Microsoft Regressing? Nah.

Hugh says that Microsoft has lost a big asset in Robert Scoble, who left the company to join startup

To me it says, Microsoft finally has reached the crossroads indicated in the cartoon above, and have opted to take the non-Cluetrain route. They opted to take that route because they have run out of ideas. They're at a time in their corporate life when they need a big idea. And you what? They. Simply. Don't. Have. One.

That's a bit harsh.

Yes, Scoble was a big asset to Microsoft because he's been able to add a human face to the company over the past few years that just didn't exist. But really, unless you're a Techmeme reader and participate actively in the blogging/tech community, the chances are pretty great that you don't know who Robert Scoble is. I know that I'm the only person in my entire family who would know who Robert Scoble is, and you know what?  The rest of my family still thinks Microsoft is evil.  They used to think Bill Gates was the devil, but now that he's been deemed one of the most charitable people on earth, he's suddenly a benevolent, giving billionaire.

It's good that Robert has been able to help the tech community see past the hard edges of Microsoft, and I hope someone steps up to fill Robert's shoes. Microsoft needs that human face within the tech community. But saying that they're headed down the path of evil just because they didn't pony up enough cash to keep Robert on board is a bit of a stretch.