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This 85 message thread spans 3 pages: 85 ( [1] 2 3 > >     
Yahoo Capitulates - Gives Up Goal of Being #1 in Search

 1:18 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Bloomberg News [seattlepi.nwsource.com] interview of Chief Financial Officer Susan Decker:

"We don't think it's reasonable to assume we're going to gain a lot of share from Google," Chief Financial Officer Susan Decker said in an interview. "It's not our goal to be No. 1 in Internet search. We would be very happy to maintain our market share."



 1:21 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)


I'm sure the shareholders will just eat that one up.


 1:25 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Then they need to ditch their search engine, or sell it, and concentrate on being a portal and/or something else.

Either that or fire Susan Decker.



 1:29 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

It's not very clever for someone at Yahoo! to say this. How about improving the search engine?


 1:29 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

they don`t want to set expectations to high, that way they can`t fail! it is a win-win situation.


 1:34 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Could they be trying the old "we're number two but we try harder" routine? Or are they using misdirection to keep competitors off-balance.

If the former, their execution leaves much to be desired. If the latter, well, that has to be about the dumbest way of using misdirection I've ever seen.

If the statement reflects the actual mindset of the brass at Y!, even if they think it, they shouldn't say it.


 1:49 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yahoo going for the underdog approach?

Lord Majestic

 1:58 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

The only suprising bit is unusual honesty - Yahoo did not exactly grow because they developed their own tech, they bought technology and some search market share by acquisitions.

It is really pathetic to see how huge corporation that can easily afford to put 100s of millions of $$$s into R&D not even trying hard.


 1:58 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Do people still bet on the underdog?


 2:06 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yahoo going for the underdog approach?

That's exactly what I thought. Google benefited from being the underdog and today it is anything but the underdog. Yahoo can take that place and steal a march over big G, maybe even get media support when both are written about as competitors.


 2:13 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

They've still got that slick yodel that Google can't top.


 2:16 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Susan Decker should be fired. What in the world is she thinking making a statement like that?

Shareholders and analysts should demand her resignation. How would you like to work at Yahoo on their search engine technology and have someone state that they really don't think they can catch Google? To me it's like admitting that the Google folks are smarter than yours.

>>"We would be very happy to maintain our market share."

And what does that statement mean? That they are lucky to have the share they already have? Yahoo! do yourself a favor and keep her away from the press.

As a CFO she should know better - did they get downgraded yet?


 2:21 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

In fact they are going to lose market share, in the PPC arena anyway, when they lose the MSN account!


 2:22 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yeah hearing a top exec. make that sort of statement is a little scary. Not sure what they are thinking over there, but I have trouble seeing how this will help them "maintain" their current market share...

Very puzzling indeed... Unless it was made to throw Google off somehow. Misinformation if you will.

Who knows... I'd be a little peeved if I owned Y! shares though. lol


 2:22 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

They definately should have gone another way with that announcement. Even something like "we don't expect or want to compete with Google on all fronts, we just want to provide the best search experience for our users" would have been 100x better. Show some pride but keep the goal a little nebulous and impossible to disprove if you want to play it safe.



 2:29 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Wow. Things I've learned from that statement.

A: Susan Drecker does not have a backup career in public relations.
B: Oh yea, as a shareholder, I'm thrilled to hear they are throwing in the towel on making any gains in the industry and are happy to keep status quo. <sarcasm>


 2:36 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

may become a verb ..as in to "drecker" ones share price , company or employees efforts ;)

 2:37 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Susan Drecker does not have a backup career in public relations

LOL - nice one sugarrae....

Why don't Yahoo and MSN just do what Google did... offer shed loads of wonga and good share options to the best people to get them to come over to them...

You can bet their share price will go down on this little statement! What a bunch of muppets... who gave her the tannoy


 2:46 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

> to put 100s of millions of $$$s into R&D

Since when has yahoo put that kind of money into R&D? Buy Goto/Overture, AllTheWeb, Inktomi, and Altavista was simply taking those players off the board so that Microsoft couldn't have them as weapons.

> And what does that statement mean?

It means they are getting their butt kicked and everyone knows it. Not to come out publicly and say it, would be an admission they can't read the market.

> Susan Drecker does not have a backup career in public relations.

I have little doubt that the statement came from on high - she fell on a sword here.


 2:48 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Personally I applaud the honesty. Would you rather hear a bunch of BS thatís just intended to keep the stock at a certain level? Yahoo is an incredible web entity, by any standard especially from a revenue standpoint , but an algorithmically created index has just never been one of their talents. Technique wise, they are so far behind Google in that very particular area, any other statement than what she put forth would just not be true.


 3:08 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

I'm with Brett on this one. OK, the lady may not have a future in PR -- and that's a good thing too: the world already has way too many people who either are good liars or are trying to be. Having an honest executive is ... refreshing. That's the first step towards going anyplace that's worth going.


 3:11 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

There are two statements here. The first being they don't expect to take share from Google.

To me, the more interesting is the second, that being....

We would be very happy to maintain our market share."

Which sounds like a sideways admission that losing share is a distinct possiblity.

It's one thing to find gaining share difficult, it's another to find keeping share difficult.


 3:12 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

What a disappointment. I have been cheering for Yahoo. How would sports fans feel if their team coach came out with a statement like that? "We're not expecting to win, but if we score the same number of points as usual, that's OK with us."



 3:14 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

That's an unusually frank admission. I would have expected something like, "While we know Google will be difficult to unseat as the leader, we think that if we continue to deliver excellent search results and refine our technology even further, we'll maintain our share and increase it over time."

Yahoo has an advantage in site stickiness, and they need to exploit that - they should work to insure that no Yahoo user goes to Google to search.

Search is still important to Yahoo's business model, and a negative statement like this seems kind of dumb. "Yeah, those guys are just better than we are... we might as well give up."

On the other hand, business history is littered with failed firms that pursued quixotic efforts out of pride or just bad judgment, and paid the price in the long run.

Still, any sports fan will tell you that a team that gets conservative and doesn't play to win but tries to play "not to lose" ends up doing just that... losing. Can you recruit top people if you are striving to be second best? Can you motivate your current people to achieve greatness if they think management is happy with being #2? I don't like this strategy.


 3:15 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

>>>fell on a sword

I do agree with that. But, how the *hell* this type of statement appeared to anyone inside as a "good thing" to come out with is beyond me.

>>>Having an honest executive is ... refreshing

I can see that standpoint. But as a shareholder, I have a biased view and agenda on what I want people to hear. ;-)

>>>How would sports fans feel

That puts my feelings into a nutshell.


 3:20 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

That statement reminds me of the movie Casino where Sam 'Ace' Rothstein got suckered into saying "I'm The Boss" by a reporter. She said exactly what she should've never said.


 3:43 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Very clever statement from Y! Looks like they want to beat Google using their strenghts rather than publicly fighting for search-share.

Really not sure, if google would believe this...!



 4:00 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

I think the subtext here is "Search is just a tool." (Let's not forget that Yahoo outsourced search to Google for a long time, when it was building itself into a major Internet property.)

If Ms. Decker had wanted to elaborate on her remarks, she might have added: "Unlike Google, we've never relied on spidered search as our core business--we're an Internet-based media company, not a tool vendor."

Mind you, I'm not suggesting that Google is just a tool vendor, but Yahoo might not mind planting that idea in reporters' and investors minds. :-)


 4:01 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't know why anyone would bother assuming that this is a ploy to get Google off their gaurd?!

It's obvious that Yahoo has lost focus on the search market - little to nothing of significance has been done since Yahoo search went live. Perhaps their objectives were different than we had assumed; never having wanted to be the #1, but just not having to rely & pay Google.

Back when Google were providing Yahoo with their search results, Yahoo were were being paid by Google so that they would display their ads, but they might have had a feeling that the tables would turn when Google got more popular and didn't need Yahoo so much for ad impressions, since the content network was coming up, plus a plethora of people running to Google for Search.

Yahoo just wanted to make sure that the Google/Yahoo relationship didn't become more of a reliance for search results. If Google had wanted to charge them a fortune, there would have been 2 options: Ditch google (and have no search results, thus loosing visitors), or build their own search service.

Considering they haven't promoted it that well, nor upgraded it so much - that does seem like the most likely option - it was just a substitute for Google. Most Yahoo users probably wouldn't know the difference anyway - since those that did know about search quality were already searching at Google!

Nevertheless, I don't think you'd hear Bill Gates or Eric Schmidt saying that they have no chance of catching up on their competition.


 4:05 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Stupid Yahoo...

I was really enjoying this upcoming search engine wars (Google vs Yahoo vs MSN) but now they seem to have thrown in the towel.

I used to think Yahoo was going to burst back into the search world with some great technology, but now I think they will just fade out of importance in the next 5-6 years only to be bought by Microsoft.

This 85 message thread spans 3 pages: 85 ( [1] 2 3 > >
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