MSFT to YHOO?

Yahoo is up on rumors that Microsoft is wanting to buy it. Something to ponder as I travel to Mexico with Maryam today. Of course that is getting covered from all angles on TechMeme. I’m speaking at the Forbes Online Brand Management forum. I’m not being paid (they paid my travel expenses, but Maryam’s paying her own way down there). No link blogging or regular blogging until Tuesday (I’m going to a BEA thing on Tuesday in Atlanta, though, so not even sure I’ll be back until Thursday next week — too much traveling in my life).

UPDATE: it’s funny that Microsoft could end up paying a LOT more for Flickr and Del.icio.us than it would have paid if they had bought those when I told Gates to buy those. Sigh.

88 thoughts on “MSFT to YHOO?

  1. @36:
    “@34 Actually their are ONLY 15 Technical Evangelists at MS. That’s not MANY.”

    rubbish. there are hundreds of them, if not close to a thousand. Most of the DPE org are evangelists. Scoble was a leaf node and one of many, so just cos he thinks up an idea (with no business plan) then it’s hardly an earth shattering moment.

  2. @36:
    “@34 Actually their are ONLY 15 Technical Evangelists at MS. That’s not MANY.”

    rubbish. there are hundreds of them, if not close to a thousand. Most of the DPE org are evangelists. Scoble was a leaf node and one of many, so just cos he thinks up an idea (with no business plan) then it’s hardly an earth shattering moment.

  3. Scoble : There’s no denying that Flickr is *popular*. But as LayZ asks – how much has Flickr contributed to Yahoo. ( Apparently not much – going by recent performances)

  4. Scoble : There’s no denying that Flickr is *popular*. But as LayZ asks – how much has Flickr contributed to Yahoo. ( Apparently not much – going by recent performances)

  5. Well you do know that Msoft is not interensted in Flikr ,They want to buy Yahoo to obstruct Google and also narrown down the lead google has in search and no. of search queries!
    Gates did the right thing by not listening to you! :)

  6. Well you do know that Msoft is not interensted in Flikr ,They want to buy Yahoo to obstruct Google and also narrown down the lead google has in search and no. of search queries!
    Gates did the right thing by not listening to you! :)

  7. Dan’l Lewin told me that Steve Jobs talked IBM out of $500 million without even having a product.

    Most of this is just getting the right person to believe. I don’t have Steve Jobs’ skills. That doesn’t make me wrong.

  8. Dan’l Lewin told me that Steve Jobs talked IBM out of $500 million without even having a product.

    Most of this is just getting the right person to believe. I don’t have Steve Jobs’ skills. That doesn’t make me wrong.

  9. LayZ: Twitter is where Flickr was back then. If I told you that Twitter would be worth $100 million in 18 months and laid out a path for it to get there, would you believe me?

    I doubt it.

    Why? Cause a lot of what I’d be writing is pulling numbers out of my ass based on the doubling effects I’m seeing. Do those doubling effects continue? I think so, but lots of smart people think not. Who’s right?

    It’s pretty obvious I wasn’t able to coherently define the business value for the execs. But, then, neither was anyone else and there’s a lot of people smarter than me working at Microsoft.

    Funny enough someone DID convince Yahoo to buy all this stuff.

    Someone DID convince Murdoch to buy MySpace for $800 million (they got that back in the deal with Google and more).

  10. LayZ: Twitter is where Flickr was back then. If I told you that Twitter would be worth $100 million in 18 months and laid out a path for it to get there, would you believe me?

    I doubt it.

    Why? Cause a lot of what I’d be writing is pulling numbers out of my ass based on the doubling effects I’m seeing. Do those doubling effects continue? I think so, but lots of smart people think not. Who’s right?

    It’s pretty obvious I wasn’t able to coherently define the business value for the execs. But, then, neither was anyone else and there’s a lot of people smarter than me working at Microsoft.

    Funny enough someone DID convince Yahoo to buy all this stuff.

    Someone DID convince Murdoch to buy MySpace for $800 million (they got that back in the deal with Google and more).

  11. @36 Perhaps in Scoble’s old division. But I’m guessing there are some in other divisions within MS.

    @40. Fair enough. Never mind what its worth. What’s it been able to do for Yahoo’s ultimate bottom line? Are you perhaps suggesting Yahoo would be losing even MORE money if not for Flickr? Did they make money from the acquistion? Were they able to get more adoption/usage of more of their services from Flickr users? How many Flickr users became exclusive consumers of Yahoo Mail and Yahoo search? How many users did they keep from using Google search, Gmail, Hotmail, Windows Live by acquiring Flickr?

    Sounds like you didn’t make a very good business case for MS to buy it. “Nifty-neato cool web app” is not really a business case. Did you map out what the aciquistion price would be? How soon would MS have made their money back? How would it have benefited MS’s overall strategy? So, were you able to coherently define the business value for the execs?

  12. @36 Perhaps in Scoble’s old division. But I’m guessing there are some in other divisions within MS.

    @40. Fair enough. Never mind what its worth. What’s it been able to do for Yahoo’s ultimate bottom line? Are you perhaps suggesting Yahoo would be losing even MORE money if not for Flickr? Did they make money from the acquistion? Were they able to get more adoption/usage of more of their services from Flickr users? How many Flickr users became exclusive consumers of Yahoo Mail and Yahoo search? How many users did they keep from using Google search, Gmail, Hotmail, Windows Live by acquiring Flickr?

    Sounds like you didn’t make a very good business case for MS to buy it. “Nifty-neato cool web app” is not really a business case. Did you map out what the aciquistion price would be? How soon would MS have made their money back? How would it have benefited MS’s overall strategy? So, were you able to coherently define the business value for the execs?

  13. >Care to tell us why, in those “lengthy replies” from “several execs” they thought your idea was stupid?

    Well, keep in mind they didn’t quite think it was stupid. If they thought that they wouldn’t have wasted the time to answer me (expensive time, too, probably the most expensive emails I’ve ever received).

    One had an answer about 2,000 words with the words “business value” repeated 13 times.

    Keep in mind that back then they didn’t see the value in any of this stuff. Flickr was sold for, what, $30 million (at the high end). Now it’s worth way way more.

  14. >Care to tell us why, in those “lengthy replies” from “several execs” they thought your idea was stupid?

    Well, keep in mind they didn’t quite think it was stupid. If they thought that they wouldn’t have wasted the time to answer me (expensive time, too, probably the most expensive emails I’ve ever received).

    One had an answer about 2,000 words with the words “business value” repeated 13 times.

    Keep in mind that back then they didn’t see the value in any of this stuff. Flickr was sold for, what, $30 million (at the high end). Now it’s worth way way more.

  15. “I’m an arrogggaannntttt bbbbbaaahhhhssssttttaaaarrrrrdddd, but where was your plan back in 2003″

    I made more than my fair share in the dot com years, but not working for Microsoft… it makes little sense to ask me where my plan to Gates was.

    Good point LayZ.

  16. “I’m an arrogggaannntttt bbbbbaaahhhhssssttttaaaarrrrrdddd, but where was your plan back in 2003″

    I made more than my fair share in the dot com years, but not working for Microsoft… it makes little sense to ask me where my plan to Gates was.

    Good point LayZ.

  17. stevekit, it’s obvious that this is primarily industry speculation; we’ve been here three or four times before. The interesting thing is that it still helps YAHOO’s value no matter what. (Which still hurts MSFT no matter what.) And, two, even though it’s almost infeasible for Microsoft and even though Yahoo resists it, the more desperate MS is and the more the industry wants to see it happen, it or some form of merger could still happen. The finance world has a way of becoming an inevitable snowball.

    And, finally, this really does show Microsoft’s desperation. They can only think of one option: swallow the next biggest competitor in one of the largest and most overwhelming acquisitions ever. Who cares about the tech or integration or brands or brain drain… Size wins. Virtually the only Microsoft strategy.

  18. stevekit, it’s obvious that this is primarily industry speculation; we’ve been here three or four times before. The interesting thing is that it still helps YAHOO’s value no matter what. (Which still hurts MSFT no matter what.) And, two, even though it’s almost infeasible for Microsoft and even though Yahoo resists it, the more desperate MS is and the more the industry wants to see it happen, it or some form of merger could still happen. The finance world has a way of becoming an inevitable snowball.

    And, finally, this really does show Microsoft’s desperation. They can only think of one option: swallow the next biggest competitor in one of the largest and most overwhelming acquisitions ever. Who cares about the tech or integration or brands or brain drain… Size wins. Virtually the only Microsoft strategy.

  19. Scobleizer:

    I think two questions are worth asking…

    1. In a merger what new services or products will be created to serve new customers?

    2. If there are no new services and new customers to be created by the merger, is the deal really being constructed to prop up a weakening business model?

    Beware that most mergers fail because of these points. Talk of culture and synergies related to MSFT and YHOO are side-issues because these have little to do with customers.

    Mike
    http://www.OnDisruption.com

  20. Scobleizer:

    I think two questions are worth asking…

    1. In a merger what new services or products will be created to serve new customers?

    2. If there are no new services and new customers to be created by the merger, is the deal really being constructed to prop up a weakening business model?

    Beware that most mergers fail because of these points. Talk of culture and synergies related to MSFT and YHOO are side-issues because these have little to do with customers.

    Mike
    http://www.OnDisruption.com

  21. @28 Actually I believe he was merely one of MANY “technical evangelists” at MS. And a fairly low level one at that, I’m sure, given that he didn’t produce anything other than “Microsoft’s Home Videos” What’s curious is that Scoble never tells us WHY those execs thought his idea was stupid.

    @27 Scoble, Gates has proven to be a pretty smart businessman. I rather doubt he could be “sold” by anyone not in his executive circle. There’s a reason he’s where he is and you were where you were in the org. Care to tell us why, in those “lengthy replies” from “several execs” they thought your idea was stupid?

  22. @28 Actually I believe he was merely one of MANY “technical evangelists” at MS. And a fairly low level one at that, I’m sure, given that he didn’t produce anything other than “Microsoft’s Home Videos” What’s curious is that Scoble never tells us WHY those execs thought his idea was stupid.

    @27 Scoble, Gates has proven to be a pretty smart businessman. I rather doubt he could be “sold” by anyone not in his executive circle. There’s a reason he’s where he is and you were where you were in the org. Care to tell us why, in those “lengthy replies” from “several execs” they thought your idea was stupid?

  23. Does it make sense for a company that already has Hotmail and MSN to buy Yahoo! ?

    They didn’t do much with Hotmail after they bought it and I would hate to see Yahoo! go down the same stagnant path.

    I’m a paying Yahoo! Mail customer and I already have half a mind to move my stuff to Google Mail. If Microsoft buys then neglects Yahoo! (like they did with Hotmail), I’ll probably take the plunge.

  24. Does it make sense for a company that already has Hotmail and MSN to buy Yahoo! ?

    They didn’t do much with Hotmail after they bought it and I would hate to see Yahoo! go down the same stagnant path.

    I’m a paying Yahoo! Mail customer and I already have half a mind to move my stuff to Google Mail. If Microsoft buys then neglects Yahoo! (like they did with Hotmail), I’ll probably take the plunge.

  25. I have nothing against msft, BUT
    If I have to get a Passport ID to use Flickr or del.icio.us, I will seriously reconsider using either of those services. Passport’s record on privacy sucks, and I’d rather not go there.

  26. I have nothing against msft, BUT
    If I have to get a Passport ID to use Flickr or del.icio.us, I will seriously reconsider using either of those services. Passport’s record on privacy sucks, and I’d rather not go there.

  27. Not really. Presumably Yahoo the brand would ultimately be subsumed by Microsoft. I have never liked MSN and Microsoft Live is going nowhere or is focused on particular services not of interest to me. Yahoo as it exists serves my needs. Microsoft will kill off, rebrand, alter, or migrate Yahoo services to MSN or Microsoft Live services. Yahoo as it is now would not continue to exist forever.

    In ZERO way are Microsoft and Google the moral equivalents, and that is not the oly criteria for my decision. I am supporting Yahoo NOW by saying I will abandon them if they agree to be taken over by Microsoft.

  28. Not really. Presumably Yahoo the brand would ultimately be subsumed by Microsoft. I have never liked MSN and Microsoft Live is going nowhere or is focused on particular services not of interest to me. Yahoo as it exists serves my needs. Microsoft will kill off, rebrand, alter, or migrate Yahoo services to MSN or Microsoft Live services. Yahoo as it is now would not continue to exist forever.

    In ZERO way are Microsoft and Google the moral equivalents, and that is not the oly criteria for my decision. I am supporting Yahoo NOW by saying I will abandon them if they agree to be taken over by Microsoft.

  29. This would be a dumb move by Microsoft.
    Maybe smart for Yahoo.
    Not that it matters – it’t not going to happen.

  30. This would be a dumb move by Microsoft.
    Maybe smart for Yahoo.
    Not that it matters – it’t not going to happen.

  31. Scoble wasn’t just a “simple blogger” when he made those suggestions, he was Microsoft’s technical evangelist.

  32. Scoble wasn’t just a “simple blogger” when he made those suggestions, he was Microsoft’s technical evangelist.

  33. teknologist: actually no one else had proposed the strategy I had proposed. I got lengthy replies from several executives. So, yeah, I’m an arrogggaannntttt bbbbbaaahhhhssssttttaaaarrrrrdddd, but where was your plan back in 2003?

    Obviously no one did a good enough sales job to Gates and Co, have they? So, I failed swinging at the bat. Not many other people even took a swing.

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