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Microsoft Windows Advertising Goes Too Far, Parents Television Council Complains

Posted in Marketing, Microsoft, Vista, Vista 7, Vista 8, Windows at 9:03 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Summary: On top of vapourware promotion, Microsoft Windows ads are upsetting families; group demands removal of Microsoft ads that offend children

MICROSOFT keeps invoking Vista 8 every now and then, especially when the reality behind Vista 7 proves too challenging to defend. Microsoft is already hyping up a successor of Vista 7 in order to “freeze the market” (Microsoft's words) while Microsoft’s PR puppet at CNET participates in this. The same PR puppet is hyping up Vista 7 sales despite them being flat for manufacturers. They measure only what they want to measure, where they want to measure it, for a period of time that’s desirable only based on one particular definition/criteria. We wrote about this early in the month [1, 2] (NPD’s fake numbers).

“The same PR puppet is hyping up Vista 7 sales despite them being flat for manufacturers.”It turns out that the latest Vista vapourware comes from Microsoft’s very own presentation, so this case of vapourware is clearly intended, not “leaked” (the sense of taboo in a leak adds to mystique and increases attention, so it is often a PR move that’s akin to viral marketing).

We recently analysed a Guardian podcast where Microsoft marketing people took credit for other people’s ideas that Microsoft is routinely copying. Despite such shameless and baseless marketing hype, The Guardian has published this article which calls Vista 7 “The Hard Sell”. From the gentle short rant:

But hang on, how is being in a cab suddenly some kind of a treat? Not only are Microsoft putting tedious features front and centre, the ideas behind them are apparently coming from people so dense they’re unaware they’ve been in a certain kind of vehicle before. “I’m a PC, and Windows 7 was my idea,” Crystal boasts.

Vista 7 has also just been criticised in The Daily India.

Honestly, does anyone understand Microsoft’s point in offering upgrade media for Windows 7? As well, what’s with the different versions?

Last time, we discussed the multiple versions of Windows 7 and why it’s largely silly. Now we’re going to discuss the even-sillier idea in all of this: upgrade versus full install.

Seriously, why is Microsoft even going down this road? Are we seriously believing that they’re rewarding prior customers? We’ve already seen that the really good customers (like me) who bought their most expensive version of Vista, are now getting screwed. We Vista Ultimate users aren’t getting a single penny off in upgrading to Windows 7. In the end, the extra money I spent on Vista Ultimate is gone with my move to Windows 7.

One shameless aspect of Microsoft’s advertising for Vista 7 continues a tradition of using AIDS to increase sales [1, 2]. These days, Microsoft is frequently using kids to sell Windows and according to The Register Microsoft has just resorted to “child labor” too. We will write about it later.

There is a little new rant floating out there about Microsoft using youngsters to pretend they are Windows fans (before they even understand anything). How long before newly-born babies are shown bearing a copy of Vista 7? Or maybe sonogram of Vista 7 inside the fetus? Seriously, Microsoft cannot just impose this type of false advertising like some parents impose a particular religion (supposedly a belief) upon their child when it is conceived.

A parents group has just formally complained about Microsoft. How timely a deed.

Here is the group demanding that Family Guy ads for Microsoft/Windows are pulled entirely. This has already happened to an extent.

The organization’s national grassroots director, Gavin McKiernan, delivered a speech to the board stating, “Mr. MacFarlane’s Family Guy has consistently presented excessively violent, graphically sexual and profane material. The lead in and lead out of the Seth MacFarlane special were both Family Guy episodes supported by Windows 7.”

The Seattle-based, Microsoft-friendly sites have covered this also:

Seattle P-I Microsoft blog: Parent group to Microsoft: Stop supporting ‘Family Guy’

The Parents Television Council, which aims to protect children from sex, violence and profanity on TV, is calling for Microsoft to stop advertising on the popular show “Family Guy.”

Seattle Weekly blogs: Parents Group Asks Microsoft to Drop All ‘Family Guy’ Ads

Microsoft found out that Seth MacFarlane’s one-hour “Family Guy” special was filled with jokes about the Holocaust, Mother Theresa and incest they canceled their sponsorship. Now, the same busybodies that got the FCC to fine ABC for daring to show a bare ass on “NYPD Blue” have asked them to go one step further.

Perhaps Microsoft has simply lost the plot. The viral videos of Microsoft Store staff dancing deliriously sure is a sign.

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  1. williami said,

    November 22, 2009 at 9:31 pm


    All I have to say on this post: What is going on in the crazy minds of the Micro$oft marketing people?!?!?!?!?!?!!? Even the Guardian, and most of the M$ friendly press are admitting that!!!!!!!

    As a side note, Microsoft seems to be killing products left and right, maybe because they are slowly loosing money? I think that’s so.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Not only that–notice that they introduce no new products, not even in PDC (Professional Developers Conference). Earlier this month Microsoft announced more layoffs.

  2. Needs Sunlight said,

    November 23, 2009 at 3:34 am


    What about the threats against young families that Miguel “Mouth of Sauron” deIcaza made last week on behalf of his owner?

    Those threats are in the context of threats attempted and carried out:

    Scroll down to “Historical Footnote”

    Scroll down to “formal complaint”

    Scroll down to “get fired”

    Scroll down to “nice side effect”

    Miguel’s comments and the story above about false advertising are a call for use of R.I.C.O. to shutdown the Anti-American racketeering network collectively known as Microsoft.

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