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Microsoft: The New New York Times?

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer last year famously remarked that in 10 years, all media will be digital -- meaning print will be deader than a run-over Texas armadillo. Maybe Steve really believes such an absurd idea (despite iPods and CDs, the LP is the hot ticket for young music-philes). Or perhaps he's trying to will it into happening so Microsoft can take over the publishing business.

Like Google and Yahoo, Microsoft isn't really planning on doing publishing the traditional way -- the hard way -- where you actually hire journalists and editors and produce content. No, Microsoft and its ilk want to monetize content produced by others. They want advertisers to connect with Microsoft by advertising on Microsoft sites, or for advertisers and publishers to use Microsoft as the Web advertising go-between. Here's a rundown of what Microsoft has to offer.

The company has a new partner, Rapt Inc., which Microsoft is in the process of buying. Rapt helps publishers forecast and does inventory management. The software will be added to Microsoft's Atlas Publisher Suite.

Posted by Doug Barney on March 17, 2008 at 11:52 AM