TECH BEEF 2008: Apple/Microsoft marketing war continues – Microsoft attempts to enlist the world

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Ages ago, Apple released the “I’m a PC, I’m a Mac” ads, which were hugely successful. Much more recently, Microsoft moved to reclaim “I’m a PC” from Apple’s negative stereotyping. Apple responded with some rather nasty ads criticising Microsoft for spending loads of money on marketing that didn’t mention the V-word (Vista).

Microsoft aren’t taking that lying down, though, and they’re attempting to enlist THE ENTIRE WORLD in their defence. They’re taking signups for people who are happy to say “I’m a PC” in an attempt to show the broad range and diversity of PC users, and also to contrast with Apple’s rather more limited demographic of users. People who sign up might feature in Microsoft’s internet, poster, and television ads.

People are being asked to upload a photo or video of themselves to a dedicated website. You can also view the people who’ve already signed up, who seem like a remarkably normal group of people. I’ve just added myself to the list, to see how easy it is, and I can confirm that it’s very easy indeed, if you don’t mind scrolling past a huge release agreement that lets Microsoft steal your soul.

It’s not a direct response to Apple’s criticisms, but I’m quite glad of that, because it was turning into a bit of a farce, with warring adverts. Microsoft are wise enough to know that they won’t necessarily win a “who’s fans are more rabid” fight, but they’ve got a good chance of winning a “who’s got the most users” battle.

“I’m a PC” signup site

Related posts: Microsoft’s “I’m a PC” ads | Apple’s reponse

Duncan Geere