Microsoft has escalated their war on Google with their Scroogled campaign. Their Scroogled campaign, targets Google for what they see as privacy related issues with Gmail, Chrome, the Google apps store, paid advertising and more. The campaign has been both web-based and on television, but they have now stepped it up even further by releasing a line of Scroogled branded items such as T-shirts and mugs.
Most of the Scroogled products have Google's Chrome logo on them, while others are utilizing the words Scroogled the stylized as identical to the Google logo. Many of the items feature the "Keep Calm" meme with the Chrome logo and "Keep Calm While We Steal Your Data" underneath, with the "Don't get Scroogled" slogan on the back.
While a lot of people view the Scroogled campaign is being very unclassy, Google seems to be taking it in stride, with their latest spokesperson comments about Scroogled merchandise being, "Microsoft's latest venture comes as no surprise, competition in the wearables space really is heating up."
This is clearly a reference to Google Glass, something that Microsoft is also rumored to be developing, which could also explain why we haven't seen the Scroogled campaign targets Google Glass yet.
Microsoft also blogged about the new merchandise on their Scroogled blog, also mentioning items such as water bottles, so it's likely not the last of the items we will see in the Scroogled store. Some items have already sold out such as the Scroogled Keep Calm T-shirt (all sizes) and mug.
Each item description also targeted their anti-Google campaign, with their Scroogled Word Cloud T-shirt bearing the huge description of "Gulled. Humbugged. Buffaloed. Wire-tapped. Extorted. Sold out. Chicaned. Fleeced. Scammed. Conned. Surveilled. Double-dealt. Ensnared. Suckered. Sandbagged. Gossiped. Scandalmongered. Flimflammed. Skullduggered. Bamboozled. Hornswoggled. Beguiled. Cheated. Fooled. Double-crossed. Defrauded. Hoodwinked. Swindled. Duped. They're all just synonyms for being Scroogled – and you can get them all on this American Apparel 50/50 t-shirt."
Their Scroogled I'm Watching You T-shirt description says "Do you use Google Search? Or Gmail? Or Google Chat? Or Chrome? Then Google is watching you…all the time."
If you want to check out the Scroogled items, they are not available openly on the store however, you have to use a direct link from the Scroogled blog to access them. Interestingly, if you search for "Scroogled" you get no results in the Microsoft Store, but the smart search displays them in a drop-down as you're searching, and even directly clicking those smart search results won't bring up the items either.
The Scroogled campaign began a year ago, and earlier this year Microsoft and stated they would no longer continue their television Scroogled ads, but would continue to support the website. Last month, Microsoft claimed the anti-Google television spots were working and tarnishing the Google's image in the consumer's mind while Bing's went up.
Once viewers do hit Scroogled.com, data collected for Microsoft by Answers Research show a 45% favorability gap in favor of Google contracting to just 5%. Data collected by Answers up until this summer also show the likelihood of someone recommending Google to a friend drop by 10%, as opposed to a 7% increase for Bing, after watching the ad.
Google isn't the only tech company that has been in Microsoft's crosshairs. Microsoft targeted Apple's iPhone with a similar anti-iPhone campaign, which they uploaded on YouTube, however the response to that campaign was primarily negative, particularly with the Steve Jobs lookalike they used in the video. But clearly, Microsoft has escalated the Scroogled war once again.
Googlers are also having fun with the Scroogled campaign, making their own comments on Google+, of course. Edward Eigerman wrote:
Microsoft has opened an on-line "Scroogled" store.
I desperately want a Scroogled T-Shirt to wear to work, but you have to have a Microsoft Account to buy one.
Really, MS? Your store that makes fun of the competition's need to have user information requires a buyer to give you all their information to buy a T-shirt.
The irony is palpable. Palpable, I say.
Forbes has a fantastic roundup of more comments from Googlers.