Sensationalism gets to me

I just hate people who warp and twist facts in the interest of putting a story together. I suppose I’m a bit of a pedant sometimes; if someone says “Ah .. it was three quarters full”, I’m pretty quick in pointing out “Well actually, it’s only 60% full, which is really closer to half”. I wonder why some people hate me …

Anyway, this morning I spotted a news article titled “Tesco takes on Microsoft in battle for software market“, and thought to myself “Wow! Is Tesco backing Open Source? Do they have something up their sleeve? Maybe a Tesco branded flavour of Linux?”. Shaking in trepidation, I clicked on the link to have a read …

The first line read “Tesco, the UK’s biggest retailer, will go head-to-head with Microsoft, the world’s largest software company, by entering the £8.5bn computer software market.” Amazing! An audacious plan! Will Tesco displace Microsoft in the software market. The next paragraph read “The retailer will launch Tesco-branded software in 100 stores this month. An initial range of six products, which will include office software and security suites, will sell for less than £20 each, massively undercutting rivals’ prices. Microsoft Office sells for up to £300.

What exactly does that sound like to you? Well .. it sounds like Tesco was launching a Microsoft Office killer which presumably consists of, maybe a word processor or a spreadsheet at £20 each which rivaled Word and Excel in terms of functionality, right?

The rest of the article is pretty depressing as the truth finally hits home. Turns out that what Tesco is really selling consists of some finance, CD burning and photo editing products. This begs the question: how does this compare to Microsoft’s target market? How is this going to steal market share from Microsoft? WHY DID THE REPORTER FEEL HE HAD TO MENTION THAT MICROSOFT OFFICE COSTS UP TO £300???


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