Zune: Welcome to the Social

“Welcome to the Social”

My reaction the first time I saw this slogan was not really positive. Several years ago, I moved to Ohio from a place where they speak English, and I’ve rarely gone a day without lamenting the sad state of the language here in the land of the Buckeye.One of the strangest experiences of my new citizenship was the strangely common practice of asking for “my social.” Invariably, the interrogator was at the head of a line at a government agency or doctor’s office. It took me a while to appreciate the efficiency of these workers; after all, if they’d taken the time to spit out “security number”, too, I might still be waiting in line.

I saw Microsoft’s new slogan, then, and immediately flashed back to my experience with those decidedly un-hip, non-technical queue processors, and I shuddered just a bit. I’m not sure I’m really ready to be part of the social.

After my cold sweat subsided, my next impression was that the social, whatever it was, sounded vaguely Borg-like. In understand, of course, that this is not the way Zune sharing is supposed to work, but we’re talking about first impressions here, so I’m going to stick with mine. I don’t want to be assimilated, either.

So, as far as I’m concerned, Microsoft’s marketing department is 0-for-2. The popular consensus on the Zune seems to be that it’s a 1.0 release, and Microsoft never gets 1.0 releases right, but they’ve got the sheer stubborn will to pour money into a losing fight until they finally get it right. I have to believe that the marketing message will improve in with future releases, too.