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LinuxWorld Editorial Machinations 498

Posted by Hemos
from the as-the-worm-turns dept.
James Turner writes "The editors of LinuxWorld Magazine have been fighting a quiet war with the publishers (Sys-Con Media) for half a year, trying to get hack-journalist Maureen O'Gara purged from their site. Well, with O'Gara's recent vile attack on Pamela Jones (which I won't give any more free publicity by linking to), enough is finally enough. In my latest blog, I've basically told Sys-Con that it's either her or me. I suspect, given the amount of page views O'Gara's tripe brings to the Sys-Con sites, that they'll choose her." James isn't the only one either.
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LinuxWorld Editorial Machinations

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  • Shame (Score:4, Insightful)

    by gotpaint32 (728082) * on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:12AM (#12476337) Journal
    Although journalism should be an unbiased thing, journalists are still part of a buisness whose incentive it is to make profit. Supply and demand. So do we blame the sensationalist writer, or the thousands of sheep reading the articles and demanding more. How are such articles from O'Gara tolerated in a trade mag like this. You would think the linux community would be more educated and less susceptible to this type of journalism, then again noting the anonymous cowards on slashdot, i take that back...
    • Are you saying that readers of LinuxWorld are demanding more trash articles from O'Gara? Funny, I though most Linux people think of her as a paid figurehead of MS / SCO / etc. and that her articles are bogus...

      What I find MORE interesting is that the editors for LinuxWorld are going along with her crap. This anti-linux anti-OSS bias in a Linux magazine is mind-boggling. What are they thinking? Maybe a letter campaign to the advertizers would be effective.
      • Re:Shame (Score:5, Interesting)

        by hal9000(jr) (316943) on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:42AM (#12476621)
        RTFA. The editors are aparently trying to get rid of O'Gara. The problem is that their management seems to make the final decision, which is too bad.

        You can help by sending emails to the publisher asking for her removal and drop your subscription and don't visit the site if they don't. Remember, if the publisher is keeping her around because she is driving dollars, you and the linux community can fire back by walking away with those dollars.
        • Better way (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Groo Wanderer (180806) <charlieNO@SPAMsemiaccurate.com> on Monday May 09, 2005 @03:59PM (#12481392) Homepage
          As I said below, there is a better way. Don't bitch at MoG or Sys-Con, that will only inflame their semi-masochistic sense of persecution. Instead, write their advertisers.

          If 100 people write polite letters to the sys-con advertisers politely, and I do mean politely, informing them that their support of Sys-Con, MoG and others is costing them your business, it will hit Sys-Con where it hurts.

          I write for The Inq, I know how the game is played. If you want attention, polite and cogent letters that hit them in the wallet are the only things that work.

          Flaming them only hurts your cause, clicking on them brings them more money. It is pretty obvious that they are out for hits at any cost, that is how their bills are paid. Cut that out and you end the games, play into it, and it gets worse.

          If you notice, there is nothing on Groklaw about it, that would be playing the game MoG wants you to play. Don't feed the trolls, cut off their food instead.

          I personally wrote several people I know about it, and lets see what becomes of it. Do the same. If someone wants to make a list of Sys-Con advertisers and post it below, great. If you want to hunt down that and contact info, better still. You can find the contact info on most vendor's web pages under contact us or press links. Be polite and firm, and tell them their wallets are at risk. Have fun also.

          -Charlie
    • I think it's worth mentioning here that the copyright system punishes and rewards in such a way that that promotes hype over substance. I think it's unfair to "blame society", while at the same time holding this system of punishment and reward in place. In a copyright society, it is always the information that turns the most heads that gets the most money, where in a non copyright world the information that has the most value is rewarded the most.

      Of cource I know people would say, well Linux Journal is c
    • Re:Shame (Score:5, Insightful)

      by burnin1965 (535071) on Monday May 09, 2005 @10:04AM (#12477505) Homepage
      There are many journalists and media sources who do not give in to the profit first mentality, i.e. democracynow.org [democracynow.org], freespeech.org [freespeech.org], pbs.org [pbs.org]. Granted some of the messages from these outlets can be just as hair brained and off base as the paid shills, but they are out there none the less.

      I will agree that for profit journalists and media bring in more cash for themselves and have the resources to make more noise and be in more peoples faces. However, the attention they get is not due to demand for their product no more than rubber neckers at a train wreck create a demand for more train wrecks.

      And in case you haven't noticed, those same for profit journalists, media, and their corporate backers with deep pockets are funding a massive attack on the linux community because the community threatens their for profit revenue streams. The level of education and susceptibility of the community have little to do with the unethical actions of those who would attack the community.

      burnin

      (doh, forgot to post anonymously, maybe next time)
  • by zogger (617870)
    ...to have another job lined up first before this sort of "line in the sand" comment to your employer. Of course this being the net, you and your other disgruntled editors can just start your own zine pretty easily.
    • He doesn't get paid. He works for free. So do all the other Editors, except for Maureen O'Gara. It says so in the last link in the summary (which you were supposed to read):

      A posting to one of O'Gara's sites, along with SYS-CON, the parent of LinuxWorld Magazine, which unfortunately pays O'Gara for her spewings even though they don't pay the editors and authors for their magazines, lists all kinds of personal information about Jones including... ...The irony is that someone recently offered to hire me awa
  • Some background (Score:3, Informative)

    by Sanity (1431) * on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:19AM (#12476413) Homepage Journal
    Can be found in this [corante.com] article.
  • by JPelorat (5320) * on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:20AM (#12476417)
    Apparently the Dictionary Search extension for Firefox, when you do a context menu search on the word 'hack', gives you this page:

    http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=maureen%2 0o'gara [reference.com]
  • by Craig Maloney (1104) * on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:20AM (#12476419) Homepage
    I've picked up and flipped through LinuxWorld magazine on several occasions. On all occasions I put it back right where I found it. LinuxWorld Magazine looks like yet-another journal trying to capitalize on the Linux hype. With a writer like Maureen O'Gara still on the payroll, their fragile credibility crumbles. James, if there's anywhere that will have you, run with a quickness to it.
    • by czei (121516)
      Point One: Maureen O'Gara doesn't write for LinuxWorld, but another Sys-Con publication. People just assume because she writes on Linux topics and works for Sys-Con, that she writes for LinuxWorld, which isn't the case.

      Point Two: No one on the LinuxWorld editorial staff is paid, its all volunteer because they love Linux.

  • O'Gara Needs to Go (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jcm (4767) * on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:24AM (#12476454) Homepage
    I am amazed that Sys-Con would continue to allow Maureen O'Gara to write. They must be desperate for the controversy that her articles cause, because I really see no value in them after reading a couple of them this morning. The worst article [sys-con.com] , and the one in question, tries to paint quite the negative picture of Pamela Jones' sanity and lifestyle. Instead it leaves me questioning O'Gara's ethics and sanity. Quite the smear campaign on the part of O'Gara.

    So, Pamela Jones could perhaps be a 61-year old Jehovah's Witness who lives in a not so nice apartment. What does that have to do with anything? O'Gara finishes the article hinting that perhaps it is all stolen identity, though she didn't present a news story that would lead you to that conclusion.

    I spent the first 23 years of my life as a Jehovah's Witness. I do not believe I am scarred in anyway because of it. If anything, I think I have a lot more respect for my fellow human beings and in general have a deep desire to be a good person. Sure the methodology of learning about the religion is a bit like brainwashing, but they have their religious beliefs like most religions. They just are more strict about the belief and the punishment if one does constantly violates them. If you are going to have faith, I think most religious people would appreciate the JW's strictness.

    Did the religion make me paranoid? No. Does it take a lot of your time? Yes, but if you are going to devote your life to being religious then it probably should take a lot of time. Personally I appreciated science too much to put so much faith in religion. I still believe that if any religion has it right though, it is probably the JW's. They read the bible and do what it says. They refuse to pick up arms against another human, they punish sinners through disfellowshipping (total cut off until they have repented of their sins), and they make worship the primary thing in their life not allowing anything else to come first. There are obviously more devoted JW's than others, but that is true of any religion.

    So, after reading the crap that passes for journalism from O'Gara, I personally can't wait to see her unemployed. Perhaps she can go get a job at the National Inquirer.
  • by bmo (77928) on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:28AM (#12476495)
    It's been down since somewhere around 2am.

    --
    BMO
  • by spludge (99050) on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:36AM (#12476562)
    So I just read the article (thanks previous poster for the link). I can't believe that Sys-Con would publish this trash. What sort of lowlife reporter is O'Gara, that she would stoop to ripping up someone like that in an article? There isn't a single thing about linux in there, it's all about Pamela Jones' personal living arrangements (with her home address!) and her religious leanings. There is no story there at all.

    I think if I read this article on the site without looking at the other articles I might have though I was reading some of the lowest form of tabloid.
  • by John Hasler (414242) on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:41AM (#12476607) Homepage
    Some people here appear to be assuming that there is some truth in the O'Gara article. It seems much more likely that everything in it originated in her imagination.

    It's barely possible that she investigated a Pamela Jones: the wrong one.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      My thoughts are in line with yours.

      1. When GROKLAW first started, it was basically a collection of court documents. PJ represented herself as a paralegal who had collected the documents because she was interested in the case and placed those documents on the internet because others were interested in the case.

      What supports the paralegal position was that she obviously had access to PACER, and only a paralegal or equivalant would know where to get the documents. The implication that she was currently wo
  • by poena.dare (306891) on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:49AM (#12476678)
    Apparently, no one has realized yet that Maureen O'Gara is actually Jeff Gannon/Gucket in a dress.
  • by WillRobinson (159226) on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:54AM (#12476732) Journal
    from http://www.groklaw.net/comment.php?mode=display&si d=20050507193419581&title=&type=article&pid=311460 #c311509 [groklaw.net]
    PJ's take lets move on:

    Authored by: PJ on Sunday, May 08 2005 @ 10:45 AM EDT
    I agree. The person who originally suggested you all
    go and look used a Long Island, NY, IP address, and
    guess where you-know-who lives?

    If we make the above assumption, we may deduce that
    this was done for one of the following reasons:

    1. to get you guys mad so you would act like "extremists" so
    MOG and the mob can attack you again;

    2. to get me mad so I sue her for slander, thus revealing
    where I really live;

    3. to set me up for the next "suicide" -- over my
    "distress"
    over "losing" my privacy. I have had some, including one
    ex SCO employee, suggest this latter scenario as being
    plausible. It seems not everyone in Utah thinks the
    "suicides" were suicides.

    Just in case 3 is true, let me state for the record that I
    couldn't care less what MOG thinks of me, even if what
    she wrote were true. I also don't care what anyone else
    thinks. I'm proud of who I am and the choices I've made
    in my life. I don't even care if Groklaw came to an end
    tomorrow. I have no ambition, never have, didn't do
    Groklaw to become famous or rich, so I truly don't
    care. I would never commit suicide over anything, because
    I think it's wrong, and I surely wouldn't over anything MOG
    wrote, for I hold her in the deepest disdain, when I'm not
    laughing at her.
  • by dominux (731134) on Monday May 09, 2005 @08:57AM (#12476760) Homepage
    mods, please can you nuke the copies of the article posted with addresses and phone numbers.

    From the Google cache of the original page:http://66.102.9.104/search?q=cache:t5F0lsD5UW sJ:jdj.sys-con.com/read/83267.htm+read/83267.htm&h l=en&lr=&client=firefox&strip=1

    Exclusive: Who Is 'PJ' Pamela Jones of Groklaw.Net?
    Pamela Is A 61-Year-Old Jehovah's Witness Who Lives In A Shabby Genteel Garden Apartment In Hartsdale, New York
    By: Maureen O'Gara
    May 7, 2005 09:15 PM

    A few weeks ago I went looking for the elusive harridan who supposedly writes the Groklaw blog about the SCO v IBM suit.

    The now-famous opinion-shaping open source leader Pamela Jones, aka "PJ," doesn't give conventional face-to-face interviews. Never has, near as anyone knows. All communication is virtual. Only one person in the world has ever claimed to have met her - in the pressroom at LinuxWorld in Boston complete with a Pamela Jones badge - and described her as a fortyish reddish-blonde who giggled a lot. [address removed], NY[Photo: May 7, 2005 12:37 PM - [address removed], New York. The last known address of Pamela Jones, as the superintendent of the building calls it, Ms. Pam Jones.]

    Oh yeah? Wonder what cold crème she uses.

    Pamela Jones is a 61-year-old Jehovah's Witness who lives in a shabby genteel garden apartment in desperate need of an interior decorator on a heavily trafficked commercial road at [address removed], New York. [removed] is in Westchester and Westchester is IBM territory.

    See, even though Groklaw treats cell phones like they were Kleenex and changes its unpublished numbers regularly, one number it left with a journalist led to this flat and - wouldn't you know it but - some calls from there had been placed to the courts in Utah and to the Canopy Group so obviously this just isn't any Pamela Jones.

    Pamela has lived in apartment [removed] for 10 years at least, according to the super, who says he's watched people move in, have children, and the children marry and move away.

    Now, this isn't your usual anonymous New York apartment. It's practically a self-contained village where the super goes for the old ladies' groceries when there's snow on the ground and people know each other's business.[Photo: May 7, 2005 12:41 PM - [address removed], New York. The last known address of Pamela Jones.]

    But the super didn't know much about Pamela except that she had a computer, worked at home (maybe sometimes) for a lawyer, was "paranoid" - his word - and "sensitive to smells."

    He remembered how he was cleaning paintbrushes one day and she came running down the stairs screaming "Fire."

    She was also missing and had been for weeks.

    Nobody there knew where she was.

    She had up and disappeared one day, and the super was worried about her. He said her son had dropped by and he didn't know where she was, and that some strange man that "nobody knew," as the super described him, had tried to get into her apartment while she was gone - the Medeco lock she had had installed on her door - something nobody else in the complex seemed to feel a need for - was more expensive than the door. But, as it happened, the super said, she had just sent in her rent in an envelope postmarked Connecticut. Like an episode out of "Where in the World is Carmen San Diego," the trail led to [address removed], Connecticut, 24 miles away. Sure enough, parked in the driveway was Pamela's car, just as the super had described it, a dark gray '90s Japanese number with a bunch of Jehovah Witness pamphlets tossed on the backseat.

    The woman at the house, Barbara Jones Sharnik, told a disjointed story. She didn't know Pamela, Pamela hated her, Pamela wasn't there, Pamela left her car there because it got bumped, Pamela left her car there because she left town, and so on.

    Afterwards Barbara called the cops, and then the cops called the number we left with her and the cops said that she was Pamela
    • I must say that i had yet to actualy read the artical before today , This is not journalism its a cheap dirty smeer campaign .
      As of today i am blacklisting all of O'Garas Advertisers in protest , that will allow me to stay informed and not fund this filth.
      I suggest we all do the same .

      Personaly i dont care what Pamela Richards gets up to in her free time
      She does alot of good work and has Ethics , and for that i respect her.
      O'Gara ethics are on par with the Given reasons for the recent Iraqi conflict.

      If i read a linux news site i want News on linux , I dont want to have to read tabloid grade personal attacks on individuals .

      O'Gara will continue to get press and fame over this and the only way we can send a message (as i see it) is to blacklist her sponsers and make that fact known to the sponsers.

    • by Linux_ho (205887) on Monday May 09, 2005 @07:13PM (#12483404) Homepage
      What strikes me the most about Maureen O'Gara's smear job was how much she jumped on the "Jehovah's Witness" thing. I don't like to think of myself as intolerant, but I admit to having some prejudice against JWs.

      I've read through a few issues of the Watchtower, and had decided that the only people who could find it interesting are people who want their opinions spoon-fed to them by an authority figure. So until now, for me, finding out that someone is a practicing Jehovah's Witness would have been an effective means of diminishing my respect for that person. Until now.

      PJ has shown what kind of person she is through intelligent analysis, tireless research, and candid admissions of even the most minor error (of which there have been very few from what I've seen). She has demonstrated unimpeachable integrity, pursuing the facts wherever they might lead.

      I find it amusing that my reaction was the opposite of what Maureen O'Gara intended. Instead of lessening my respect for PJ, Maureen's allegations (whether or not they are true) have made me realize the wrongness of my prejudice towards Jehovah's Witnesses.

      I am grateful to have been reminded that one should judge people by getting to know them instead of by the categories they seem to fit. At least MOG's abandonment of integrity and common sense had one tiny positive effect. I'm sorry that this contribution to my education had to come at PJ's expense.

      Best wishes, PJ.
  • Fair play (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 09, 2005 @09:03AM (#12476823)
    CONTACT US

    SYS-CON Media
    135 Chestnut Ridge Road
    Montvale, NJ 07645

    Departments: Customer Service
    Phone: 1-888-303-5282
    Fax: 201-782-9600
    Advertising
    Phone: 201-802-3020
    Fax: 201-782-9601

    Accounting / Finance
    Phone: 201-802-3063
    Fax: 201-782-9601

    Production
    Phone: 201-802-3031
    Fax: 201-782-9637

    SYS-CON Events, Inc.
    Phone: 201-802-3066
    Fax: 201-782-9651
    JDJStore.com
    Toll Free: 888-303-5282
    Phone: 201-802-3000
    Fax: 201-782-9600
    Editorial
    Phone: 201-802-3040
    Fax: 201-782-9638

    Credit and Collections
    Toll Free: 888-679-7266
    Phone: 201-802-3063
    Fax: 201-782-9601

    Web Services
    Phone: 201-802-3050
    Fax: 201-782-9600

    Circulation
    Phone: 1-888-303-5282
    Fax: 201-782-9601
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 09, 2005 @09:29AM (#12477109)
    Linuxtoday editor thinks so

    Editor's Note: Screed Attempts to Silence Voice Against SCO
    http://linuxtoday.com/infrastructure/2005050900926 OPBZ [linuxtoday.com]
  • by DingerX (847589) on Monday May 09, 2005 @09:33AM (#12477150) Journal
    Sorry guys, I know very little about this stuff. But poking around the Google cache, I found this here [216.239.59.104].

    The article begins:
    Maureen O'Gara writes: SCO CEO Darl McBride claimed during the company's Q1 earnings report Wednesday evening that Pamela Jones, a.k.a. "PJ," the now-famous, albeit shadowy, voice of Groklaw, the web site that follows the SCO v IBM suit and has become a festering thorn in SCO's side, is "not who she says she is." He didn't say who she is - if she is a she - but he did say that SCO has been "digging" to discover the true identity of its nemesis and claimed that, from what it has learned so far, the situation is "much different than advertised" and that "all is not as it appears.


    So, I wonder where she got the idea to "attack the person, not the argument".

    A real gem is later:
    By definition, journalism is nominally "objective," even as practiced by Dan Rather. There is nothing objective about what Groklaw says or the reaction it gets. Opinion maybe, but not journalism.

    Sentence fragments aside and obligatory "pot calling the kettle" comments aside, some "opinions" are back by evidence, at which point they become "arguments". Others remain merely the flatulence of mind.

    Seriously guys, if someone's writing crap like that, she's clearly on a payroll. If you pretend to some sort of journalistic integrity, you don't work with them. The outcome of this can only be Mr. Turner's resignation; this is like the bouncer of a tittie bar writing the manager, threatening to quit because the girls are prostitutes. Who do you think is profiting from the arrangement?
  • Shameful (Score:3, Interesting)

    by oceanclub (654183) <paul_moloney@hot m a i l . com> on Monday May 09, 2005 @09:49AM (#12477359) Homepage
    Hmm. Whichever side of the argument you come from, that article was shameful rubbish. It's the kind of thing that even a freshman gossip magazine would baulk at publishing (and I know, I edited one once). I've no problem with righteous vitriol against opponents, but was just grubby stalking.

    P.
  • Advertisers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by r_benchley (658776) on Monday May 09, 2005 @09:52AM (#12477396)
    If people really want to see O'Gara gone, they should contact the companies that advertise in Sys Con Media publications, and let them know that you will not read any Sys Con Media publications while O'Gara is writing for them. If you contact Sys Con Media directly, they'll be overjoyed at the amount of free publicity that's being generated. If enough people contact the advertisers and let them know that the situation is unacceptable, they'll pull their ads. It's pretty hard to run a magazine with no advertising revenue.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Two before. Three After.

      Lets do a 30 day boycott of any advertisers that fall within five pages of an article written by Ms. O'Gara.

      Imagine the chaos this would cause....

      Yea, I'll advertise in your magazine as long as I'm not within five pages of that woman!
    • by doublem (118724) on Monday May 09, 2005 @11:02AM (#12478028) Homepage Journal
      To: sales@barracudanetworks.com, press@barracudanetworks.com
      Date: May 9, 2005 11:10 AM
      Subject: boycott of your products due to SYS-CON

      I'm writing to inform you I am engaging in a personal boycott of all your publications due to your affiliation Maureen O'Gara, who is
      currently stalking the Groklaw author Pamela Jones.

      O'Gara's most recent "article" consisted of personal information about Ms. Jones, including her home address and disparaging comments about
      Ms. Jones' living conditions.

      The article contained a number of offensive comments about the Jehovah Witnesses, under the guise of "accusing" Ms. Jones of being one.

      I will not purchase any products or services from any firms who do business with SYS-CON while a paranoid, delusional pseudo journalist such as Maureen O'Gara remains on your payroll.

      I am writing your advertisers to inform them of this decision, so they are aware that their use of your site for advertising purposes is
      costing them business.

      From: Michael Perone
      To: *********
      Date: May 9, 2005 11:24 AM
      Subject: RE: boycott of your products due to SYS-CON

      Michael Perone
      Call me 650 292 1523

      To: Michael Perone
      Date: May 9, 2005 11:42 AM
      Subject: Re: boycott of your products due to SYS-CON

      I'm afraid I can't call you during the day today, as I am at work and need to keep my line available for client calls.

      I have noting against Barracuda Networks aside from your advertising with a company that employs a stalker disguising herself as a journalist.

      You can see a copy of the article in question at
      http://www.clientservernews.com/ [clientservernews.com]

      The above link does not contain the photographs of the home of Pamela Jones that ran in other online publications running the article.

      So long as Maureen O'Gara is employed by SYS-CON, I will not purchase any products from any company that advertises on their sites or in their publications. If SYS-CON fires Maureen O'Gara or a company ceases advertising with SYS-CON sites and publications, then I would have no reason to avoid their products.

      From: Michael Perone
      To: ***********
      Date: May 9, 2005 11:46 AM
      Subject: RE: boycott of your products due to SYS-CON

      We don't emplyy this person according to our records.

      To: Michael Perone
      Date: May 9, 2005 11:52 AM
      Subject: Re: boycott of your products due to SYS-CON

      I know you don't employ Maureen O'Gara, however, you advertise on web sites owned and operated by SYS-CON, who does employ her. So long as your advertisements run on SYS-CON owned sites, and Maureen O'Gara remains a SYS-CON employee, then I will not purchase your products.

      This is nothing personal, I'm informing all of the companies that advertise on SYS-CON sites of the same thing.

      Matthew Miller
  • it appears that Maureen O'Gara would be more qualified; after all, PJ hasn't published MOG's home address and that of her mother. Perhaps MOG's miffed that PJ has torpedoed virtually every article she's written. So, now it's gotten personal.

    I stopped looking at LW's web site long ago specifically because of MOG's poorly researched pieces and her bitter style. Why they allowed her to publish details of a journalist's personal life when it's entirely possible that there really were threats to that journalist's life is beyond me. Now, of course, if anything does happen to the woman (PJ or not) whose mother lives at that Connecticut address the cops there will certainly have something to say to MOG. And lawyers will be involved. What if publication of those addresses led to someone being killed?

    PJ's articles stand on their own merit without regard to the age, gender, religion and lifestyle of the writer. MOG just can't stand it that she is constantly upstaged by someone who shows her to the world for the twit she is.
  • by tonymercmobily (658708) on Monday May 09, 2005 @10:23AM (#12477669) Homepage Journal
    Hello, This is my response to Maureen. I also published it here [freesoftwaremagazine.com].

    I am upset. If you write quite a bit, you learn a rule: you must never, ever write when you are upset. In such a state, clarity simply goes and what you thought was a masterpiece in truth was in fact... a pile of incomprehensible, misspelled crap.

    I am going to do it anyway. I shall add a disclaimer: I am going to publish this article "as is" - no spell check, no Dave guard which turns my atrocious English into... well, English.

    I am deeply upset and saddened by O'Gara's article on Pamela Jones at GrokLaw. To the point that I am absolutely speechless. I mean it. I don't know what to say.

    I don't share O'Gara's ways nor approach. She seem to hate Groklaw, and the secrecy around this web site. Hatred is not a nice nor constructive feeling; it doesn't help anybody, and in fact it often goes against you (as it's going against Maureen right now); unfortunately, we all experience it and we all act out our anger sometimes.

    This "pill" is here for two reason. The first one, is to ask you to... to forgive Maureen O'Gara. What she did was vile; but it was out of frustration and anger. She is a human being; she has made a great mistake; and she will pay for it. I ask you to forgive her because she is unforgivable, and it is right now that we all have to take out the best of ourselves and feel that even the unforgivable is... well, forgivable.

    The second, more important reason why I am writing this (dangerously) unedited "pill", is to ask the question: why is Maureen's article unforgivable? I asked this to myself. In a way, you can even see where she is coming from: there is this wonderful site which is helping the demolition of SCO's absurd case, and it seems unlikely that a single individual could possibly run it all on her own. It is also true that if Groklaw were run by a bunch of IBM's lawyers, well, it would loose at least some of its credibility. I think I have reasons to believe that this is exactly what Maureen wanted to find out. Again, then: why is Maureen's article unforgivable?

    Because there is a chance (and for a lot of us that's a fat chance) that Groklaw is run by a wonderful 40 or 60 year old woman or man who is a Christian or a Jehovah's Witness or a Buddhist, who believes in what she does to the point that she is willing to put herself in a dangerous position by doing so. Yes, I said dangerous, and I mean dangerous. There is a (big) chance that Pamela is in fact a woman who lives her everyday life, has a job, does what she has to do, and runs Groklaw thanks to the support of the whole Free Software and Open Source Community.

    This paragraph is for you, Maureen: if that were the case, Maureen, you hurt somebody beyond belief. You hurt somebody so much, that I can only hope you will never, ever find out quite how mad the damage was. Because if you did find out, you would never be able to forgive yourself.

    Well, that's a big weight out of my chest. But I am not quite finished yet. I want to talk about myself for a minute.

    I am an ex-cracker born in Italy and living in Australia. When I was 18 and 19, I cracked quite a few computers and nearly went to jail for it. My phones were tapped, and only an amazing series of coincidences saved me. I didn't go through a trial, but a lot of people around me did. I never destroyed a system, but I did read files I should have read. If one day I made somebody very powerful really angry, I can see how they would be able to dig in my past and find all sorts of things that I would find "embarrassing" at least, compromising at worst. They could pick on my past as a cracker, on my religion (I am a Buddhist), on the way I live my life (I don't shop and yet I am not stingy), or on another million things.

    Maureen, this is another paragraph for you. I am sure you haven't been a cracker, but if I were to look very, very thoroughly into your l

    • > ...there is this wonderful site which is helping
      > the demolition of SCO's absurd case, and it seems
      > unlikely that a single individual could possibly
      > run it all on her own.

      She doesn't. It is no secret that many Groklaw members assist her.
  • by Elwood P Dowd (16933) <judgmentalist@gmail.com> on Monday May 09, 2005 @10:25AM (#12477695) Journal
    But that's ok. I'm not basing this off of anything in O'Gara's story, because I'm not going to read it, but PJ does enough to make herself look bad on her own website. Her tone is often just on the edge of snide and unprofessional. She is extremely partisan.

    But she keeps publishing true shit. O'Gara can trash talk as long as she likes (I think Jehova's Witnesses are idiots too.) but that won't change whether PJ is providing timely factual information. Sure, she might be completely batty. Doesn't matter. She's batty and she's still more on top of it than Ms. O'Gara. Show us that she's a habitual liar (like... O'Gara) and then maybe she'll get less credit. Don't care if she's a religious nut.
  • by Groo Wanderer (180806) <charlieNO@SPAMsemiaccurate.com> on Monday May 09, 2005 @10:53AM (#12477959) Homepage
    Syscon has lots of advertisers. Call them, write them, and politely tell them that you find their support of Sys-Con so repugnant that you will not longer buy their products. Be polite and be firm, don't rant, don't threaten.

    Make the connection that advertising on any Sys-Con related publication will lose your business. A hundred of these, and they will think twice.

    I write for The Inq, and on a given story, I get ~5 letters out of 20K reads. If any advertisers get 100, they will sure as hell sit up and take notice. Spend the time, write up why you find MoG and Sys-Con so repulsive, and go from there. The more articulate you are, the more effect you will have.

    Happy hunting, I have already pulled out the rolodex, and I have sent a few off to some choice individuals. If you know anyone, write them, if not, you can always look things up on the web site's contact or press info pages.

    -Charlie
    • by dcam (615646)
      I have emailed a number of the advertisers about this. I got back a response from Devon IT:

      David, thank you for your email.

      Devon IT has received many emails regarding the articles written by
      Maureen O'Gara, editor-in-chief of Maureen O'Gara's LinuxGram. We have
      reviewed and voiced our concerns regarding the editorial content of her
      recent article, "Who Is 'PJ' Pamela Jones of Groklaw.Net?" directly to
      SYS-CON. We have encouraged them to stop distributing articles which
      contain personal attacks and private in
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 09, 2005 @10:59AM (#12478004)
    I am Quatermass who fairly regularly posts comments on Groklaw. I do not usually post on Slashdot, but I have a few words to say about Ms. O'Gara's article.

    I do not know whether the "facts" alleged in Ms. O'Gara's article are correct or not, and whether or not she (or whoever supplied her the information) is describing the correct PJ or not.

    For the sake of argument, in this post, I will assume that Ms. O'Gara is describing the correct PJ (if she did not, that makes her O'Gara's article even worse in my view).

    If you boil down Ms. O'Gara's article to the essentials the "facts" alleged about PJ are this:

    1. Ms. O'Gara doesn't like PJ's residence

    2. Ms. O'Gara doesn't like PJ's car

    3. Ms. O'Gara doesn't like the locks on PJ's apartment (Ms O'Gara then criticises PJ for these locks, but then goes on to also criticise PJ for having strange men apparently trying to break into her apartment - rather an odd and self-contradictory position don't you think?)

    4. Ms. O'Gara alleges that PJ has been involved in business with her son.

    5. Ms. O'Gara alleges that PJ has a fear of being stalked, and criticizes her for this (at the same time PJ tells us that PJ is being pursued if not stalked by Ms. O'Gara herself, as well as two strange men apparently trying to break into PJ's apartment - again, another odd and self-contradictory position, don't you think?)

    6. Ms. O'Gara says PJ is older than Ms. O'Gara thought. (Well more fool you O'Gara, PJ never claimed to be any particular age, so who cares what O'Gara thought PJ's age was?)

    7. Ms. O'Gara implies criticism of PJ's religious affiliation. (so what? Who cares what PJ's religion is)

    8. Ms. O'Gara notes that PJ lives within a few miles of IBM's headquarters (without mentioning so do about a million or more other people too)

    9. Ms O'Gara alleges that PJ has a brother with an expensive apartment.

    10. Ms O'Gara says she questioned PJ's mother and didn't get clear answers. (So what?). I'd also point out that if PJ is 61, then PJ's mother must be in her 80s or 90s

    Well, none of the above, have anything at all to do with the validity or otherwise of PJ's writing. PJ's writing stands for itself, and everybody should judge it on that basis.

    The majority of the above, when striped of implied criticism are not particularly unusual - and not one is divergent with any fact that PJ has told us about herself.

    The attack on PJ's age, car, religion, housing and brother, are purely gratutious personal attacks. All play to the lowest common denominator and people's prejudice. I really do not care what O'Gara thinks of PJ's car or house.

    The self-contradictions in O'Gara's article abound, some of which are noted above.

    I note that somebody else on Slashdot has alleged that O'Gara's information comes from SCO's private detectives seeking PJ. I do not know if this allegation is true or not.

    I would note however the following:

    1. In January 2003, O'Gara published an article about SCO's plans to monetize their IP allegedly in Linux. This was two months before SCO sued IBM. This was six months before SCO announced their Linux IP licensing program. This was long before SCO had made any public statements about their plans for licensing Linux, or alleged infringements in Linux. So where did O'Gara get this information from?

    2. On September 18th O'Gara published an article claiming that SCO would sue IBM for a fraud claim, in Monterey, by putting SVR4 code (as opposed to SVR3 code) into AIX5L. [Maureen O'Gara misnames the UNIX versions in her article).

    At the time that this was written, the only court document that mentioned fraud, and the AIX 5L was *sealed*, SCO's supplemental memorandum on discovery. This was filed with the court, without permission apparently in August, and properly filed on 13 September 2004.

    We have not seen this document, but we know that it exists, because IBM's reply memo has recently been unseale
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Quartermass wrote:

      1. In January 2003, O'Gara published an article about SCO's plans to monetize their IP allegedly in Linux. This was two months before SCO sued IBM. This was six months before SCO announced their Linux IP licensing program. This was long before SCO had made any public statements about their plans for licensing Linux, or alleged infringements in Linux. So where did O'Gara get this information from?

      Securities laws prohibit purchases and sales of securities on the basis of material non-pub
    • Well, he's anonymous, but from the writing style and thorough detail, I'd say that this is certainly sounds like Quatermass from Groklaw.

      It occurs to me that if O'Gara really is a sock puppet for SCO, that would certainly explain the venom toward PJ and Groklaw in her articles...
    • Darl has done no such thing.
      However, less than one month later, O'Gara did.


      So, has anyone ever actually seen these two characters in the same room at the same time?
  • You'll Like This Bit (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Master of Transhuman (597628) on Monday May 09, 2005 @11:16AM (#12478189) Homepage

    After the "bozo sues open source" story last week from O'Gara, I sent an email to SugarCRM, whose ad was running next to the story. For those not in the know, SugarCRM is an open source CRM suite that is highly regarded in the CRM market. I figured they might like to know that they were advertising in a journal that is constantly attacking open source while claiming to be about "Linux Business News".

    Well, their marketing person got back to me and said they don't run ads on Linux Business News - only with Sys-con's LinuxWorld site.

    So I wrote back explaining that I just checked and the ad was right there, and described the ad.

    She got back to me saying that they didn't even KNOW the ad was running on that site, as they only had a contract with Sys-con to run on LinuxWorld - and she would be checking their ad rep at Sys-con about it.

    So it looks like Linux Business News is running ads unbeknownst to the companies involved (either that or SugarCRM never understood their contract). I find that somewhat bizarre. Is there some business benefit to LBN running ads without the knowledge of the companies involved?

    • Is there some business benefit to LBN running ads without the knowledge of the companies involved?

      Absolutely! Most advertisers request a minimum number of impressions for a placed AD. Putting an AD on multiple sites will increase the number of impressions.

      Is SYS-Con defrauding advertisers*

      * unfounded and unresearched claim (C) MOG 2005

  • PJ is 61 (Score:3, Funny)

    by dtfinch (661405) * on Monday May 09, 2005 @11:23AM (#12478244) Journal
    I knew it. I tracked her down like 6 months ago but wasn't sure enough it was her to post it. She's a really great girl. I have a lot of respect for her.

    I guess Linux is ready for grandma.
  • by Facekhan (445017) on Monday May 09, 2005 @12:17PM (#12478903)
    LinuxWorld should offer to fire O'Gara if their subscriptions rise by x amount in 5 days.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 09, 2005 @12:20PM (#12478928)
    Reads the same both ways:

    OGARA GO

  • by valdis (160799) on Monday May 09, 2005 @12:37PM (#12479117)
    OK, I don't know, nor do I care, if PJ is really a 61 year old Jehovah's witness or a 98 year old monk living in a grass shack on Okinawa.


    If I had been Maureen O'Gara, if I had found out this "truth" about PJ, I'd have backed away very quietly and carefully and not said a thing about what I found. It's bad enough when Darl is fuming and venting because he think some IBM front ruined his SCOsource venture with their fronted website.


    Now Darl has to admit that he got bested by a single Jehovah's Witness who had hit beat on both active neuron count and morals....

God doesn't play dice. -- Albert Einstein

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