23 March 2010

Ubuntu as not Linux

!=

?

Yesterday, I commented on how there seems to be a concerted effort by Canonical to brand Ubuntu as an independent OS and conceal the Linux that it is. I based this view mostly on UI and software developments I've seen in the last few Ubuntu releases. Today, I got a bit more curious about the PR side of things and had a look at the Ubuntu website.

As a start, I wanted to see how prominently the site featured the term "Linux". And after visiting a whole bunch of pages a typical user would, I couldn't find a single use of the term. Compare this to the respective sites for Debian, Fedora, Mandriva, and even openSuSE, all of which state very plainly on their home pages that they are Linux-based distributions.

So, I fired up Google and searched for "linux" site:www.ubuntu.com to see if I missed something. Excluding mentions in security reports (which a typical user will almost certainly never access), the term "linux" popped up in Google's results in three places:
  1. The Ubuntu Server Edition page--which a regular (i.e., desktop) user will likely never visit.
  2. The Ubuntu MID Edition page--which is intended for use by industry folk building MIDs, not by end users.
  3. In passing in the list of download options. (Look for it ... can you find it?)
This is making me sad.

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