If any company can take bad PR and make it worse, it's Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT).

Fresh off its recent slap from the European Union's second-highest court, The Wall Street Journal has been subject to anti-Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) "pitches" from a public relations company working surreptitiously for Mr. Softy, and that company is trying to undermine Google's purchase of display ad maven, DoubleClick.

Secret's out now, and my guess is the public won't like it. After all, as far as most Web consumers are concerned, Google doesn't cost them a penny, and it provides them with nifty "innovations," even if most of those -- like Google Earth -- were innovated by others. Microsoft, on the other hand, is the creator of the OS and productivity software that makes them scream obscenities every day.

This kind of anonymous cloak-and-dagger is nothing new in the computer industry. Everyone, including "not evil" Google, does it. But execs at Microsoft don't seem to have gotten the memo: They'll be strung up for behavior that is just fine from others. Better to take the highest road possible and be transparent about it from the get-go.

Microsoft is a Motley Fool Inside Value recommendation.

At the time of publication, Seth Jayson, a top-10 CAPS player, had shares of evil Microsoft, but no positions in any other company mentioned here. See his latest CAPS blog commentary here. View his stock holdings and Fool profile here.

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