Tuesday, June 06, 2006
Google-mart Economy, E-paper, Online Newspaper Ads, the ADBE/MSFT Kerfuffle
Some e-paper news
Online newspaper advertising was up +35% in the first quarter to more than $600 million. Print advertising was $10.5 billion. Yeah, there's a big difference. Before anyone gets crazy about "see, printed newspapers are still thriving," it's important to remember that the real cash cow of newspapers, classified advertising is what's really been hit over the years. The huge margins newspapers got from that kind of advertising is hard to replace, and hurts the most when it disappears. And then, declining circulation adds a new dynamic. Also remember, that newspapers data are not adjusted for inflation. They're not keeping up. One of the reasons this industry was so beloved was because it grew with population and the economy. Whoops. Ain't no more.
WSJ commentary about Adobe and Microsoft's spat about inclusion of PDF-making in Office 2007. Adobe is now complaining to the European Commission, and seems to be one of many US companies who take competitive or negotiable issues to Europe for solution. Is this the business equivalent of "jury shopping" or "doctor shopping"?
I still think the DOJ complaint about Microsoft was extremely misguided. There was such a surge of outrage starting to brew against MSFT at the time that competitive operating systems were starting to get some interest. Remember IBM's OS/2 Warp product? It won many awards in its day and MSFT had a grand and well-executed PR strategy against it.
The decision to support OS/2 eventually led to to failure of Lotus' PC efforts, despite superior products at the time. Lotus Freelance was a leap forward in presentation software when it arrived on the market. Linux would have gotten far more investment if the market had its MSFT-outrage well-entrenched. But now, there is no outrage to springboard from.