Look like MS will be hit hard by this one...
---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: firstname.lastname@example.org
> To: DRUDGE@drudgereport.com
> Subject: DRUDGE-REPORT-FLASH 4/9/98
> Date: Thursday, April 09, 1998 11:23 PM
> XXXXX DRUDGE REPORT FLASH XXXXX 20:55:36 PDT THU APRIL 09 1998 XXXXX
> PAPER: MSFT MEDIA BLITZ TO CREATE LOOK OF PUBLIC SUPPORT
> Friday's LOS ANGELES TIMES has obtained internal confidential documents
> MICROSOFT that show the software giant has "secretly been planning a
> media campaign designed to influence state investigators by creating the
> appearance of a groundswell of public support for the company."
> TIMES reporters Greg Miller and Leslie Helm shock with the elaborate plan
> media control involving "the planting of articles, letters to the editor
> opinion pieces to be commissioned by MICROSOFT's top media handlers but
> presented by local firms as spontaneous testimonials."
> The DRUDGE REPORT has learned that according to the documents obtained by
> the TIMES, in a story now set for Page One of Friday editions, local PR
> agencies will begin placing opinion pieces to the media next week, in a
> first wave of the "Microsoft multi-state plan."
> The newspaper report reveals: "Opinion pieces are to be written by
> free-lance writers, and perhaps a 'national economist,' according to one
> document. The writers would be paid with costs 'billed to MICROSOFT as
> out-of-pocket expense.'"
> Sources close to MSFT tell Miller and Helm that the campaign is a result
> the company's "growing fears that it is being outgunned in the media by
> rivals and perhaps even hostile state officials."
> "They're trying to plant stories about how wonderful it is to do business
> with Microsoft," one unnamed source tells the TIMES.
> The stated targets of the campaign are attorneys general and politicians
> 12 states that may be considering antitrust action against the giant,
> reports the paper. Costing millions of dollars, the goal is to generate
> positive public relations at critical junctures in MSFT's various legal
> MSFT spokesman Greg Shaw, whose name appears throughout confidential
> documents, initially told the paper that he was unaware of such a plan,
> later amending comment, acknowledging that the plan exists, but saying it
> "merely a proposal and 'not something we are moving on.'"
> But the TIMES goes deep on a meeting held in Chicago earlier this week
> attended by many, if not all, of the regional coordinators allegedly
> involved in the blitz that is designed to appear not as a major thrust by
> MSFT, but as a spontaneous eruption of grass-roots support.
> Michigan Attorney General Frank Kelley tells the TIMES: "It represents
> arrogance, and it's personally demeaning to me. Bill Gates would have
> better off if he or one of his representatives had picked up the phone
> called me."
> Filed by Matt Drudge
> Reports are moved when circumstances warrant
> http://www.drudgereport.com for breaks
> (c)DRUDGE REPORT 1998
> Not for reproduction without permission of the author