'Intel, the chipmaker most affected by these flaws, incidentally just announced an extension of its bug bounty program – just through the end of 2018 – covering side-channel vulnerabilities, with awards of up to $250,000.'...
That is an indication that they are aware that the current firmware fixes are deficient. It also tells me that their subsequent products will continue to be vulnerable if they do not redesign the chips. Intel have only released firmware fixes for Sky Lake and Kaby Lake systems and their remaining product line (all of it) is still being evaluated. A stopgap perhaps.
I certainly get the impression that everyone is being manipulated by Intel. Did they release their updates merely to console their strategic partners who have been left holding the bag? Also, Intel boldly announced that their product line will be free of meltown and spectre vulnerabilities by the end of 2018. That appears more hubris than fact.
If Intel is not being ethical in their response, they should be punished for it. Some big Cloud Providers have already suffered performance hits from Intel fixes and that could get even worse if more are required. Damage, large or small from potential exploits, will be the litmus test. The enterprise leases and the consumer buys their computing products, so there is a lot at stake. Trust is paramount.
BTW, Intel made 'The 2018 World’s Most Ethical Companies' chart, released by Ethisphere. To determine if a company is worth including on the list, Ethisphere calculates what is called an Ethics Quotient, which is an objective score that assesses each firm’s performance in five different categories, as it follows: ethics and compliance program (35 percent), corporate citizenship and responsibility (20 percent), culture of ethics (20 percent), governance (15 percent), and leadership, innovation and reputation (10 percent). Intel is in good company as Microsoft made the list as well.