An interesting and slightly amusing article on news.com details problems that Microsoft has had with its products in foreign markets. Certain minor errors or misunderstandings have lead to their products being banned in various countries after they offended the authorities. The article lists some of the blunders, which in brief are:
- Microsoft marked a part of Kashmir which was 8 pixels in size as not being a part of Indian territory, leading to the recall 200,000 copies of Windows 95 in India
- A computer game which used the chanting of the Koran, the Muslim holy text, as background music, offended the authorities in Saudi Arabia
- A Spanish version of Windows XP asked users to select their gender from ‘not specified’, ‘male’ and ‘bitch’, due to an error in translation
The article goes into more detail, but it shows even the biggest of companies can make the biggest of slip-ups.
On a somewhat related note, news.com now accepts trackback pings in its articles. An interesting move.