Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Gates + Stewart = $$$

Anyone else catch Bill Gates on The Daily Show last night?

I stayed up past my bedtime to see what Jon Stewart would ask the world's richest man, and what did I see? A glorified commercial. The business reporter for the Seattle P-I went ga-ga over the visit, but I went to sleep unimpressed.

Couldn't Jon ask one of the world's most influential people about his hopes and plans for ending poverty? Instead he asked about the F12 button.

Couldn't there have been SOME comment about the popularity of charity donations and concern for the developing world that the Gates Foundation has initiated? Instead, Bill talked about his dreams of web-based TV.

It didn't help that Gates ran off the set even before the commercial break! He's thinking, "Well, my job is done here, hopefully I sold a few thousand more copies of Vista!"

I wonder if there was some pre-show agreement about questions. Maybe Jon was as flustered sitting next to Bill Gates as he is when some beautiful actress comes on the show. Yeah - that's gotta be it.


gecko said...

Well, yeah, that was disappointing. But I guess if promoting Vista was the point of the visit to The Daily Show, then he might have told Jon Stewart not to ask about the B&M Gates Foundation. Perhaps he'll ask him to come back at a future date to talk about that kind of thing, now that they've had him on once? But man, Gates sure was acting the part of the salesman, wasn't he? I guess Microsoft realizes that a huge chunk of its target customer base watches the Daily Show and thus wanted to reach them/us. But a little philanthropy discussion thrown in might have helped too.

BuddhistValkyrie said...

I do know that they had to reschedule when John Hodgman was to be on set - Gates is apparently really irate about those Mac adverts. So it wouldn't surprise me, at all, if there were conditions on the interview.

...at least they milked it the next couple of days. Jon got in some good pokes at both Gates and himself.