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Stock Market to Linux: Yeah, Baby!

Markets Soar After First Graders Learn How to Pronounce 'Linux'

  • December 16, 1999
  • By Kevin Reichard

News item: K-tel investors heard the sound of money this morning, as shares of the online music company soared more than 24 percent in early trading after it announced its support for a Linux-based system � C|Net, December 16, 1999

MINNEAPOLIS (Reuters) � Linux-related stocks soared this morning after reports that a first-grade class in suburban Minneapolis learned how to properly pronounce Linux.

This move came when Sean Reichard told his classmates in Mrs. O'Leary's first-grade class in Excelsior (Minn.) Elementary School that his father worked on a Linux Web site, "and Linux is cool cause it rhymes with sucks." It is not clear whether the students were actually intrigued with the next-generation operating system or by the novelty of getting away with saying "sucks" in class repeatedly, but that nuance was of little importance to the Linux investors. The stock market, which can't seem to shake its fascination with the freely available Linux, responded by sharply raising Linux-related stock prices in heavy trading.

"We really see this as a vindication of Linux," said Bob Young of Red Hat Software, which issued several press releases shortly after recess, touting the actions of the first graders. "The fact that some first-graders in Minnesota learned how to pronounce Linux properly really vindicates the stock prices we're seeing for Red Hat Software and other Linux-related firms. We're right on track in building brand awareness."

In other related news, the countries of South America banded together and announced that in an effort to relieve third-world debt they would jointly adopt Linux as the official operating system of the newly renamed continent of LinuxLand.

"This is really a shrewd move," said analyst Tony Franke of King-Matador Securities. "We know that anything related to Linux defies all the laws of economics as we know them. I would expect nothing less from LinuxLand." The International Monetary Fund (IMF) immediately forgave all debt to the new LinuxLand in exchange for 10 percent of the new entity, clearing a way for an economic resurgence in the Southern Hemisphere.

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