sloppy journalism, clever marketing

1 October 2006

The BBC reports that Tesco is about to set sail on the software high seas with an office package “it had developed” with software firm Formjet. Tesco, the report continues, will make this top notch software available to its millions of customers for £20 a throw. Gosh, you might think, what a bargin, how clever of Tesco to develop such cheap applications, Bill will be quaking in his boots.

30 seconds of high quality Google-based research later it turns out that Formjet’s business is software licencing and that the good people of Britain can already buy the Ability Office suite (in development since 1985) for £49 or individual applications such as Ability Write for, yes you’ve guess it, £19.99. So, not only have Tesco managed to get someone at the BBC to simply copy its press release onto the world’s favourite news site without any apparent thought, it will also be charging its customers an additional 1p for something already available.

Will the punters care? Of course not. After all, every little helps… doh! now I’m at it!

UPDATE: the Guardian also has a go at this one and also misses the backstory.

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