By Sumit Passary email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Feb 10, 2013 11:49 AM EST
Microsoft's campaign "Don't Get Scroogled by Gmail" highlights the issue that Google scans it's users' e-mails so it can target and customize advertising to accompany each e-mail message. Microsoft has also released a couple of video adverts which take a direct dig at Gmail.
The latest Microsoft commercial shows how Gmail scans all your e-mails to "scroogle you." The advert also promotes Microsoft's Outlook.com, propagating that the company's free e-mail service does not interfere with your privacy.
"Emails are personal - and people feel that reading through their emails to sell ads is out of bounds," said Stefan Weitz, senior director of Online Services at Microsoft.
Stefan further added "We honor the privacy of our Outlook.com users, and we are concerned that Google violates that privacy every time an Outlook.com user exchanges messages with someone on Gmail. This campaign is as much about protecting Outlook.com users from Gmail as it is about making sure Gmail users know what Google's doing."
One of the adverts explains how Google goes through the contents of its Gmail users by identifying keywords and immediately pushes related ads. Furthermore, the commercial also says that "they don't always get it right," and "you get scroogled when your privacy is invaded." Unfortunately, there is no way to opt out of these adverts.
Another Microsoft TV commercial gives the same message and ends with "don't get scroogled, try Outlook.com."
Microsoft seems to have gone an extra mile, as the company has also launched an online petition, which says "Google earns money by violating your privacy. They go through every word of your personal Gmail so they can target you with ads. It's time to take back your privacy. Sign this petition and tell Google to stop going through your emails to sell ads."
If you use Gmail, have you noticed the ads which appear? What do you think of Gmail invading your privacy and selling your personal information and making money out of it?
Check out the video commercials below.