The giant from Redmond must be desperate since it has to use a controversial story from a relatively small Italian city to combat open source software, as in the mean time many larger deployments also in Italy are happy with LibreOffice and the numbers produced by Provincia di Perugia prove the opposite of the Microsoft-publication.
Microsoft writes about the switch of the city of Pesaro from OpenOffice to Office 365. There are however many questions around the publication that should provide backing for the switch. Yet Microsoft uses that publication on it's website for promotion goals.
There are several facts that make the publication controversial. It mentions, for example, the sum of € 300.000 for migration and training costs and extra phone costs of € 85 a year without any data to back that. Sonia Motegiove, an Italian IT consultant, comments that an extensive training for 600 people would cost € 25.000 maximum.
The publication also claims that the interface would cause problems, but apparently the new 365 environment is not considered to cause users any problems.. When a lack of compatibility of OpenOffice is mentioned, Motegiove asks why Pesaro didn't choose for LibreOffice, with a much improved exchange of documents.
In another publication Italo Vignoli from LibreOffice-Italy points to the fact that Pesaro ignores facts such as the security issues that come with the use of Microsoft Office but in stead chooses wording to explain the migration that read as Microsoft propaganda.
All questions to the city of Pesaro or the project manager however, have remained unanswered.
Sources around Pesaro tell that the whole migration project was broken. First the involved IT company could not finish the project, and also half way there was a new IT-director with less focus on the project.
All this does not prevent Microsoft from using a 'study' to make false claims.
This situation looks similar to what happened with a Microsoft sponsored HP publication regarding the city of Munich, that works with Linux and LibreOffice. The HP publication 'proved' high costs in Munich coming with the open source solution. Yet the reality is that during the migration alone, 13 million was saved. That apart from the million or more license fees that ware saved every year since 2013. Savings that are partly spend to support the development of the open source software that Munich uses, and that also stimulate local/regional IT-firms.
Does these actions from Microsoft look so desperate because now also it's office-business faces serious competition?