Summary: Waggener Edstrom’s lack of ethics – take II; a look at a current real-world example
IN OUR previous post about Waggener Edstrom* we showed that it had become an integral part of Microsoft Corporation, for which is also lobbies in a variety of well-documented ways [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10]. This includes anti-Linux actions.
One issue that we explored before is this set of Microsoft guidelines for controlling coverage about the company and its products. Whereas Microsoft’s documents are confidential, Waggener Edstrom turns out to be talking about what it does a little more openly. It’s promoting itself using its unethical methods that it also patents (see the “Our IP” section). That first patent which was mentioned earlier today is a universal translator, but there is a lot more. “Some of their other ones are [...] strange scanning tools to [...] guide the direction of your development,” claims oiaohm. “It’s really strange to depend on a machine to tell you if your marketing is working. It’s even more strange to attempt to use a machine to tell you if you are the market leader or not,” he adds.
“A short while later it received an unexpected phone call from Microsoft and some abuse which ultimately led to the review being removed.”Going back to that video, “it covers all the methods you have been seeing,” oiaohm told me. According to his interpretation, the “idea [of] throwing more resources and shills/astro turfers at the problem is documented graphically in that video (instead of fixing problems that caused the bad PR in the first place). The information is around publicly to see Microsoft’s tactics.”
As a new example of this, see the following post from last week. A small business received 1,000 times the usual traffic on its Web site when it had published a negative review of Microsoft’s Surface. A short while later it received an unexpected phone call from Microsoft and some abuse which ultimately led to the review being removed. Could Waggener Edstrom have sent an alert regarding this blogger? After all, that’s just what they do at Waggener Edstrom.
The post was ‘updated’ (emptied), comments were closed, and the latest separate update — to quote what Twitter wrote — may indicate the following:
There is nothing gentle about that contact. If you are so “Microsofty” that you would even consider a $13,000 novelty, Microsoft is your oxygen. They go on to explain the hate mail they got.
5pm today that discussion had become so chock full of “web-muck” (the online equivalent of the telephone game, where the original message gets lost in the transmission) that it was becoming a huge distraction. … the tireless Apple vs. PC debate … impassioned souls who accused me of being everything from a “Microsoft Apologist” to “M$ fanboy” to a “complete idiot”
This is typical troll juice and crap flood that comes from Microsoft astroturfers. Microsoft and friends will smear this person to protect what’s left of their own reputations. Had this person worked for Microsoft or a Microsoft partner, they would have been fired. Comments to the apology posts are now moderated and I doubt any will see the light of day.
Indeed, not a single one has appeared since then. It has been a week. █
“Just keep rubbing it in, via the press, analysts, newsgroups, whatever. Make the complete failure of the competition’s technology part of the mythology of the computer industry. We want to place selection pressure on those companies and individuals that show a genetic weakness for competitors’ technologies, to make the industry increasingly resistant to such unhealthy strains, over time.”
–Microsoft, internal document
* The core is Melissa Waggener and Pam Edstrom, who are based in Bellevue, Washington just like a lot of Microsoft.