P16: a blog by Matt Kangas home archive
01 Feb 2008

Today is a sad day (Yahoo-oo?)

Microsoft just made an unsolicited offer to buy Yahoo! for $31 a share. Yesterday, YHOO was trading for $19/share, so that's one heck of a premium for shareholders. It's going to be very hard for Yahoo's board to turn this offer down.

The talking heads on Bloomberg and MSNBC are gushing praise for this deal. Credible folks in the web space like Fred Wilson and Danny Sullivan are more measured in their response, but still sounding positive, from a financial perspective.

I'm going to ignore the dancing dollar signs in front of everybody's eyes, and focus on things less tangible: open source, web developers, and the soul of the web. If you care about those things, today is a sad day.

(FYI: I worked for HotJobs.com, which became Yahoo! HotJobs, from 2001 to 2005)

Why? I'll leave the weepy details for a later post, but in short: Microsoft sucks at the web because Microsoft thinks in terms of command-and-control, which is the antithesis of the web.

Putting Yahoo! inside of Microsoft is kinda like putting the Woodstock Festival, Jimi Hendrix and all, inside of the Kremlin. Maybe it was going to die off eventually on its own, but you know the life will be snuffed out now!