[sf-lug] Song and dance to sell software

Christian Einfeldt einfeldt at gmail.com
Wed Apr 16 19:45:46 PDT 2008


<rant warning>

On Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 6:54 PM, Sameer Verma <sverma at sfsu.edu> wrote:

> My sincerest apologies for sending this in, but I can't help it ;-)
> Amazing where advertising dollars go...
> http://opensource.sfsu.edu/node/500

Yeah, that is really bad.  What a waste of $200k, because that is probably
what it cost to make, at least.  That is expensive camera work, for one
thing.  They probably have union camera crews and union actors and union
script writers, and union set crews.  And all of them are going to be
embarrassed at what they did for money.

Who could this infomercial possibly be targeted at?  I can't imagine what
demographic it is aimed at.  The first thing this ad brings to mind is late
night television jewelry sales, it's that bad.  The only thing I can guess
is that some Microsoft exec somewhere hoped that this would be a good use of
money because it would get viral attention since it is so bad.  But it's
such stinky cheese that it runs the risk of negative branding for
Microsoft.  I am really kind of surprised that they would have let something
like this get out.

Don't watch it unless you can stand the pain of a seeing a really poorly
scripted, poorly acted mock up of Bruce Springsteen singing a ridiculous
song praising the anti-virus power of Vista Service Pack 1.  You feel sorry
for the actors who needed to appear in it to pay their rent.

Some Microsoft ads are (regrettably) effective.  The TV ads with the kid
jumping off of the bus with an astronaut's spacesuit drawn around him, and
the tag line, "Your potential.  Our passion."  That was effective.

But this video is different.  It's almost as if it is Microsoft's attempt to
be casual like this viral Google gmail video, which was stitched together by
videos submitted by thousands of people, and has gotten nearly 5.5 million
views, despite the fact that it is overtly commercial:


It just seems as if everything Microsoft does is fake and lacks soul.
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