Monday, November 30, 2009

MSFT's exclusivity strategy

Is MSFT trying to "tip" the search engine market in their favor:
In an effort to keep News Corp.'s (NWS) newspaper content out of Google's search results, Murdoch's media giant has held early-stage talks to forge a deal that would put content from The Wall Street Journal, and possibly other company-owned publications, exclusively in Microsoft's Bing search engine, a person familiar with the talks says. The discussions come amid Murdoch's mounting frustration that Google (GOOG) benefits at the expense of his own media outlets when Web users search for news online. But analysts and antitrust experts say the move will do more to hurt Murdoch than Google.

In exchange for the exclusive content, Microsoft (MSFT) would pay an undisclosed fee, according to the Financial Times, which initially reported the discussions. Microsoft has also approached other news outlets about a similar agreement, the report said.

Microsoft would use exclusives with widely read publications as a way to gain share in the lucrative market for online search. Bing has a mere 9.9% of search traffic, vs. Google's 65.4%, according to October data from ComScore (SCOR).

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