Space Ramblings

Microsoft + Yahoo, Together at Last?

One of the sordid temptations of corporate life is for flailing major companies to try and compensate for their basic inadequacies by buying or merging with other companies to fill the gap. Time Warner had no clue about the internet, so naturally they merged with AOL which had a massive subscriber base on the internet and nothing to entertain them with, the whole thing of course resulted in the ultimate match from hell.

Microsoft’s renewal of its proposal to gobble up Yahoo seems like one of those monstrously terrible ideas. At least when Google buys companies like Blogger or YouTube, it’s primarily so they can shove annoying AdSense ads on their users. It’s not too clear what Microsoft has in mind. The reality is that even Microsoft and Yahoo’s search numbers put together don’t beat Google and such a merged entity is likely to be an extremely unwieldy beast.

Under Terry Semmell, Yahoo has thrived as a portal and as a provider of some small user friendly services where Google can’t compete. Microsoft meanwhile has muscled its way into the business, competing more with Yahoo than with Google however. I suppose that moving Yahoo off the board might allow Microsoft to refocus on trying to kill Google, but it’s not too clear how. By now either company should have spawned the next Facebook or MySpace, but Yahoo 360 and MSN Spaces were both also rans.

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