No you're not a product but you're not very objective are you?
You can walk away from Microsoft and into the loving arms of Google, vastly worse than Microsoft, Apple, much worse than Microsoft, or the open source community which is probably worse than MS but for a whole host of different very not business friendly reasons.
The nag screen is able to be disabled, the article said as much and more importantly if you pride technical expertise and how much your clients mean to you why the hell are they on a domain without basic WSUS configurations for one download for all when it's A FREE PART OF THE PRODUCT? #justsaying
Every part of Microsoft's personal data leaking sieve of an operating system is configurable to be turned off except one; when you use the start search function what you type there is sent to the bing search engine with a UUID, that's the only gripe I have about MS and privacy. All the rest you can turn off in the all settings feature, privacy section except for the feedback information and this can be disabled by stopping and disabling the "Connected User Experiences and Telemetry" service. Also disabling Windows Update will allow you to schedule or manually update your machine with no issues.
Also regarding privacy Microsoft is probably the only company of the big three who plasters privacy and "what the big bad has got on you in the could" information all over the place. Personally I've turned everything off except for my maps app which I allow only to use local information when it's running. I've checked this with network monitors and everything except for the search engine UUID data sticks. You could certainly argue that MS should go from closed to open with regards to privacy and I think this will change in the future to be the default much like they went from security open to closed model during the 2000s but you can't argue, except for one minor detail, that you can't switch it all off (bar one piece).
Looking at MSes current approach to users and what the average user does and wants they are pretty much right on the money. The average personal user wants something that works right out of the box with little to no configuration and have it connect seamlessly; if you've actually ever dealt with a typical user then this is what you'll find I know this and it infuriates me but they really don't care. It's our job as IT experts and people who manage infrastructure and devices to make this balance work so that users get that experience and still have their systems private and working. It would be very difficult to design systems with binary choices such as "allow bluetooth" and "disallow bluetooth" to work seamlessly out of the box with "disallow" set, it would piss the average user off to have to manually do that and it's the same reason that most users wander around draining their phone batteries with their mobile Antenna, Wireless and bluetooth enabled. I'm the sort of guy that runs five addons on their browser to ensure privacy and anonymity but most users couldn't give a damn, start up random browser X and lets go!
Yeah they fucked some of this stuff up, true. Pushing an OS down a metered connection was a bad choice as well as not having a don't nag me again button on the pop up window, this was also a bad choice. Then again, apple added Wi-Fi assist to their phones in an effort to help users and ended up with a shit load of billshock across the board. Companies do stupid things all the time but when you compare the big three objectively Microsoft seems to learn more from their mistakes than the others.
For example the security landscape has changed and people want to be patched but can't be assed managing their patches so MS just makes sure they get them while enterprise and pro users can opt out of this model. There are definitely pros and cons to this but it's now the world norm and it's probably the only way to manage average users effectively; see above where they just don't care. How will this pan out? Who knows but if it goes badly MS will change it's tack again, adapt or die yeah?
In short it's all a trade off and there are so many choices that you don't really need a large infrastructure form society to support your choice to leave your abusive spouse, most business really don't have a lot of IT requirements anyway outside of internet access, desktop text editors, spread sheeting software maybe an internal intranet and a database or two. All this stuff you can find with minimal support in open source land but you don't have a lot of enterprise level support unless you pay through the nose for it. Trade off.
You can choose to leave sure but the grass is always greener yeah?