back to article Microsoft launches iPad-happy website for wimmin

Microsoft launched a website for women yesterday based on Adobe’s Flash technology, and it renders particularly well on Apple’s iPad. The site's homepage animation does not currently run on Microsoft’s own Silverlight software, which is the vendor’s rival to Flash. The Register has asked Microsoft when it plans to slot …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't GIO make stockings?

    Must be for the ladies then

  2. g e

    Flash? ipad?


  3. swaygeo
    Paris Hilton

    Mmmm stereotypes :D

    I'm pretty sure most birds will find this belittling, patronising, and strangely gush laden...

    Furthermore are they trying to reinforce a negative stereotype or are the majority of you lady folk actually that interested in shoes?

    I honestly don't know.

    Paris because I fear there may be big words in there...

    1. Test Man


      ... you obviously don't know! :D

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      >are the majority of you lady folk actually that interested in shoes?

      What a dumb question. If you need an answer you aren't married or in any other form of stable relationship with a woman.

    3. little_redshoes

      Nope, this is what women want

      I believe you may need to stop by the newsstand tonight. Take a look at how many magazines are just like this. Granted, I'm from the US, but I remember London's newsstands having many of the same mags. The majority of women are just as shallow as the stereotypes. Stereotypes are so often based on truth.

      And yes, my username is little red shoes, but that's not because I go gaga over shoes. It's a music reference. :-P

    4. anarchic-teapot


      > I'm pretty sure most birds will find this belittling, patronising

      As is calling us birds.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        RE: Patronising

        Maybe he thought that some of our female avian friends would somehow develop the ability to read, type, use a computer etc etc

      2. Andy ORourke

        Maybe he thought

        he was being amusing without realising that there are a lot of people out there ready to take immediate offence?

        1. CD001

          shoes pfff....

          ... it's handbags with my better half.

          Lots and lots of handbags.

    5. Boring Bob
      Thumb Down


      This is the type of stuff women want. My wife buys Elle magazine and it is full of mindless rubbish. It totally reinforces the stereotype of women being pathetically delicate things whose minds are only capable of being concerned with nothing but pretty shiny things, lipstick and shoes. It is so bad I have tried to prevent my 13 year old daughter reading it as I want her to grow-up thinking that women can be so much more.

      Women - my wife goes on about feminism and how the world is sexist and then spends her money on that shit. Only if the exact same magazine was called "IL" would she recognise it for the demeaning sexist rag that it is.

  4. Anonymous Coward


    ....Running i.e.8 with Simple Adblock and there seems to be a gaping hole in the middle where content should be.

    1. Alhazared

      Don't work in Firefox either - FAIL?

      Although as a bloke I'm not sure it matters

  5. Robert Ramsay

    as usual, xkcd get there first

  6. TomatoQueen

    Never mind about the shoes, buster

    You are quite right about the belittling, patronising, gushladen reinforcement of dehumanizing stereotypes, which we lady folk can get just about anywhere else without attending a new half-functional Micro$ site tyvm.

    Note about the shoes: Take a pair of your Church's ones. Now compare that pair to ANY pair of ladies' shoes. See how thin the sole is? See any sign of hand-stitching or hand-lasting or any of the other features of quality cobblery on that pair of ladies' shoes? Of course you don't, because ladies' shoes generally are poorly constructed and do not last as long as gentlemen's shoes do. That is why ladies are interested in shoes.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Poor quality or disposable?

      I'm sure Amelda Marcos' interest in shoes had nothing to do with the fact they are "generally designed with poor quality."

      Perhaps they'e poor quality because women tend to own more pairs than men and given fashion cycles they don't *need* to last as long. Perhaps it's because women tend to go for clothes that are more delicate (generally). I don't see it as being that women likes shoes because they wear out quicker - that makes no sense.

      1. CD001

        Comfortable shoes

        ... and we all know what they say about women in comfortable shoes...

        ... ummm, yeah, they have comfy feet ;)

      2. Boring Bob


        Exact. My last pair of Church's were worn most days to work for over 5 years. They cost a packet but if you look after them you can wear top quality shoes every day for about the same amount of money you would need to spend on crap shoes over the same time period.

        And as for "thin soles". They are thin because women don't want to wear chunky shoes. Manufacturers do not make women's shoes based on a sexist agenda. They make them on a "give women what they want to buy" and make lots of sales agenda.

  7. Glenn Amspaugh

    Hot keyword of the day?

    So... was iPad thrown in here just for page clicks? If so, well done. *golf clap*

  8. Dana W

    Not again!

    Shades of Dell's "Della" site. I hope this gets slammed as the travesty it is. This just stinks of 21st century Microsoft's patented brand of fail.

    Romance, cooking and shoes....... AAAGH! This is insulting to everyone, including mollusks. Get this through your head corporate entities! It is NOT 1955!

    Lets see, supposedly from this site, all women care about shoes, cooking, more shoes, beauty tips, why romance novels are not stupid and ASTROLOGY!

    At least when Dell tries this with Della, they mentioned actual COMPUTERS in its site, if only to tell you how well they match with your outfits.

    All I can think of, these companies ideas of focus groups for these sites consists of polling their trophy wives. Its the only thing that could explain this sort of content. At least they are not trying to market actual Microsoft products to women, who they know are defecting to Apple in droves.

    It finally ends with a "scrapbook" where you can make notes about your fantasy kitchen and ways to suck up to your mother in law! I'm sharing this site alright, with all my women friends in hopes they will tell Microsoft in no uncertain terms that this is utterly pathetic!

    1. CD001

      Tell you what...

      Do a search online for "presents for women" or something similar and you'll find it's pretty universal of all the stereotypes... mix in some tame "kinky sexy fun" bullshit (like chocolate body paint) and you have the entire woman... according to the Internet.

      ... I guess the web really is still a predominantly male preserve.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Two in one

      >from this site, all women care about shoes, cooking

      Dana, then explain this.

      I was going to go into a long explanation of how I happened upon this site but I'll cut it short and just say I was looking for a pastry recipe. So, I googled "pastry" and site at the top of the list is:

      Official website for Pastry Shoes by Vanessa and Angela Simmons

      Seems MS have it about right shoes and cooking.

      PS: If you have a good pastry recipe please reply.

  9. DZ-Jay


    >> Microsoft launched a website for women yesterday based on Adobe’s Flash technology,

    OK, they used Flash instead of Silverlight, fine.

    >> and it renders particularly well on Apple’s iPad.

    Flash rendering "particularly well" on the iPad??? Wut!!!


  10. Wibble

    Story rating...

    Ooooh orgasmic:-)

  11. Florence

    They did succeed at pissing me off.

    While I like shoes, I have to admit they aren't my main passion in life. They also have an article about romance novels on the page - but there's no tech article (or bootnotes). I think even worse than the content of the site, is all the marketing guff about 'me time' and how 'inspirational' content about style, beauty, home and relationships can be. They might as well display a sign saying "OI WOMAN, BACK TO THE KITCHEN NOW!" and I'd find it just as inspirational.

    As for their "beautiful site", it's all broken when I try to set fixed width in Opera. And it's not pink enough, and it lacks unicorns.

  12. Anonymous Coward

    RE: g e

    Was thinking the same thing, what has this site got to do with the ipad, it cant view flash, so how is it ipad happy?

  13. fishman


    I'm a lucky man - my wife isn't interested in shoes, and the only shoes my teenage daughter cares about are soccer shoes.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      >I'm a lucky man

      I beg to disagree, at least at the shoe level. Due to reciprocal spending agreements many a pair of shoes has allowed the male party to the agreement to buy a nifty little gadget, sometimes even something as expensive as an iPad (hence iPad happy website) without the usual ear bashing you would get for "wasting" money.

      1. Ben Holmes


        ...that post is evidently the work of a gentleman who has never 'played the system'!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Dear Ben

          Playing the system is like playing Vegas, in the end, the house always wins.

  14. Anonymous Coward

    Della, all over again...

    Fantastic - It's Della all over again.

    And I get no content with Firefox 3.6 on a Mac, so I've learned nothing about shopping or shoes this evening.

  15. /etc
    Thumb Down

    Good grief! they're dinosaurs, aren't they?

    " Microsoft launched a website for women yesterday based on Adobe’s Flash technology"

    Good grief! they're dinosaurs, aren't they? Flash will be with us for awhile yet, but you'd think they'd use a *little* less when writing a *new* site, bearing mind there's not just the iPad out there but also the iPhone/iPod Touch and various other mobile devices that'll lack Flash support.

    And what does it do for accessibility?

    They're even using Flash for text headings (so-called sIFR Flash).

    And the page has no fewer than 143 errors and 48 warnings at the W3C HTML validator. On an old page that would be excusable, but on one they've just written ...

    They just don't take thought or care.

    I just tried one of Apple's new pages for comparison:

    Only 2 errors -- and those are only in the meta-tags (whose syntax seems to have changed slightly for HTML5).

    1. Steve Roper
      Gates Horns

      143 errors and 48 warnings at W3C

      That's because they designed it for Internet Suxplorer, which, as every web developer knows, is compliant with W3C standards to about the same extent that Al-Qaeda is compliant with the UN Declaration of Human Rights.

      1. Ben Holmes


        ...I agree with everything you have written, do we really have to keep inventing new and ridiculous ways of referring to Internet Explorer?

        Yes, we know it's a bag of arse. PLEASE can we just accept it, and move on?

        1. Steve Roper
          Thumb Up

          Internet Suxplorer

          is what we've been calling it around the office for the last six years, so while it may be ridiculous it certainly isn't new! ;)

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Embrace, Extend, Extinguish

    On noes! It's the end for one half of humanity. Next thing we know women will all run Fem-dows as their primary operating system!

    Next thing you know they'll get all shouty once every four weeks or so and their OS will need to be reinstalled.

  17. Goat Jam
    Dead Vulture

    Flash site is Ipad friendly?

    Seriously, how can el reg make a statement like that after all the Steve Says No To Flash articles we've seen here recently without explaining how this has come to be?

    Are you guys just sticking "ipad" into every headline just so you can up the click rate or something?

    Cynical? Who? Moie?

  18. Goat Jam

    It's funny

    but I thought MS already had a wimmin friendly site.

    It's called

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not iPad-friendly - try MacBook!

    Had a look just to convince myself this wasn't a late April fool... especially with the reference to how well it rendered on an iPad because it was Flash-heavy! One click to the "relationships" page and there was a lap with a MacBook/Pro on it. Maybe someone just got confused between Mac laptops and iPads?

  20. cordwainer 1

    No, this is not what women want...

    At least not ALL women. It never ceases to amaze me how someone can judge an entire gender based solely on his observation of an extremely limited statistical sampling (seemingly consisting of 1 (one) wife and 1 (one) daughter). I have no patience either with women who think male stereotypes are any more acceptable.

    I'm sorry, didn't we get over this sort of - let's face it - bigotry years ago? Do these idiots STILL think a woman's place is in the kitchen while the menfolk ride off to the IT roundup and troubleshoot them thar 'puters?

    Sigh. OK, I'm female. And I'm sick to death of media and retail and computer corporations particularly trying to create sites for "women" or "men" exclusively, as if either sex could be lumped together and targeted like cows or sheep.

    What the hell is this, the 1940s? Haven't these people noticed yet that women have been using computers for quite a long time, and - wonder of wonders - even have careers in IT? Haven't they noticed the astonishing numbers of men and women who share the same interests? That a lot of women would rather be sky diving? That a lot of men would rather be preparing a cordon bleu dinner?

    I don't own a huge number of shoes, nor do any of the women I know. The idea that the majority of women have an entire walk-in closet with shelves of footwear is absurd. (One of my doctors, however, who is male, has so many pairs of shoes in 3 years I've only seen him wear the same pair twice. When I once guessed he had a least hundred pairs, he thought about it for a moment, and said that was probably a little low.)

    I don't care for high heels, because I value my ability to walk, both now and for the rest of my life (I may occasionally wear high heels for NOT walking, but that's another matter entirely). I like to dress up now and then (see also previous parenthetical statement), but am not a fan of dresses.

    I wear lipstick often and have fun painting my nails odd colors when I have time....and when the polish doesn't immediately get scratched off by all the metal edges inside the computers I troubleshoot and repair. I love doing tech support, consulting, tutoring. It's been my career for a long, long time.

    I stared with disbelief, jaw dropped, reading such tripe as ", engaging content about style, beauty, home and relationships. Glo is there when women escape to 'me time,' delivering fun and inspiration with a smart inclusive voice..."

    Obviously this is some definition of the word "smart" of which I was previously unaware, perhaps from an alternate universe where "smart" is synonymous with "patronizing bullshit."

    How is this a "unique escape" for women? What is "unique" about once again assuming these are the only topics women care about? OK, I realize there are also huge numbers of women who ARE obsessed with that sort of thing, but there are just as many, and probably a lot more, who are simply trying to deal with their jobs and families, and looking forward to getting in a little recreation and relaxation when they can.

    Personally, I don't know anyone whom I count as a friend or regular acquaintance - or any of my co-workers, for that matter, male or female - who could read this article without ending up giggling helplessly. Their "me time" ranges from volunteering to kayaking to dog training....searching for interstellar particles on Stardust@home...playing a game with the kids or a group of other adults...getting together to read through piano and violin duets...going to a movie...taking a writing a book, going to a concert, having dinner with a good friend.

    Sure, I enjoy trying out bath products (mmmmm, fig and pear body scrub), relaxing with a little at-home spa-ing (as do many of my men friends, who don't mind at all a nice face massage before we lazily zone out in the hot tub). But I like my entertainment active, not passive. I don't want my fun "delivered". The site described couldn't possibly offer any genuine "inspiration," not unless women are inspired by being condescended to.

    Whoever mentioned the similar short-lived Dell "Della" site was right on the money. Let's hope Glo is similarly savagely mocked and the same women who attached "Della" with such vitriol, my lingering impression is within 24 hours the page had evaporated, and Dell was trying to pretend it had never existed, nope, you must have imagined it (frantically sweeping pink dust under rug).

    C'mon Microsoft, women today have jobs that include spending entire DAYS at a computer....and men ditto. By the time we get done, most of us want a break from keyboards and mice and little words and pictures on a screen making our eyesight blurrier as the day progresses. Oh, we may check our personal e-mail, or catch up on the news, but let's get serious. Except for the 'net addicts and gamers, most everyone else is ready to shut down for a while.

    So when all those tired workers "escape" to "me time", how many, really, are going to "escape" to a site called Glo that seems to be advertised by a PR film on LSD?

    Good grief, there's a whole WORLD out there of things to do, and intelligent, active, imaginative men and women are out doing them (or happily catching up on their sleep deficit)....not sitting around reading about "style"--a concept that exists almost entirely for marketing purposes--or passively waiting for "fun" to be delivered (what "fun" is being delivered exactly? Does someone ring my doorbell and hand me a basket of "yippee!"?).

    There is no such thing as an "inclusive voice" that concentrates on a limited range of subjects, and thinks it even BEGINS to speak for a tiny percentage of women's interests, or anyone's interests. There is also no such thing as an "inclusive voice" designed for women only.

    Personally, I'm inclined to send Glo a dictionary (they can look up "inclusive" on the way to "smart"), and Microsoft a catalog from The Straitjacket Factory. Someone there obviously needs one.

    Gosh, I enjoyed that rant. Now where did I put the clippers? Ah, there they are. Time to get back to work on the T. Rex topiary.


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