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WINDOWS 95 MANIA : Paper's Readers Got Something Extra

August 25, 1995|From Times Wire Services

LONDON — Read all about it. That's what Microsoft Corp. wanted readers of the Times of London to do Thursday, so it sponsored a 1.5-million-copy press run of the daily newspaper and gave copies away as part of a global campaign to promote Windows 95.

The Times normally sells 655,000 copies a day. Even home subscribers were not charged for the edition.

A banner across the top of the front page advertised the new software. The newspaper also carried a special supplement on the product. At 25 pence--about 38 cents--each, 1.5 million copies would carry a retail value of more than $500,000.

It also marked the unlikely coming together of two moguls, media baron Rupert Murdoch, whose News Corp. publishes the Times, and Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates. The one-day takeover of the paper sparked denouncements from some in journalistic circles, who criticized it as a blurring of the traditional distinction between news and advertising.

The Times did not say what Microsoft paid for the promotion.

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