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Mark Ward & the BBC

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Mark Ward? The anti-Microsoft bloatware crusader formerly of the Daily Telegraph, now one of the head technology honchos at BBC News? How could he do this?

But he has. As if the oversights of Auntie Beeb haven't been criminal enough already. As if the scare of Windows malware wasn't already omnipresent and giving people sleepless nights.

The BBC have been notorious in the past for skewing and skirting issues when the pocketbook's been involved and the people twisting the screws have been too adamant. And Mister Bill certainly has many good friends in Britain - he's got research labs all over the place, he sponsors community projects with Sainsburys and Tesco and all the other supermarkets, he knows how to grease the pockets.

But when things are as bad as they are with Windows malware one has to draw the line. Unfortunately Mark Ward and the BBC aren't too good at drawing lines yet.

Coping with the Malware Deluge

And yes deluge it is, Mark! 'In 1988 the whole universe of malicious programs numbered 1738 samples according to statistics from AV Test. By 1998 it had grown to 177,500 and in 2008 it hit 6,000,000', says Ward. And he's got plenty of scary quotes.

They repack and recompile them and they look different.
 - Roger Thompson AVG

If it starts looking at keystrokes and never has done before that's a sign it's something bad.
 - Roger Thompson AVG

It's a model we've been using for 20 years or more but it's no longer up to the threat. It's just not quick enough.
 - Rik Ferguson Trend Micro

In 2007 we saw more malware in one year than we had in the previous 20. And in the last 18 months we've seen more than in all the previous years combined.
 - Tom Parsons Symantec

Now one would think that with tacit and frank admissions that standard AV and anti-malware software suites cannot handle malware that punters would be disinclined to purchase any more of the junk. But that simply isn't so: the more you tell people AV won't help the more they'll rush out in a panic to buy it. Just ask John McAfee and his friends who really cleaned up.

One might as well start making things up again. Claiming there's a virus named after a famous painter and it's going to infect between 5 and 5,000,000,000,000,000,000 computers on the artist's birthday.

Mark Ward has a lot of quotes from representatives of the Windows security cottage industry who can now count on a sales boost in these tight times; he even has a really scary video clip designed to give you goose bumps; but he has no interviews with independent security experts. Such as Bill Joy who says Windows should not be online, that it is Windows' fault. Or such as Bruce Schneier who says people should unequivocally abandon Windows. No mention of that. Only scare screens and scare statistics. And the BBC are supposed to be a public service corporation.


 The scare story. Hackers control victim's webcam, computer screen, and keyboard. Box in LRHC shows how to lodge a formal complaint.

Welcome to the Hall of Monkeys, Mark Ward. 'Tis a shame to see you stoop this low. Being put in here is a shameful thing, Mark Ward. You qualify because your scary article, ostensibly honest reporting but having the desirable side effect of helping the Windows security cottage industry, does not a single time remind readers that none of this - NONE OF IT - applies outside the crap world of Windows.

You start with the cellar floor. We want it immaculate. Shining. You get to work with a toothbrush. If you want your feast of bread and water this week you'll have to get to it.

The Charter

BBC News is a public service company. They see themselves as an 'unrivalled resource of authoritative fact and comment'.

BBC News strives to report what matters in the UK and around the world with independence and impartiality.

Their budget is in excess of £350 million. Surely there are a few quid there to tell the truth about Windows?

The breadth and depth of BBC news coverage is unrivalled. The BBC's news service is trusted and respected.

Complain!

The BBC are supposed to be a news service you can trust. They're known worldwide and so is their reputation. Right now they're cheating - giving in to market forces and/or colluding with people who should be behind bars. The only way you'll get the BBC to clean up their despicable act is by complaining. So go to the following URL and complain now.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/complaints/make_complaint_step1n.shtml

Select 'make an official complaint' and click through. Supply correct information and tell them politely (but firmly) what you think about Mark Ward and their policy of not telling their readers the truth. Give them the referring URL to Mark's article.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8056486.stm

Give them a deluge of your own they'll not soon forget. And help make 'Life Without Windows™' a reality for everyone.

See Also
Learning Curve: Life Without Windows™

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