Microsoft has confirmed reports that it is equipped to train Best Buy employees in the fine art of trashing Linux -- or rather, the "important differences between Linux computers and Windows computers." Less than a week ago news broke that the software giant was "indoctrinating" Best Buy workers in preparation for the launch of its much-anticipated Windows 7 operating system.
The employee who leaked the training material has joined Linux advocates in these accusations. The training material avows, "Linux does not support many common applications and online services," including iTunes, Zune, Quicken, Photoshop, and Office 2007. It also supposedly debunks the claim that Linux is safer than Windows.
Microsoft further asserts that "few" cameras, iPods, MP3 players, printers, and scanners are compatible with Linux. It also claims that video chat is not available on all major IM networks, and games like World of Warcraft are incompatible with Linux -- though many (including WoW) can be played via WINE. The list goes on, and you can view about eleven slides here.
Specific content aside, the slides are repetitious and encourage trainees to regurgitate Microsoft's message via a quiz. I'm no Joseph Goebbels but I believe both are common tactics in disseminating propaganda. No matter your stance in the Windows versus Linux debate, the training material is certainly full of half-truths.