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05.18.09

Another Microsoft Product Officially Dies, More Layoffs, Tellme Founder Quits Microsoft

Posted in Microsoft, Security at 6:04 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: More new signs of the rapid self-destruction/implosion at Microsoft

YES, it’s true. Say goodbye to Microsoft’s QnA. It has only a few days left to live.

Yahoo Answers wins: Microsoft to kill QnA on May 21

[...]

Microsoft’s QnA website has had a very shaky development, never quite becoming good enough to lose the beta tag, and never quite becoming popular enough for its company to give it the attention it really required. Finally, the long road for QnA is coming to a dead end. On the Live QnA Team Blog this week, Microsoft announced that it would be discontinuing its QnA service.

Since this article mentions Yahoo, here is a noteworthy new report from The Wall Street Journal:

Ad Execs Worry A Microsoft-Yahoo Pact Might Not Make Sense

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) and Yahoo Inc. (YHOO) may be closer than ever to striking a search and display advertising deal, but many in the ad community are skeptical the two companies can agree to a cohesive structure that makes sense for marketers.

The death of Microsoft’s QnA may actually reduce overlap in the activity of this pair of companies. The news is already covered in:

The Seattle press says that it’s “a sad day in Seattle” as more details surface about Microsoft’s failure in the advertising market.

The company also confirmed that ‘deep cuts’ had been made at Massive, the in-game advertising unit that Microsoft has acquired. Moreover, as a part of its cost-cutting measures, Microsoft is also slashing its expenditure on travel, vendors, and contractors; as well as canceling its once-a-year picnic.

Of the affected products that will reportedly be scaled back, Microsoft will continue to sell and support the first version of the small businesses-specific ResponsePoint, and the traffic and like services-specific MSN Direct. However, in the case of the .Net Micro Framework, the company intends making the project a community source effort, thereby eliminating royalties from the distribution of the product.

Security is already very poor at Microsoft and it is likely to get even worse if the company lays off those who have been responsible for security thus far.

Layoffs hit Microsoft security unit

[...]

The latest round of layoffs at Microsoft has taken a toll on Redmond’s security unit.

In addition to Microsoft layoffs there are also voluntary departures that won’t be counted. When major people from acquired companies decide to leave, then it is usually an indication that the acquisition was a failure (see aQuantive/Razorfish for example [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]). Such as the case with Tellme, whose integration with Microsoft has shown little or no fruit so far. Tellme’s co-founder says goodbye:

  1. Tellme’s Mike McCue leaving Microsoft
  2. Exclusive: Tellme Founder and GM McCue Departs, as Microsoft Reorganizes Its Speech Recognition Unit
  3. mocoNews – Microsoft’s Tellme Networks Faces Reorg: Founder To Leave, New Speech Team To Be Created
  4. TellMe co-founder Mike McCue is leaving Microsoft’s speech-recognition business

Microsoft’s PR person at CNET adds that typical sentimental spin:

With earnings down 32%, Microsoft’s future does not look entirely bright.

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