Microsoft pokes fun at Google in video: ‘The GMailman’

Microsoft may have taken another swing at Google and, more specifically, Gmail in the form of a spoof video that was allegedly shown to rally the Office 365 salesforce at the Microsoft Global Exchange conference last week.

The video pokes fun at Gmail’s keyword advertising and Google’s lack of respect for user privacy as a “GMailman” browses through emails to find keywords and create personalized and “unsolicited” ads.

It ends saying: “Your email is your business. Google makes it theirs.”

Producer Unconfirmed

The leaked video was given to ZDNet’s Mary-Jo Foley by a conference attendee. Foley suspects the video was produced by Microsoft even though the company gave her an official “no comment” when she asked if the video was “legit.”

“It has all the hallmarks of a real Microsoft production, including the fact that the name on the company doors that Gmail man opens when visiting an office is Contoso Ltd.,” she wrote. “As Microsoft customers, partners, and watchers know all too well, Contoso is Microsoft’s favorite fake company name, and is used in demos for all kinds of Microsoft products.”

Office 365 and Google’s Docs/Gmail combo have been at odds since Microsoft first announced its cloud-based productivity suite last October. Google even went as far as releasing a blog post titled “365 reasons to consider Google Apps” the day before Microsoft publicly released Office 365 in June.

The differences in the two services ultimately come down to user preference.

PCWorld’s Tony Bradley said that Microsoft had a slight edge over Google in a feature-by-feature showdown between Office 365 and Google Docs, but that a user will have to “weigh the benefits of each” before choosing which one will be the best fit.

This isn’t the first time Microsoft targeted Google’s privacy stance to claim superiority. Last January Microsoft announced a new Bing search policy regarding privacy and quickly pointed out its superiority to Google.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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