Business, Computers, Entertainment, Morality & Ethics, News, Software, Technology, Television

Microsoft leaves Family Guy high and dry

Microsoft signed up to be the exclusive integrated sponsor of the upcoming “Family Guy Presents: Seth & Alex’s Almost Live Comedy Show” special in which Windows 7 would be pitched directly in the show rather than through advertising spots. Once they viewed the show, however, they decided to pull out, citing that “the content was not a fit with the Windows 7 brand.”

No, really?

I don’t have a business degree from a fancy school and I could have told them that.

The thing is… you don’t advertise on a show like Family Guy because its content compliments your brand identity unless you happen to be a supporter of Proposition 8 or MFX Media.

You advertise on the show because you want to get the word out to the ever-desirable 18-25 male demographic who loyally watches a 3-time Primetime Emmy Award-winning show that’s been hailed by The New York Times as having “an outrageously satirical family” with “plenty of comic possibilities and parodies” and described by The Associated Press by way of The Seattle Times as a “breathtakingly smart… blend of the ingenious with the raw.”

Apparently, someone in Microsoft’s marketing department didn’t do their research and actually watch an episode of the show to see first hand the type of deliciously crude humor that makes the show so popular. What’s more, nobody else in the company spoke up about the sponsorship being a bad business decision (probably because everyone realizes how smart a business decision it is to advertise on such a hit show) such that it took a viewing of the taping of the special to get the marketing department to pull the plug on the deal.

The problem is that this leaves Seth McFarlane and crew to figure out what to do about all the mentions of Window 7 that have already been integrated into the program. Microsoft didn’t decide to renege on their deal until after they had seen the essentially finished television product, and now Fuzzy Door Productions (McFarlane’s production company) and Fox have to clean up the mess.

This is a, for lack of a better term, dick move by Microsoft. I don’t criticize them because they don’t want to associate with Family Guy’s style of comedy. It’s not for everyone and it’s understandable that a major corporation like Microsoft may be wary of how such an association would be perceived by the more conservative members of our society. However, they should come to this realization before they signed the sponsorship deal or at least before McFarlane and friends went through the trouble of actually finishing the program.

Microsoft has to be thanking their lucky stars that most of the fans of the show probably haven’t heard about this development, although one has to wonder how hard it would be for those fans to figure out what happened when the special airs on November 8 with all those strange, out-of-place mentions for Windows 7.

Source: Reuters


4 thoughts on “Microsoft leaves Family Guy high and dry

  1. Haha! I’ve never watched Family Guy before but I can imagine what you’re getting at.

    I don’t think Microsoft’s marketing officials have a wild sense of humour.

    I recently installed Windows 7 on a separate hard-drive to test out the Retail. I used to have the RC for ages. but to be honest, Windows 7 kills Vista in just about every way.

    I started using Vista since the RC. I then bought the x64 retail, which I’m still using now. Back then, it was BADD!! I had to download DRIVERS for a flippin’ CARD READER!

    I haven’t reformatted since 4years ago, and now I have SP2 on my Vista. Bootup takes about 5 to 6 minutes.

    I decided to time my Windows 7 (which is actually installed on a slower hard drive) and the bootup was 45s (to desktop) and 1m:12s for drive activity to stop!

    Now THAT, is an amazing upgrade!
    Don’t know if the people in Family Guy realized this 😛

    1. I’ve only seen a few episodes of Family Guy myself and have been generally entertained by them. The criticism that most episodes are formulaic is valid but the humor still shines through for the most part. You should check out an episode or two to see if it floats your boat.

      I’m in no rush to install Windows 7 myself. I actually have never had any issues with Windows Vista (possibly because I didn’t get a PC with an installation until about a year ago). I also tend to leave my PC running most of the time so I don’t have to worry about boot time (although I never have to wait more than a minute since I don’t have many applications installed).

      I think I’d need a pressing reason for an upgrade before I go ahead and get one.



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