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Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Is Microsoft really to blame?

With the recent revelations of Microsoft playing about with the colour preferences of their marketing photograph and now apologising for the 'mishap', surely the more significant issue is why they feel they needed to make such changes.

Marketing is after all only relevant and correct if aimed precisely at it's given target-market, and is culturally effective. Therefore adaptations of this kind are only a result of what a region or country is willing to accept, or morally adhere to. I would argue Microsoft were merely adapting their marketing photo for a specific region, in this case Poland, to make it more socially and culturally acceptable. Whether that be right or wrong is something we most definitely will discuss in the coming days, but what is evident and concerning, is the level of disintegration that still exists in some parts of the world.

Microsoft has apologized for the incident and taken the offending image down, as well as stating they would be looking further into the matter. A spokesman said: 'The image has been removed. Diversity and inclusion are core values and business imperatives of Microsoft and we apologise for any offence that might have been taken.'

From a marketing viewpoint Microsoft were both right and wrong in adapting their marketing photograph for a sensitive market, and allowing such minorities to manipulate their values and beliefs. What should be taken from this incident is to identify that differences and inequalities still exist in some parts of the world. It should be our aim to overcome these differences for a more unified and equal world, and if mishaps of this kind do nothing but remind us of the single minded minorities that are still among us, then let that be the drive for us to continue in our efforts.

However, one final note, whether Microsoft thought they would be able to integrate and merge the body of an Afro-Caribbean, with the head of a Caucasian and get away with it so easily is still both questionable, and stupid.

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