EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS


Microsoft’s Proxy Fight May Have Begun Weeks Ago, Quietly

Posted in BSD, Finance, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft at 1:07 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Don’t! Tell! Anyone! That! We! Adopted! Mafia! Approach! Against! Yahoo!

A couple of months ago we showed that Microsoft was preparing for a proxy war whose purpose was to unseat Yahoo’s board. This is nothing new. Separate warning came at different times. It did Microsoft some great public relations damage at the time.

Microsoft later confirmed (openly even!) that it was prepared to launch an attack shall an ultimatum be ignored, but it then backed away very abruptly and pretended it had no interest in Yahoo anymore. Then came someone called Icahn out of the blue and suddenly Microsoft expressed some interest in Yahoo again. As the following article (among other sources) ought to teach us, it’s likely that this man is merely Microsoft’s headhunter. Days ago he even admitted that Microsoft needed Yahoo in order to compete. Why is he so concerned and why is he communicating with Redmond now?

Microsoft cops to talking with Icahn on Yahoo

Dispensing with its previous above-the-fray posture, Microsoft has admitted conspiring with talking to activist Yahoo shareholder Carl Icahn, who is trying to oust the Internet company’s board and Chief Executive Jerry Yang for failing to sell out to the software giant.

“Interesting but fully expected,” said one of our readers about this finding.” About the source, though, the LA Times material, IIRC, tends to evaporate over time, so it’s not necessarily the best for a link you plan to return to in a few weeks, months or years,” he added. It ought to be noted that the crossing out at the top came a little while later. The RSS feed said just “conspiring with” when the article got captured (no strikeout).

Target #1 appears to be Yahoo’s brainchild, as cruel as it may seem.

For more of the nasty details of this fight, and the details are illuminating, see my blog “Why Icahn Now Wants to Boot Yahoo!’s Jerry Yang.”

Use of the word “replace” seems to be misplaced. Mind aggressive terminology like “boot” and “kill”. Many people are already getting tired of terms like “dump”, and “<product x> killer” in the press. It’s intended to add drama and inspire fear.

As another new article about this endless Yahoo saga, consider impending lawsuits. We wrote about it the last time. Some of these lawsuits may be backed by Microsoft in one form or another. Encouragement in this case is not illegal (let alone lawsuits by proxy).

In its own filing, the shareholders suing Yahoo say the chairman of its compensation committee is due to be deposed Friday, while another outside director also has been served notice for deposition. Microsoft also has been served with related subpoenas, the plaintiffs say, and “will shortly provide a date for its deposition.”
for trial before meeting

To conclude and describe the situation at hand, consider the following thoughts from a reader (sent in earlier today):

“It appears that he wants Yahoo to destroy itself voluntarily so that Microsoft can hang on as a company for a short while longer.”The nauseating part is that he is pleading for a handout / bailout from Yahoo. It appears that he wants Yahoo to destroy itself voluntarily so that Microsoft can hang on as a company for a short while longer. Just how does that benefit anybody besides Icahn? Since when are profitable companies expected to be liquidated to keep unprofitable money pits (c/f indications of Enron-style money shifting) like Microsoft a float a while longer? I thought everyone in the know had long since sold their Microsoft stock, if they ever had any in the first place.

Let’s ask Icahn if maybe Microsoft is scraping by primarily through buying and selling its own stock.

However, be that as it may, if a main purpose of the bid is to screw with and stress-out Yahoo’s many PHP, BSD and other FOSS developers, then attacking the severance plans makes a lot of sense:

* Worrying about the severance plans and job security reduces productivity, which helps Microsoft by hurting Yahoo and its FOSS projects.

* Removing the severance plans means some staff will bail, disrupting Yahoo and FOSS development, regardless of how quickly staff relocate.

* Removing the severance plans mean that if Icahn is able to hand his Microsoft masters Yahoo, they can mess with the FOSS developers effectively stopping development on projects dependent on those developers.

We will keep an eye on this never-ending story because the impact on Free software can be high.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New

  1. Luxembourg Can Become a Hub of Patent Trolls If the EPO Carries on With Its 'Reforms', Even Without the UPC

    With or without the Unified Patent Court (UPC), which is the wet dream of patent trolls and their legal representatives, the EPO's terrible policies have landed a lot of low-quality patents on the hands of patent trolls (many of which operate through city-states that exist for tax evasion -- a fiscal environment ripe for shells)

  2. The Patent 'Printing Machine' of the EPO Will Spawn Many Lawsuits and Extortions (Threats of Lawsuits), in Effect Taxing Europe

    The money-obsessed, money-printing patent office, where the assembly line mentality has been adopted and patent-printing management is in charge, is devaluing or diluting the pool of European Patents, more so with restrictions (monetary barriers) to challenging bad patents

  3. Links 17/3/2018: Varnish 6, Wine 3.4

    Links for the day

  4. Deleted EPO Tweets and Promotion of Software Patents Amid Complaints About Abuse and Demise of Patent Quality

    Another ordinary day at the EPO with repressions of workforce, promotion of patents that aren't even allowed, and Team UPC failing to get its act together

  5. Guest Post: Suspected “Whitewashing” Operations by Željko Topić in Croatia

    Articles about EPO Vice-President Željko Topić are disappearing and sources indicate that it’s a result of yet more SLAPP from him

  6. Monumental Effort to Highlight Decline in Quality of European Patents (a Quarter of Examiners Sign Petition in Spite of Fear), Yet Barely Any Press Coverage

    he media in Europe continues to be largely apathetic towards the EPO crisis, instead relaying a bunch of press releases and doctored figures from the EPO; only blogs that closely follow EPO scandals bothered mentioning the new petition

  7. Careful Not to Conflate UPC Critics With AfD or Anti-EU Elements

    The tyrannical Unified Patent Court (UPC) is being spun as something that only fascists would oppose after the right-wing, anti-EU politicians in Germany express strong opposition to it

  8. Links 15/3/2018: Qt Creator 4.6 RC, Microsoft Openwashing

    Links for the day

  9. PTAB Continues to Increase Capacity Ahead of Oil States; Patent Maximalists Utterly Upset

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) sees the number of filings up to an almost all-time high and efforts to undermine PTAB are failing pretty badly -- a trend which will be further cemented quite soon when the US Supreme Court (quite likely) backs the processes of PTAB

  10. Patent Maximalists Are Still Trying to Create a Patent Bubble in India

    Litigation maximalists and patent zealots continue to taunt India, looking for an opportunity to sue over just about anything including abstract ideas because that's what they derive income from

  11. EPO Staff Has Just Warned the National Delegates That EPO's Decline (in Terms of Patent Quality and Staff Welfare) Would Be Beneficial to Patent Trolls

    The staff of the EPO increasingly recognises the grave dangers of low-quality patents -- an issue we've written about (also in relation to the EPO) for many years

  12. The EPO is a Mess Under Battistelli and Stakeholders Including Law Firms Will Suffer, Not Just EP Holders

    As one last 'gift' from Battistelli, appeals are becoming a lot more expensive -- the very opposite of what he does to applications, in effect ensuring a sharp increase in wrongly-granted patents

  13. The EPO Under Battistelli Has Become Like China Under Xi and CPC

    The EPO is trying very hard to silence not only the union but also staff representatives; it's evidently worried that the lies told by Team Battistelli will be refuted and morale be affected by reality

  14. Links 14/3/2018: IPFire 2.19 – Core Update 119, Tails 3.6

    Links for the day

  15. Links 13/3/2018: Qt Creator 4.5.2, Tails 3.6, Firefox 59

    Links for the day

  16. Willy Minnoye (EPO) Threatened Staff With Disabilities Said to Have Been Caused by the EPO Work Pressures

    Willy Minnoye, or Battistelli's 'deputy' at the EPO until last year, turns out to have misused powers (and immunity) to essentially bully vulnerable staff

  17. IAM and IBM Want Lots of Patent Litigation in India

    Having 'championed' lobbying for litigation Armageddon in China (where IBM's practicing business units have gone), patent maximalists set their eyes on India

  18. The Patent Trolls' Lobby (IAM) Already Pressures Andrei Iancu, Inciting a USPTO Director Against PTAB

    Suspicions that Iancu might destroy the integrity of the Office for the sake of the litigation ‘industry’ may be further reaffirmed by the approach towards patent maximalists from IAM, who also participated in the shaming of his predecessor, Michelle Lee, and promoted a disgraced judge (and friend of patent trolls) for her then-vacant role

  19. Patent Trolls in the United States Increasingly Target Small Businesses Which Cannot Challenge Their Likely-Invalid Software Patents

    South by Southwest (SXSW Conference/Festivals in Austin, Texas) has a presentation about patent trolls, whose general message may be reaffirmed by recent legal actions in Texas and outside Texas

  20. EPO Staff Union Organises Protest to Complain About Inability “of the Office to Recruit the Highly Qualified Staff it Needs.”

    Having already targeted union leaders and staff representatives, the EPO may soon be going after those whom they passionately represented and the staff union (SUEPO) wants the Administrative Council to be aware

  21. Battistelli Likes to Describe His Critics as 'Nazis', Team UPC Will Attempt the Same Thing Against UPC Critics

    Demonising one's opposition or framing it as "fascist" is a classic trick; to what degree will Team UPC exploit such tactics?

  22. Session in Bavaria to Discuss the Abuses of the European Patent Office Later Today

    The EPO shambles in Munich have gotten the attention of more Bavarian politicians, more so in light of the Constitutional complaint against the UPC (now dealt with by the German FCC, which saw merit in the complaint)

  23. Links 12/3/2018: Linux 4.16 RC5, KEXI 3.1, Karton 1.0, Netrunner 18.03, Debian 9.4

    Links for the day

  24. EPO Patent 'Growth' Not Achieved But Demanded/Mandated by Battistelli, by Lowering Quality of Patents/Services

    Targets at the EPO are not actually reached but are being imposed by overzealous management which dries up all the work in a hurry in order to make examiners redundant and many European Patents worthless

  25. Doubt Over Independence of Judges at the EPO Clouds Reason in Deciding Regarding Patents on Life

    With the growing prospect of a Board of Appeal (BoA) having to decide on patentability of CRISPR 'innovation' (more like explanation/discovery), questions linger or persist about judges' ability to rule as they see fit rather than what some lunatic wants

  26. Patent Academics and CAFC Make a Living Out of Patents, But Both Must Begrudgingly Learn to Accept That Patents Went Too Far

    A look at academic pundits' views on the patent system of the United States and where the Federal Circuit (a high patent court) stands on these matters after the US Supreme Court (highest possible court) lashed out at many of its decisions, especially those from the disgraced Rader years

  27. Patent Maximalists Cause a Crisis of Legitimacy for Patent Law

    The patent extremists who nowadays equate monopolies on mere ideas to "property" and "rights" gradually cause the public to lose respect for patents, more or less in the same way copyright maximalists (and copyright trolls) cause the population to seek alternatives (both legal and illegal)

  28. We Shall Soon Find Out Where Trump Appointees Such as Neil Gorsuch Stand on Patent Policies

    Staff shuffles at top-level roles will soon reveal what Donald Trump's changes mean to patent law and caselaw

  29. Trump's USPTO Changes Patent Designs, Changes Director/Deputy Director, and Anticipat 'Ranks' Patent Examiners Based on How They Deal With Section 101

    Today's USPTO isn't the same USPTO which was managed by Michelle Lee and anti-PTAB groups (proponents of software patents) have begun profiling examiners based on their stance on abstract/software patents -- a form of neo-McCarthyism

  30. Links 10/3/2018: Amarok 2.9.0, Debian 9.4, Sparky 5.3

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time


Recent Posts