Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

The Inevitable Endgame for Yahoo

Of course, finally.

Sure, there might be a giant scramble among media and tech giants over the next few weeks to grab Yahoo, now that Microsoft has finally pulled the trigger on its longtime desire to buy the troubled Internet company.

But, as BoomTown and everyone else has written, another weak quarter, a continued muddled outlook, perpetually confused management goals and the dipping of Yahoo stock below $20 a share have finally added up to the tipping point that Microsoft had long been waiting for.

To say this could have been prevented is moot now–Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang and his execs have managed the company right into the arms of the software giant.

In other words, they have been just lackluster enough over the last six months of managing Yahoo’s “revival” to push the company into a now-uncontrollable situation it finds itself in.

And with it’s I-shall-have-it bid for the troubled Internet giant, Microsoft has made a bold, slightly insane lunge to ensure that it is not sidelined in war with Google to control the Internet.

You have to guess the phones were ringing at Google HQ this morning, as other companies–from News Corp. to eBay to Comcast–are trying to figure out how to make a competing bid to the $31-per-share offer Microsoft lobbed today.

The obvious scenario: That Google would guarantee billions of dollars of revenues from search monetization for another company, so it could enter the race to grab one of the most trafficked sites on the Web.

Ironically, Google is the obvious company capable of bidding against Microsoft in this war and the only one which cannot, because of their dominant share of the search market and the justified concerns of monopoly.

And Microsoft, proving its ability to make dramatic moves in its own efforts to remain relevant on the Web by overpaying for a stake in Facebook, has stepped right into the fray by trying to take control of one of the Web’s once mighty and most important independent companies.

And while it’s never over until it’s over, let me just say, for Yahoo, it’s over.

Please see this disclosure related to me and Google.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald