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How Microsoft offended millions of Indians

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In response to our recent piece Microsoft! Beware of Greeks (reading maps), which explains how MS came to upset Greek Cypriots, Shiv Shankar Ramakrishnan has an interesting tale to tell about Kashmir, disputed between India and Pakistan:

You might be interested in MS's response to a somewhat similar incident in the past. In the original Windows 95 the time zone selection control while installing (or later) had a world map. You would choose your country from the drop down list or click on the correct part of the world map if you geography was good enough :)

Then the country you selected would get highlighted in the world map in a different colour depciting its map. So far so good. But for India it showed the state of Kashmir only partially. Since the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir was shown in Pakistan. Naturally people in India were furious. All maps in India have to show the whole of Kashmir as part of India. And foreign publications have to stamp near each incorrect map that it does not represent the true map of India as per Govt. of India! So Windows 95 was threatened with a ban.

What MS did was that from Win95B and Win95OSR2 onwards thew world map just would not highlight any country's map! :) Seemed like they wanted to steer clear of all kinds of such issues all over the world. Hmm ... I wonder what they will do in this Greek case. They cannot remove all the borders can they? :)

Oh dear, oh dear. It seems that they can't do anything right over there in Redmond. We wouldn't fancy being the bloke working on the Balkan map for WinXP. ®

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