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Microsoft eyeing AOL?

 1:03 pm on Mar 19, 2004 (gmt 0)


NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Time Warner Inc. may be looking into the possibility of selling its AOL unit to Microsoft, according to a published report Friday.



 1:08 pm on Mar 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

That idea scares small children! I'm just increduluous at the thought of MS being able to corner the market on computer hardware, software, AND Internet connections. Hmmm. Good find.


 1:31 pm on Mar 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

But wait, they have that guy in the Butterfly Suit. He watches closely over everything you do. Haven't you seen the commercials? ;)

ukgimp, with all the recent mergers and acquisitions, there isn't much left for MS to purchase. AOL would be a viable option and may bring them back into the search game.


 1:38 pm on Mar 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Well, if Microsoft do buy AOL they may receive a slice of Google too!

Internet service provider American Online has the right to buy about 1.9 million preferred shares of Google for around $22 million, under a 2002 deal with the world's No. 1 Web search engine, AOL parent Time Warner said in a recent filing.



 2:55 pm on Mar 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

And I thought that the whole point of Google's IPO was to raise cash to buy AOL (and make a few people very rich and some shareholders considerably poorer).

Looks like there could be some competition for it then. Is there any reason Yahoo couldn't afford to buy AOL as well? It isn't as if they couldn't do with the extra boost in the search engine wars. That would put them well ahead of Google and MSN in terms of traffic.


 3:45 pm on Mar 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

>>Good find.

sent to me by a mysterious friend :)


 4:03 pm on Mar 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Ukgimp - Person of intrigue. :)

So, do we have a little insider info here? Mmm?

I can only imagine the chorus of mhuahahhahaha as Bill Gates signs the deal to buy AOL.


 12:26 pm on Mar 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

Oh No, I can't imagine MS owning 2 instant messenger's (MSN and AOL), and me loosing my friends list just because MS wanting to integrate AOL with MSN. Its wrong. I like AOL the way it is.



 10:16 pm on Mar 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

Make that three IMs. ICQ is owned by AOL as well.


 4:33 am on Mar 21, 2004 (gmt 0)

I could be mistaken but doesn't AOL own Netscape? What could happen to DMOZ?


 4:36 am on Mar 21, 2004 (gmt 0)

>>What could happen to DMOZ<<

Maybe it would get some funding. :)

I think there are some real antitrust issues involved in such a combination. I'd expect all the usual Microsoft foes to line up against a deal like this.


 1:22 pm on Mar 22, 2004 (gmt 0)
I think the key thing to realise here is the number of assets that AOL has. Dmoz, netscape (& the gecko/mozilla project), shares in google, ICQ, AOL subscriber base and more (can anyone expand?). Trying to guess what M$ would do with these assets scares me, but they have deep enough pockets and "buy and conquer" approach has and will be used by M$. Holding out hope for the anti-trust as well.

Anyone else see the user friendly cartoon sunday? http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20040321

Which is where I first got wind of this.


 9:13 am on Mar 23, 2004 (gmt 0)


Flat denial by AOL?


 9:23 am on Mar 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I like the Register, but it is the Register :)


 1:47 pm on Mar 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Well, at first I was going to say that I dislike AOL only slightly less than Microsoft, so it didn't really bother me. I forgot about the Mozilla connection... that bothers me ;)

Make that three IMs. ICQ is owned by AOL as well.
Well, I've been wanting to try Jabber, but no one I know seems to use it.


 2:02 pm on Mar 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Well, one positive benefit of such a combination would be the end of the IM wars and incompatible IM platforms. Yahoo would probably have to fall in line if the other flavors became interoperable or were merged. Of course, this "benefit" might be grounds for an antitrust complaint.


 2:45 pm on Mar 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

If M$ were to acquire Moz, then perhaps IE would become standards compliant?



 3:09 pm on Mar 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

If M$ were to acquire Moz, then perhaps IE would become standards compliant?

No, Mozilla would become compliant -- to Microsoft's "standards"! I weep for the future . . .


 3:24 pm on Mar 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

It makes much more sense for Google to buy AOL. That would put them in a position to take on Yahoo, in the same way that Yahoo is attempting to take on Google.

They would have a separate 'portal' and huge memberbase, and they could continue to run Google separately to maintain their brand and focus on search. It would also prevent the AOL search stream from being taken away by one of Googles competitors.

Considering the animosity in the past between AOL and MSN, and the existing friendliness between AOL and Google, it seems like a no-brainer to me.

Go Google, Go Google, Go, Go, Go Google!

; )

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