Microsoft beige? More like a frat house!

Jon Wilcox
Technology Correspondent
Sift Media
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Microsoft isn’t seen as a particularly cool company. Remember those “Mac vs PC” ads a few years back? The perception of Microsoft is middle-of-the-road and boring, despite the company being responsible for some pretty cool technology like the Kinect device for Xbox, or the overhauled interface for Windows Phone 7.

Colour is a great way to convey the personality of a company. For years IBM has not only been big, it’s been blue: The ‘Big Blue’ moniker captured not only the monolithic-like stature of the otherwise bland sounding International Business Machines, but also its blue chip status in the technology sector.

iPhone and iPad developer Apple for many years used a rainbow-coloured apple for its logo, together with the tagline “Think different”. And a multi-coloured piece of fruit with a bite taken out of it was certainly that.

And then there’s Microsoft.

In a world where colour can be described as “Totally Nutmeg”, “Blue Reflection”, and “Apple White” (thank, Dulux!) the Redmond Corporation could quite easily have a colour named after it: “Microsoft Beige”.

But according to a High Court battle currently going on, perhaps Microsoft isn’t so much a colour than a US college institution: A frat house.

According to the £10m case, the culture of Microsoft UK is one of “outrageous behaviour” and “excessive drunkenness” with vodka fountains and Jägermeister liquor available during the 14,000 people strong parties. The claims are being made by former UK general manager Simon Negus, who was sacked for allegedly kissing a colleague at a conference in the United States. Negus is currently appealing for wrongful dismissal.

A report on the case by the Daily Mail quotes a Microsoft spokesperson saying it would be “inappropriate to comment on the details of an on-going legal case, other than to say we will be vigorously defending it.”

News of the alleged alcohol-fuelled partying at Microsoft UK comes as a former accountant at the corporation’s Seattle HQ was jailed for two years after he was found guilty of stealing over $1m dollars…

Microsoft…beige? More like vomit green!


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