This is a short posting. Just a comment on a world view, really.
FUD is Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. A term applied to the IBM strategy used to push folks away from perfectly reasonable alternative products. Luddites were folks opposed to progress. I’m coining a new term, Fuddites, to describe the attitude of the Global Warming Cabal. This posting just explains it.
Fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) is a tactic used in sales, marketing, public relations, politics and propaganda.
FUD is generally a strategic attempt to influence perception by disseminating negative and dubious or false information. An individual firm, for example, might use FUD to invite unfavorable opinions and speculation about a competitor’s product; to increase the general estimation of switching costs among current customers; or to maintain leverage over a current business partner who could potentially become a rival.
The term originated to describe disinformation tactics in the computer hardware industry but has since been used more broadly. FUD is a manifestation of the appeal to fear.
The term appeared in other contexts as far back as the 1920s. A similar formulation “doubts fears and uncertainties” reaches back to 1965. By 1975, the term was already appearing abbreviated as FUD in marketing and sales contexts:
“ One of the messages dealt with is FUD—the fear, uncertainty and doubt on the part of customer and sales person alike that stifles the approach and greeting. ”
FUD was first defined with its specific current meaning by Gene Amdahl the same year, 1975, after he left IBM to found his own company, Amdahl Corp.: “FUD is the fear, uncertainty, and doubt that IBM sales people instill in the minds of potential customers who might be considering Amdahl products.” The term has also been attributed to veteran Morgan Stanley computer analyst Ulrich Weil. As Eric S. Raymond writes:
“ The idea, of course, was to persuade buyers to go with safe IBM gear rather than with competitors’ equipment. This implicit coercion was traditionally accomplished by promising that Good Things would happen to people who stuck with IBM, but Dark Shadows loomed over the future of competitors’ equipment or software. After 1991 the term has become generalized to refer to any kind of disinformation used as a competitive weapon. ”
By spreading questionable information about the drawbacks of less well known products, an established company can discourage decision-makers from choosing those products over its own, regardless of the relative technical merits. This is a recognized phenomenon, epitomized by the traditional axiom of purchasing agents that “nobody ever got fired for buying IBM equipment”. The result is that many companies’ IT departments buy software that they know to be technically inferior because upper management is more likely to recognize the brand.
Lately Microsoft has adopted the strategy:
Although originally associated with IBM, from the 1990s on the term became most often associated with software industry giant Microsoft. Roger Irwin said:
“ Microsoft soon picked up the art of FUD from IBM, and throughout the ’80s used FUD as a primary marketing tool, much as IBM had in the previous decade. They ended up out FUD-ding IBM themselves during the OS/2 vs Win3.1 years. ”
The leaked internal Microsoft “Halloween documents” stated “OSS [Open Source Software] is long-term credible… [therefore] FUD tactics cannot be used to combat it.” Open source software, and the GNU/Linux community in particular, are widely perceived as frequent targets of Microsoft FUD:
Statements about the “viral nature” of the GNU General Public License (GPL).
Statements that “…FOSS [Free and open source software] infringes on no fewer than 235 Microsoft patents,” before software patent law precedents were even established.
Statements that Windows has lower total cost of ownership (TCO) than Linux, in Microsoft’s “Get-The-Facts” campaign. It turned out that they were comparing Linux on a very expensive IBM Mainframe to Windows on a PC.
Statements that “If an open source software solution breaks, who’s gonna fix it?”
I’ve been aware of (and contending with) FUD since I worked at Amdahl in the early ’80s. Then contending with Microsoft as part of the Free Software / Open Source movement since I was at Cygnus Support in the ’90s (later folded into Red Hat – they made the compiler tool chain and I ran the documentation, QA, and IT functions there).
So I have a higher awareness and sensitivity to FUD than most. I spotted FUD being liberally applied in the AGW narrative “right quick”.
Member of organized groups of early 19th-century English craftsmen who surreptitiously destroyed the textile machinery that was replacing them. The movement began in Nottingham in 1811 and spread to other areas in 1812. The Luddites, or “Ludds,” were named after a probably mythical leader, Ned Ludd. They operated at night and often enjoyed local support. Harsh repressive measures by the government included a mass trial at York in 1813 that resulted in many hangings and banishments. The term Luddite was later used to describe anyone opposed to technological change.
Luddites are folks who oppose technological progress and break things to get their way. Folks with a phobia about technology and progress.
IMHO, those two terms describe, accurately, the Catastrophic Global Warming Cabal and their Useful Idiots.
Term invented in Soviet Russia to describe people who blindly supported the likes of Lenin and Stalin while they committed atrocity after atrocity.
Today, it refers to brainwashed liberals and leftists the world over (usually college students that aren’t necessarily idiots, but just misinformed, naive, and ignorant of facts due to being indoctrinated with liberal/socialist propaganda through their public education) who believe that George W. Bush has committed more crimes against humanity than leftist darlings like Saddam Hussain, Yasser Arafat, and Osama Bin Laden, and still defend Communism, the cause of over 100 million deaths to this day.
So, why not combine them into one term to accurately describe these folks?
Feel free to use it with pride in your knowledge of the history of FUD, of Luddites, and of Useful Idiots.
Sidebar on Me
While most of the time “it isn’t about me!” holds. There’s a minor point where this is about me. Some years ago, about 2009?, I mentioned that I think a bit differently and have an internal process that is different from English. Some folks asked for a few clues about how that works. Well, this is an example. I coin “my words” all the time. Often to compress a lot of detail into a smaller token. So all that history of FUD and Luddites gets combined into a “tag” (to use current parlance) and that gets attached to people or properties as appropriate. So I use “Fuddites” “internally” when thinking about the AGW clown car circus. While “watermellons” has interesting connections, I think Fuddites more accurately captures my understanding of them.
So some thoughts are in terms of my own words, some are ‘tagged’ in a non-linear side tag (a sentence like “Hanson is arrested again” would have the equivalent of #fuddite appended) and some things are just thought as a visual or “grokked” gestalted whole. It all happens very fast, and it isn’t always verbal. But that’s how things happen “in here”. Oh, and I’m prone to a ‘Reverse Polish Notation’ form on some things. Had an HP calculator very early (still have it) and found that RPN is very efficient… Got built in to my processes for some things. (For those who don’t know, instead of: 1 enter + enter 2 enter = enter 3 you would have 1, enter, 2 enter, + enter and the answer is just displayed.
So for folks wondering about how things work “in here”, now you have a bit more insight ;-)