Behavior, Content, Money – 3 Things you should never give away for free!!!

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Ballmer on the future and Microsoft

Posted by bcmoney on June 6, 2008 in Cloud Computing, E-Business with No Comments

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Earlier this month Bill Gates confirmed rumors and news headlines that he would be stepping down from his daily activities at Microsoft and handing over the bulk of the control and responsibility of Microsoft’s management to current CEO Steve Ballmer. (In fact, it was part of a multi-phase retirement plan already released on the company’s corporate press site)

Since the announcement, and indeed over the course of this transitionary year, Ballmer has already made himself comfortable as he prepares for the position of Microsoft top gun by redifining the Microsoft mission statement and privacy policies, shifting a significant focus towards the horizontal and vertical advertising markets, with particular emphasis on content and discovery (i.e. search). The company’s new policy and direction can already be clearly seen in the attempted acquisition of Yahoo!, the world’s #2 search provider (by market share and volume), and arguably one of the best at dealing with premium advertisers, and working them into its existing content portal & framework.

An interesting set of interview clips were posted this week over at the Washington Post’s Technology section.

Finally we see the executive-level beginning to echo what the BCmoney team has been talking about for quite some time. It seems that Mr. Ballmer has been debriefed extremely well, and assuming that his responses were not merely scripted, he seems to really have a handle on the emerging global content ecosystem. He even went so far to have admitted that perhaps Microsoft and competitors Google, Yahoo! and other Ad Networks are crossing some legal boundaries and thresholds, and will eventually need to pay users in exchange for monitoring their behavior and usage data. In the picture of the future of advertising painted by Ballmer, companies will compete on not just services and technology, but also on privacy policy. Finally, he warned that governments need to refine their laws for the digital world or put its people at risk to large corporations mining their date without limit or reprecutions.

In addition, Bill Gates has even made an ode to Bill Clinton and his popular “Final Days in the White House” viral video, with “Bill Gates’ Last Days at Microsoft”:

BC$ = Behavior, Content, Money

The goal of the BC$ project is to raise awareness and make changes with respect to the three pillars of information freedom - Behavior (pursuit of interests and passions), Content (sharing/exchanging ideas in various formats), Money (fairness and accessibility) - bringing to light the fact that:

1. We regularly hand over our browser histories, search histories and daily online activities to companies that want our money, or, to benefit from our use of their services with lucrative ad deals or sales of personal information.

2. We create and/or consume interesting content on their services, but we aren't adequately rewarded for our creative efforts or loyalty.

3. We pay money to be connected online (and possibly also over mobile), yet we lose both time and money by allowing companies to market to us with unsolicited advertisements, irrelevant product offers and unfairly structured service pricing plans.

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