Automattic, Those Champions of Open Source Plug The Microsoft Cloud

Duncan Riley

Automattic, the company behind WordPress and self-proclaimed nazis when it comes to enforcing the strictest interpretation of open source on others, have announced that they're moving to are plugging Microsoft's Azure cloud hosting.

At the Microsoft (MSFT) Professional Developers Conference on Tuesday, Automattic founder Matt Mullenweg took to the stage alongside Microsoft's Ray Ozzie to announce the move plug the service.

We can't find a full transcript of what Mullenweg said on stage yet (update, see below), although other sites are suggesting that the tie-in with WordPress was used to highlight how Microsoft Azure will (or soon will) support PHP, MySQL and other open-source tools.

I don't doubt that what Microsoft is doing with Azure is great, and that it is offering a highly appealing product. That they'll support open source platforms is probably overdue, but likewise will make Azure that much more competitive.

That aside, how is it that one of the most over the top purists in the open source world is now in bed with a company that at its very core is all about proprietary software and has long been seen as a combatant against the open source movement?

Still, Automattic's and Mullenweg's hypocrisy when in comes to open source has long been documented: the company likes nothing more than attacking those who dare profit from WordPress code while they themselves act as if they believe that only Automattic alone should be able to profit from it. That they'd get into bed with Microsoft really shouldn't come as that much of a surprise.

Update: the transcript for the appearance doesn't say that Automattic is switching to Azure, only some how backing it.

A number of outlets, including at the time of writing AOL's Daily Finance is reporting that is going to Azure.

The contention either way remains the same: Mullenweg is an open source nazi who stops at very little to cut off or make life difficult for those outside of Automattic who seek to profit from the WordPress code.

Don't believe me on Automattic's support?, ask ReadWriteWeb, who wrote "Mullenwegg appeared on stage to show that his company, Automattic, is fully supporting Azure. Automattic is the company behind Wordpress."