Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Happy One-Year Anniversary, Carol! Party Today, Because BoomTown's Grading Begins Tomorrow.


In an interview with Bloomberg last week, Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz gave herself a “B-minus in her first year.”

The anniversary of her arrival at Yahoo is, in fact, today. (Her first words as CEO at a press conference a year ago? “Yahoooo!” and “Friggin’.”)

In the Bloomberg interview, Bartz was less effusive, saying should have moved faster to reorganize and to strike the online advertising and search partnership with Microsoft (MSFT), even as she noted that the management challenge at Yahoo (YHOO) “was a little tougher internally than I think I had anticipated.”

Predicted Bartz about the Silicon Valley icon: “You’re just going to see Yahoo bloom more.”

That’s nice, especially since BoomTown loves getting pretty-smelling flowers!

But, ever the stickler, it is incumbent on this Yahoo-obsessed column to weigh in on grading too, starting tomorrow and drilling down a lot more specifically on Bartz’s overall performance in 2009.

Thus, I will be looking at five overall areas by which to render the CEO’s marks: Management, financials, product innovation, deal-making and, yes, moxie–or, if you want to be dull, inspirational leadership.

Until then, please enjoy the highlights video below from my most excellent interview with Bartz at the seventh D: All Things Digital conference last May, in which she both touched my knee and cursed me out.

Let me say, Bartz gets an automatic A-plus for that!

And here is the video of the full session, if you’re interested, clocking in at about 49 minutes:

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work