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Thread: Tux on TV!

  1. #1

    Default Tux on TV!

    Watching the BBC 6 o'clock news tonight (the UK version), I was pleasantly surprised to witness what I see as a 'tipping point' in worldwide Linux recognition. There was an item about the imminent release of Windows 7, but unlike the emissions of years ago surrounding the Vista release, which largely consisted of nothing more than a frenzied full-tongue slurp from Microsoft's backport department, this time there was a much more cautionary tale being told. The BBC referred to the 'disaster' of Vista, and mentioned how Windows now had other systems to compete with. Through a cloud came flying the expected Apple logo, and then lo-and-behold, along came Tux, as the voiceover added 'free Linux systems' to the list of the opposition, after which came Google (Linux again).

    It may be only a small thing, but this simply wouldn't have happened even three years ago. It was all Windows blah blah blah, with the occasional token Apple reference thrown in. There are many people who have never even heard the word Linux (evident from a recent discussion on a popular UK newspaper blog), so just a tiny reference like this lodging in people's subconscious is the sort of thing that can have a considerable impact when repeated over time.

    Not so considerate were Channel 4 News, who ran an extended report mentioning Apple and Google at the start, but then filling it with screenshots and an interview with the Managing Director of Microsoft UK. Part of the report was itself contained inside a window on a mock-up of the Windows 7 desktop, which served as nothing more than an extended advert for MS. They did go on to suggest competition would be coming from Apple, Google and cloud computing in general, providing proof in the form of the Daily Telegraph who have apparently switched to web-based services. Even so, it's a different story to a few years ago. I just hope tomorrow's news items aren't saturated with reporting of queues at PC stores on Oxford Street, which is the usual lame media offering on these occasions.

    How's the media treating the Windows 7 launch in your own country?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Sydney, Australia

    Default Re: Tux on TV!

    The Australian channel SBS carried the same report, and my reaction was the same as yours: Linux mentioned at last! Pity it was because SBS are too poor to do their own stories, but better than nothing...

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  3. #3

    Default Re: Tux on TV!

    I saw both the same UK broadcasts - and I have to admit I was slightly disappointed with the BBC one. Not with the BBC, but with the fact that they felt the need to pronounce the inverted commas around Linux, then say "which is a free operating system" or words to that effect.

    Are people really that out of touch?

    [...fails to pause mid train of thought to consider infinitely more philosophically defensible possibility that it is in fact me that's out of touch, not everyone else...]

    I mean maybe I just grew up escaping this, because my dad is a coder, so I've always been around computers. But I'm just shocked that enough people really haven't even heard of it that they feel it necessary to treat it as an indulgent lapse into jargon.

    They don't start the business news with "And there are these things called 'interest rates'", even though probably an equivalent proportion of the population could actually coherently tell you what an interest rate was, because they realise they'd sound like condescending twonks.

    [slightly drunk post... sorry ]

  4. #4

    Default Re: Tux on TV!

    The Beeb are really pushing the boat out now. (Or should that be the 'U-boat'?)

    BBC NEWS | Technology | Ubuntu readies the Karmic Koala

    Bit of a random musing this, but sadly I'm increasingly believing that there will be no large-scale switch to Linux amongst regular users until the day people are reassured that they can 'pay for it', what with retail therapy and consumerism being the populist pursuits of our times. Perverse, but true.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Tux on TV!

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