On 08 Aug 2003 21:21:18 +0200, danlee@informatik.uni-freiburg.de

>The more serious problem is: most users simply don't know there is a
>choice. i.e. they don't think it's even POSSIBLE to go hunting for
>alternatives. And since they don't know they can do it, they don't do
>it -- even if they want to.

This statement is nonsensical and arrogant. If most users don't seem
to know that there are alternatives to Media Player, then they are
either not interested in finding alternatives -- or happy with what
they have.

Have you considered that perhaps they don't care? Plenty of
individuals don't even care who runs their country, what makes you
think that they care about what OS they use as long as it works
without show-stopping problems? I believe it's rather eccentric to
assume that everyone who doesn't follow a certain way (usually the way
that the insulting party prefers) is "stupid" or uneducated.

If my mother, who most certainly didn't grow up with computers, or
even TV, can use Google and find what she looks for, then I'm
relatively confident that MOST people who have 'net access *can* and
*do* look for alternatives, if they have NEED to look. Most people are
"users", however, they don't look at their computers as religious
objects or altars, but as simple tools. If the tool does what they
expect of it, they are satisfied. It's that simple -- give people some

On my Windows box, I have (had) Quicktime, Real Player and Media
Player. I use the latter, because it happens to work far better for me
than the alternatives (even works better for playing DVDs than some of
the commercial products that I -bought-). I removed Real Player
because it annoyed me with pop-up-like "announcements" -- and I kept
Quicktime for the odd movie that doesn't run on Media Player.

But then again, I never had real issues with Microsoft's products. I
have issues with their restrictive politics and license agreements.
What made me look into FreeBSD wasn't dissatisfaction with Windows,
but the introduction of activation codes and the TCAP. That's what I
mean when I say that monopolies trip over themselves, it's just a
matter of time.