The Mojave Experiment

Mikey 9 comments
The Mojave Experiment

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.

Not a Member!


Friday 1st August 2008 | 03:03 PM

Never heard of FUD.

Not a Member!


Friday 1st August 2008 | 03:04 PM response to this comment by Janine. Here's a wiki which goes into more detail about FUD:

Not a Member!


Friday 1st August 2008 | 03:06 PM

Great story Mike, and I agree with your assessment. This is one time where controlled experiments work against unbiased results.

Not a Member!


Friday 1st August 2008 | 05:38 PM

What does mojave mean? Maybe it could have been a clue for them.

Not a Member!


Friday 1st August 2008 | 05:40 PM response to this comment by Hellboy. I doubt it. Mojave is not "mo-jave" it pronounced "Mo-Ha-Vee" as in the native American Indians.

Not a Member!

Kim OJ

Friday 1st August 2008 | 10:59 PM

Basing your opinion on little experience is still better than no experience. Personally I have not had any problems with Vista in the 8 months I have been using it. You could advocate people getting comprehensive information on the up and down sides of Vista, but in the end people just use whatever is installed on the computer they buy.

Not a Member!

The Movie Whore

Saturday 2nd August 2008 | 12:08 AM

The only problem I have had with Vista is the DEP(Data Execution Protection) other than that it works fine for me and I run all kinds of stuff on my machine and have been doing so for 6 months or so. If giving these nay sayers a short experience with the OS so they know what they are complaining about is a good thing. To rip an OS you have never used is flat out ignorant.

Not a Member!

Dan L.

Saturday 2nd August 2008 | 07:53 PM

I read a few reviews about this and they all pretty much say the same thing you said.

It's to be expected from a company like Microsoft. But then who else's products are so badly received that they have to go these extraordinary lengths to prove themselves?

It feels like they're saying "All those Vista complainers are wrong! It's their fault".

Not a Member!

Nate >.>

Saturday 2nd August 2008 | 09:23 PM

At the start, I was one of those vista-haters who had not actually used it.

Now, I had a deep hatred for micro$oft when they (at first) pulled XP straight away and tried to shove vista down our throats, but they learned their lesson there.

I use vista quite a bit at work, a lot of the new PC builds have vista and there are a few bugs but overall it works ok i guess.

The only thing I truly despise is that with EVERY application it asks you "Are you sure?"......YES I'm sure, that's why I double-clicked on the bloody icon!!!
I know you can turn this feature off, but it's just plain annoying!

Add a comment

Login to Rusty Lime

Not registered? | Forgot your Password? Cancel Login