Windows 7 launch parties attacked by anti-MS viral spoof video campaign

A spoof Windows 7 launch party promitional video has surfaced on the web, in a viral propaganda campaign designed to ridicule Microsoft's plans for Windows 7 launch parties. Microsoft is sponsoring parties around world to celebrate the launch of Windows 7.

It doesn't take a genius to work out which company is responsible. The spoofs first surfaced in the vast online Apple fanboy community, where they have been eagerly received and widely blogged about. At least one remixed video originates from the heart of the Mac empire: "Cabel Sasser -- founder of Mac software maker Panic Inc -- has remixed said video". Apple's designer-brands include a range of products designed to compete directly with Microsoft's products. Mac OS is a direct competitor with Windows.

The original genuine video is cheesy to a comical level. If Microsoft engineered this as a deliberate PR stunt to raise awareness of the imminent launch of Windows 7, it could be marketing genius. It wouldn't be the first time MS has generated a huge amount of PR in this way, intentionally or not. Either way, the video is surprisingly bad.

To be honest, the spoofs aren't that funny. The comedy routine gets boring after the first few minutes. It seems Mac fanatics find it disproportionately funny:-

We might be Mac Fanboys but seriously, take a look at this video and tell me you can keep a straight face. Can you? This just looks insane. Who are these people? Windows 7 launch parties? ... And the fun doesn’t stop here. There is a whole bunch of fake (oh, you thought these were real?) Windows 7 launch parties at Youtube.

It was a good joke, notwithstanding the dark-side of negative advertising. This type of parody is implicitly arrogant. It's a corporate superiority complex, in which the company responsible perceives its self as perfect while portraying its rival as a joke. This PR stunt is ultimately just another dirty-tricks campaign. To date Microsoft has not stooped to this level, and their PR machine does seem less effective than the likes of Apple and Google. This is essentially one big corporation stabbing another in the back down a dark alley, and running away so nobody knows who did it.

24 September 2009

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Well maybe not

http://blog.seattlepi.com/microsoft/archives/179908.asp


Yup. You're a moron. You just proved it in front of the three people who read your blog and the thousands who came as a result of your link-bait. Too bad none of them will ever be back again. Fool me once...


Seriously, did you do any research at all before writing this?
One of the videos you refer to is available at http://uk.houseparty.com/offers/windows7uk/hosthelpvideos
So unless Microsoft have co-opted "fake" videos to promote their own product, I doubt Mac had anything to do with this.

Tim Acheson (24 Sep 09, 17:59)

Joe, apologies I don't quite follow. Maybe not what, and why?

Tim Acheson (24 Sep 09, 18:01)

nstig8r sounds like you misunderstand. Nice try though. Everything I wrote is true.

Tim Acheson (24 Sep 09, 18:13)

katherine, the original genuine video is bad. So bad it may even be a deliberate negative PR exercise.

As I pointed out much earlier in my comment on the original blog post I cite here, "that video is shameful," and we "don’t get many ads that cheesy here in the UK."

http://thenextweb.com/2009/09/24/microsoft-easy-fun/comment-page-1/#comment-126687

To avoid any further confusion among Mac users, and in case people more attention to the comments on this page than the original post, I have revised my third paragraph to make all of this crystal clear.


Or it could just be a joke based on a terrible video...or it could be a 'superiority complex'; you pick...sigh.

Andy Buckingham (24 Sep 09, 19:00)

Hi Tim, I'm slightly confused. The original video was produced by Microsoft and is part of a series of videos provided by them on their 'Host a Windows 7 Party' mini site.

The parody video was, as you pointed out, made by a fan of Apple, true. But I don't see how this is one corporate 'attacking' another? It's a fan producing a video whose humour is based solely upon the fact that by bleeping out the words you can alter the apparent subject of the piece.

It's not at all attacking the product. And it's not at all attacked by any of Microsoft's rivals, just a particular person.

In summary "an individual takes a corporations video and changes it to appear to be about sex". All seems a bit like a non-story really?


Definition of an "Apple fan boy": the name you give to an enthousiast mac user, until *you* buy one.

Tim Acheson (25 Sep 09, 09:07)

Will, yes it could just be a joke based on a bad video. It's interesting to consider other possibilities, though. Microsoft has generated a lot of additional publicity about the launch of Windows 7 through this.

Tim Acheson (25 Sep 09, 09:09)

Andy, I agree, this isn't big news. I do find it interesting though. It's the level of interest in the story that interests me, and the scale and viral nature of the response. It's certainly interesting n PR terms.

The biggest part of the story is that MS made an unbelievably bad video. I mean that literally; I find it difficult to believe that a corporation can make such a cheesy ad. Perhaps in the US many ads are like this. /:|

Of course, I can't sit here and say that Apple is responsible for this. I wouldn't be surprised, but there's no evidence of a direct link, at least not within my limited scope of visibility, I prudently confine myself to quoting somebody else, who reported that "Cabel Sasser -- founder of Mac software maker Panic Inc -- has remixed said video". So this nasty video, poking fun at poor little Microsoft's party idea, apparently originates squarely within the Apple community -- but I can't say how much Apple paid Sasser's company to produce this viral video, if at all.

Tim Acheson (25 Sep 09, 09:24)

SH, I don't disagree with your definition of a Mac fanboy. But I was just innocently quoting from the original blog post in which the author wrote: "We might be Mac Fanboys but seriously". :)

Interestingly, I seem to have had more interest in this story than in anything else in the very brief history of my blog so far.

Thanks for your feedback, folks.

Tim Acheson (07 Feb 12, 14:12)

Related: The Apple fanboy problem

"Apple fanboys have a reputation for hostile attacks based on suggestion, and it’s harming Apple’s image. ... Apple “fanboys” have gained a negative reputation as a hostile entity. The vitriolic fanboy mob mentality has made online discussions about Apple difficult to keep civil, and has created an environment of increasingly shocking and disturbing hostility. ... it’s damaging Apple’s reputation. ... This week, “king of the fanboys” John Gruber and Apple evangelist Shawn King were instrumental to an online witch hunt that eventually included threats of violence toward a female blogger. ..."

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