Microsoft marketing uses a variety of psychological tricks to control journalists. These typically consist of making silly, inconsequential demands. One example: journalists will be told they cannot mention one specific feature, or cannot show screen grabs.
Here is another example I came across today, which illustrates that Microsoft continues to engage in this behaviour:
Microsoft is now referring to the next version of its desktop office suite, code-named "Office 12," as "Office 2007." Microsoft watcher Steven Bink is reporting that Microsoft officials used the Office 2007 name at IT Forum. -- from Microsoft Watch
When a new release of Office is in beta, it is given a name. For example, "Office 12" noted above. Mentioning the real name, "Office 2007" is a violation of the NDA (non disclousre agreement) along with loss of access to pre-release software, et al.
Note this detail in the quote above: Mr Bink makes it clear that it was Microsoft who broke the NDA, not him. Fear abounds.
Microsoft shunned me after I made mention of "Visio 2002" (aka Visio 10) after another site made mention of the name based on logical speculation. Not that I minded. As a journalist, I like being ignored by Microsoft, because then I don't feel the need to kowtow.
Recently, someone from Microsoft emailed me a request to talk to me about some misundertandings on my blogs. I replied, "Sorry, no time right now." I'm too busy being free of Microsoft.
And I still have more horror stories to relate another time.