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Microsoft PR: Looking Under The Hood

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the leave-that-tracking-info-in-remember dept.

Microsoft 389

mtr writes "An interesting article uncovering some embarassing and amusing PR practices of our friendly software giant had been recently published by Michael Zalewski. The author recovered change tracking information from all the DOCs published on microsoft.com, and came up with something to cheer you up. It's funny when it happens to others - but even better if it fires back on themselves. Read the full story here."

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JesuitX Strikes Again! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709810)

GNAA Announces responsibility for kernel backdoor
By Tim Copperfield
Raleigh, NC - GNAA (Gay Nigger Association of America) this afternoon announced one of their loyal members was responsible for planting the "backdoor" inside the popular opensores operating system, Lunix [redhat.com] (Stocks [yahoo.com] , Websites [google.com] ).

In a shocking announcement this afternoon, GNAA representative goat-see revealed that the mistery hacker who penetrated high-security defenses of the Lunix "source code" repository and injected viral gay nigger seed deep inside the kernel was indeed a full-time GNAA member.
"This is serious," goat-see began. This is a first event of such magnitude since GNAA opened its doors to new members in 1996. Until now, we were gathering new members by announcing our group information on a popular troll website, slashdot.org [kuro5hin.org] , but this is a whole new era. By injecting our holy gay nigger seed right into the Lunix kernel, we will be able to immediately collect thousands of members. "Make the most of the next six weeks," he added. "We will grow in numbers more than you can possibly imagine".
Insertion of the GNAA backdoor came right between the consideration of Novell [novell.com] to buy out the entire Lunix Kernel programming team, and will most likely positively affect the decision. By adding all the gay niggers working for Novell with the gay niggers developing Lunix kernel source, GNAA will be all-powerful and will begin plotting our next plans to add "backdoors" into the next favorite operating system, BeOS [microsoft.com] .

About GNAA
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the first organization which
gathers GAY NIGGERS from all over America and abroad for one common goal - being GAY NIGGERS.

Are you GAY [klerck.org] ?
Are you a NIGGER [mugshots.org] ?
Are you a GAY NIGGER [gay-sex-access.com] ?

If you answered "Yes" to all of the above questions, then GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) might be exactly what you've been looking for!
Join GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) today, and enjoy all the benefits of being a full-time GNAA member.
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the fastest-growing GAY NIGGER community with THOUSANDS of members all over United States of America. You, too, can be a part of GNAA if you join today!

Why not? It's quick and easy - only 3 simple steps!

First, you have to obtain a copy of GAY NIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE THE MOVIE [imdb.com] and watch it.

Second, you need to succeed in posting a GNAA "first post" on slashdot.org [slashdot.org] , a popular "news for trolls" website

Third, you need to join the official GNAA irc channel #GNAA on EFNet, and apply for membership.
Talk to one of the ops or any of the other members in the channel to sign up today!

If you are having trouble locating #GNAA, the official GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA irc channel, you might be on a wrong irc network. The correct network is EFNet, and you can connect to irc.secsup.org or irc.isprime.com as one of the EFNet servers.
If you do not have an IRC client handy, you are free to use the GNAA Java IRC client by clicking here [nero-online.org] .

About Lunix
Lunix is an operating system. An operating system is the basic set of programs and utilities that make your computer run. Some other common operating systems are Unix (and its variants BSD, AIX, Solaris, HPUX, and others); DOS; Microsoft Windows; Amiga; and Mac OS.
Lunix is Free Software. Now, just because it's Free, doesn't necessarily mean it's free. Think "free" as in "free speech," not "free beer," as we in the Free Software/Open Source community like to say. In a nutshell, software that is free as in speech, like Lunix, is distributed along with its source code so that anyone who receives it is free to make changes and redistribute it. So, not only is it ok to make copies of Lunix and give them to your friends, it's also fine to tweak a few lines of the source code while you're at it -- as long as you also freely provide your modified source code to everyone else. To learn more about free software and the major software license it is distributed under, called the General Public License (GPL), go here [com.com] .

If you have mod points and would like to support GNAA, please moderate this post up.
By moderating this post as "Underrated", you cannot be Meta-Moderated! Please consider this.

________________________________________________
| ______________________________________._a,____ |
| _______a_._______a_______aj#0s_____aWY!400.___ |
| __ad#7!!*P____a.d#0a____#!-_#0i___.#!__W#0#___ |
| _j#'_.00#,___4#dP_"#,__j#,__0#Wi___*00P!_"#L,_ |
| _"#ga#9!01___"#01__40,_"4Lj#!_4#g_________"01_ |
| ________"#,___*@`__-N#____`___-!^_____________ |
| _________#1__________?________________________ |
| _________j1___________________________________ |
| ____a,___jk_GAY_NIGGER_ASSOCIATION_OF_AMERICA_ |
| ____!4yaa#l___________________________________ |
| ______-"!^____________________________________ |
` _______________________________________________'

Re:JesuitX Strikes Again! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709875)

JesuitX JesuitX JesuitX AGAIN DOES NOT FAIL IT!

props to penisbard and timecop

AARP: GNAA FLAA! (-1, Offtopic)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709917)

The American Association of Retired People issued a fartwad (fat wife? that jihad crap the radicals are all preaching--ed) the Gay Nigger Association of America in a Four Letter Acronym Assault today. Nicholas DILLIGAF, AARP spokesman, read the following: "Friends, Americans, Countrymen, lend me your ears. And a few bucks. An essential, God-given right of all Americans stands threatened by cretins of the GNAA ilk. That's right: Socialist Security is jeopardized by their existance. Now, anyone with two shreds of common sense can see that Socialist Security is a godforsaken ponzi scheme. Private citizens would be nailed to the wall for even trying such an audacious stunt. I guess being the government, you can just legalize it. What matters to you and me, though, is that, like any pyramid scheme, Socialist Security relies on continued population input. And that's why the GNAA, and all other outbursts of creeping faggotry have got to be stopped. If men continue to plant their seed where it cannot grow, who will feed the Socialist Security beast? We certainly cannot resurrect the family unit, and expect parents and children and relatives and communities to care for one another; we've got to make sure that the demolition of the family and all other outmoded values continues. Faggotry, in this sense, is an idea carried just a little too far. We want people to be heterosexual, and sew their wild oats with measured indiscrimination, so that we will continue to have a population input of people from properly disintegrated families to feed the Socialist Security machine. In summary, ignore the GNAA, knock up some chick, but don't worry about actually making a family of the situation, and ensure that Socialist Security continues to snowball beyond its current Real Hard Problem state and achieves the ultimate goal of Problem That Could Destroy America. Thank you for your attention. "

Re:AARP: GNAA FLAA! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709934)

Loser! Post that crap anonymously!

I FAIL IT... (-1, Offtopic)

Stupid American (766263) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709918)

because I am Stupid American

GNAA Reports Third Quater Profit of $200 million (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709811)

GNAA (Gay Nigger Association of America) Reports Third Quater Profit of $200 Million
Reports Third Quater Profit of $200 Million,
Revnues up 19%,
Profits Before Investment Gains up 43 percent

By GNAA Business Systems Development director, rkz [google.com]
East Midlands, United Kingdom -- Today, GNAA announced financial results for its fiscal 2004 first quarter ending April 1, 2004
For the quarter, the Company posted a net profit of $200 million, or $.55 per diluted share. These results compare to a net profit of $203 million, or $.60 per diluted share, achieved in the year-ago quarter. Revenues for the quarter were $1.825 billion, up 17 percent from the year-ago quarter, and gross margins were 29.8 percent, up from 27.4 percent in the year-ago quarter.
International sales accounted for 46 percent of the quarter's revenues.

"Strong earnings combined with superb asset management resulted in positive cash flows from operations of $234 million," said timecop [www.ne.jp] , GNAA's CIO (Chief Information Officer). "GNAA finished the quarter with $3.8 billion in cash and short-term investments."

"We're pleased to report our eleventh consecutive profitable quarter, with net profits up 43 percent," said Penisbird, GNAA's CEO (Chief Operation Officer). "We had a strong quarter for our pro products, especially Gay Nigger erotic literature."

About GNAA:
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the first organization which
gathers GAY NIGGERS from all over America and abroad for one common goal - being GAY NIGGERS.

Are you GAY [klerck.org] ?
Are you a NIGGER [mugshots.org] ?
Are you a GAY NIGGER [gay-sex-access.com] ?

If you answered "Yes" to all of the above questions, then GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) might be exactly what you've been looking for!
Join GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) today, and enjoy all the benefits of being a full-time GNAA member.
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the fastest-growing GAY NIGGER community with THOUSANDS of members all over United States of America. You, too, can be a part of GNAA if you join today!

Why not? It's quick and easy - only 3 simple steps!

First, you have to obtain a copy of GAY NIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE THE MOVIE [imdb.com] and watch it. (You can download the movie (~280mb) using BitTorrent, by clicking here [idge.net] .

Second, you need to succeed in posting a GNAA "first post" on slashdot.org [slashdot.org] , a popular "news for trolls" website

Third, you need to join the official GNAA irc channel #GNAA on EFNet, and apply for membership.
Talk to one of the ops or any of the other members in the channel to sign up today!

If you are having trouble locating #GNAA, the official GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA irc channel, you might be on a wrong irc network. The correct network is EFNet, and you can connect to irc.secsup.org or irc.isprime.com as one of the EFNet servers.
If you do not have an IRC client handy, you are free to use the GNAA Java IRC client by clicking here [nero-online.org] .


If you have mod points and would like to support GNAA, please moderate this post up.

________________________________________________
| ______________________________________._a,____ |
| _______a_._______a_______aj#0s_____aWY!400.___ |
| __ad#7!!*P____a.d#0a____#!-_#0i___.#!__W#0#___ |
| _j#'_.00#,___4#dP_"#,__j#,__0#Wi___*00P!_"#L,_ |
| _"#ga#9!01___"#01__40,_"4Lj#!_4#g_________"01_ |
| ________"#,___*@`__-N#____`___-!^_____________ |
| _________#1__________?________________________ |
| _________j1___________________________________ |
| ____a,___jk_GAY_NIGGER_ASSOCIATION_OF_AMERICA_ |
| ____!4yaa#l___________________________________ |
| ______-"!^____________________________________ |
` _______________________________________________'

Question - (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709812)

What happens If I don't want to see the full story?

Re:Question - (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709878)

Don't worry, Sir Haxalot will make sure you see it, one way or another.

IN SOVIET RUSSIA... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709815)

The hood looks under YOU!!!

Your DICK IS IN MY ASS! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709883)

Oh no!

Your dick is in my ASS!

OUCH!

Negative! The correct Inspector Grimm quote is: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709948)

"Your cock-up, my arse."

Cue Lawyers! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709818)

I believe the analysis posted here meets the fair use criteria and does not disclose trade secrets - because it is a critical review of short excerpts of publicly available resources and data accessible with a click of a button in Microsoft Word - but I am not willing to dispute it too vigoriously if I receive a cease-and-desist letter. As such, enjoy it while it lasts.
Hint, hint, save a copy. I wonder how long it will take Microsoft lawyers to smell blood. Wagers? I'll put five bucks on "yesterday".

Re:Cue Lawyers! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709837)

I'll put 5 on some shill site putting up an expose on that piece, with lots of good-old marketing terms thrown in for good measure.

Lawyers would probably be overkill.

Re:Cue Lawyers! (3, Insightful)

AnotherFreakboy (730662) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709952)

/. ran the link, so now millions of people who already hated microsoft know that microsoft is evil.

To do anything about this site now would probably draw the attention of people who don't read /., harming the microsoft image more than doing nothing.

However now that /. has run the link, it will probably be picked up by other news sites, with a less anit-MS audience.

I bet they wait a few days until something more mainstream runs the link before they take any action. When they take action they will be firing all cannons though.

Re:Cue Lawyers! (3, Informative)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710044)

There's not much they can do. Microsoft publishes these documents, and fair use allows the snippets to be posted for the purpose of criticism. They have no more right to have them removed than a novelist has to have a uncomplimentary book review removed.

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710012)

+5 Insightful? It was supposed to be a bad joke. Next time I'll post flamebait while logged in, so fewer mod points get wasted.

His Name is "Michal" (4, Informative)

porkrind (314254) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709827)

And he's writing a book for No Starch Press due in August :@)

It's called "Silence on the Wire" and he is One Smart Dude (TM).

Full disclosure - I work for No Starch Press.

Re:His Name is "Michal" (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709911)

The program he used is called wvWare [sourceforge.net] , obviously a handy little tool. He also gives links to some documents that supposedly yield interesting results. They are reproduced here:

1 [microsoft.com] ,

2 [microsoft.com] ,

3 [microsoft.com] ,

4 [microsoft.com] ,

5 [microsoft.com]

So get cracking and have fun!

DO NOT MOD PARENT UP! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709971)

This is the original poster speaking... the parent post has been reproduced here [slashdot.org] .

Mod that one up if you want this to be seen.

Re:His Name is "Michal" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710054)

I no work for Starch Press myself.

If only... (5, Funny)

Frisky070802 (591229) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709831)

Don't you wish we had the same thing for White House internal memoranda?

Re:If only... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709996)

You imply that civil servants can use all them fancy features.

Start Bashing: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709833)

Wait for it.....

wait for it....

GO!

Re:Start Bashing: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709862)

bash? why would I need to use that now? I'm not on my linux box.

Stupid AC.

What does this all mean? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709834)

What???

Hey, guess what? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709839)

I just got raped by a goat! I thought it was supposed to be the other way around!

Finally! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709841)

Now even Microsoft is in on the tired^H^H^H^H^Hclassic "^H" joke!

Re:Finally! (5, Funny)

endx7 (706884) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710000)

Now even Microsoft is in on the tired^H^H^H^H^Hclassic "^H" joke!

The " joke? I don't get it.

Re:Finally! (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710053)

You probably need to be over 30. Or at least spent a good amount of time with old technology.

Re:Finally! (1)

Delirium Tremens (214596) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710083)

And you probably need to reread his post or at least spend a good amount of time reading elaborate jokes.

Re:Finally! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710086)

I hate to point out the obvious, but it was a joke. "^H" = " because the ^H removes the first ". Moron^?^?^?^?^?... damn! stty erase ^?

Re:Finally! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710073)

^H is/was used for backspace, way back in the day; when nerds were nerds, and livestock were nervous

SCO news getting hard to find? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709843)

That explains the redirect on MS bashing.

Friendly software giant? (4, Funny)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709845)

Oh come on, Debian isn't that big...

Embarassing not (4, Insightful)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709846)

By definition an effective PR person cannot be embarassed by the stuff that comes out of his/her mouth. The bastards lie -- err -- "manage the truth" with no shame at all.

Beyond the Spin Doctor (1)

handy_vandal (606174) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710068)

By definition an effective PR person cannot be embarassed by the stuff that comes out of his/her mouth. The bastards lie -- err -- "manage the truth" with no shame at all.

Right you are.

The term "spin doctor" doesn't go far enough -- "doctor" is too vague -- in this age of specialists, a better title would be "spin anesthesiologist".

-kgj

Hey! (4, Funny)

lukewarmfusion (726141) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709848)

"our friendly software giant"

Is that sarcasm?

Re:Hey! (4, Funny)

savagedome (742194) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709941)

No. The sarcasm is "our friendly software giant" !!

Re:Hey! (0)

twigles (756194) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709992)

True, M$ products are entirely to brittle to be referred to as soft.

Pining... (5, Funny)

inphinity (681284) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709852)

An Office removal wizard?

This makes me harken back to the days of yore...

....when an uninstall actually, well, uninstalled..?

Ah ... (2, Funny)

Sonic McTails (700139) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709853)

Nothing cheers me up as much as watching something backfire on Microsoft.

Re:Ah ... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709957)

Nothing cheers me up as much as watching something backfire on Microsoft.

I used to be that way too. Then I got a life.

Tool? (5, Insightful)

Joe5678 (135227) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709857)

Odd... that tool linked to in the article and again in the post, links to a tool that removes all traces of office from the operating system, it has nothing to do with tracking changes or removing them from documents.

Re:Tool? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709927)

Actually, the removal tool is just part of the application on that page... upon actually downloading and installing it, one comes to see that there are several tools/options that one can do with the "Office Resource Kit", and removal of Office is simply one of those things. So actually, yes, yes it does have stuff to do with the above =).

web page tracking (4, Interesting)

Frisky070802 (591229) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709860)

The issues with evolving Word files using version tracking also come up with web pages, since there are tools to track changes to web pages (for instance, WebCQ [gatech.edu] ). When a projected date changes, it can be pretty embarrassing. I've seen projected Ph.D. graduation dates slip in six-month increments, huge price changes, policy changes, and so on.

The key difference here is that the tracking reveals internal versions that were obviously never meant to be public. The idea that a draft would attribute a quote to a nameless executive is particularly appalling!

Why? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709897)

I have had Rackspace do the same thing when I worked for a company that was a major Rackspace customer. Their PR team provided some quotes and the CEO of our company picked the ones he liked and attached his name to them.

It happens all the time.

Re:Why? (4, Interesting)

Frisky070802 (591229) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709978)

Their PR team provided some quotes and the CEO of our company picked the ones he liked and attached his name to them.

Yeah, but isn't this case more like the PR team from your company attaching the CEO of someone else's company to their own quotes? Sure, if that person then agrees, it's OK, and I'm sure that's done too. But it does devalue such testimonials a bit in my eyes.

Re:Why? (1)

black mariah (654971) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710036)

Testimonials had value in your eyes to begin with? They're PR fluff, what do you expect?

Re:Why? (5, Informative)

Magic5Ball (188725) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710096)

Find me a CEO/senior executive of something important (company, government) who doesn't use speech writers, and you will have found a failed executive.

Does anyone seriously think Bill, Bush, Gore, Gates, Thatcher, Scott, Arnold, etc. really have time to research and prepare up to a dozen dozen speeches every week on topics ranging from youth education, the state of the automobile industry, and how the new initiative will enhance health care in a region?

PR firms and flacks write speeches all the time because they are the ones with the time and training to parse highly specilised information into something Joe 6 p.m. nightly news reporter can understand, while making disasters look good for the company or government. Executives, however, are tasked with leading/spearheading/announcing important things when they happen and providing overall organizational leadership and management.

It would sometimes be nice if $leader fully understood the consequences of bituminous petro extraction and writes the entire speech himself before he speaks about it before their association, but I'd rather have $leader worry about leadership and management things which I might be paying him for through holdings or taxes.

Re:web page tracking (4, Interesting)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709926)

Doesn't Word also save a GUID in the file that contains the MAC of the network card of the computer where it was created/edited? Something juicy could probably be done with that, but it would take a lot more work.

Re:web page tracking (2, Informative)

kris_lang (466170) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710020)

Hmmm... I remembered something about that too, and found a link from 1999 [davemathews.com] on a site not related to the Dave Matthews Band. Don't know if XP is doing it too. Haven't cared since I've been MS free since 1999.

Re:web page tracking (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709955)

The program Michal used is called wvWare [sourceforge.net], obviously a handy little tool.

He also gives links to some documents that supposedly yield interesting results. They are reproduced here:

1 [microsoft.com] ,

2 [microsoft.com] ,

3 [microsoft.com] ,

4 [microsoft.com] ,

5 [microsoft.com]

So get cracking and have fun!

P.S. This same post is somewhere lower in the threads - and probably going lower (i.e. it's sinking with its parent) ... I'm posting again hoping this copy won't go down. :P

fires back? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709861)

In english, we have a term for "fires back".

It's BACKFIRES YOU FUCKTARD!

LEDOSKO!

is anyone else a little hesitant? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709863)

did anyone else see that .cx address and have a slight moment of hesitation before clicking through?

Re:is anyone else a little hesitant? (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710013)

Yeah, I figured it was probably some guy who went for the "trendy" .cx domain so he could host his own with a linux box on a cablemodem or under his desk at work. Thus it's totally slashdotted.

Call me crazy, but .cx domains are so...'99.

Re:is anyone else a little hesitant? (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710076)

Call me crazy, but .cx domains are so...'99.

archive.org agrees with you. [archive.org] (Just don't click on the links of the link. You were warned!)

Re:is anyone else a little hesitant? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710019)

As everybody else here I would not read the article, but you made me curious...

Re:is anyone else a little hesitant? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710066)

Pfft...nobody here even bothers with clicking on links. That might lead to article reading.

Re:is anyone else a little hesitant? (1)

Mag7 (69118) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710074)

Our corporate info sec nazis^H^H^H^H^H net nanny's blocked the location. Seems they think everything .cx is unsuitable for our impressionable eyes.

Looking under the hood.. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709868)

You'll find a massive clit, aka Steve Ballmer. You can't miss that shiny fucking bald head for the world.

Hmmm (5, Funny)

wideBlueSkies (618979) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709877)

From the article:
Call me paranoid, but all those "xxx, Chief Information Officer/Vice President at Avensis" quotes make it look as if they were fabricated prior to even figuring out who to talk to at the company, not to mention determining what his/her name would be.

Could it be that the Author of the memo heard a taped recording of the comments, and transcribed them without knowing the guy's name, thus leaving placeholders?

I don't think that even M$FT would stoop so low as to intentionally misquote someone. They'd never get away with it.

wbs.

Re:Hmmm (5, Informative)

Thanatopsis (29786) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709907)

Actually it's a pretty common practice to write place holder quotes (ie quotes they write for you) for the executive and then ask if it's ok to use them. I have done so for Netledger [www.netledger] and MyGeek [mygeek.com] . Most executives don't have time to think of something nice to say about the vendor. In joint marketing efforts this is the norm, usually it also passes through your PR department as well.

Re:Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710008)

Are you serious? Doesnt that make the quote 100% bullshit then? My mum always said, if you cant think of something nice to say, dont attribute your name to the product. Or something like that...

Re:Hmmm (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710049)

Why am I not surprised that fabricating quotes is a practice that journalists find acceptable.

You sure you don't work for the BBC or New York Times?

Re:Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709908)

". They'd never get away with it."

Mod parent funny! I DIED laughing!

Re:Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709919)

more like mod parent naive.

Re:Hmmm (4, Interesting)

Penguinshit (591885) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709991)


Having participated in this sort of work before, a "quote" is created by whatever marketing agency Company "X" hired to create the white paper, arrange press exposure, etc. They will write stuff up and make "quotes" which are then reviewed and approved by the executive being "quoted" (often as many as 10 or 15 revisions).

I've seen "interviews" where the whole thing is carefully scripted; the "interviewer" and the executive only see the final copy the day before (or even day of) the interview video is shot.

Stunts gone wrong (5, Funny)

Realistic_Dragon (655151) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709890)

Between Microsofts marketing attempts - Windows ME, the BSOD on stage, the DOCs with changes in them that insult users or other companties - it almost seems like Microsoft marketing is trying not to sell to users.

It would be fantastic to find out that MS is actually some kind of joke gone wrong. Like,

"Hey, lets make a really bad operating system and see what happens."
"Holy cow, they are buying it!"
"Man, thats insane, lets make another one and see if they still fall for it."
"Jesys, can't these people learn? I know, lets hype up something that doesnt exist and then not bother releasing it."
"Woah, demand is so high we can afford to pay for it to be made."
"Why not, but insert some easter eggs that make it crash. That should let them realise it's all a big farce."

Re:Stunts gone wrong (2, Insightful)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710037)

There is an element of truth in this. Microsoft don't make money out of their trimmed down offerings (WinME, 98, XP Home, Outlook Express,...) but they do/have on their professional stuff (Win2000/WinXP, Office). So while they want people to get sucked in to their lower end stuff, they'd like it to be nasty enough to prompt people to upgrade.

Re:Stunts gone wrong (1)

Sensitive Claude (709959) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710087)

I remeber hearing about an easter egg in the BSOD where you could still pull up solitare after your computer otherwise complete crashed.

I can't remember if it was real, or a joke.

CX (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709892)

Ok, how many of you saw the cx on the link and were scared to click it too.

Already slashdotted (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709900)

Google Cache [216.239.51.104]

Re:Already slashdotted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710005)

Wow.. mod that person up "+5 Non-Karma-Whore".

slashdot has incredible news! (5, Funny)

LBArrettAnderson (655246) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709903)

Micrsoft releases final drafts onto the web... but WAIT! we can see their ROUGH DRAFTS TOO!!! I'm sorry, but there wasn't anything embarrassing about any of that. It's not like Bill Gates himself or anyone high up in the company is the one who initially wrote those documents. And besides, they were corrected... so i don't get it... who cares? this is not news. (anyone want to see the rough draft to my english paper!?!? it's HORRIBLE! how embarrassing!)

Mod Parent Up (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709929)

This is just another example of slashdot scraping the bottom of the barrel for anti-Microsoft stories.

It's not very interesting, and reveals almost no new information. It's just more tired old drivel designed to embarass Microsoft and generate another flame-war.

Slashdot has long become a sad parody of itself nowadays.

Re:Mod Parent Up (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8709965)

Hello LBArrettAnderson (655246).

How's the weather in fuckwit town today?

Sorry, I know this is offtopic but... (3, Funny)

eLoco (459203) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709939)

where are the SCO articles?!! I need my fix man!

wow... (5, Funny)

Whelzorn (761799) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709962)

wow... If microsoft can write a piece of software to remove one of their own programs, they could effortlessly write the world's most effective virus removal tool...

Mirror Provided (4, Informative)

baximus (552800) | more than 10 years ago | (#8709969)

Mirror available at PlanetMirror now here [planetmirror.com] .

How Gates really came to power... (0, Offtopic)

Neo's Nemesis (679728) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710001)

CompuGlobalHyperMegaNet

Some of the conclusions are dubious (5, Insightful)

syousef (465911) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710002)

Some of the conclusions are dubious. Most of this looks like fairly standard business practices.

For example xxxx CEO of blah said yyyy
may simply be the result of the employee drawing up the report not knowing the full name or title of the person who made the statement.

As for exact facts and figures about a customer being included, this looks like they got asked not to include them, or decided against it, and complied.

Where's the story here? There's plenty of more interesting things that go on. This is just pure MS bashing. Bashing any company you dislike for genuinely bad business practices this way is a fantastic way to come across as a lunatic with a chip on your shoulder, but not a good way to be taken seriously when pointing out a company's flaws.

Re:Some of the conclusions are dubious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710061)

For example xxxx CEO of blah said yyyy
may simply be the result of the employee drawing up the report not knowing the full name or title of the person who made the statement.

Ridiculous. Go away M$ troll.

Informative line about Home Depot (5, Funny)

xs650 (741277) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710004)

One of the examples in the article was was:

"Home Depot: evaluated both, chose Windows for 8,200 Windows desktops, 42,000 Windows embedded for POS devices,... "

Several devices that I have bought at Home Depot have been a POS, but I wsn't aware Windows was embedded in them. Is windows in every POS that Home Depot sells or just certain items?

Re:Informative line about Home Depot (2, Funny)

SoLO (91992) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710093)

Just Windows?

bwahhhahaha (2, Funny)

MajorDick (735308) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710010)

I love when people get caught saying stupid things or saying they didnt say something when they did. I have a semi-photographic memory I will call it, I can pretty much remeber any conversation verbatim, nearly perfectly for as long as a year back with less than important conversations and pretty much forever if it was of some special importance. I think its because I have this ability that it absolutley drives me NUTS when people say they didnt say something, to have trackingin word docs..too funny. Did so say that ...no I didnt.....errrr yes you did here it is......uhhh no I didnt.....wasnt me....

Re:bwahhhahaha (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710052)

Maybe you should have a conversation with your english teacher...

Plu5 1, troll) (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710016)

slashdoted (1)

gd2shoe (747932) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710018)

Anyone post a mirror?

Re:slashdoted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710089)

google cache [slashdot.org]

This is what a PDF is for (5, Insightful)

waynegoode (758645) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710021)

This is one of many reasons why you should publish documents in PDF format. But, Microsoft can't do this--it would be admitting the problem exists.

I guess Microsft thinks its better to ignore the problem than solve it, if the solution is not yours. What's the worst that could happen? ;)

Thats what you get for bad design... (3, Insightful)

aralin (107264) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710022)

... and not separating data and metadata. If they would rather hold their document's metadata in database separate of the document, this would never happen. Nah, why would I care? At least its fun :)

Nothing to see here...move along. (2, Informative)

ShinyBrowncoat (692095) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710025)

Everything described on that site is standard operating procedure for technology marketing/pr departments. Case studies, customer/analyst quotes, etc. are often drafted ahead of time and then sent to the company/analyst for approval. And of course straightforward engineer-speak ("our monopoly") is massaged into marketing-speak ("our large installed base of satisfied customers").

Man.. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710026)

Don't you people -EVER- get tired of talking about Microsoft?! Doesn't it seem a bit odd that there are more stories about -MS- than Linux and OSS combined! Why not just cut to the chase and rename Slashdot, 'Microdot.' At least then we could respect /. for its honesty. News for nerds, pffbt. My arse.

About the exec quotes (4, Informative)

heff (24452) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710032)

A lot of people are talking about the quote with the xx's.. this is common practice in PR, we write the quotes in the release, they sign off on them.

Did you actually think the pr people were interviewing the ceo for a press release?

Anybody else transfixed by the bare boobies (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8710050)

on the author's photos page? If that is his girlfriend, I wonder why he felt the need to Photoshop her snoobs?

There is no spoon. (4, Insightful)

Kenneth Stephen (1950) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710051)

While it is certainly possible to ascribe less than pure motives to all the instances documented in the story, if one applies Occam's razor, one can come up with a simpler but not as interesting explanation : this is the way big business works. In a multi-national corporation, different people collaborate. They have different personalities, and some are more antagonistic than others. Some people are asked to produce marketing materials and others are asked to review them for factual accuracy. Ultimately, before a document is published, several reviewers will go through it, and it would be shocking if edits were not made.

For example, the first example talks about changing the "deploying" to "evaluating". What exactly is damning about this? Perhaps when the marketing material was written, Aventis had plans to deploy and this got changed later. Or maybe, there are some reasons why Aventis, even though it is actually deploying, may not actually want their names used as a reference for the tablet PC. There are a million and one innocuous (sp?) reasons why the change was made, but yeah, they arent as fascinating as the interpretation made on the site.

Another example - the Robbie Bach / Sandy Duncan mixup. Organizational chains are quite tangled in large corporations and can change quite frequently. The author might simply not have had the right information on who was actually in charge - especially if both were Senior Vice Presidents and connected with XBox.

My favorite bit (1)

jelle (14827) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710080)

I wish they had published this one, because it is just too easy to bite in...

"Gordon Benett, Aberdeen Group analyst, in his October 2001 article," ... " What's wrong with an analyst asserting his opinion and a vendor leveraging it to gain competitive advantage? First, the analyst opinion is unfounded and, as it happens, flat out wrong."

Well, to begin with that explains why they took that passage out, because it would otherwise have been a passage of an analyst asserting his opinion and a leveraging it to gain competitive advantage: The exact point he's trying to convey as being wrong (the pot/kettle effect). As if the Aberdeen Group doesn't have very big vested pro-MS interests, ok sure, yeah.

And huh? Since when can a opinion be right or wrong. I'm not a linguist, and english is not my first language either, but as far as I know an opinion is not a fact, but is it a subjective assertion, which is incapable of possessing the property of being either right or wrong.

But it gets better:

"But even if it had a modicum of merit, steering the market away from Microsoft in the wake of cyber-terrorist actions would be grossly wrong-headed."

Besides the more than modicum of merit represented by the overall and detailed security track record of Apache versus IIS... Tell me again, who had the unfounded opinions?

Wow.

"Get the facts" initiative (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710084)

Is that glassnost or peristroika? Ignore the spelling. Just answer the question. Thanks in advanced.

Proves one thing, if results are bad: hush (2, Interesting)

Ricin (236107) | more than 10 years ago | (#8710092)

One can dabble about form, tone, and words for weeks, but when it comes down to it, what matters if you have something viable to say.

If not, that's where PR breaks down, (see Dubya) .. its presumed you have good things to say, then it'll work or at least not backlash. Please keep in mind this is MBA level stuff.

That's also why PR for damage control after something went wrong is wasted money from the start. It always breaks down. But they'll spend it anyway. The lesser of sciences tend to have the strongest dogma's. And this PR/MBA stuff is certainly a disgrace to science to be ranked with it.

This stuff looks more like a wannabee's homework though. Funny to read I must say.
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