First, it was the open source code that was not credited in the Windows 7 USB Installer that Microsoft released, and now the company gets caught copying much, if not all of a Twitter-like product in the Orient.
I had heard this in another place, but that place was not as reliable as TechConnect, where the rest of the details come from –
Accused of stealing design elements and code from micro-blogging site Plurk, Microsoft has this week taken down the MSN Juku service and kicked off an investigation to confirm or deny the allegations. The results are now in and yes, they say, black on white, that a portion of code used for Juku was indeed copied from Plurk.
As previously mentioned, the Chinese-only Juku service was developed by a local vendor not Microsoft, but even so the Redmond-based company assumed responsibility for the mess and apologized to Plurk, vowing to contact them and explain in more detail what happened.
“When we hire an outside company to do development work, our practice is to include strong language in our contract that clearly states the company must provide work that does not infringe the intellectual property rights of others,” stated Microsoft in a press release. “We are a company that respects intellectual property and it was never our intent to have a site that was not respectful of the work that others in the industry have done.”
Already down, MSN Juku is now suspended indefinitely while Microsoft and its MSN China joint venture analyze the practices around applications code provided by third-party vendors
While this is being played as good guy Microsoft falling on the sword of a bad contractor, I’m not buying it. It is simply the company not being careful about swiping stuff these days. It seems as though the company has no new ideas available these days, so instead ideas are either recycled or appropriated from others.
It’s just sad they have stopped doing a good job at covering the evidence.
perhaps it’s time for the flag to be at half staff, as the mistakes are coming out, fast and furiously