Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 7th Mar 2014 22:30 UTC
Microsoft

Microsoft is trying to convince politicians to take out targeted ads on Xbox Live, Skype, MSN and other company platforms as midterm elections begin heating up around the country. To plug the idea, Microsoft officials handed out promotional materials Thursday at CPAC, the annual conference for conservatives.

It's the latest move by tech companies to seize a piece of the lucrative political ad market. The ads, which would appear on the Xbox Live dashboard and other Microsoft products, combine Microsoft user IDs and other public data to build a profile of Xbox users. Campaigns can then blast ads to selected demographic categories, or to specific congressional districts. And if the campaign brings its own list of voter e-mail addresses, Microsoft can match the additional data with individual customer accounts for even more accurate voter targeting.

This from the company behind "Scroogled".

On a more general note, hypocrite company behaviour like this should be illegal. A company should not be able to say "leave company Abc behind because they do xyz, and come join us!", only to then turn around and do xyz as well. This is lying, and should be punishable in some way.

Thread beginning with comment 584138
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Gee, Thom
by fossil on Sat 8th Mar 2014 17:54 UTC
fossil
Member since:
2009-05-29

If you are really outraged about Microsoft's practices, don't buy or recommend Microsoft products. Microsoft does care about it's bottom line. Full Stop.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Gee, Thom
by Alfman on Sat 8th Mar 2014 18:38 in reply to "Gee, Thom"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

fossil,

If you are really outraged about Microsoft's practices, don't buy or recommend Microsoft products. Microsoft does care about it's bottom line. Full Stop.


Depends. Of course I do appreciate the hypocrisy of those who don't (or can't) boycott. But boycotts aren't always a silver bullet. Firstly you need a massive scale to even show up on the radar, MS would not notice that Thom & friends were boycotting MS products. Secondly Boycotts are such a blunt instrument, sales could go up & down for any number of reasons. Negative press with sustained widespread public coverage can be effective even without a boycott.

Boycotts are probably most effective against companies with a physical presence because protesters are directly visible to potential customers, and loss of sales are immediately evident. Companies without a physical presence are harder to protest this way and it could be months before the effects are felt up the supply chain.

Anyways like others, I think it's unethical to encourage the use of targeted ads on voters. The potential for "playing both fields" just to get elected in the campaign is too risky. All voters should get the same information.

Edited 2014-03-08 18:56 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3