Microsoft Makes 44.6 Billion Bid for Yahoo

Microsoft Makes 44.6 Billion Bid for Yahoo

This is an interesting development. I’ve been hearing for years that Microsoft was considering buying Yahoo!. I always thought it was nothing more than a silly tech rumor pushed around on slow news days.

I’m not quite sure what this could mean for "us." I do use quite a few Microsoft products, and I use two Yahoo! products. Actually, the one Yahoo! product, Yahoo! Mail, I’m looking forward to seeing some improvements. I know that I get a lot less spam with MSN mail than Yahoo! Mail. I’ve often wondered what the point to Yahoo! Mail is. I get so much spam in that account I often wonder if Yahoo! sends the spam itself. I’ve seen people set up brand new Yahoo! accounts and been buried in spam in under an hour.

On the other hand, I’m worried about Yahoo! Messenger. I use the service through the open-source client Pidgin, and it works flawlessly for me. MSN Messenger, on the other hand, I’ve been forced to discontinue. I was getting way too many spam chat requests. I had the same problem on ICQ. I don’t get that on Yahoo! Messenger or AOL Instant Messenger, so I leave those services running as much as possible.

Yahoo! Search works about the same as Microsoft’s search, that is to say, I’ll continue to use Google. If I’m looking for something on Microsoft’s web site, I’ve found it to be much faster to use Google than Microsoft’s own search engine. I read many blog posts a day through Google Reader about alternative search engines, but to be honest, I see no reason other than principle not to use Google. Microsoft and Yahoo! both have search engines that appear substandard in regular use.

One fear that I have is that we will have fewer choices in the marketplace. Market oligopolies are rarely a good thing (look at the telecommunications industry). Obviously, only time will tell. I don’t have a strong opinion either way, as I doubt Microsoft could screw up Yahoo! any more than Yahoo! could.

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