This "Scroogled" campaign is exactly what turns me off, Microsoft

Anna Scantlin
Contributing Editor from  Kansas City, MO
| Published: November 23, 2013

With there being only three real contenders in the platform race at this time, stakes are high. Where BlackBerry once ruled, shortly followed by iOS, we now have an empire that is ruled under Android. Just the fact that there has already been three major lead changes of who has the best selling platform in the industry is proof enough that this is an industry that is never a guarantee. That's the cool thing about technology, though; It's always evolving. 

But among those three platforms already mentioned, one has pretty much given up and another hadn't even been mentioned. With BlackBerry having one foot out the door (presumbly) at this point given the descent of their popularity, even after the release of BlackBerry 10, we can pretty much assume that at this point in time that BlackBerry is a non-threat. I'm not saying they'll never get back to the top, but I am saying that... well, I'm just not worried about them right now. They've got a lot more on their plate right now. 

However, the other platform, Microsoft's Windows Phone, is and has always pretty much been stuck in limbo. That's the best way I can think of to describe it. It hasn't ever been particularly bad (unless we're speaking in terms of Windows Mobile, don't even get me started on that) but aside from the great cameras that the Nokia Lumia line showcases, it hasn't exactly been that exciting either. With a minimalist design (which I actually love) and a lackluster (but slowly growing) app store, it's hard to really pin Windows Phone against giants like Android or iOS. As it currently stands, it's just on a different level. I still consider Windows Phone a "work in progress". 

There is one pet peeve that gets me in this industry, or really any industry, and that's a company taking their own shortcomings and blaming it on what's going on with other companies. I first started hating this tactic when coming across political campaigns on TV. 

"Hi, I'm Jan Jannenson, and I'm running for a local elected official position. I just want to take a moment out of your day to talk to you about why Sam Sammenson isn't qualified to run for the very same campaign."

Wow, jee, thanks Jan. Now that you've pointed out all of the things that you think Sam does wrong, I can safely say that you're the person I want to vote for. Oh wait, no I can't, because you didn't tell me squat about what you do to help the community. It's a stupid tactic, and it really rustles my jimmies.

So it's pretty much a safe bet that wherever this tactic is applied that it's not going to sit well with me. Why? Because it's not doing anything truly productive, and it makes you look like a whiner. I'm fine with the occasional notation of a competing company or person doing something unruly, but to base an entire campaign by using negativity just doesn't work on me that well. And that's what Microsoft is doing to Google with their "Scroogled" campaign. They got political about it.

Microsoft has now opened a store selling "Scroogled" products, which in a nutshell sells you clothing and accessories that advertise against Google. That's about it. The Scroogled campaign has pretty much been going on all year, I think that by selling this merchandise it's being taken to a very unnecessary level. At first it was kind of a humorous joke, but when you put that much focus on it, to me it looks like a blatant move of desperation. Microsoft has bigger fish to fry when it comes to Windows Phone, and to take a step out of the mobile box for a moment I feel like they could also use more focus in other areas as well. I'm not trying to say there's no room for some humor and taking a couple of shots at other products. It happens all the time. But getting to the point where you're trying to actively make money off of the campaign through apparel? It doesn't fly with me. Make money off of me by proving to me that your product is worth more money.

Maybe I am caught in a tangled web of Googleyness, I can't deny that. I've written several times that I live a pretty Google-centric life. But I wouldn't have a problem switching to Windows Phone if Microsoft stepped it up a bit. That's just my two cents, though.

Readers, what are your thoughts on the new Scroogled campaign? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!