Let's start with an example of how not to do things right, with a recent attempt by Microsoft to co-opt the bloggers. What's interesting in all of this is that the bloggers seem more than amenable to being co-opted, until the chorus starts to chime in. Then they move on to the next thing.

Back in December, Microsoft decided to give a slew of bloggers a free laptop with Vista installed. It was an Acer Ferrari. Apparently, the company gave away dozens, and it seems that the laptops were given to people who had been blogging a lot about Microsoft and in a positive manner. In fact, most bloggers are not professional critics (or even amateur critics, for that matter), and they tend to jump for joy over everything. They are obviously taking their cue from today's clueless reporters, who regurgitate PR fluff and call it news. So these bloggers boost whatever they run into with accolades, thus mimicking the pros.

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