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Linux Business Government Politics

Malaysian Open Source Procurement Policy Amended 18

Ditesh writes "The Malaysian Open Source Masterplan, which favoured open source over proprietary public sector procurements when all other evaluations are equal, has been reversed to a purely 'neutral technology platform' policy due to 'negative reaction towards open source (from the IT market)'. This comes after months of hard lobbying by Microsoft Malaysia. This reversal is certainly unfortunate, as the policy has helped raise comfort levels of other policy makers worldwide in pursuing similar goals. The Malaysian Open Source Alliance has published a position statement asking for clarification of the term 'neutrality', and has received support from MNC's, local companies and free software developers in Malaysia."
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Malaysian Open Source Procurement Policy Amended

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  • Currently Microsoft is playing whack a mole with Open Source, they try to stop it wherever it crops up. Thing is, it's cropping up more and more frequently.

    In related news, Ballmer plays punch the monkey.
    • by timjdot ( 638909 ) *
      Well put! Funny to see how some people are stil thinking like its 1999. Loking through some state government bids recently I same up with a new one for the lawyers - willful negligence. Also for not-for-profit insurance companies who are legally bound to refund profits to the state insurance coffers and such. A very probably legal case can be made as anyone buying proprietary alternatives when Open Source is clearly available is potentially commiting willful negligence. I suspect once the lawyers start to u
  • Bad thing... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by El Lobo ( 994537 )
    It's a bad thing... the day when a goverment (or any company or person for that matters) prefers a software piece over another just becuase it's Open Source or Commercial. The criteria to select a software must be: quality, usefullness (is that a word?) and , why not price, but NEVER political and isiological (idiotogical) reasons.

    What to use Linuz? Or Windows? Use them, but please let the politics out. Think for your self. And think logically. And technically.

    • by Per Abrahamsen ( 1397 ) on Friday December 08, 2006 @11:11AM (#17162256) Homepage
      Obviously the license needs to be considered when making purchases. Who has the right to use the software? At home or at work? For what purposes? And are we at the mercy of a single vendor for service and upgrades?

      There is nothing "ideological" about preferring a license that gives your organization the freedom to optimize the deployment and maintenance of the software for both current and (unforeseeable) future needs, over a license that put limitations on use and/or the future evolution of the product.

      It is simply due diligence on the part of the decision makers.
    • by Shambhu ( 198415 )
      If I understand you correctly, you're saying that a practical assessment of the competing software products should be made and there is no place for emotions in such an assessment. The problem with dismissing so-called political, or even ideological, arguments is that there is often (some would say always) much more to a particular software package than the software itself.

      You have to evaluate the whole package for a particular use, and if you are setting broad government policy you must consider many other
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ajs318 ( 655362 )

      The moment merely obeying the Law of the Land requires a piece of proprietary technology -- any kind of proprietary technology, be it closed-source software or a patented widget -- then the Law has been privatised via the back door.

      You surely don't need telling how and why that's a bad thing.
    • OK, let's do that (Score:2, Interesting)

      by zogger ( 617870 )
      Let's look at it from a tech standpoint, and a logic standpoint. From a tech standpoint, closed source means you have just signed up for having someone keep their hands on your wallet forever, and have turned over long term control of your data to some for-profit vendor who can hold you up for more money down the road, and should they go out of business, you are then screwed as your application gets less and less useful, but your data stays locked in their format and system. Security issues? Too bad, now yo
    • The criteria to select a software must be: quality, usefullness (is that a word?) and , why not price, but NEVER political and isiological (idiotogical) reasons.

      Being free vs commercial is not a political matter. In fact mostly detractors of FOSS utter that word. We're not choosing between two equivalent solutions because of sympathy for a hippie. They are two different things from a technical (as in: "can't recompile for a new arch", or: "can't get support for an obscure FOSS project") point of view.
    • It's a bad thing... the day when a goverment (or any company or person for that matters) prefers a software piece over another just becuase it's Open Source or Commercial. The criteria to select a software must be: quality, usefullness (is that a word?) and , why not price, but NEVER political and isiological (idiotogical) reasons.

      Governments exist to serve the interests of their people; if that includes increasing the freely-usable software available to those people, and if using F/OSS for government proj

      • Look at my Journal (Score:2, Informative)

        by Daengbo ( 523424 )
        Take a look at the article I translated in my journal showing how the ICT Minister of Thailand reversed the FLOSS policy recently. There's also a translation of the open-letter response from the Thai IT community in there.
    • by Bert64 ( 520050 )
      Which is why they said "when all other things are equal"...
      They're saying if an open and proprietary piece of software are equal on quality, usefullness and price, then the open one should be chosen.

      Aside from that, there are many valid business reasons to choose open source:

      Support - support can be gotten from local vendors (it makes sense for a government to spend money locally instead of to a foreign company, if they spend locally they get a portion of it back in tax and contribute to their own local eco
  • i, having lived in asia have a bit of prospective about why this is happening.

    Basically the IT market is telling malaysia, hey this sorta thing is going to put your workers out of business. This is being as a disportionate amount of IT firms, programming farms, and support centers are locate in these asian former brittish colonies for their language profeciency, and low wages. whilst open source as a hole, is dominated by other reigons. this has brought malaysia to question wheather free software is good fo
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by LinuxLuver ( 775817 )
      I've spent some time in Malaysia and live in the A/P region. What you say fits with my own experience. It's a shame that Dr. Mahathir Mohammed had to resign. He was able to think freely and design effective policies while governments in Australia and New Zealand and elsewhere just follow the same consultants who (mis)advise government globally. Dr. Mahathir's handling of the 1998 Asian meltdown by restricting sp[eculative currency flows through exchange controls, was contrary to the "received wisdom" and wo

  • Anything to try and retain business. Of course any other company would do the same, but then again any other company isn't Microsoft .

  • Malaysia....for this policy to change, something was traded. No doubt about that. :-)

The best book on programming for the layman is "Alice in Wonderland"; but that's because it's the best book on anything for the layman.