In response to a few emails, etc:
While no sane person would ever confuse me with a paid Microsoft shill — I think the last time I said something nice about the struggling software company was in … okay, never — an ad campaign that ran on this and a few other sites gave a few opportunistic people room to craft that view.
I could blame someone else, or point out how implausible the nonsense is, but I’ll say this instead: Sure, this blog thing is a one-man show, and, sure, the people at Federated Media who rep my ad space are well-meaning folks, but I still should have taken more time and said “No” to an ad whose style could so easily be misconstrued. My mistake, but the ad and associated campaign are now gone.
(And if you don’t know what I’m talking about, well … trust me, move along. It isn’t worth it.)
[Update] This affair just won’t die, with many of the principals not getting the point, authors and FM alike. Bottom line: This was a bad campaign, horribly executed, and poorly handled by FM and its authors. While I was in it for the prankish nuttiness, not for the money, I have still been out of it since Friday.
I wish I hadn’t been sucked in by the silly idea, and I think FM did its authors a disservice in the campaign’s initial handling — if you’re launching a campaign requiring authors to give serious thought about potential disclosure, then fucking say so — as well as mishandling its subsequent responses.
Nevertheless, my mistake. And I’m seriously thinking about my relationship with FM. Over to you, John.