-In their first steps, Canonical tried to be subtle. They just repackaged Debian -UNSTABLE (read: buggy, incomplete code) instead of Debian -STABLE, and adopted a 6 month release schedule, to ensure bugs won't get ironed out. The Linux crowd ignored these little details and cheered for them.
-Some time later, they started bundling bleeding edge stuff like PulseAudio, and also made sure that clicking the "upgrade" button will trash your computer. "Have we gone too far and risk of our ploy being exposed?" Shuttleworth (Canonical's CEO) thought. However, the Linux crowd mumbled something about "teething problems" and continued to cheer for Ubuntu and Canonical. Shuttleworth was happy.
-Taking it another step too far, Canonical started to mangle the Gnome UI, and then released the worst interface ever (Unity). Surprisingly, this time 'round, the Linux crowd woke up and abandoned Ubuntu. Instead, they moved to Linux Mint, an Ubuntu-based distro which has all the problems Ubuntu has but lacks the Software Center (for whatever it's worth). You can't make that stuff up.
What about Debian -STABLE? It still exists. If you are smart enough to ignore the Ubuntu/Mint fanboys.
Me: Have you tried Debian? You do know that Ubuntu is based on Debian -UNSTABLE which means buggy and incomplete code?
Ubuntu fanboy: But some guys on the internet told me Ubuntu is da shit!
Skid2: Wow, cool you are awesome.
Person who actually knows computers: I installed ubuntu on my grandmothers computer, she can now read her email without calling me five times
The primary cause of a lack of knowledge of the operating system that is actually running.