Promoter Sues Microsoft Over Kinect Launch Event

Remember the Times Square launch event for Kinect last fall? It took some begging, pleading, and cold hard cash just to happen, when the cops made the last-minute discovery a full blown concert didn't have the requisite permits. The promoter who made all the bad stuff go away says Microsoft owes him $US63,000 for it.

When Ne-Yo [pictured]showed up to serenade the crowd waiting to buy the first Kinect sold in North America, the gathering became something a little more complex than what police had been told to expect. The event coordinator, the agency P.R.omotion!, "sweet-talked the NYPD and promised to pay $US45,000 in fines," if they let it continue, reports AdWeek.

Now the company has sued Microsoft, a New York ad agency, and the Microsoft Xbox executive Craig McNary, for stiffing them on the back end. P.R.omotion says the three parties should pay the $US63,150 it absorbed in fines, legal fees and other costs associated with fixing everything.

"I've never had to do this, ever, and my clients are the biggest in the country," Tom Hennigan, P.R.omotion's owner, told AdWeek. "It's unfortunate that this happened."

Hennigan says he warned everyone that New York authorities didn't like surprises. Thirty minutes before the first Kinect was sold, police threatened shut the whole thing down because no one said Ne-Yo would be there. Says P.R.omotion's lawsuit, McNary directed the planner to "negotiate with the city to ensure that the event would proceed."

Microsoft and the other ad agency named both declined comment to AdWeek.

Event Planner Sues Microsoft Over Kinect Launch Snafu [AdWeek, thanks ScratchButt]


    Wait... let me get this right... Everything was all fine and dandy until a singer(Ne-Yo)appeared?

      Guess the difference between a 'launch event' and a 'concert' is the addition of a famous singer and about $45k in permit fees.

      Yeah, a launch party is different to a concert... you cant just have a famous singer rock up, ready to get his jig on and draw in the crowds; thats how riots start.

    Hang on. So the event organiser, who would've known the full extent of what was going on and who might be performing secretly, and who also failed to correctly inform the cops in the first place hence getting the fines, is looking for compensation over a mistake they made in the first place?

    Or was the Ne-Yo dude a spontaneous appearance?

      Assuming P.R.motion's description of the events is correct, they warned Microsoft that something like this might happen if they had a surprise like this.

      If they warned their client of the consequences and were told to go ahead anyway, then why should they foot the bill for the fines? That doesn't sound like a mistake on their part.

    Wasn't this the plot of a Gossip Girl episode? A transparent attempt to generate more publicity by using a manufactured controversy regarding a liquor license?

    Smolkowicz About time someone sued Microsoft

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