Microsoft does Windows 10 privacy propaganda well
One of the big complaints people had about Windows 10 when it first launched was how the new operating system spied on its users.
Microsoft has since reigned in this spying and introduced controls to give users greater management over their privacy, and now the software company has issued a lovely piece of spin, with an equally lovely headline -- Your feedback is helping shape Windows privacy -- to convince Windows 10 doubters the problems of the past are rapidly receding.
I’m naturally cynical, so when I read this new post from Marisa Rogers, WDG Privacy Officer, all I could think was how interestingly it was written. It doesn’t really say much, but it says it in such a way that you’re left thinking users totally LOVE the changes. Let me break things down for you (the emphasis in the quotes below is all mine).
Rogers says the feedback Microsoft has received about the Creators Update has been "positive." In truth, that doesn’t really mean much as "it doesn’t suck donkey balls" can be viewed as positive.
She also says that the web-based privacy dashboard announced in January -- which lets you to see and control your activity data across Microsoft services -- has had a "positive reception" with more than 23 million people visiting it. Of course, to put that in context, Rogers says over 500 million devices are running Windows 10 (which, interestingly, is the same number quoted three months ago), so that’s a very tiny proportion who have used the dashboard so far. (Don’t get me wrong, the privacy dashboard is a very welcome addition, but maybe it needs to be promoted a bit better).
Marisa also reports that "71 percent of customers are selecting Full diagnostics data to help us fix things and improve Microsoft products." I think in reality, 71 percent of customers aren’t bothering to change the defaults.
She also drops in this line which I love:
While your direct feedback like, "The privacy settings added to clean installs are a boon for the privacy minded," and "Very well done," is great to hear, we know there is still work to do to meet and anticipate the expectations across our diverse customer base and provide you with the best privacy experience possible.
Be in no doubt, she’s cherry picked some nice comments there for a very deliberate reason.
All tech companies push out propaganda and spin like this from time to time, much of which then gets regurgitated across tech media sites, helping to spread the intended narrative, but the trick is to read between the lines. What Microsoft is really saying here is "you need to trust us regarding your privacy, because other people do."