How are the Microsoft product brands picked up in the blogosphere? The graph below shows the general use of various brands in conjunction with the company name.
What we see here is a clear ordering between Windows (operating system), Office (productivity), Xbox and Bing (gaming and search) then Zune (media device).
However, if we look at the following chart, which shows Xbox, Bing and Zune without Microsoft being required in the blog post, we can see that Xbox leaves Bing behind, suggesting that it has a clearer brand independence.
Brand independence in the search space will be a key metric for tracking the success of the recent re-launch of Microsoft (my employer's) search product.
Bing does have some amount of brand independence. The graph below shows how the Bing brand is discussed without Microsoft and also how search in general is discussed with Microsoft. The Bing brand has almost the same weight independent of Microsoft as the category of search in general - i.e. the blue and green lines level off around the same place. In addition there is a constant level of discussion about Microsoft and search independent of Bing (the red line) which seems unaffected by the launch of the new product.
I'm assuming that some formal metric of brand (recognition) independence exists - I've not yet found a definition.