Feeds

Jerry Yang - Slugworth to Google's Willy Wonka

How did it come to this?

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

I Need an Adult

When Yang took over the CEO position from Terry Semel in June of 2007, Yahoo! had already become the stagnation nation. Nobody ever expected Yang to have to handle a grownup situation like the Microsoft buyout offer that came nine months later. His failure to take his money and shut the fuck up sent Yahoo! on its death spiral. Microsoft's bid was $31 per share, which at the time was a 62 per cent premium to shareholders. With Yahoo!'s stock hovering triumphantly around $9 per share right now, you have to wonder: Are Jerry Yang's decisions worse than decisions made at random? I mean, even on the SAT, if you guess at every answer, statistically, you're going to be right 25 per cent of the time.

The real fuck-up wasn't Yang's playing footsie with Microsoft's offer, it was his refusal to admit that he was in way over his head. After broadcasting his incompetence to Microsoft, Yahoo!'s shareholders and his employees, he stayed on as CEO. We can't stop here. This is bat country.

Still unsure as to whether Yang's leadership was a comedy or a tragedy, Steve Ballmer gave up. Like a girlfriend with too much emotional baggage, Microsoft figured that putting up with Yahoo!'s bullshit would really just make things worse. One of the classic characteristics of crazy girlfriends is that they don't know that they're crazy, and Yang is no exception. In a recent interview with The Wall Street Journal's adorably terse Kara Swisher, when asked if he had any fucking clue what he was doing, Yang replied:

...in this uncertain environment, I think I am absolutely the right person. Times like this require a leader who really understands this company and its customers, and I think I do. The world is a different place today than even a month ago and I think I am the best person to guide Yahoo through this volatile time.

Roughly translated, that means “No.”

Don't Forget To Take Your Massive Truck of Fail With You

Finally, ten months after he should have quit, Yang is throwing in the towel. Of course, before he packs his shit, he will lay off 10 per cent of the workforce and run an informal competition with himself to see just how low he can send the stock price of the company before the other 90 per cent up and quits. Microsoft isn't interested in a buyout anymore - rightfully so. The top talent fled months ago, earnings are in the shitter, and morale among employees is just shy of fueling a mutiny.

Yang is still going to keep the once playful but now annoying title of Chief Yahoo!. Whatever his role in the future, for the sake of everyone still associated with the company, let's all hope that he just takes his money and shuts the fuck up. ®

Ted Dziuba is a co-founder at Milo.com You can read his regular Reg column, Fail and You, every other Monday.

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
Captain Kirk sets phaser to SLAUGHTER after trying new Facebook app
William Shatner less-than-impressed by Zuck's celebrity-only app
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.