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The Threat Of The Microsoft Bid For A Yahoo Takeover

By James Donahue

Those of us now struggling with the built-in problems in the new Windows Vista operating system in our new personal computers are silently cursing Bill Gates and his big money operation on almost a daily basis.

The system is found to be incompatible with a lot of our old and costly software that works perfectly well with the older Windows XP and Windows 2000 systems. While new computers come equipped with compatible software, we are discovering, to our horror, that the Microsoft programs, like Office, which contain word processing, graphics and bookkeeping programming that we all use, are only available on a trial basis. If we want this new software, we have to pay Microsoft directly to get it.

Small wonder Gates is as wealthy as he is. He has created an empire that exploits the Internet in a way that is somewhat of a monopoly.

This is why the issue of the Microsoft effort to take over Yahoo, one of the most popular and successful browsers, entertainment and information services available on the web, is so scary. Imagine how Gates might turn a program like Yahoo into a new money-making enterprise, and a mass media controlling system, at our expense.

A board of director's meeting, now set for the end of July, is expected to be a show-down as new board members are elected and a decision is made to accept or reject a new $47.5 billion offer by Microsoft to take over the company. Microsoft claims it needs Yahoo to go in competition with the popular Internet search engine Google.

But Google executive Larry Page knows what a threat to the Internet Microsoft could become if it ever gets that deeply entrenched in the system. He recently warned that the acquisition would harm innovation by giving the combined company too much control over Web communications.

We're pretty concerned that a Yahoo-Microsoft merger would really close a lot of things that are really important,” Page said. He said one such threat would be the development of an instant messaging system that would not be compatible with other software.

In other words, folks with alternative operating systems, including the powerful Macintosh computers, and the Linux system, that is growing in popularity because it is not Vista, could find themselves unable to use Yahoo.

Once Microsoft succeeds in taking over Yahoo, what is going to stop that company giant from expanding its interests with perhaps a Google takeover, followed by MySpace, E-Bay and the multitude of other big money-making enterprises now operating on the World Wide Web.

Something like that would assure Microsoft a key place in all Internet services. To enjoy the web services we would be required to not only buy Microsoft products, but purchase their services on line as well. And once the company has that kind of power, it can literally set the price we pay.