The Mojave ExperimentMikey 9 comments
Microsoft have been guilty of their fair share of dubious marketing campaigns in the past, as has any other company, but their latest, called 'The Mojave Experiment' is easily the most unique.
The experiment attempts to set aside any FUD that users might have regarding Vista, but the problem with the experiment is that it 'achieves' it by embarrassing the participants.
I think I better explain. FUD is a well known marketing acronym which stands for Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt, which is something Microsoft have been accused of spreading in the market place. The premise is to simply put
propaganda information out there that makes people uncertain about moving away from your product (to get a Mac for example), by using confusing rhetoric and vagueness that casts the competition in an uncertain light.
So back to FUD and the Mojave Experiment. The experiment is simple. They ask a focus group what they think of Microsoft Windows Vista, and the reactions are typical negativity ranging from "I don't like it" up to "I hate it with a passion".
Now bear in mind these are people that have never used Vista before, and are assessing the operating system based on stories they have read or user experiences relayed to them from friends or family. What Microsoft are really saying here is that most of Vista's negativity (and consequent poor sales) are the result of people who have never used it. People with negative perceptions.
So now the participants are allowed to interact with a new Operating system, code named 'Mojave'. The reception is very positive, and everyone has glowing things to say about Mojave. It's fast, secure, slick, nothing like that gastly Vista!
But there's just one small thing they don't know - they are really using Vista.
When it is revealed to them that they were in fact using Vista all along, there are some embarrassing reactions, including one particular guy who was the most outspoken against Vista now conceding "Oh really? Interesting. Wow. I guess it's always about using it right? So this is a good eye opener".
In theory the experiment doesn't sound too shabby. But here's my problem with it.
It's too easy to impress people in the short term. If the participants were given a laptop with the operating system to take away and use for a week or more - you know like in the real world where drivers, compatibility and other issues can rise - their eventual assessments might not have been as positive as they were after the short term demo.
Not only that, people don't like being embarrassed or shown up. So I place this marketing campaign at the pointy end of being arrogant.
In this authors humble opinion, this campaign is deceptive in they way the results were obtained because the participants had minimal exposure in a controlled environment, whereas us real world Vista users know it isn't always smooth sailing, and now amount of Microsoft FUD is going to change that.