> [AndrewLeonard - Cul[Packet]
> I Want My MSMTV
> Microsoft and MTV built a browser
> ghetto to shut out Netscape. There
> goes the neighborhood.
> MTV should be ashamed of itself. For
> a mess of pottage, the cable network
> is selling the Web's soul. In cahoots
> with Microsoft, MTV is helping to
> turn community creation into a
> proprietary process.
> Blame the browser wars. Along with a
> passel of other well-endowed
> corporations, MTV cut a proprietary
> deal with Microsoft in August that
> restricted access to special features
> of its MTVOnline Web site only to
> Internet Explorer 3.0 users.
> So if you visit the "Choose or Lose"
> subsection of MTVOnline under the
> auspices of Netscape Navigator, you
> arrive at an overdesigned, GIF-heavy
> page with a bald message front and
> "To participate in MTV's live Choose
> or Lose Convention coverage download
> Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for
> Windows 95 now."
> Navigator users are blocked from an
> MTV chat room and lose access to a
> Java-esque ActiveX "control" that
> allows them to read an interminably
> slow scrolling slate of email
> messages on Choose or Lose topics.
> To be sure, the inducements may
> seem like peanuts compared with
> free subscriptions to The Wall
> Street Journal, or access to ESPN
> SportsZone, other bribes
> Microsoft is using to win new IE
> 3.0 users. And the chat room
> access isn't all that exclusive -
> I was able to enter the room
> using regular Internet Relay Chat
> software. But so what? It's the
> principle of the thing.
> and MTV We're talking the AOL-ification
> are pursuing of the Web. Microsoft and MTV are
> a profoundly pursuing a profoundly
> bumble-headed bumble-headed approach that
> approach that misunderstands everything the Web
> misunderstands stands for. The beauty of the Web
> everything is its cross-platform,
> the Web hyperlinked structure - its
> stands for. openness. In contrast to other
> forms of virtual community such
> as MUDS, or discussion areas such
> as Usenet or IRC, the Web does
> not require the mastery of
> specific programming languages or
> sets of interface commands, which
> tend to create insular
> communities of experts. The Web
> has shoved that insularity into
> the deep background by
> simplifying its requirements to
> point and click.
> Yet Microsoft's bottom-line
> aspirations propose to reverse the
> Web's evolution and force it back
> into exclusivity, essentially
> slamming the door in the face of all
> non-IE users.
> Has Bill
> locked Granted, Netscape has not been
> you out? innocent of trying to win the market
> to its own platform. One can even
> Vent make the case that Netscape's own
> your spleen. proprietary HTML extensions - the
> The latest constitute the ultimate original sin
> post to Culture in the browser business. But
> is Netscape-style differentiation is a
> "Convolution can far cry from excluding the
> be Fun." competition's users from any access
> by Andrew at all.
> (aleonard) And this particular instance of
> community bifurcation is made all the
> more galling by MTV's choice of the
> Choose or Lose site as a test case.
> The entire Choose or Lose campaign on
> PacketChat: MTV is sold to viewers partly as a
> Chat here. public service - a gesture of
> selflessness by MTV on behalf of the
> civic life of our community. MTV,
> whether you believe the network or
> not, is making the claim that it is
> important for America's young people
> Subscribe to to know what is going on in the
> PacketFlash, political arena. It becomes just a
> for Packet news bit more difficult to buy into the
> illusion of MTV's public-spiritedness
> when the network starts restricting
> access to chat rooms based on which
> browser a would-be policy discussant
> might be using.
> No one at MTV was available for
> comment by press time. But Microsoft
> was adamant in rejecting the charge
> that it was contributing to community
> annihilation. Welcome to "creative
> marketing," Microsoft-style.
> "It's not restrictive at all," said
> Susan Fine, director of business
> development for Internet Explorer.
> "We just want to make sure that there
> are key things you can do with
> Internet Explorer that are
> Fine wouldn't reveal the financial
> terms of the MTV deal. IE product
> manager Bill Koszewski was eager to
> point out, however, that "all our
> partners have noticed significant
> traffic increases on their Web sites"
> since IE 3.0's launch.
> In today's Web climate, it feels
> distinctly quixotic to rail against
> corporate decisions that are made
> based on issues of Web-site traffic
> and product differentiation.
> Anything's fair in a free market,
> isn't it?
> No doubt. But to anyone who still
> clings to more idealistic notions of
> what the Net can offer society, the
> example set by Microsoft and MTV is
> Product marketing should not be the
> engine that makes communities run.
> Creating communities by expanding
> access is a good thing. Creating
> communities by linking together
> people with shared interests is a
> good thing. But creating communities
> via exclusion is worse than a bad
> thing. It's a travesty.
> [Andrew Leonard]
> Send mail to Andrew Leonard at
> Illustration by Dave Plunkert
> [to webmonkey]
> [to netsurf central]
> Join Packet, it's
> free. Members log Previously in Leonard ...
> Copyright =A9 1996 HotWired, Inc. All
> rights reserved.
>Previously in Packet ...
If I had a shiny gun, Or had I some poison gas, I could have a world of fun I could make the moments pass Speeding bullets through the brains Bumping off a number of Of the folk who give me pains; People whom I do not love.
But I have no lethal weapon- Thus does Fate our pleasure step on! So they still are quick and well Who should be, by rights, in hell. Who should be, by rights, in hell.
------------------------------------------------- just hit reply... sheesh.