EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

09.21.09

Microsoft Cheats and Bribes Again to Distort the Reality Regarding Vista 7

Posted in GNU/Linux, Marketing, Microsoft, Vista, Vista 7, Windows at 6:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Trying to win

Summary: For Vista 7 perception management Microsoft compensates journalists, pays ‘promoters’ handsomely, pays analysts, uses kids, Twitter and other forms of hypnosis — all in attempt to promote a product that CIOs already reject

THE reality behind Vista 7 is rather grim because it is just another Vista and it will fail to sell based on early surveys and predictions that we covered. Microsoft bets the entire farm on Vista 7 by deliberately ignoring Vista. In the past week, for instance, we found just two headlines about “Vista”, compared to 23 that are about “Windows 7″. This buzz gets generated organically by the business press, which in turn affects what people speak about in personal blogs, chat rooms, the office, etc. Today we will show how Microsoft is doing it, based on citations from the past week alone.

Earlier this week we wrote about Microsoft's subtle admission that Windows Vista had failed. Here is some more new coverage of that quotable incident:

Windows Vista ‘less good,’ Microsoft exec admits

[...]

Company executives’ private opinions of Vista were much more revealing, however. According to internal Microsoft e-mails disclosed in 2008 during a class-action lawsuit, senior executives and a board member griped about Vista shortly after it was released in early 2007, saying it was missing drivers and crippled their new PCs.

The reality is that Vista 7 continues to lack good driver support. Under the hood, Vista 7 is virtually identical to Vista. Three of our readers who tried Vista 7 reported exactly these types of issues which they encountered [1, 2, 3].

Mary Jo Foley and Paul Thurrott Get Paid to Promote Microsoft’s Vista 7

We often emphasise that those who hail Microsoft products are being compensated by Microsoft. This is especially true once prudent observers realise that gentle bribes come in all sorts of forms. Consider the Bing sponsorships for example; that $100,000,000 marketing budget does end up landing somewhere. That’s how people like Todd Bishop are paid. Likewise, Mary Jo Foley and Paul Thurrott present not just literature; they also get invited to Microsoft events and here they are invited to hype up Vista 7 (paid talks):

Microsoft in 2010: Is Windows 7 Enterprise Ready? What IT Managers Need to Know

[...]

Speakers to include:

* Mary Jo Foley (Keynote), Microsoft Author and Editor of the All About Microsoft blog (http://blogs.zdnet.com/microsoft/)
* Paul Thurrott, Author of Paul Thurrott’s SuperSite for Windows blog (http://www.winsupersite.com)
* Ben Armstrong, Microsoft Program Manager (Virtualization) and Author, Virtual PC Guy’s Weblog (http://blogs.msdn.com/virtual_pc_guy/)
* Andrew Hopkins, Microsoft veteran and Principal Consultant for Chrysalis BTS (http://www.chrysalisbts.com)

The author of “All About Microsoft” should maybe be assigned to run “All About Marketing”, as that’s what Vista 7 is all about. There are many of her colleagues out there in ZDNet who are on a similar boat (e.g. Bott, Ou) and even Microsoft employees. They get bribed by Microsoft to promote Vista 7 under the guise of “news” (ZDNet no longer does much news, just blogs, which get aggregated in news feeds nonetheless).

Vista 7 Stickers/Branding

How far would Microsoft go with marketing? Here is some more ‘fluff’ like “Compatible With Microsoft Windows 7 Logo” — selling people the impression that there is something unique about it. For a long time Microsoft has been trying to ‘stamp’ hardware components with its logo/s, giving the delusion that a keyboard gets designed for Windows (it has a key with the logo on it), that entire computers are designed or certified for Windows, and even monitors are somehow ‘approved’ for Windows. It’s all just an antiquated stunt and someone is paid or rewarded to play along with that stunt, which deceives average consumers and acts as an advertisement (fake endorsement) too.

More AstroTurfing

Microsoft rewards go a long way. Here you can see that Paul Thurrott advertises Vista 7. Mary Jo Foley currently pretends that Vista7WillFixEverythingTM, so she plays along with Ballmer's latest marketing delusion. If that’s not enough, Microsoft now recruits more shills for Vista 7:

Microsoft to pay Windows 7 promoter HK$7,777 a day

[..]

Microsoft Hong Kong is now recruiting Windows 7 promoters who will be paid HK$7,777 (US$1,004) each for a day’s work in late October when the software giant launches its new OS.

The vendor has created a group on Facebook to invite individuals aged 15 or above, speaking fluent Cantonese and English, and possessing basic computer knowledge to post their one-minute self-introduction videos on the Chinese-language page. As of 3:20pm Monday, there are only four videos uploaded.

This is covered also in NetworkWorld. Who is Microsoft kidding? For Mac fans to become Windows shills Microsoft offered to pay $15,000. This is the type of stuff that should be covered and pinned at the front page of the technology section at the BBC, New York Times, and other such high-profile publications. It’s truly a blunder, but the world does not pay attention simply because the business press conveniently ignores the facts. The BBC only advertises Vista 7 at the moment, just as it advertised Windows Vista and hailed it wholeheartedly back in 2006/7.

Crooked Research

Are paid shills not enough for Vista 7? Warped coverage also? Well, Microsoft is already busy paying a favourite pay-to-say agency, namely Forrester ‘Research’, to do its thing. Previously, Microsoft was paying Forrester to attack GNU/Linux [1, 2] and now it pays to help promote Vista 7.

A Microsoft-commissioned study by Forrester shows that worker mobility and office decentralization will become key issues for the enterprise and SMBs (small- to medium-sized businesses) in coming years, possibly creating substantial challenges for IT administrators. Microsoft is using the report as the basis for a promotional push for Windows 7, its upcoming operating system due for general release on Oct. 22.

A recent Microsoft-commissioned study also claimed that Internet Explorer was the most secure Web browser. Shouldn’t such practices of conducting ‘studies’ be banned or at least their outcomes embargoed? Professor Larry Lessig currently studies this type of corruption, especially where pharmaceuticals are concerned.

Shameless Marketing

On top of all the above, Microsoft resorted to shameless marketing which is now being slammed by the Los Angeles Times:

Windows 7 is reduced to rainbows and unicorns

It’s official. Microsoft has no shame. None. They should just stop paying rent on that storage unit where they keep their shame because they, as I said, have none.

The new TV ad campaign for Windows 7 (Crispin Porter & Bogusky) kicked off this week with a masterpiece of emotional manipulation that brings back Kylie, the precocious 4-year-old girl from the “I’m a PC” series. The slightly lispy Kylie — who pronounces the product as “Windows Theben” — is sitting at a table in front of a PC. “My name’s Kylie, and I found these happy words all over my dad’s computer. . . .” (Uh-oh, I hope dad’s been behaving himself with his PC.) The “happy words” are rave reviews for Windows 7 from tech magazines, which Kylie then puts into a slideshow with images of a unicorn, a kitten in marshmallows, a bunny in a straw hat. “Happy words need happy pictures.” Uh-huh. We can only assume as the campaign rolls out to the Windows 7 launch date of Oct. 22 that we’ll see baby penguins and water-skiing squirrels hawking for the Redmond, Wash., software giant.

[...]

This is advertising as hostage situation: Buy Windows 7 or the little kid gets it.

It is similar to what Microsoft does here in the UK, where Microsoft exploits toddlers (put in Windows TV adverts) to hide is real image of thugs who willfully break the law time after time because it pays more than abiding and obeying rules.

The PR industry, which thrives in superficial imagery and deception, hails the above as a success and uses the headline “Microsoft ‘Good News’”.

Kylie seems to know that cute goes a long way towards snagging viewers’ attention and kindling the warm fuzzy feelings only images of kittens, marshmallows, a bonnet-wearing bunny and a pint-sized pitch-gal can produce.

Microsoft PR agencies would see nothing wrong with it, either. They are in the business of deception and are often lacking a real sense of consciousness. They find justifications for what they are doing and viral videos are just business as usual to them. Then there is Microsoft AstroTurfing at Twitter, which we wrote about in:

The Wall Street Journal published this new article which has Microsoft’s senior marketing manager explain “Tweet Assignments”:

Marcus Schmidt uses one called Tweet Assignments for his job as a senior marketing manager at Microsoft Corp. He oversees two company Twitter pages where consumers post about 300 questions and comments a day. He says Tweet Assignments helps him generate swift responses from the appropriate Microsoft employees by allowing him to send consumers’ tweets to colleagues instantly, without having to copy them into email messages. The recipients can then respond directly to consumers with tweets of their own or send responses back to Mr. Schmidt.

At Twitter, Microsoft has a huge number of accounts for promotional purposes, with extra assistance coming from agencies that Microsoft hires. As we showed yesterday using a confidential memo from Microsoft, the company identified “constant indoctrination” as the way forward.

The Slog

“Windows Vista enjoyed the same type of hype ahead of its release.”Elsewhere in the news we find Microsoft pressuring businesses to move to Vista 7 (because CIOs reject it already). Here is Microsoft’s de facto PR person Ina Fried (disguised as reporter) slamming Microsoft’s competition, Linux included, probably on behalf of the company. It’s all in preparation for Vista 7 and it is clearly composed in this way.

The Vista 7 discount which we wrote about the other day is being promoted by other Microsoft de facto PR folks like Shane O'Neill, who are essentially embedding advertisements, turning discounts on products that do not exist into articles.

In summary, Vista 7 is a huge deception. People must not fall for the hype. Windows Vista enjoyed the same type of hype ahead of its release. There is quite a lot one can achieve with billions of dollars that are exclusively dedicated to imposed ignorance and mind shaping.

“I am currently testing the Beta of Win7 in a closed VM environment. I am considering deleting it. It’s actually worse than Vista. Multiple program crashes, refusal to install any software, naff looks and many other complaints.”

Moog

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

6 Comments

  1. David Gerard said,

    September 21, 2009 at 8:33 am

    Gravatar

    Microsoft has been payin graffiti artists to spray-paint advertising for Windows 7: http://twitpic.com/h5cqo In sight of the Wikimedia Foundation offices, no less: http://twitter.com/jansonw/status/3877626150

    I actually found the use case where Windows 7 is easier than XP: reinstalling Windows on a ‘l33t gamer rig from a few years ago. Windows 7 has all the weird-arse custom drivers included, XP you have to chase around the web looking for them. I was actually Googling on PCI IDs to find what some of this crap was. http://reddragdiva.dreamwidth.org/14460.html

    p.s.: MY FUCKING GOD I HATE WINDOWS AAAAAAAAGGGGHHH FUCK.

  2. Will said,

    September 21, 2009 at 9:04 am

    Gravatar

    For now, all this 7 hype exists only in a world awash with Redmond Kool-Aid. It means nothing until it hits the real world. Either way, there will likely be a sales spike initially from Microsoft fans, shills, and curious early adopters. After that, the marketing whitewash should wear off pretty quick. It didn’t take normal people very long to realize what a dog Vista was once it hit the streets. If 7 turns out to be not much better, it should be entertaining to watch the damage control and spin tactics from Microsoft once impressions from non-bribed users start getting out.

    Even so, over time people will still have to buy a new computer eventually, and the odds are good that that computer will come with Windows, so MS gets paid anyway. The key is to let people know that they have a choice not to use Windows on their PC if they aren’t satisfied by it, but also to make them aware of vendors that don’t include the Windows tax on their PCs.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Prepare for Microsoft to flaunt fake “sales figures” like it did with Vista for about a year (“we sold 100,000,000 copies” … 200,000,000 … etc etc … even if it’s an XP/PC sale, in which case it counts as 2 sales of Vista).

    David Gerard Reply:

    Yes. I don’t recall anyone in the press actually asking the big question: “Microsoft knows precisely how many copies of Vista are in use – it’s the number talking to the WGA servers. Microsoft, how many copies of Vista are in use?”

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    “Microsoft was not available for comment at the time of writing.”

What Else is New


  1. Links 30/10/2014: GNOME 3.15.1, Red Hat Software Collections 1.2

    Links for the day



  2. Links 29/10/2014: Ubuntu Touch Tablet, Puppy Linux 6.0

    Links for the day



  3. Links 28/10/2014: SUSE Linux Enterprise 12, Canonical OpenStack Distro

    Links for the day



  4. Links 28/10/2014: PiFxOS, The Document Foundation in OSBA

    Links for the day



  5. Microsoft is Bricking Devices With Linux (Yet Again!), So a Microsoft Booster Spins/Paints Linux Devices as 'Fakes'

    Microsoft delivers rogue drivers through Windows Update and they brick Arduino microcontrollers



  6. How Bill Gates Continues to Pass Wealth From the Public to His Own Bank Account

    Having put a universal tax on many things (not just computers) and evaded tax using the classic 'charity' trick, Gates is now buying the media, the schools, politicians etc. and earns as much as 10 billion dollars per year while the public is taught that Gates is a giver, not a hoarder of the worst kind



  7. Links 27/10/2014: Lenovo Unbundling, Linux 3.18 RC2

    Links for the day



  8. IRC Proceedings: September 14th, 2014 – October 25th, 2014

    Many IRC logs



  9. Links 25/10/2014: KDE Mockups, Update on GNOME Outreach Program for Women

    Links for the day



  10. After Infecting Unity -- Successfully -- Microsoft's Partner Xamarin Wants to Infect Unreal Engine With .NET

    Xamarin continues to spread dependence on Microsoft to more gaming frameworks, not just platforms such as GNU/Linux, Android, and even permanent-state devices



  11. Taking Microsoft Windows Off the Grid for Damage to Businesses, the Internet, and Banking Systems

    Microsoft's insecure-by-design software is causing massive damages ([cref 27802 possibly trillions] of [cref 13992 dollars in damages to date]) and yet the corporate press does not ask the right questions, let alone suggest a ban on Microsoft software



  12. City of Berlin Does Not Abandon Free Software, It's Only Tax Authorities

    A Softpedia report that says the City of Berlin is moving to Microsoft Office is flawed and may be based on a poor translation



  13. Nadella a Liar in Chief at Microsoft, Pretending That His Anti-Competitive Practices Are Unfortunately Imposed on Microsoft

    The nastiness of Microsoft knows no bounds as even its assault on GNU/Linux and dirty tricks against Free software adoption are characterised as the fault of 'pirates'



  14. Reuters Writes About the Demise of Software Patents, But Focuses on 'Trolls' and Quotes Lawyers

    How the corporate media chooses to cover the invalidity of many software patents and the effect of that



  15. Links 24/10/2014: Microsoft Tax Axed in Italy, Google's Linux (ChromeOS/Android) Leader Promoted

    Links for the day



  16. Links 24/10/2014: GNU/Linux History, Fedora Delay

    Links for the day



  17. Links 23/10/2014: New *buntu, Benchmarks

    Links for the day



  18. Links 22/10/2014: Chromebooks Surge, NSA Android Endorsement

    Links for the day



  19. Links 21/10/2014: Debian Fork Debate, New GNU IceCat

    Links for the day



  20. Criminal Microsoft is Censoring the Web and Breaks Laws to Do So; the Web Should Censor (Remove) Microsoft

    Microsoft is still breaking the Internet using completely bogus takedown requests (an abuse of DMCA) and why Microsoft Windows, which contains weaponised back doors (shared with the NSA), should be banned from the Internet, not just from the Web



  21. Microsoft 'Loving' GNU/Linux and Other Corporate Media Fiction

    Microsoft has bullied or cleverly bribed enough technology-centric media sites to have them characterise Microsoft as a friend of Free/Open Source software (FOSS) that also "loves Linux"



  22. India May be Taking Bill Gates to Court for Misusing His So-called 'Charity' to Conduct Clinical Trials Without Consent on Behalf of Companies He Invests in

    Bill Gates may finally be pulled into the courtroom again, having been identified for large-scale abuses that he commits in the name of profit (not "charity")



  23. The Problems With Legal Workarounds, Patent Scope, and Expansion of Patent Trolls to the East

    Patent trolls are in the news again and it's rather important, albeit for various different reasons, more relevant than the ones covered here in the past



  24. Links 20/10/2014: Cloudera and Red Hat, Debian 7.7, and Vivid Vervet

    Links for the day



  25. Links 20/10/2014: 10 Years Since First Ubuntu Release

    Links for the day



  26. How Patent Lawyers Analyze Alice v. CLS Bank

    Breaking down a patent lawyer's analysis of a Supreme Court's decision that seemingly invalidated hundreds of thousands of software patents



  27. Is It Google's Turn to Head the USPTO Corporation?

    The industry-led USPTO continues to be coordinated by some of its biggest clients, despite issues associated with conflicting interests



  28. The EPO's Public Relations Disaster Amid Distrust From Within (and EPO Communications Chief Leaves): Part VII

    Amid unrest and suspicion of misconduct in the EPO's management (ongoing for months if not years), Transparency International steps in, but the EPO's management completely ignores Transparency International, refusing to collaborate; the PR chief of the EPO is apparently being pushed out in the mean time



  29. Links 18/10/2014: Debian Plans for Init Systems, Tails 1.2

    Links for the day



  30. Links 18/10/2014: New ELive, Android Expansion

    Links for the day


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts