Microsoft's 'Scroogled' efforts against Google now include t-shirts

Microsoft has been keeping up its "Scroogled" campaign against Google for about a year now, claiming that Google's online user policies constantly invade the privacy of the customers they claim to serve. In October, a study even claimed that the campaign has been successful in driving away people from using Google services like search and Gmail.

Now Microsoft is giving anyone the change to become a walking "Scroogled" ad with a new line up of t-shirts, hats, hoodies and mugs that the company is selling on its Microsoft Store website. One of the t-shirts, as seen above, has Google's Chrome logo with a variation of the "Keep Calm and Carry On" meme, now changed to "Keep Calm while we Steal Your Data." That specific t-shirt is priced at $12 and you can get the same image printed on a mug.

Another t-shirt has a Chrome logo on a spider with the phrase "Step into our Web". Yet another shirt design has the same logo as a head on a humanoid wearing a fedora and trench coat with the phrase "I'm watching you." We have emailed Google to see if they wish to comment on Microsoft's newest product launch.

Source: Microsoft via TechCrunch | Image via Microsoft

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73 Comments

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Enron said,
If M Dollar stole my data, I'd probably know about it.

That's the point though. If Microsoft want to gather data from you they ask you to give permission using a checkbox that you have to click on, Google tick the checkbox for you, bury that checkbox somewhere in the settings and expect you to find it and untick it.

neo158 said,

That's the point though. If Microsoft want to gather data from you they ask you to give permission using a checkbox that you have to click on, Google tick the checkbox for you, bury that checkbox somewhere in the settings and expect you to find it and untick it.


Sorry, but you make it sound like Google are the only ones that do this. (They aren't)

I can't believe they knocked out a 'Keep Calm' clone t-shirt. Just when that meme has become so passé and overused, Microsoft make some marketing materials out of it. I think that pretty much sums up Microsofts marketing efforts, frankly.

Not just their marketing, they`ve been late to the game in quite a few things lately, meaning some have been half baked!
Things do seem to be turning round but they really need to start moving faster and really grabbing peoples attention in a good positive way, not all this negative bu^^sh!!.

Chicane-UK said,
Just when that meme has become so passé

Considering the phrase dates back to almost 4 decades prior to the invention of the word meme itself and is still going strong, I'd hardly say it's become "passé".

Romero said,

Considering the phrase dates back to almost 4 decades prior to the invention of the word meme itself and is still going strong, I'd hardly say it's become "passé".

Seriously it's been done to death. Surely Microsoft could have come up with something a bit more original ffs..

Chicane-UK said,

Seriously it's been done to death. Surely Microsoft could have come up with something a bit more original ffs..

Ah well, those who don't like MS or their line of attack are surely not going to have a change of heart if the company decides to use an alternate phrase. Anyway, that's about all the discussion this subject is worth...

Romero said,

Ah well, those who don't like MS or their line of attack are surely not going to have a change of heart if the company decides to use an alternate phrase. Anyway, that's about all the discussion this subject is worth...

I knew it would come down to being accused of being anti-Microsoft, purely because of having a negative opinion about them.. which really isn't the case. I'll use whatever platform gets the job done, and professionally I'm a Windows system administrator for a 500+ server estate. If I hated them so much I'd have made moves to find an alternate line of work

FWIW that was a generic comment and not directed at you (although you seem to fall into the category of people who, while not hating MS, don't like their line of attack, which is why I inserted an "or" in there). The validity of the comment stands - people who've already made up their minds for or against a company no matter what it does can't be persuaded otherwise by such campaigns.

I'm simply against fanboys of any persuasion, and like most people (including you) use hardware and software from most of the major companies. I take every chance I can get to praise companies for the good as well as harshly criticize them for the bad. Google does lots of things well, but when it comes to issues of privacy then, purely because of how they make their profits, on this issue I trust an Apple or a Microsoft any day over Google.

Romero said,
FWIW that was a generic comment and not directed at you (although you seem to fall into the category of people who, while not hating MS, don't like their line of attack, which is why I inserted an "or" in there). The validity of the comment stands - people who've already made up their minds for or against a company no matter what it does can't be persuaded otherwise by such campaigns.

I'm simply against fanboys of any persuasion, and like most people (including you) use hardware and software from most of the major companies. I take every chance I can get to praise companies for the good as well as harshly criticize them for the bad. Google does lots of things well, but when it comes to issues of privacy then, purely because of how they make their profits, on this issue I trust an Apple or a Microsoft any day over Google.

Have to admit as a long term supporter of Google my enthusiasm for them is starting to fade quite quickly. Their pig headed push to integrate everything into Google+ which the cynic in me would say is purely driven by their determination to beat Facebook and not for any real benefit for their users, is starting to drive me crazy. Couple that with the change to YouTube comments recently which anyone who's anyone on YouTube seems to universally agree was a terrible decision.. really they need to sort themselves out

Even getting fed up enough to the extent that that I'm considering the painful process of moving to a different email provider after 7 or so years of GMail being my only email account.. it's going to be a real chore, but feel like it needs to be done

I'm with you 100% regarding the bone-headed YouTube decision. A desperate attempt by Google to prop up their floundering Facebook competitor is what it is, users be damned.

Somehow GMail never became my primary account. I was a paid user of Yahoo's offering (have had my account for a decade and a half now, which is eons in internet time!), although of late I've started using Outlook.com as well. My GMail account was mostly used for cloud backup (before the term went mainstream) using GMailFS.

If you're serious about switching mail providers then Ed Bott over at ZDNet had an article recently about it (GMail > Outlook.com).

I'll certainly look into it - but part of me sort of wants to get away from the big providers (GMail, Microsoft, etc) and find something else - just not sure what exactly!

Small but feature-rich, secure and stable with little to no downtime - let me know if you ever attain email nirvana!

Brilliant fun! It has people buzzing. Google I'm sure couldn't care less. People take this stuff too seriously.

I always dislike how when I click on a link in Google, it redirects to a Google page first, then the actual page you want to visit. Bing doesn't.

Google obviously track everything. They can easily find out what my interests are, where I work/live, etc.

For the Love of God, doesn't Microsoft realize that this doesn't work? How long have they been doing this campaign 4 years now? Perhaps the "Scroogle" campaign has been going on for the the past two years, but Microsoft has been going after Gmail and Search for much longer than that.

Plus, this Scroogle campaign is disinformation. Instead of trying to pull the other company down, how about them trying to lift themselves up by innovating technology.

Microsoft is not an company concentrating on innovation. Rather, it's a company that focuses on Imitation and Renovation. After all, Google is doing Google Glass, Smartwatch, Google Now, self-driving cars, etc.....and what is Microsoft trying to do? Convince people that their Gmail imitation, "Outlook" is better? That their present day 2011 technology on Nov. 2013 is better than Google's 2016 technology? Oh Come ON, Microsoft...COME ON! (LOL)

I'm guessing you didn't see the news last month that the campaign (and word-of-mouth) has actually started to make a dent in their marketshare. As negative as the campaign is, it's honest and it's working.

A company that has complete monopoly on desktop OS and that has been sued and paid record fines over their practices is engaging in this kind of advertising. Crazy.

Note that Google has as much monopoly in the mobile OS space as Microsoft has on the desktop, so I don't see what market share has to do with it.

Romero said,
Note that Google has as much monopoly in the mobile OS space as Microsoft has on the desktop, so I don't see what market share has to do with it.

Google doesn't profit from Android. Microsoft, however, has a long and storied history with antitrust investigations.

Different people have tried to put a figure to exactly how much Google makes (directly or indirectly) off Android but of course it's all speculation given the lack of hard data from the company itself. Regardless, I very highly doubt that Google is altruistically continuing to develop Android purely out of the goodness of its heart for all of us without seeing (or hoping to ever see) a dime in return. No company is *that* stupid.

Romero said,
Different people have tried to put a figure to exactly how much Google makes (directly or indirectly) off Android but of course it's all speculation given the lack of hard data from the company itself. Regardless, I very highly doubt that Google is altruistically continuing to develop Android purely out of the goodness of its heart for all of us without seeing (or hoping to ever see) a dime in return. No company is *that* stupid.

You're right. But there's more to android than that. Google created an operating system where they can push their own services. Google+, Youtube, Google Maps, and so on. This is where the whole "indirectly profiting" comes in.

stevan said,
You're right. But there's more to android than that. Google created an operating system where they can push their own services. Google+, Youtube, Google Maps, and so on. This is where the whole "indirectly profiting" comes in.

Yep, that is why I said "directly or indirectly". You can be sure they are making money from Android one way or another, with plans to increase their control and monetization even more in future. Read the "Google's iron grip on Android" article on Ars Technica for an insight into their plans for the OS going forward. I for one am happy that viable mobile OS alternatives such as iOS and Windows/Windows Phone still exist (with new albeit unproven entrants such as Firefox OS), although Google's shrewd strategy has all but steam-rollered them.

Microsoft are really plumbing new depths in their unyielding desire to emulate Apple in every way possible.

Microsoft collects data yes, but not to the extent that Google does, and most Google users are unaware of the amount of data their browser collects, whereas IE does not collect that type of information. Hence why it says 'steal'.

recursive said,
Good when MSFT does it. Bad when anyone else does it.

That's essentially the way it works around here, yes. But don't worry there are pockets of sanity if you dig a little deeper.

Honestly Microsoft could redesign Windows 9 to allow for no local storage on your own computer, would cost $500, and that you had to interface with a touch display using your feet only - and large amounts of Microsoft shills on this forum would say it was a groundbreaking move, that they can't understand why businesses are still running Windows XP or Windows 7 and that everyone who doesn't rush to adopt it is too stupid to use a computer.

MS are just getting and coming off as completely desperate now, don't be like Apple, innovate and maybe people will like using your products

This is just like politicians who bad-mouth the other guy instead of giving us reasons to vote for them.

The sad part is negative advertising works.

I lean Microsoft in this battle being a Win8/WP8 user, and really only using Google services for Youtube and a secondary Gmail account. But I honestly think MS needs to cool off on this. The tech press is killing them for it and this can do more harm than good in the long run.

Let's also keep in mind this is within days of Google updating their WP8 app, actually allowing Waze to be published on WP8, and putting official Youtube app on Xbox One before PS4.

MS really needs to come up with a positive campaign on why their services are better, maybe subtlety alluding to the fact that they're a software company and not an advertising company.

Don't get me started on most of the so-called "tech press". 99% seem to be on the payroll of one or the other company already and are so biased it's sickening. It's best that you just try and filter out the facts after frequenting multiple sites and make up your own mind about things.

This is real marketing. Dirty marketing yes, but it works. There are people who have switched to Bing over this. Anyway who knows, maybe this will get Google to clean up their act, so everyone wins.

Google has actually lost quite a bit of marketshare thanks to this campaign and word-of-mouth. So in my opinion, it's working.

techbeck said,
Yawn. Let me know when MS goes back to real marketing.

They already do real marketing. Have you not seen any of the ads for Bing, Surface, Xbox, Windows 8, Windows Phone, etc? They're literally all over the place and they're pretty excellent.

I just ordered a whole set!

Although, this is going a bit too far. I think these might be collectors items some time soon.

Enron said,
I just ordered a whole set!

Although, this is going a bit too far. I think these might be collectors items some time soon.

screwSoft... they just made u pay... all microsoft care is the money...

progpass23 said,

screwSoft... they just made u pay... all microsoft care is the money...

Wonder if they'll reach other markets. I'd buy the mug if it were available in Australia. If it does reach us, I wonder what our markup would be. Novelty products like these tend to be pricey

progpass23 said,

screwSoft... they just made u pay... all microsoft care is the money...

They care about money as much as Google care about stealing your data and delivering ads to your inbox based on the content of your email!!!

Definitely a great geeky shirt for Christmas time....sold out....figures. Ebay? Naw, who likes being over charged. As with the Xbox One, trying to get one of these t-shirts before the holidays would be an expensive adventure not worth the extra cost.

Google is too busy making money with a superior product to care what MS does, it only makes Google look better in comparison

techbeck said,
Doubt they will even comment. If they do, I doubt they will care much. They seem pretty quite towards the Scroogled campaign.

Cause they know the more they will talk against scroogled campaign, the more media focus this campaign will get. That will only inform more people about their data "collection" tactics.

z0phi3l said,
Google is too busy making money with a superior product to care what MS does, it only makes Google look better in comparison

Really, which "superior product" is that?

Cleaned. Please report comments that you believe fall below community standards rather than engage the poster yourself.