. I imposed a direct ban on any original content from osV; I did not want any more of that crap on OSN. I think you guys can agree with me that that is the wisest thing to do, hmm? It's better to prevent than to heal, as we Dutch say.

Another crazy idea

Now, let's get to that crazy idea I just mentioned. As I said, Kelly started submitting dozens of items (he even counted (!) them, ~100!), and almost all of them were turned down by me, because of mostly similar reasons as I mentioned in my paragraph on that first email he sent me.

This gave him a crazy idea. He IMd me, saying that I was turning down his items because they came from him. As tempting as that may sound, that obviously wasn't true. I turned his items down, like I turned down a gazillion other items, because I simply didn't found them important enough to be published on a *general* newssite about operating systems. It's like someone in Cupertino letting one rip constitutes as news, according to Kelly.

So, a few days ago, when he again submitted a whole batch of items, I decided to email him, carefully explaining why each of them was turned down. Obviously, to no avail. He had already made up his mind: I turn down newsitems just because they come from him. A large email discussion followed, in which he accused me of being biased, he accused me of purposefully turning down items because they came from him. As "proof", he stated that some items I had turned down, a few days later got published when they were submitted by someone else. Naturally I asked him to present me with examples; up until now he has failed to do so.

Kelly's views

In that large email discussion, he explained why osV is per definition less biased than OSN, because osV publishes newsitems as soon as they get submitted a few times by readers. And since OSN does not do that, OSN is biased. So, I asked him if there is any form of control over what get's submitted to osV's front page; suprisingly, he said that he decides what goes up and what doesn't. Most sane people will already see that this makes osV exactly the same as OSNews; with the only difference that OSNews has 140 000 readers, and 5 times as many editors than osV.

So, I presented him with an example. I know out of experience that Kelly is very active in fighting the opinion that Macs are expensive. So, I said to him "So, if I were to submit under 5 different names a piece that confirms that Apple stuff is more expensive, you'd agree with it and post it." Not surprisingly, he responded: "If Macs were indeed more expensive and it was submitted 5 times then yes, that would be a newsworthy news item."

So, there I nailed him. If Macs are expensive or not is a completely subjective matter; to some, they are, to other, they aren't. As with anything that costs money, something's 'expensive-ness' is dependent on a multitude of factors, including income, perceived value of the goods, and much, much more.

Yet, his bias that Macs are not expensive stops him from posting any articles claiming otherwise. You get how completely fcuked up that is, don't you?

The aftermath

The aftermath is the email I posted on my blog here. I sincerely felt insulted by all his accusations. However, the reply to this email literally is completely out-of-this-world. A few quotes:

When did I insult or make any false accusations toward you?

You DID in fact choose to not publish many of the links I submitted because they came from me. If it bruises your ego too much to admit that, don't bother. It's pretty obvious to the both of us, and now since you've decided to include the rest of OS News editors in our conversation, I'm sure it has become glaringly obvious to them as well.


Somehow our friend decided that I admitted to not posting his items due to the items coming from his hand... I could post all the emails on this blog, but you can take my word for it. I obviously did not admit to anything, as there is nothing to admit to. I did, however, without any form of secrecy, explained why I put a ban on osV's original content (he even tried to lie about the articles that were removed from his site due to their factual errors).

I simply pointed out 4 links on OS News that showed a trend in the style of publishing links of which I had a problem with and you took it personally. I even apologized if you took it the wrong way. However, you took it personal and decided that you weren't going to publish any of the links I sent in.


Again, he promotes his own sick ideas as facts. Very, very disturbing.

I could go on for another ten pages about this, but I think most of you have seen enough.

---

Now, as that email I published on my blog already explained, I feel truly offended by this guy's sick ideas. I put so much effort into making OSN a balanced, fair, fun place to visit-- and then, when some guy comes along, promoting his own sick assumptions as fact, putting words in my mouth I never said, playing the supreme being and innocent victim, it just hurts.

I can take criticism-- when it's founded. I surely will admit any mistakes I make. I am arrogant sometimes, and I can be very stubborn-- but anyone who's involved with me for a longer time knows that I *will* swallow my pride if someone truly points out errors or mistakes on my part.

I'm trying to put this issue to rest now. OSN is bigger, badder, and more fun than it has ever been nowadays. There are five honest people working on making OSN the best place for news on the alternative computing scene-- and many people can attest that we're doing a good job. Of course we have our deficiencies, but we're not afraid to admit them.

As long as your critique is founded.
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10:20 PM, by Anonymous Eugenia

These are the exact same problems I had with Kelly for the last 3 years. After I left OSNews, he obviously put *you* into test by submitting crap articles that he believes are great, and if these were not published he would accuse you of things. Predictable.

Kelly lives in his own world. And as much as he accuses osnews of being biased, I can accuse him twice as much for being an Apple ass-kisser. His off topic posts on ipods/itunes degrade osViews IMHO (when seen as an OS-related site), because these mp3-related posts are more in numbers than BSD or X11 or OS posts in general. Also, he runs osViews and yet he has never run anything else beyond MacOS and Windows. His user relationship with Linux is spotty, and he has doesn't care on getting experience with other OSes like BSD or Solaris or Zeta. In his world, there is only Mac and Windows pretty much.

Kelly's target in life is simple: promote Apple in every way, fight anyone who doesn't comply. Kelly should have been a hired Apple evangelist, he obviously is much more fanatic about that company than any other Apple employee alive.    



10:31 PM, by Blogger Thom Holwerda

And besides all this, it is quite obvious that he is jealous of OSNews' success.

It is also obvious that he is trying to make OSN look bad so he can attract more readers to osV.    



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