The Register attempts to outdo Dan Rather
The Anti-Idiotarian Rotweiller has a great fisking
of this Eurobabble
from the Register. (Good enough of a piece that I felt compelled to add the Rottweiler to my permanent Blogroll!) His piece is a very nice piece of work, please go read the whole thing...
Done? Ok, good! I'll continue now...
The sad part is that this isn't a one time idiotic piece from the Register. Nope, time and time again, you see items like this.
It is really hard to take a publication like the Register seriously. About 75% of it seems reasonalbe tech industry news, but that last 25% is just waaaay out there in left field. Especially anything to do with Microsoft or the US. Its like they take out their pocket protecter, lay down their PDAs, and immediately becoem some sort of hellfire and brimstone streetcorner preacher, standing on a soapbox, decrying all that is wrong with the world. (Which would typically be some combination of Microsoft and the US, according to the Register.)
Just in the last week of stories, I can find the following.
- SSL defeated in IE and Konqueror An excuse to slam on Internet Explorer.
- Experiences at a Firm Hostile to Free Software Basically, a long rant about working at a "Microsoft Shop" (i.e. a Tech Environment where Microsoft products are commonly used.) by someone who is an avid Opensource (GNU/Linux) advocate.
- MS 'Software Choice' scheme a clever fraud The title speaks for itself.
- Sacked 'Blog Martyr' speaks to The Reg Which gives them the excuse to use the phrase "thanks to America's constipated "journalism ethics"..."
- WorldCom accounting disaster doubles I was expecting to see some cheap shot about US Business climate, or the dangers of Unfettered Capitalism. Nope. SUre enough, another cheap shot at Microsoft: "It's not illegal to maintain a cash reserve; Microsoft, for example, exhibits considerable pride in the gargantuan pile it has stored up for rainy-day needs."
- Web pornographer hacks bin LadenThis is their take on the "Porno Patriot". Of course, they find a way to imply that the "Living the American Dream" is equal to Pimping your wife on the web.
- 'Safe' web still wide open - Windows sleuth Relatively unbiased, until they get to the second to last paragraph, where they throw in this nice quote: "As an example, the FBI could insert exploit code onto its "Amerithrax" Web page  in order to track down visitors who attempt to use SafeWeb to anonymously read about its investigation into the U.S. anthrax attacks of October 2001, say the authors. Nothing like using the FBI, and American law enforcement agency as a convenient boogeyman.
- Attacking Nimda-infected attackers "Does it matter that we wouldn't be susceptible to Nimda or Code Red if IIS had been designed and shipped in a more secure manner? Isn't Microsoft liable for selling a faulty product?"
- Whither Exchange users? Basically a long article talking about how MS Outlook is going to go away, and listing all the ways that their non-microsoft competitors have them pinned in a corner.
- Trio of bugs bite MS Content Management Server Yet another reason to trumpet a problem with some piece of MS software.
- Win32 API utterly and irredeemably broken Could they make at least a token effort to hide their biases?
- Morpheus bundles McAfee.com info in P2P client This doesn't sound like a microsoft slam, does it? Oh, wait. nevermind. They used the last two paragraphs to slam Hotmail's virus scanning. God forbid that a free web based email service run by microsoft doesn't provide perfect virus protection. Anyone relying on a free email service as their only protection from viruses is probably dumb enough to be using AOL, and thus wouldn't need Hotmail in the first place.
- FBI plays cyber-fear card again FBI as boogeyman, again.
Mind you, this isn't by any emans a definitive list of all their bias. No, this is only out of the articles I looked at from the last week. There would probably be more, except that when I attempted to do a search on their site for "Microsoft", their search engine apparently blew up. That search is still running, 2 hours after I originally mashed the Go button. (I'm not that slow of a typist, there was a bit of Bloggus Interruptus involved) If you are going to attempt to pass yourself off as a publication for IT experts, shouldn't your website work? Where the heck was Quality Assurance on this one?
I can say that all of the stories by I read by Computerwire
were pretty much free of this kind of bias. But then, those appear to be from some sort of news service, like AP for the IT world. But it is disingenuous of the Register to have half the stories as actual news stories relatively free from bias, when the other half is shoddy editorializing, attempting to pass itself off as real journalism. Either treat it as news, or as editorial commentary. You can't mix the two together, lest you end up with the biased, hack journalism well known by the readers of the New York Times, or the viewers of Dan Rather.
(P.S. Thanks to Sasha Castel
for making me notice the Rotweiller in the first place. I have yet to figure out why I'm in the same category with him on her blogroll, but I take my association with him as a definate compliment!)