Yahoo this morning is making a play for cord cutters with the launch of a new TV watching site called Yahoo View, featuring Hulu’s free content. The site will now become one of the only ways to watch Hulu’s TV shows and movies for free, as the company is planning to wind down its free version in favor of its subscription services – a plan that was already in the works ahead of the Yahoo partnership.
Yahoo [disclosure: Yahoo and TechCrunch are now both owned by Verizon] and Hulu have had a long-standing relationship for years, which saw Yahoo acting as a distributor of Hulu content, but this particular deal has been in the works for around six months.
And while Yahoo now has the status of “preferred partner,” it’s not an exclusive distribution partner – Hulu content is also available through a number of other sources, including Comcast, and on websites that carry its player, like People.com, EW, New York Magazine, and others.
Verizon Communications Inc. today announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Yahoo! Inc. for $4.83 billion. The acquisition only includes Yahoo’s core operating business, not its more valuable assets: Yahoo Japan and its $41 billion stake in Alibaba, the Chinese ecommerce company.
This is not the first time Verizon purchased an aging Internet giant. Last year, the company picked up AOL for $4.4 billion.
“The addition of Yahoo to Verizon and AOL will create one of the largest portfolios of owned and partnered global brands with extensive distribution capabilities,” says the announcement.
The purchase gives Verizon access to Yahoo’s more than 1 billion monthly users — 600 million of whom are mobile users — which is most likely what piqued its interest in the first place.
There’s no logical explanation for Yahoo’s reported $30 million acquisition of Summly, an app created by a 17-year-old Brit that launched five months ago. The team and technology are unexceptional and the app itself will be shut down. What Yahoo really gets for its big check is momentum and buzz.
In other words, Yahoo bought Summly to appear cool again.
[Update] Rumor has it the rumors are wrong. While Facebook and Yahoo! may work together on certain projects and collaborations, a search alliance is not likely to be one of them in the near future.
Female executive powerhouses Marissa Mayer and Sheryl Sandburg may be forging an alliance between their two companies.
UK newspaper The Sunday Telegraph reported that Mayer, who is the CEO of Yahoo! and Sandberg, the COO of Facebook, are discussing ways the they can work together to conquer the internet. There is already some overlap between Yahoo! and Facebook, but according to unnamed sources, “board members expect the talks to lead to much more substantial collaboration based around web-based search.”
Testing a user interface
When brand control becomes damage control:
“Scantily clad gyrating women” who give lap dances to men on your company’s dime can damage your brand within seconds.
For a sample of the outrage, click here. Especially entertaining are the dozens of Twitter posts.
If you haven’t heard of the term ‘keyword spam’ this is a good example of it. Some web site developers that promote making your site more visible to internet search engines like Google and Yahoo use variants of the technique described in this article.