Things are definitely heating up over the Microsoft bid for Yahoo! and here I am on the east side (near Redmond, for non-locals) in the center of all this speculation - how can I not blog about it? My husband works for Microsoft, and what neither one of us can figure out is how this is really so much better for the company. True, they will increase their market share in the internet advertising space somewhat - but is taking on Yahoo! (a drifting ship of mediocre leaders at this point) really such a boon?
It has taken years for MSFT stock to rebound and it has been enjoying pretty decent market valuation lately, but attracting the attention of regulators (perverse as it is) isn't going to do wonders for legal expenses that are already through the roof.
It sounds like Google is positioning for a fight and has decided to take a legal angle, taking advantage of the public's previous concieved notion of Microsoft as an evil empire of monopolistic goons. Thanks guys! While Microsoft has openly waged war with Google on commercial grounds, I don't think this particular type of fighting is very commendable. I'd like to see the two duke it out in the open market - and although others don't seem to believe that market can be "open" once Microsoft acquires Yahoo! I beg to differ.
In this article from Fortune: http://techland.blogs.fortune.cnn.com/2008/02/03/google-will-microsoft-monopolize-the-internet/ Google is calling for legal action against Microsoft on the grounds that they allegedly will "extend unfair practices from browsers and operating systems to the Internet" [sic] if they acquire Yahoo! As I write on Blogger, one of the many Google products I love, I find myself disgusted. Of course the word "openess" is getting bandied about as well. If people want a free and open internet then they won't buy Microsoft products. Google has a firm enough foothold in the market that they should be able to convince people of that.
Of course, all this follows speculation in the media and specifically in Silicon Valley that Microsoft's bid for Yahoo! might actually be a GOOD thing for the internet, freeing it from an impending "monopoly" by Google. All this sounds like a bunch of positioning and political nonsense - may the best products and services win in the open market. Let consumers decide.