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Most Insulting Blog Entry Of The Year?

I thought all the nominees had already been submitted, but then I saw this little gem from Scoble: http://radio.weblogs.com/0001011/2004/12/19.html#a8932. For the record, I've met quite a few people from the Windows Media team and always found them to be very informed and capable. I wonder why Scoble feels the need to be so insultingly condescending in such a public way. This could give Barbie's "yo mama so fat" post a run for its money.

Also, I don't recommend letting "big name" stars design the next versions of the media players. I believe they tried this a few years ago, but Elton John kept burning out EPROMS, Ludacris stabbed two usability engineers, and nobody wanted to buy Eminem's "I'm gonna kill &$(*$& you *#*#@!% Mobile Edition".

Clarification: By "insulting", I'm not referring to Robert's praise for competitive products or encouragement to the internal teams at Microsoft, although I think all private paths should be exhausted before "telling" on a team to Bill through an open blog letter. The reason I found his post insulting (from the WM perspective) is that he simplifies things that aren't that simple. For example, saying "get a plan together and have OEMs bought in on it in the next few weeks" is just not possible--although Robert makes it seem like the WM team hasn't been working on it or that anyone who can't do it is incompetent (discaimer: I have no inside knowledge of any of this). However, if you look at Microsoft's mobile devices initiative, it sometimes takes years (especially for Smartphone) to get unofficial agreements to turn into official product announcements, and even then it takes a really long time to bring these things to market. I just find it insulting--having been part of a very competitive and politically challenging initiative--to see someone trash the efforts of their peers without giving them a fair shake.

Comments

Simon said:

Scoble is living in a very closed world, he's not open to thinking about what others feel or experience, he's not open to ideas after he's looked once and decided.

Examples are his constant references to things he has found, without exposing any desire to find something better - he's a perfect evangelist for the current moments product.

Examples are RSS, technorati, feedster, ipods, halo 2, longhorn for a brief moment, how many feeds he reads, etc.

I wish people like him would open their minds more, would believe that they are not necessarily approaching things correctly.

I hope I'm capable of the same thing, but I expect it's hard for anyone to judge for themselves if they are capable of being open minded and thoughtful.
# December 19, 2004 5:38 PM

Jeff Atwood said:

Scoble has become kind of a marketing guy over the last 6 months, but on this one, he's right.

Any jackass can strap a tiny hard drive, LCD, and scroll wheel together; Apple is kicking everyone's ass with marketing and usability. And deservedly so.
# December 19, 2004 8:33 PM

Microsoftie said:

Insulting? I think seeing that 99% portable players MS employees using are iPods should be insulting, not Scoble's post. Our DM marketing is very poor.
# December 19, 2004 9:30 PM

Paul Lockwood said:

What was insulting about Robert Scoble's post? I think he was making valid points.

Perhaps you have friends on the Windows Media team you would like to impress?

Does Robert live in a closed world? Perhaps, I have his feeds Syndicated but don't read very many posts (real life gets in the way). You know this for sure though; he has an amazingly large audience and at guess he get lots of comments from a wide spectrum of other bloggers (is that a closed world?).

One more thing. I’ll be buying an iPod soon too. Would love to buy Microsoft but the whole DRM thing is too scary. I am an English national and have read George Orwell’s 1984.
# December 19, 2004 10:54 PM

Dave said:

Somebody at MS needs to seriously reassess their "strategizing" so they stop playing catch-up and wanna-be on everything. Nevermind the sidestream jokes from nay-sayers. It's obvious that MS now has the ability to execute. What they lack is real vision. Too much of the recent success stories are derived from acquisitions. They need to focus more on reinforcing internal innovation.
# December 19, 2004 11:00 PM

Peter da Silva said:

If Microsoft wants to sell digital media players, they should make digital media players.

They make good hardware, I use a Microsoft mouse on my Mac. It's ironic, isn't it... Microsoft think they're a software company, Apple think they're a hardware company...
# December 19, 2004 11:32 PM

Robert Scoble said:

Ed: it wasn't my intent to "trash" the work of my coworkers. But, really, hasn't the marketplace already done that?

Or, did you notice that Microsoft's stock price has remained steady and Apple's has quadrupled?

That's called "being trashed" in my world.

Yes, I understand that it takes a long time to get a product to market. But I also understand that sometimes -- if the will exists on all sides -- that heaven and earth CAN be moved in a short period of time.

Anyway, if something is going to take a long time -- like the King Kong movie -- then do it in public so that we can all help where we can. Or, at least, we can see how work is progressing and decide whether or not to wait.
# December 19, 2004 11:53 PM

Tom Guarriello said:

Guys (and I'm sure you're all guys) wake the <b>#%&!@##@</b> up. <b><i>Scoble's not your enemy</b></i>. Your enemy is <b><i>Steve</b></i>. Get it? You're kind of losin' it here.

Listen to the man and scramble to make something in the DM world that's not freakin' embarassing!

Paraphrasing Tom Hanks, "There's no whining in tech!"
# December 19, 2004 11:54 PM

Tom Guarriello said:

Sorry, thought you'd permit HTML. How stupid of me.
# December 19, 2004 11:55 PM

Brett Nordquist said:

I don't agree with all Scoble's points but he does make some interesting points. The last time I've truly seen anyone excited about a Microsoft product was the Xbox launch. It's funny to see people from inside attacking Scoble as he's the least of their worries. Apple is kicking their ass in this arena.
# December 20, 2004 12:06 AM

Robert Scoble said:

Um, Ed: >without giving them a fair shake.

You think you'd get a fair shake if you went on the Apprentice? Ask the guy who was fired for trying to give a fair shake to his teammates.

The way they can get a fair shake is to help the OEMs get a killer product out and help the OEMs do some killer marketing. Until they do, it's an iPod world. You did see Steve Jobs in Time Magazine's "person of the year" article today, didn't you?

Translation: we're getting our behinds kicked. I just am trying to give some ideas of how we can get on the same playing field that the iPod is.
# December 20, 2004 12:09 AM

Tom Guarriello said:

Style, ludo, style...in this day and age, it better be designed to within an inch of its life. Functionality alone's not enough anymore. See all those cool girls with the pink iPod Mini's? It's an accessory as much as it is a DM player.
# December 20, 2004 7:19 AM

d.w. said:

Tom is completely right:

I visited my sister a few months ago, coincidentally arriving on the day that her 13-year old daughter's (blue) iPod Mini arrived. She bought it herself, with her babysitting money. In that age group, there aren't "portable media players", there are iPods. Period.
# December 20, 2004 3:03 PM

ludo said:

Tom, style is in the packaging. What I was trying to say is that Microsoft potentially has the right features for the right price. They just have to convince themselves they can do it, and as you say get the style right, which imho is not too difficult. Look at Sony, or co-develop with them. I have always liked their style much more than Apple's anyway. :)
# December 20, 2004 4:25 PM

Jeff Atwood said:

> They make good hardware, I use a Microsoft mouse on my Mac. It's ironic, isn't it... Microsoft think they're a software company, Apple think they're a hardware company...

IT'S SO TRUE! Have you seen that Phillipe Starck mouse Microsoft introduced?

Also, Ludo, way too miss the boat, man. Do you work for MS?
# December 20, 2004 7:44 PM

Robert Scoble said:

D.W.: the same thing is true in the 11 year old age group too. My son can't name another music player other than iPod.
# December 21, 2004 2:11 AM

ludo said:

Jeff I don't work for Microsoft, and the only MS software I use is PocketPC 2003 on my iPAQ. Oh, and I've been using Linux as my desktop and server OS since 1994...
# December 21, 2004 2:41 AM

Jason said:

Ludo, Microsoft do not sell hardware with media players.
# December 21, 2004 4:41 AM

Bryan Batchelder said:

Yeah, its totally insulting to tell what you feel is the truth and offer up ideas and suggestions to better things. Scoble is evil!
# December 24, 2004 4:45 AM