Click here to close now.


Recurring Revenue Authors: AppDynamics Blog, Jayaram Krishnaswamy, Carmen Gonzalez, Jason Bloomberg, Yeshim Deniz

Blog Feed Post

NAD recommends Oracle discontinue certain performance claims for Exadata

NAD recommends Oracle discontinue certain performance claims for Exadata

By Greg Schulz

I Received the following press release in my inbox today from the National Advertising Division (NAD) recommending that Oracle stop making certain performance claims about Exadata after a complaint from IBM.

Oracle Exadata

In case you are not familiar with ExaData, it is a database machine or storage appliance that only supports Oracle database systems (learn more here). Oracle having bought Sun microsystems a few years back moved from being a software vendor that competed with other vendors software solutions including those from IBM while running on hardware from Dell, HP and IBM among others. Now that Oracle is in the hardware business, while you will still find Oracle software products running on their competitors hardware (servers and storage), Oracle is also more aggressively competing with those same partners, particularly IBM.

Hmm, to quote Scooby Doo: Rut Roh!

Looks like IBM complained to the Better Business Bureau (BBB) National Advertising Division (NAD) that resulted in the Advertising Self-Regulatory Council (ASRC) making their recommendation below (more about NAD and ASRC can be found here). Based on a billboard sign that I saw while riding from JFK airport into New York City last week, I would not be surprised if a company with two initials that start with an H and end with a P were to file a similar complaint.

I Wonder if the large wall size Oracle advertisement that used to be in the entry way to the white plains (IATA:HPN) airport (e.g. in IBM's backyard) welcoming you to the terminal as you get off the airplanes is still there?

The following is the press release that I received:

National Advertising Division (NAD) and ASRC

For Immediate Release
Contact: Linda Bean

NAD Finds Oracle Took Necessary Action in Discontinuing Comparative Performance Claims for Exadata; Oracle to Appeal NAD Decision

New York, NY July 24, 2012 TheNational Advertising Division has recommended that Oracle Corporation discontinue certain comparative product-performance claims for the companys Exadata database machines, following a challenge by International Business Machines Corporation. Oracle said it would voluntarily discontinue the challenged claims, but noted that it would appeal NADs decision to the National Advertising Review Board.

The advertising claims at issue appeared in a full-page advertisement in the Wall Street Journal and included the following:

  • Exadata 20x Faster Replaces IBM Again
  • Giant European Retailer Moves Databases from IBM Power to Exadata Runs 20 Times Faster

NAD also considered whether the advertising implied that all Oracle Exadata systems are twenty times faster than all IBM Power systems.

The advertisement featured the image of an Oracle Exadata system, along with the statement: Giant European Retailer Moves Databases from IBM Power to Exadata Runs 20 Times Faster. The advertisement also offered a link to the Oracle website: For more details

IBM argued that the 20x Faster claim makes overly broad references to Exadata and IBM Power, resulting in a misleading claim, which the advertisers evidence does not support. In particular, the challenger argued that by referring to the brand name IBM Power without qualification, Oracle was making a broad claim about the entire IBM Power systems line of products.

The advertiser, on the other hand, argued that the advertisement represented a case study, not a line claim, and noted that the sophisticated target audience would understand that the advertisement is based on the experience of one customer the Giant European Retailer referenced in the advertisement.

In a NAD proceeding, the advertiser is obligated to support all reasonable interpretations of its advertising claims, not just the message it intended to convey. In the absence of reliable consumer perception evidence, NAD uses its experienced judgment to determine what implied messages, if any, are conveyed by an advertisement. When evaluating the message communicated by an advertising claim, NAD will examine the claims at issue in the context of the entire advertisement in which they appear.

In this case, NAD concluded that while the advertiser may have intended to convey the message that in one case study a particular Exadata system was up to 20 times faster when performing two particular functions than a particular IBM Power system, Oracles general references to Exadata and IBM Power, along with the bold unqualified headline Exadata 20x Faster Replaces IBM Again, conveyed a much broader message.

NAD determined that at least one reasonable interpretation of the challenged advertisement is that all or a vast majority of Exadata systems consistently perform 20 times faster in all or many respects than all or a vast majority of IBM Power systems. NAD found that the message was not supported by the evidence in the record, which consisted of one particular comparison of one consumers specific IBM Power system to a specific Exadata System.

NAD further determined that the disclosure provided on the advertisers website was not sufficient to limit the broad message conveyed by the 20x Faster claim. More importantly, NAD noted that even if Oracles website disclosure was acceptable and had appeared clearly and conspicuously in the challenged advertisement it would still be insufficient because an advertiser cannot use a disclosure to cure an otherwise false claim.

NAD noted that Oracles decision to permanently discontinue the claims at issue was necessary and proper.

Oracle, in its advertisers statement, said it was disappointed with the NADs decision in this matter, which it believes is unduly broad and will severely limit the ability to run truthful comparative advertising, not only for Oracle but for others in the commercial hardware and software industry.

Oracle noted that it would appeal all of NADs findings in the matter.


NAD's inquiry was conducted under NAD/CARU/NARB Procedures for the Voluntary Self-Regulation of National Advertising. Details of the initial inquiry, NAD's decision, and the advertiser's response will be included in the next NAD/CARU Case Report.

About Advertising Industry Self-Regulation: The Advertising Self-Regulatory Council establishes the policies and procedures for advertising industry self-regulation, including the National Advertising Division (NAD), Childrens Advertising Review Unit (CARU), National Advertising Review Board (NARB), Electronic Retailing Self-Regulation Program (ERSP) and Online Interest-Based Advertising Accountability Program (Accountability Program.) The self-regulatory system is administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus.

Self-regulation is good for consumers. The self-regulatory system monitors the marketplace, holds advertisers responsible for their claims and practices and tracks emerging issues and trends. Self-regulation is good for advertisers. Rigorous review serves to encourage consumer trust; the self-regulatory system offers an expert, cost-efficient, meaningful alternative to litigation and provides a framework for the development of a self-regulatory to emerging issues.

To learn more about supporting advertising industry self-regulation, please visit us at:

Linda Bean l Director, Communications,
Advertising Self-Regulatory Council

Tel: 212.705.0129
Cell: 908.812.8175
[email protected]

112 Madison Ave.
3rd Fl.
New York, NY

Ok, Oracle is no stranger to benchmark and performance claims controversy having amassed several decades of experience. Anybody remember the silver bullet database test from late 80s early 90s when Oracle set a record performance except that they never committed the writes to disk?

Oracle image

Something tells me that Oracle and Uncle Larry (e.g. Larry Ellison who is not really my uncle) will treat this as any kind of press or media coverage is good and probably will issue something like IBM must be worried if they have to go to the BBB.

Will a complaint which I'm sure is not the fist to be lodged with the BBB against Oracle deter customers, or be of more use to IBM sales and their partners in deals vs. Oracle?

What's your take?

Is this much ado about nothing, a filler for a slow news or discussion day, a break from talking about VMware acquisition of Nicira or VMware CEO management changes? Perhaps this is an alternative to talking about the CEO of SSD vendor STEC being charged with insider trading, or something other than Larry Ellison buying an Hawaiian island (IMHO he could have gotten a better deal buying Greece), or is this something that Oracle will need to take seriously?

Ok, nuff said.

Cheers Gs

Greg Schulz - Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press, 2011), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press, 2009), and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier, 2004)

twitter @storageio

All Comments, (C) and (TM) belong to their owners/posters, Other content (C) Copyright 2006-2012 StorageIO All Rights Reserved

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Greg Schulz

Greg Schulz is founder of the Server and StorageIO (StorageIO) Group, an IT industry analyst and consultancy firm. Greg has worked with various server operating systems along with storage and networking software tools, hardware and services. Greg has worked as a programmer, systems administrator, disaster recovery consultant, and storage and capacity planner for various IT organizations. He has worked for various vendors before joining an industry analyst firm and later forming StorageIO.

In addition to his analyst and consulting research duties, Schulz has published over a thousand articles, tips, reports and white papers and is a sought after popular speaker at events around the world. Greg is also author of the books Resilient Storage Network (Elsevier) and The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC). His blog is at and he can also be found on twitter @storageio.

@ThingsExpo Stories
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Nowadays, a large number of sensors and devices are connected to the network. Leading-edge IoT technologies integrate various types of sensor data to create a new value for several business decision scenarios. The transparent cloud is a model of a new IoT emergence service platform. Many service providers store and access various types of sensor data in order to create and find out new business values by integrating such data.
The broad selection of hardware, the rapid evolution of operating systems and the time-to-market for mobile apps has been so rapid that new challenges for developers and engineers arise every day. Security, testing, hosting, and other metrics have to be considered through the process. In his session at Big Data Expo, Walter Maguire, Chief Field Technologist, HP Big Data Group, at Hewlett-Packard, will discuss the challenges faced by developers and a composite Big Data applications builder, focusing on how to help solve the problems that developers are continuously battling.
There are so many tools and techniques for data analytics that even for a data scientist the choices, possible systems, and even the types of data can be daunting. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Harrold, Global CTO for Big Data Solutions for EMC Corporation, will show how to perform a simple, but meaningful analysis of social sentiment data using freely available tools that take only minutes to download and install. Participants will get the download information, scripts, and complete end-to-end walkthrough of the analysis from start to finish. Participants will also be given the pract...
WebRTC: together these advances have created a perfect storm of technologies that are disrupting and transforming classic communications models and ecosystems. In his session at WebRTC Summit, Cary Bran, VP of Innovation and New Ventures at Plantronics and PLT Labs, will provide an overview of this technological shift, including associated business and consumer communications impacts, and opportunities it may enable, complement or entirely transform.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dyn, the worldwide leader in Internet Performance, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet conditions, Dyn ensures traffic gets delivered faster, safer, and more reliably than ever.
WebRTC services have already permeated corporate communications in the form of videoconferencing solutions. However, WebRTC has the potential of going beyond and catalyzing a new class of services providing more than calls with capabilities such as mass-scale real-time media broadcasting, enriched and augmented video, person-to-machine and machine-to-machine communications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Luis Lopez, CEO of Kurento, will introduce the technologies required for implementing these ideas and some early experiments performed in the Kurento open source software community in areas ...
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
Today air travel is a minefield of delays, hassles and customer disappointment. Airlines struggle to revitalize the experience. GE and M2Mi will demonstrate practical examples of how IoT solutions are helping airlines bring back personalization, reduce trip time and improve reliability. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Dr. Sarah Cooper, M2Mi's VP Business Development and Engineering, will explore the IoT cloud-based platform technologies driving this change including privacy controls, data transparency and integration of real time context w...
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, will discuss the impact of technology on identity. Should we federate, or not? How should identity be secured? Who owns the identity? How is identity ...
The IoT market is on track to hit $7.1 trillion in 2020. The reality is that only a handful of companies are ready for this massive demand. There are a lot of barriers, paint points, traps, and hidden roadblocks. How can we deal with these issues and challenges? The paradigm has changed. Old-style ad-hoc trial-and-error ways will certainly lead you to the dead end. What is mandatory is an overarching and adaptive approach to effectively handle the rapid changes and exponential growth.
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new data-driven world, marketplaces reign supreme while interoperability, APIs and applications deliver un...
Electric power utilities face relentless pressure on their financial performance, and reducing distribution grid losses is one of the last untapped opportunities to meet their business goals. Combining IoT-enabled sensors and cloud-based data analytics, utilities now are able to find, quantify and reduce losses faster – and with a smaller IT footprint. Solutions exist using Internet-enabled sensors deployed temporarily at strategic locations within the distribution grid to measure actual line loads.
The Internet of Everything is re-shaping technology trends–moving away from “request/response” architecture to an “always-on” Streaming Web where data is in constant motion and secure, reliable communication is an absolute necessity. As more and more THINGS go online, the challenges that developers will need to address will only increase exponentially. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Todd Greene, Founder & CEO of PubNub, will explore the current state of IoT connectivity and review key trends and technology requirements that will drive the Internet of Things from hype to reality.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data shows "less than 10 percent of IoT developers are making enough to support a reasonably sized team....
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
Today’s connected world is moving from devices towards things, what this means is that by using increasingly low cost sensors embedded in devices we can create many new use cases. These span across use cases in cities, vehicles, home, offices, factories, retail environments, worksites, health, logistics, and health. These use cases rely on ubiquitous connectivity and generate massive amounts of data at scale. These technologies enable new business opportunities, ways to optimize and automate, along with new ways to engage with users.
The IoT is upon us, but today’s databases, built on 30-year-old math, require multiple platforms to create a single solution. Data demands of the IoT require Big Data systems that can handle ingest, transactions and analytics concurrently adapting to varied situations as they occur, with speed at scale. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chad Jones, chief strategy officer at Deep Information Sciences, will look differently at IoT data so enterprises can fully leverage their IoT potential. He’ll share tips on how to speed up business initiatives, harness Big Data and remain one step ahead by apply...
There will be 20 billion IoT devices connected to the Internet soon. What if we could control these devices with our voice, mind, or gestures? What if we could teach these devices how to talk to each other? What if these devices could learn how to interact with us (and each other) to make our lives better? What if Jarvis was real? How can I gain these super powers? In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Chris Matthieu, co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, will show you!