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AOL/Time Warner Plans to Fumble Towards World Domination One Misstep at a Time
2001-06-08 09:59:40


Mocking Parade
 
I don't really think I would enjoy puking up raw tuna -- I'm just exaggerting for comic effect.
-- Daisy

 

Does corporate stupidity know no bounds? Recently, AOL Time-Warner purchased Business 2.0, one of those hype-filled new economy rags, to add to its already overgrown, festering pile of fly-fattening media properties.

O.K. AOL Time Warner buys magazines: it's what its acquisition department is paid to do, I guess. Nothing wrong with world domination, if you're the small-minded weaselly-type actually into that sort of power trip I guess.

Furthermore, AOL seems to be ditching the entire staff of Business 2.0. Apparently the only thing about Business 2.0 worth keeping is its name and subscriber list. This, I can understand too. Sometimes you have to buy an entire wrecked automobile outright just to score a few choice replacement parts for your own ride. So you salvage the carb, the transmission, a tire or two and dump what's left off on some backroad for the government to properly dispose of. Which is in effect what AOL is doing to Business 2.0. And it's displaying a perfectible respectable sense of junkyard logic in doing so.

But here's what gets me: AOL is replacing the Business 2.0 staff with the staff from its own hype-filled new economy rag, eCompany Now, which it is shelving. Now think hard about this for a second: it is buying a magazine that, by its own account, has built up a subscriber list worth purchasing, and replacing the staff of that magazine (who did the work to build up that samesaid readership) with a staff that has failed to produce similarly successful magazine.

So that is the AOL-Time Warner strategy for media monopoly? Buy a successful magazine and replace it with an unsuccesful one???

Yeah, I know that if Business 2.0 were truly successful it wouldn't be sold at spare-part prices to AOL. But it still would have to have had been more successful than eCompany Now, otherwise, the Business 2.0 subscriber list would have been folded into eCompany's, not the other way around. Good thinking!

So what next? Maybe they could buy the rights to Budweiser and have the people who made Zima run operations. Or even better, they could buy the producer of the world's most-used browser and have it run by a bunch of East Coast flunkies who thought the Web would never take off. Oh wait, they did that already.

Over.  End of Story.  Go home now.

punchbowl@pigdog.org


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