Secret e-mail about the Web 2.0ification of Microsoft?

Secret e-mail about the Web 2.0ification of Microsoft? (Update: The NYT version of the same story.) The Wall Street Journal has obtained internal e-mail from Microsoft (subscription required) the WSJ says, “are the clearest evidence yet of how seriously the company views the threats posed by a new generation of fast-changing Internet services. Mr. Gates compares the situation to two earlier times of crisis for the company — the initial advent of the Web, described as “the Internet Tidal Wave” in a 1995 memo from Mr. Gates, and a shift to Internet focused-software development in 2000, the focus of another high-profile internal memo.”


Mr. Ozzie doesn’t define specifically what kind of services and software the company will create, but emphasizes that they will be “seamless” — designed for the current environment in which users move between PCs, laptops, handheld computers, cellphones and videogame consoles. Such a seamless operating system, for example, would “deploy software automatically and as appropriate to all of your devices,” Mr. Ozzie wrote.

The coming “services wave” will be very disruptive, Mr. Gates writes in his introductory email. “We have competitors who will seize on these approaches and challenge us — still, the opportunity for us to lead is very clear.”

Is it just me, but don’t these Gates and Ozzie e-mails sound like they were cribbed from Robert Scoble’s weblog?

Updates: Dave Winer has a copy of the memos. Robert Scoble says the memos are the longest he’s ever received. (Despite his denial in the comments below, I still think there was a little Scobleizer being channeled in those e-mails. : )

  • Robert Scoble

    Well, both Ozzie and Gates have told me they read my blog, so that’s very possible!

  • Robert Scoble

    Seriously, though, the memos are far more in depth than anything I’ve written.

  • rex

    Robert – you’ve certainly influenced the discussion both inside and outside of Microsoft.

  • Carl

    It could always be the other way around.

    Scoble, of course, is an agent of the company PR message and this entire thing is simply a staged event. Scoble has the talking points and starts “off the cuff” expounding on the story he’s been told to run with.

    On the other hand, the elephant on the table is so large that it’s time everyone started talking about it.