Microsoft's DroidRage Twitter campaign goes painfully wrong

Summary:Someone in Microsoft public relations seem to think that encouraging Android FUD on Twitter would be a great way to win friends and influence others. Wrong!

Droidrage
Microsoft's #Droidrage Twitter marketing campaign quickly turned into Windows rage.

Trash-talking, whether it's on the basketball court or on online forums, has a bad habit of blowing up when you can't back it up. So when Microsoft decided to launch a win a free Windows Phone Twitter campaign with "Do you have an Android malware horror story?  Reply with #DroidRage with your best/worst story and we may have a get-well present for you" on Twitter and Chris DiBona, Google's Director of Open Source, fired back, "Wanna see what Flop Sweat looks like? Follow:@windowsphone" I knew this wasn't going to end well for Microsoft.

True, Android malware is a real problem . True, Google needs to do more about blocking malware applications from ever reaching users in the first place via the Google Play Store. But, there's also a lot of Android malware FUD and Android now has over 75% of the smartphone market -- Windows Phone 8 doesn't even show up as noise in mobile marketshare --and, what's far more important for a public relations campaign, a passionate fan-base . So, what do you think happened?

Thanks for Hashtags.org a site that monitors Twitter hashtag usage and Twitter's built-in search function, we now know from tweets like these:

Whoops. Just activated another million devices today. Sorry bout that, @windowsphone.#DroidRage

I wish my Android phone crashed more often like Windows. #DroidRage

You cant write proper software for @windowsphone, how can malware be written for it ??#DroidRage

that people were more ticked at Microsoft then they were enraged at Android. That sample gives you a fair idea of the mass reaction to this campaign. And, of course, just as the sun must rise in the morning, #windowsrage followed #androidrage on to Twitter and we soon saw tweets such as:

who on gods green earth would want Windoze on a phone, or tablet??! #idiots#windowsrage

Trojan 10 Minutes after installation #WindowsRage

windowsrage while we're talking about Malware on #androidrage, I wonder how the statistics look for the Windows OS...

And on and on. Since Microsoft doesn't seem interested in the hobbyists and enthusiasts for Windows Phone 8 , this should have come as no surprise. For people to want to tweet in favor or against a technology you need people who are passionate about that technology. While there are people who like Windows Phone 8, there aren't nearly as many who are ardently in love with it in the way that some Android and iPhone fans are with their devices.

Oddly enough this is the second time that the Droidrage campaign has appeared. Microsoft tried it in 2011 and it didn't do that well then either. Adam Winiecki, ironically enough an iPhone developer may have put it best, "Marketing guru who came up with #droidrageactually secretly works for Google. You've all been had." 

Perhaps Microsoft would be better served if they listened to Richard Knol, a Dutch software developer, who tweeted, "Dont try to be trendy, dont try to manipulate opinion, just make good products #AndroidRage." I think he might be on to something there.

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Topics: Android, Google, iPhone, Malware, Microsoft, Mobile OS, Smartphones, Social Enterprise, Windows 8, Windows Phone

About

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, aka sjvn, has been writing about technology and the business of technology since CP/M-80 was the cutting edge, PC operating system; 300bps was a fast Internet connection; WordStar was the state of the art word processor; and we liked it.His work has been published in everything from highly technical publications... Full Bio

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