My friend and colleague Rodrigo Arboleda, the CEO of OLPC Association, is often troubled by the criticism Microsoft brings to attacking OLPC throughout Latin America. Most recently they put together apparently fallacious arguments with respect to OLPC's newest project in the state of Sonora, MX.
Rodrigo frames this Microsoft behavior perfectly in a question: "why does McDonald's not criticize the World Food Program", the UN's program to feed children in the neediest countries in the world. Presumably those poor children in Africa could be eating Big Macs. So, why is McDonalds quiet and Microsoft constantly criticizing?
McDonalds is a brand that embraces children, from Kid's Meals to Ronald McDonald and Ronald McDonald House--their principal charity for terminally ill children. McDonalds realizes that children are a major reason for their success and they reciprocate in a meaningful and genuine way. Commendable behavior.
What does Microsoft stand for? The silence is deafening. I do not think anyone could define Microsoft in any way that embraces their customers in a genuine and emotional way. Microsoft is just a colossal commercial venture. Microsoft is so hardened to their commercial ways that they cannot see the day when many of the OLPC children will trade in their XO computers for the Microsoft operating system and Office. So sad.