Microsoft — Now writing satire

It certainly seems that Microsoft are moving into the scathing humour industry when one looks at this press release entitled “Microsoft Brings Holiday Cheer on a Budget to Hispanic Families With Microsoft Office 2007 and Microsoft Office 2007 Language Pack in Spanish.”

Honestly, that really is the headline. Holiday Cheer on a Budget! With Microsoft Products! Now in Spanish!

It’s either satire, or Microsoft are using their system administrators to write press releases.

An excerpt if you can’t be bothered to click through and read the article yourself:

“With the current economic situation in the U.S., families are looking for ways to save money and still celebrate the holidays,” said Fred Studer, general manager of U.S. Information Worker Business Group at Microsoft. “This alliance with the Boyle Heights Technology Youth Center will give us the opportunity to interact with Hispanic families and show them how to prepare inexpensive and creative holiday solutions for their homes, using easy technology tools from Microsoft Office 2007.”

What the hell is a “holiday solution”? Microsoft, you are trying to market Office 2007 Home and Student editions to Hispanic families in the US. I understand Hispanics to be typically working class people. I’m not sure they want a “holiday solution.” I’m not sure anyone does. A term like that completely pollutes the concept of a holiday. I don’t want to be laying on a beach on a tropical island somewhere, thinking myself clever to have solved my holiday problem (or is that work problem) with such a cunning holiday solution.

Certainly, I’m taking liberty with the disconnect between what America thinks a holiday is, and what the rest of the English-speaking world thinks it is. Microsoft’s Fred Studer isn’t suggesting anyone develop a creative vacation solution. But let’s look at some of the things Office 2007 offers to simplify the holiday season:

The Microsoft Office 2007 system and the Office 2007 Language Pack — Spanish offer a great deal of tools to help simplify the holiday season, with special templates and features that allow families to create fun projects such as these:

  • Personally made holiday cards, family calendars, gift tags and decorations using Office Word 2007
  • Holiday budget management using Microsoft Office Excel 2007 templates
  • Dazzling presentations for a posada gathering using Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007
  • Holiday recipe organization using Office Word 2007 templates

Aside from everything that the Microsoft Office 2007 system and the Office 2007 Language Pack — Spanish offer this holiday season, the software also is the perfect gift for every student and parent.

Are those bullet points what Fred means by “holiday solutions”? Aren’t hand-made cards more beautiful? Isn’t Excel 2007 a little overpowered for a holiday budget? PowerPoint is a problem — not a solution to anything. I wasn’t aware holiday recipes needed to be organised. I’m rather glad that’s been cleared up for me.

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  • Do you struggle to hammer nails into a wall without chipping out massive chunks of masonry and plaster?
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