Microsoft Copies Apple Icons…

Found this funny snippet today online. Looks like Microsoft was caught with an Apple icon on one of its properties.

Here is the image from Microsoft’s website for Vista Business Edition:


Here is the original version from Apple’s Workgroup Server:


Funny snarky comment from the blog where I got this:

Think of a snarky comment making fun of the fact that Microsoft can’t even copy an icon without screwing it up by resizing it. Bonus points if you can work in a crack about the misspelling (“Busines”) in Microsoft’s web page title.

The full play-by-play is here, along with some amusing follow up screenshots of Microsoft’s hasty efforts to replace the icon.

I don’t really fault Microsoft here – quite a few web and graphic designers have been known to grab artwork from time to time as temporary placeholders.  Sometimes, they sneak through as people forget that they aren’t the final artwork, or forget they were “borrowed” by someone else.  It’s possible on big teams.  Maybe there was a Mac-fan on the Vista team here who thought this was a funny inside joke.

Still, given all the history of Microsoft and Apple, and the obvious comparisons of Vista’s new look and feel to Mac OS X’s old look and feel, you’d think there would be a special memo out about not borrowing icons from the Mac.

Gotta imagine someone is getting fired over this.  You just can’t steal intellectual property as part of a commercial product.