Some people never learn

Web Worker Daily reports:

With Microsoft’s announcement this week that Outlook and Outlook Express will no longer support desktop access to Hotmail accounts raises some interesting questions on data portability.
After 30th June, Microsoft’s Windows Live Mail application will be the only means by which desktop and offline access to Hotmail accounts will be supported. This effectively means that a Hotmail user’s messages continue to be imprisoned within a closed ecosphere of services and applications. OK, smart people won’t be using Outlook, Outlook Express or Hotmail, but millions do and many have years of messages archived that they may wish to continue accessing outside a web-based interface.

I guess some people never ever learn.  Microsoft has screwed its users times after times, and yet there are still millions of them who either trust it blindly or are too lazy to spend a few moments of their lives to look for alternatives.  I have no pity for them anymore.  They deserve what they are getting.

5 thoughts on “Some people never learn”

  1. I have to agree with you 101%. Mail is a gmail , os is a darwin. nuff said.

    Last login: Sun Apr 27 15:03:15 on ttys000
    Macintosh-2:~ marioaspinthiras$ uname -a
    Darwin Macintosh-2.lan 9.2.2 Darwin Kernel Version 9.2.2: Tue Mar 4 21:17:34 PST 2008; root:xnu-1228.4.31~1/RELEASE_I386 i386
    Macintosh-2:~ marioaspinthiras$

  2. I agree some people never learn:

    1. Access to Hotmail from desktop application was closed for several years for free accounts.
    2. It was done because they were havily used be spammers.
    3. Not only Microsoft did this but Yahoo as well.
    4. Outlook Express is no longer exists.
    5. Outlook is business tool and rarely used with Hotmail.

    Basically it was not existed feature for not existed programs. Now it is finaly completly closed.

    I guess some people never ever learn. Open Source zealots has screwed the Microsoft news times after times, and yet there are still millions of Open Source web workers who either trust them blindly or are too lazy to spend a few moments of their lives to look for truth. I have no pity for them anymore. They deserve the news they are getting.

  3. Grigory,

    I think you are missing a few points here:

    1. It’s not important if the users were screwed today or a couple of years ago. They got screwed anyway. More than once.

    2. Microsoft closed access to the service, forcing users to both upgrade their email software and Hotmail account. Screwed twice just there.

    3. Microsoft is still tying users into their proprietary protocols and software, making it very difficult or impossible to leave or migrate. That’s called “screwing your users”.

    4. Both Yahoo and Gmail provide POP3/SMTP access to email, which are as standard protocols as you can get. The fact that Yahoo decided to provide such access to premium users is irrelevant. Nobody is tied into using any specific software for such access.

    5. Closing a useful service because of SPAM abuse is, of course, an option. But it’s not cool at all. Gmail provides free access and it’s abused, but they are working on fixing it. And their users appreciate the work very much. Yahoo is being abused too, but they work on it too. And many appreciate that work too.

    6. “Outlook is business tool and rarely used with Hotmail” -- Disagreed. It’s a business tool, alright. But it’s a tool which brings a lot of things together, and a lot of people use it to bring a lot of things together, including their Hotmail accounts. In fact, with all the hype around Gmail and Yahoo Mail, Hotmail is still extremely popular, especially with non-technical people. A lot of them are using it for business. Just yesterday I saw a movie making studio from India, who have their email accounts at Hotmail.

  4. 1. It is important as it gives a context of the decision. There is difference between portraying decision of being suddenly evil or being final in set of steps to remove legacy feature.
    2. Again, context is important -- at that time the access was blocked for newly created free accounts. Free accounts created before and Premium accounts still had access. In other words Microsoft did exactly as others like Yahoo except I am not sure if Yahoo allowed access for old accounts.
    3. Yep, like HP is still tying users into their proprietary cartridges for printers. And for the good reason. It is because being “Open”, “Free” and even “Standard”, is not equal to being “good”, “convenient for user”, “competitive”. Not everybody believes in the ideology of Open Source. Certainly users does not believe in Open Source. And blaming Microsoft for a user unwillingness to migrate from a Microsoft product is poor excuse for failure to attract them. What is next? Blaming closed source of IIS for user unwillingness migrate from IE?
    4. This is the case of “Standard” is not equal to “good” and “convenient for user”. Historically Hotmail used WebDav because it was far superior to “Standard” POP3. Now with mailboxes with size of several gigabytes it is time to use more efficient protocol. Legacy Outlook Express is dropped. But If you have Premium account you can use POP3 and whenever you want (the same as Yahoo).
    5. Service was not closed -- was closed access from desktop based applications. Here is interesting note -- this was not specific Microsoft decision but industry-wide. If Microsoft would not do that Yahoo could blame Microsoft for screwing ordinary users. Microsoft did that and you blame Microsoft for screwing users.
    6. There is free Outlook connector tool.

  5. Grigory,

    It seems that we are losing the point of the original point. Which was about Microsoft closing and removing “legacy” functionality, forcing the users to purchase paid accounts and upgrade their software. That’s not being done for the first time, probably not for the last time, and, surely, Microsoft is by far not the only vendor doing that. The title saying “some people never learn” meant that despite all the lock-ins and limited migration options, people still trust and choose such vendors, even though that often results in higher costs, migration headaches and data loss due to closed formats and protocols.

    Your example with HP is not relevant, because HP printers or cartridges do not at all cause any similar effects. If I have a document to print out, I can as easily print it out on non-HP printer, take it to a friend to print out or send it electronically, if applicable. I still have full control of my files despite the behavior of HP printer or cartridge. Furthermore, HP cartridges are being actively hacked and reverse engineered, even on such a basic level as ink. In the worst case scenario, trying to refill HP cartridge with non-HP ink will render the cartridge or printer unsupported. But it will be up to you, and will probably still work.

    As for the Open Source concept -- not everyone believes in it, indeed. And I am not forcing anyone to. :) I do believe in it though. And I think that from the end user point of view, open formats and open protocols are a better options than their closed alternatives. If you believe differently, that’s up to you.

    As for free Outlook tool -- that’s good, but it misses the point slightly, imho. Outlook Express is better than MS Outlook in a whole number of ways (it properly handles most headers, especially the Sender one; it has better supports for multiple accounts behavior (although this might outdated knowledge on my part); it used to do better filtering (don’t know about now); and it handles line wrapping, character encodings, quoting, and mailing lists way better).

    In closing, I accept your point regarding me needing to check my facts better. I’m not too far off, but I should do a better job at that. Thank you for your feedback.

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