12.29.08

Gemini version available ♊︎

Microsoft AstroTurfing, Part II

Posted in Microsoft at 5:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

FOR CONTEXT, see this post about Microsoft’s AstroTurfing getting exposed. The following has just been released to the public domain.


I gather that new interest has emerged in the content of the internal
training seminars that I gave to Microsoft’s Technology Evangelists back
in the 1990’s.

As you know, I had planned to write a book on this subject back in 2003,
but so much of the core material was Microsoft Confidential that I was
at risk of prosecution had I revealed it. The entry of this material
into the public record eliminates that risk. I have recently found
myself with time on my hands, so I am now proceeding with the book.

I expect to detail the theory and practice of Technology Evangelism at
Microsoft in the 1990’s. While some may say that this is ancient
history, that can’t be entirely true, because the underlying theory
hasn’t changed. In markets that are dominated by network effects,
standards battles are still, inevitably, winner-take-all struggles to be
the first to achieve a critical mass of complementary goods. As to
whether Microsoft’s *practice* of evangelism has changed—well, you’ll be
able to judge that better than I.

The other thing that makes such a book timely is the emerging battle to
control the standards of cloud computing. This is likely to be the most
important standards battle since at least the Browser Wars, and perhaps
since the DOS Wars, because the winner will be in control of the entire
software stack from the hardware in its proprietary server farms right
through to the cloud application APIs. No part of the computing industry
will be unaffected by this outcome. For Microsoft, losing this battle
would be fatal, so it is likely to use every trick in the book. In my
book, that is.

If you’d like to help make this book available, I would welcome your
helping me find any material entered into the public record (in the Iowa
case or any other) that deals with Microsoft’s evangelism practices,
First Wave programs, etc.

Interested?

Thanks! :-)

James Plamondon


Stay tuned. A book on Microsoft AstroTurfing may be coming, thanks to James.

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