What’s in a Name?


What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

I seem to be obsessing over names today. As reported pretty much everywhere, Microsoft has been handed a defeat in the EU, and will be required to ship a version of Windows without Windows Media Player in Europe; according to BetaNews, this version of the OS will be known as “Reduced Media Edition.”

After some recent lapses in vigilance on the part of Microsoft’s Marketing department, it’s nice to see them back on top of their game. Reduced Media Edition? It’s weaker than some other promising candidates such as Windows: Crippled Edition, or Windows EU (Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You), but it still manages to convey that all-important “don’t blame us, you asked for a lame version of our software” feeling.

This reminds me of the great trend that I’ve been seeing in the text of MPAA movie ratings. While the ratings are set by the MPAA, it’s looking more and more like producers get creative control over the text associated with that rating…with predictable results. Take Vin Diesel’s tender coming of age story xXx, for example: it got a PG-13 rating, with the associated text: Rated PG-13 for violence, non-stop action sequences, sensuality, drug content and language.

The MPAA is worried about “non-stop action sequences?” Please. I only wish I had access to the report that evaluated whether or not more 14 year old boys got suckered into seeing this after learning that The Man thought they might not be able to handle all that non-stop action.