Microsoft Legal Wants Me to Take Down THEIR OWN CONTENT

I received a surprising voicemail from Microsoft Legal – they demand that I take down the content at since it points to a promotion that’s no longer running. Click below to hear the voicemail, courtesy of GrandCentral:

There’s only one problem (actually more): this is not my content, it was set up and is controlled by Microsoft, or an entity that created the promo for Microsoft. The promotion it refers to, The Ultimate Steal was actually quite generous, giving MS Office away to students for $60. My post on the subject was partly promotional, partly poking fun at MightySoft since they could not even get the promo site up working properly:

The countdown reached zero, and started again. And again… several times, even after the advertised opening of the promotion, users were not able to get in, they were just staring at the recycled counter. A commenter @ CrunchGear called it The Ultimate Publicity Scam. I thought it was just a bug, so I created and pointed to to the MS promo site.

Now they want me to take it down. I can’t, since it’s not my site. The Ultimate Bug domain points to, which appears to belong to Peek Consulting LLC, in Louisville, KY. Perhaps MS or Digital River worked with them to create the promotion … I have no clue. is owned by Microsoft, and while they rerouted the main page to an end-of-life notice, the original content, the one Microsoft Legal wants me to take down is still available here:

Dear Microsoft, feel free to take your content down any time. And perhaps next time use a smarter agency.

Of course this makes me wonder: what if I really had duplicated the content on my site? Could MS legally force me to remove it, even though it clearly identifies the end-date as May 16 2208? I know some attorneys who read this blog, perhaps you’ll be kind enough to jump in with your comments. Thanks in advance.

Update (6/13) : Someone at Microsoft is reading this blog, after all. which was pointing to now shows ‘under construction’.  The “bug” lost its meaning after MS fixed the error anyway, and now the promotion itself is over… I need to figure out what to do with this cool domain.  In the meantime I am redirecting it to the original post that started it all.

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TheUltimateSteal = TheUltimateBug. MS Giveaway on Perpetual Countdown.

It’s really refreshing to see Microsoft sell Office 2007 at its true value. $60 is fair value, IMHO – although college students might still opt for pirated versions, or the free Open Office, or the also free Web offices. They certainly have choices.

MS labels this promotion The Ultimate Steal. Hm… that may be so in more than one way. was supposed to go live early afternoon… I saw it count down less than two hours before lunch. Then later in the afternoon I saw it at 4 hours to go. Now, 11:10pm PST. the countdown is at 14 hours and 5 minutes, definitely stretching into tomorrow!

A commenter called it The Ultimate Publicity Scam. I think it’s just a bug. A lousy one. What was I even thinking complaining about Vista bugs, when MightySoft can’t even get a promo site up working properly?

Check it out yourself:

Update: As of 9:15am on the 13th the site is now fixed.

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