back to article Google, Microsoft and Yahoo! play pots-and-kettles 2.0

Microsoft and Google engaged in skirmishing by statement this weekend as they began what is likely to be a rancorous, drawn-out battle over the future of Yahoo!. Google weighed in with competition concerns amid rumours that Yahoo! might turn to the search giant to try and fend off the bid from Microsoft. Google's chief legal …


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  1. Johnny FireBlade

    Oh PLEASE!

    Both citing anti-competition against the other? Who are they trying to convince? It's obvious to anyone with half a brain that they're just trying to discredit each other! Anti-competition applies to both of them equally as far as the Internet's concerned. On a more grand scale, Microsoft probably has a larger presence and certainly has a larger software base, which is probably what has Google worried. If MS follow their usual "adware" style approach of bundling new Windows with their combined Yahoo! products, Google faces a very real possibility of losing traffic due to your average IT illiterate user being forced to go the Microsoft route. Although, with the historical judgment against MS over IE, Google could well have some ammunition to come back with.

  2. Geoff Mackenzie

    Easy fix

    Break them both up, AT&T style.

  3. Robert Harrison
    Black Helicopters


    What difference does it make? All 3 are large, somewhat sinister, American organisations. I say sinister not out of paranoia but out of a healthy respect for realism. Who, out of most of us, knows what actually goes on inside the company walls? Nearly all of the information we search for and consume from the Internet is funneled through on or other of these organisations or similar competitors (although we're running out of those and this possible takeover doesn't make it any better). All I'm saying is, and yes many have already said it, does a large American company and its array of shareholders have your (European or otherwise) best interests as an Internet consumer in mind? Do not be evil. Whatever.

  4. muzchap


    This is ridiculous! M$ should be able to buy who they like - if they have the money!

    Lets say this situation is 'blocked' by mindless idiots claiming that one company is more morally superior than the other (as if!)

    Google then grows to a size and market share bigger than M$, will M$ be able to claim anti-competitiveness?

    I'm sick of the 'puny' American arguments - I'm fecked off that my M$ search functionality has been crippled by literally a bunch of CNUTS at google who cried about it - build your own fking OS and then put your search shite on it!

    For christs sakes they are a poxy search engine!

    The world needs to sort itself out big time - we've gone to the dogs - who said in the land of the blind, the one eyed man is king?

    This world is run by scared mindless idiots, propogating such ridiculous issues like this - any second now this takeover will be blamed for global warming...

    I'm finally cheering for M$ - go do what you need to do!

  5. Risky

    No Evil?

    At the moment google are doing far more to annoy me. Principally by trying to get everyone to bundle their toobar and search into their installer. If have have to untick that option one more time.....

  6. Bruno Girin
    Black Helicopters

    @Johnny FireBlade

    Well, they're both right but they're both telling only half the story.

    If the merger doesn't go ahead, you stay with the current situation where Google has a dominant position in search and online ads. If the merger goes ahead, you introduce credible competition in search and online ads but you also create a hugely dominant position in webmail and IM. So whatever you do, you have a situation where one player is dominant in a couple of areas. But looking further, I am more worried by the merger scenario because Macrohoosoft! would then be able to combine dominant positions in webmail and IM with their quasi monopoly on the desktop to gain unfair advantage in other areas. It's much more difficult for Google to do that.

    So if the merger goes ahead, I just hope the DOJ and the EU keep a very close eye on the resulting behemoth.

  7. 4a$$Monkey

    My 2p

    I have to admit Google is my search engine (and home page) of choice. I’ve always found Yahoo cluttered although I know people who prefer it. MSN’s poor search performance pretty much makes it discounted by everyone other than those who have not changed the search url in IE and accidently evoke it.

    At the moment neither Yahoo or MSN offer any real competition to Google. I’m sure most people would agree having some competition in the search engine sector would boost innovation but I doubt if MS buying Yahoo will have that effect.

    For most people internet searching = google

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not the same

    One thing - copyright. MS and Yahoo! both have a strong track record of doing deals with creators to generate revenue while remaining inside the law. Google have historically taken a "fuck you we've got more expensive lawyers" approach.

  9. Richard Kay

    Desperate gamble ?

    I can't see Yahoo under MS ownership being worth a small fraction of what is being bid. Those like myself who have an alternative spambucket email address with Yahoo (used to avoid having to give my real address to people I don't want to have it) are likely to drop these the moment they become Hotmail accounts. Yahoo groups has also become a hopeless spam bucket and privacy intruder. Can't really see a better way for Microsoft to lose its cash pile so I'm all in favour.

    This is corporate cannibalism certainly - but under MS ownership Yahoo will rapidly become even more worthless than it currently is. I will exclude Yahoo search from site by using robots.txt once the takeover is agreed just as the MSNbot now is. So while I despise the MS attitude that competition law doesn't apply to them, there is little that Yahoo has that is worth paying for and MS buying it will give what little value it has the inevitable kiss of death.

  10. Michael


    Jolly nice chaps those people at Microsoft! They just want to give us "a better rival to Google". How nice of them. I don't believe for a moment that their bid for Yahoo has anything to do with their failure to produce their own rival to Google. I can see no link whatever to Google's profits and the lack of consumer interest in Microsoft's latest versions of Windows or Office.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Can no-one see the true motives for this bid?





    While the ink is drying on the deal, Microoo/Yahsoft lawyers will be C&Ding any and all companies with "my" in their names... mytravel, myspace, it'll be a bloodbath making Stelios' "easy" campaign look like a gambol through the floral meadow...

  12. Not That Andrew
    Gates Horns

    MS doing deals with creators?

    Anon Coward said "MS and Yahoo! both have a strong track record of doing deals with creators to generate revenue while remaining inside the law."

    Is that why Digital Systems had to take Microsoft to court over their illegal port of CP/M?

  13. Not That Andrew

    Typo in my previous comment

    Digital Research NOT Digital Systems!

  14. Bob
    Gates Halo

    Google Counterweight

    I was concerned about the MS hold on the markets for a long time. I'm less so now. They won the wars of the 80's and 90's, and we must not keep fighting them. MS will lose OS and Office market share slowly over time as their monopoly dissipates. They have been regulated, and increasingly compelling open alternatives continue to develop. The appearance of Google was the final element that convinced me that we were not going to live in a tech world controlled by Microsoft.

    But now, I am worried about Google. They're similar to MS, and now hold a commanding and growing share of Internet search. Search is important. It defines what we see and perceive on-line. Objectivity of search is important. Google is not objective, and it's becoming increasingly less objective as it seeks to add more content creation units and drive traffic toward them. Privacy is another big concern. Meanwhile, people by and large are still enamored by Google because it makes warm-and-fuzzy AJAX interfaces; they're fighting last decade's battles, not next decade's. I am very concerned about Google.

    It is clear to me that we need an effective counterweight to this Google juggarenaut, and we need it soon. MS and Yahoo are both distant thirds in the Internet search market. A MS-Yahoo merger seems to me to be the most effective way to compete with Google, but even that would not be a sure-fire bet. If it works, it will increase competition in Internet Search from one company to two.

    And this is all written by me, a confirmed long-time granola-eating, Linux-loving, Mac-using Windows hater! Or put another way, I can't believe I just chose the Gates-halo icon. We need additional icons featuring halos and devil horns for Larry and Sergey.

  15. Fox

    Split it!

    The "regulator" should decree that if either M$ or Google want a chunk of Yahoo then they'll just have to come up with a joint bid - for which each would acquire the Yahoo! services appropriate to maintain competition.

    M$ could have the search tools which they claim to be so interested in, perhaps along with mapping etc. Thus forming The Microhoo! Corporation.

    Menwhile Google could acquire Yahoo!'s webmail and Messenger businesses, along with vairious OSS whatnots and become Googley.

    There you go. Simple! ...and everyone's happy. Right, I'm off to the pub.

    If M$ and Google don't like the idea, which could, conceivably, happen, they can just piss off.

  16. Steve Browne

    Sounds interesting to me

    Cant wait to see the new Ms Yahoo in all her glory !

  17. Herby

    Famous last words, 2008 edition

    "I'm from Microsoft and I'm here to help you".

    Doesn't seem good to me.

    Of course, one can always do: s/Microsoft/Google/ quite easily.

  18. John Benson

    To Serve Humanity...

    (at least that's what I think they're fighting over)

  19. theotherone

    I too am sick...

    I too am sick, that these three companies act like they own the internet, and are fighting a "moral" battle on which of them has the right to dominate it. If you ask me, all 3 companies are shite, and are run by a bunch of greedy bastards, evermore obsessed with turning the internet and everything associated with it into their personal cash cows, and totally disregarding the principles on which the internet was built, namely the free dissemination of human knowledge and ideas. They should all be dismantled and used as spare parts to fuel the web 2.0 "revolution" heh....

  20. Anonymous Coward

    Not so good for us consumers

    I've seen my Google AdWords revenue decrease by 50% in the past twelve months post-Doubleclick acquisition, while my traffic has increased 400%. I find it incredibly ironic to say this, but at least MS will keep Google honest and maybe quell advertising price fixing.

    P.S. Hiding behind the veil of anonymity so Google doesn't take away the few remaining peanuts it's giving me each month.

  21. J


    "because it will provide a serious alternative to Google"

    So they are admitting they currently suck, really? hehe

  22. Mark McGuire

    @Geoff Mackenzie

    Hmmmm, and what happened to all the small companies? SBC definitely didn't gobble them up and turn itself into AT&T. That'd be silly...

  23. adnim


    Well said, I whole heartedly agree. But web 2 will be likely shite too. Some greedy bastard somewhere always wants to rule the roost, and they usually have enough cash to buy the souls of those in a position to stop them. Honesty and integrity is pretty thin on the ground in this day and age.

  24. Anonymous Coward

    Honesty and integrity!

    Honesty and integrity that does not exist anymore it's just MoneyMoneyMoney and screw everyone else!Oh i use Google for searches because it works and all the small ones i used in the past are gone! M$ does suck also but don't all large corporations with money and power they just buy our regulators and politicans.

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