Interesting memo from Katie Cotton

So Katie did a really good analysis today on the two stories which appeared about the Borg this morning — one in the Journal, the other in the New York Times. Katie wrote a memo for our entire media relations staff and I thought I’d share some of it with you because Katie is really sharp about analyzing the filthy hacks in the press. I’ll skip the top few paragraphs where she tells me how smart and cool and handsome I am and just cut in to where she starts talking about the articles.

For the record they are here (Journal) and here (Times).

“Journal and NYT both have articles this a.m. on MSFT and it’s instructive to see how each went after basically the same material. Beastmaster & Co. used last week’s financial analysts meeting as an excuse to bring in some big press and purge a story that’s been hanging over their heads for a year now. To wit: What happens when the Prince of Darkness leaves? Who’s going to run this nuthouse? Will they be evil enough or will they be like Scott Evil, just one calorie, evil lite, etc. etc.

“Times story is by John “Mail It In” Markoff who appears to have simply flown to Redmond, spent an hour with Gates, Mundie and Ozzie, taken down a bit of what they said, then transcribed it into his laptop and filed it as his story, weaving in a few bits of general knowledge about Microsoft (threatened by Google, Web apps are the future, blah blah). This is Markoff’s M.O. and no doubt it’s why Waggener Edstrom probably insisted on giving the story to him. Next week he’ll visit some IBM research lab and transcribe some tale they’re telling about moving a pair of molecules around in a petri dish. WTF, it’s a living, and he’ll soon be collecting a pension.

“Journal story is by Robert Guth and it shows why the Journal remains the one news outlet we really need to worry about. Guth zooms in on Mundie, gets deep detail (what flavor power bar he eats on the road, what he learned in fourth grade) and either sat in on meetings in Europe with Mundie or at least learned enough to create the impression that he did. In other words, he actually did some reporting. Along the way he dug up how messed up the Borg’s internal communications are, eg research labs in different locations are working on the same projects and don’t realize it, and depicts the Borg as bloated, slow, dim, unable to get new technologies to market effectively, and so on.

“Advantage Guth. Advantage Journal. Bad news for us since the Journal hacks clearly still have it in for us.”