Daily Archives: October 16, 2008

Richard Waters

If you’re a journalist, you have to love Steve Ballmer. Something quotable always seems to be falling out of his mouth. In public, he is a mixture of loud-mouthed bully, bumbling reasonableness and calculating shark.

So which persona was responsible for his comment today at a Gartner technology symposium in Florida? According to a Bloomberg report, the Microsoft CEO said that a deal with Yahoo “may still make economic sense for shareholders of both companies,” though there are no talks going on at the moment. 

I’m a PCMicrosoft marketing has an identity crisis. Which means Microsoft doesn’t know how to talk to its customers, and that’s a big issue for the company.

Leave aside issues of desktop vs cloud software, Google vs Live search, and whether Yahoo was worth $33 per share. Instead, let’s look at how the company actually engages the public. 

Richard Waters

The latest internet earnings season has got off to a decidedly unappetising start.

eBay kicked it off today with two memorable firsts: the first-ever fall in the value of goods sold through its sites (which slipped by 1 per cent in the latest quarter) and a fourth-quarter financial forecast that predicts its first-ever revenue decline (yes, decline – and this is a company that was growing at 30 per cent this time last year.)