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02.21.10

New AstroTurfing from Microsoft Philippines, Increased Pressure on Businesses

Posted in Asia, Marketing, Microsoft, Open XML, OpenDocument at 8:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Summary: Microsoft Philippines “targets Manila’s top 100 Netizens” and also targets so-called ‘piracy’

THE head of Microsoft Philippines quit the firm last year but not before being part of Microsoft’s OOXML scandals. Among posts that covered OOXML in the Philippines we have:

A leopard does not change its spots and Microsoft Philippines is still very unethical if not simply corrupt.

We previously covered examples where Microsoft had bribed bloggers [1, 2, 3, 4] to rave about Vista 7. Some months ago we also showed that Microsoft fed 777 prominent Korean bloggers in order for them to do this type of promotion and now we are finding something similar in the Philippines. The following article has changed since it was first published. Its older headline was “‘VIP Mix’ of Microsoft targets Manila’s top 100 Netizens”

Microsoft in the Philippines is trying out what looks and sounds like the second-oldest sales strategy in the book.

[...]

To secure a free VIP invite, a prospective guest needs to comply with certain requirements previously set by the company.

Last December, when it held its first VIP event for students, the software company chose the top 100 students with the most number of friends on Facebook.

Those who emerged on top of the pile had an average of 2,000 Facebook friends, an achievement made possible by their extensive networks, de Dios said.

[...]

An unofficial Facebook account of Microsoft friends in the Philippines — known as MSfriends Philippines — has also been created.

Who knows how much buzz that will generate?

No one does, as of yet.

But one thing’s for sure: Bill Gates is smiling.

Yes, Bill Gates is always smiling all the way to the bank because there are enough fools out there who fall for his PR operations and fail to see his continued abuse of society (more on that later).

“Microsoft is just trying to alter press coverage and blog coverage in the Philippines.”The article above can also be found here and it’s hard not to think of Melvin Calimag, a Microsoft booster/journalist from the Philippines — one whom Microsoft flew to the United States at its own expense for some OOXML brainwash and poison against ODF (courtesy of Microsoft employees, who disparaged ODF “independently” at the time). Microsoft is just trying to alter press coverage and blog coverage in the Philippines. It’s as simple as that.

At the same time, Microsoft suppresses Free software adoption in the Philippines using dumping techniques that we covered in:

  1. The EDGIfication of the Philippines
  2. Microsoft’s B.A.D. in China, Philippines

Our reader Chips B. Malroy has just shown us this new article that says: “Citing a study by a global technology research firm, Magsadia said the country has a 69 percent software piracy rate. Magsadia bared the Microsoft Philippines has decided to reduce the standard retail price of its Windows 7, for instance, from P9,000 down to P2,000, to help alleviate the problem on piracy.”

We are going to write about the latest “piracy” propaganda from Microsoft a little later (today or tomorrow). As Malroy explains, the above shows that “MS first goes after the “business” users. Last I knew 50peso to the US dollar, so MS is selling Seven for less than $40 to these cafe owners, in order to get some of them to buy.”

Microsoft is suppressing GNU/Linux in Internet Cafés [1, 2] where Free software is a good fit (mostly safe Web browsing is required). “MS going after piracy, is another way to squeeze out more revenue as profits decline. MS attempts to do this will increasingly become evil,” concludes Malroy.

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