back to article Microsoft bets future on search bribery

Microsoft wants you to know that its Live Search bribery program has seen "positive traction," claiming that searchified cashback offers have resulted in a significant return on investment for its advertisers. The question is whether Microsoft will ever see ROI for itself. In May, as part of its desperate bid to boost traffic …


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  1. David



  2. Matt Bradley



    Y'know: if we're /really/ lucky, this recession will finally smash Microsoft to bits.

    Let's look on the bright side for a change, eh?

    Where's the Larry & Sergey icon? SERIOUS omission.

  3. John O'Hare


    When you have to start paying people to use your product, you know it's crap. Maybe they should start doing that for Vista as well?

    If they really were betting their future on just the search engine, MS wouldn't be around much longer. Instead they'll just use this as a means to try and stifle competition, while making bundles of money from their (near) monopolistic business in OS and Office crapware.

    Although with Vista SE (aka Windows 7) they might start losing their monopoly, which increases competition, which is good for consumers. Maybe MS will even start pushing out products that aren't Defective By Design(tm) and that people actually want and sell these at a reasonable price.

    I hear odds on that are the same as a mass-extinction size meteor hitting Earth, but it's not impossible.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    For $200 a month

    I'll install Fista on one of my computers.

    For $1,000 a month I'll use it.

  5. Chris C

    Isolated incidents only?

    "... [we] are actively working with eBay to identify, correct and prevent isolated incidents of inappropriate use of this program.”

    When an incident occurs more than once, it is no longer an isolated incident. Does he mean they'll only stop the first one? Speaking more generally, "isolated" could mean any single, non-group incident. So what if a group of people together initiate multiple incidents of inappropriate use? They wouldn't be isolated incidents, so would they be allowed?

  6. Andrew

    what they do best

    Imagine there existed a search engine that was used in 100% of all web transactions involving payment.

    What share of the whole search market would it need ?

    What volume of business would pass close to its gaze ?

    How would this affect the business model of its competitors ?

    Having achieved 100% share, what small tweaks to its operating model could generate significant income without jeapardising the monopoly ?

    If MS has only ever done one thing for its investors it has been to monetise a monopoly.

  7. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    a means to try and stifle competition ?

    Given that Google has 80% of the online search ad market, there is no one but Google that can stifle competition in that market.

    I'm all for a good MS-bash on a daily schedule, but if you want to bash them on this subject, stifling competition is hardly the way to go.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Hey Fatty Ballmer

    That's a great idea. Can you actually pay me for installing that heap of shit called Vista onto my machine instead of laughably asking me to pay to install it.

    Did anyone here actually pay for Vista Ultimate, if so please can you identify yourself so we can point and laugh at you, also we would like to introduce you to some Nigerians who have a once in a lifetime business opportunity.

  9. Pierre

    Actually it makes sense

    I mean, LiveSearch is kind of good for MS standards. It's a MS product that actually performs the task it was designed for (OK, it does it poorly, but it does it). And MS has the cash to subsidize it. Now, to the "pay me to use Vista" guys: even if I was paid for, I wouldn't let that crap anywhere near my iron (anymore -because I tried it). Or you would have to pay me more than the value of the wasted machine.

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