On October 6th, 2010 Microsoft published a short video on Youtube titled “A Few Perspectives on OpenOffice.org”. The video is about “Some thoughts from OpenOffice.org users and why they switched back to Microsoft Office” (OpenOffice.org and its offspring LibreOffice are “free-as-in-freedom” alternatives to Microsoft’s Office productivity suite. They have no license costs and natively support OpenDocument, an international standard format for office documents).

When it first appeared, I simply ignored the video. After seeing all the buzz around it and reading two articles that explain some of its weaknesss (1), I gave up and watched it. The first view proved the objections made in those articles, but also made me uneasy. I could feel that there was something more serious, but couldn’t quite put my finger on it. So I watched the video again, and a flash of understanding came.