Microsoft buys Netscape (sort of)

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14 Responses to “Microsoft buys Netscape (sort of)”

  1. autark says:

     Impact on Mozilla?

    Ominous…

    • Cowicide says:

      Good to see that Microsoft still has that fantastic, anti-competitive, anti-consumer monopolistic streak that’s done wonders for American competition and innovation already…

      :/

  2. digi_owl says:

    Do wonder how this will affect Mozilla…

  3. corydodt says:

    Doesn’t this mean AOL is engaged in tax fraud? How does this result in lower taxes (or a bigger refund) for them?

    In order to report a loss to the IRS, they must have to value the patents at more than $1.1B.  But patents are not a commodity.. their value is equal to the amount you can sell them for. There is no other measure of their value. (We don’t need to complicate this with the value of the products AOL can build with those patents, because AOL received licensing rights, so they can still make those products.)

    Therefore, the patents are worth $1.1B because that’s how much AOL received for them. Therefore, they can’t book a loss.

    Not a CPA or economist, but isn’t this how it works? How can they claim it’s for tax reasons?

    • Jorpho says:

       If I am not mistaken, the value of a patent can in fact be valued not merely by the price if can be sold for, but how much can be made by licensing it to other companies.

      • corydodt says:

         Hmm, didn’t consider that. I guess it makes sense.

      • autark says:

         or, can they claim the loss on the sale based on how much they *paid* for the patent(s)? if it’s an exclusive one time sale and they can’t continue licensing the IP, then they’d be claiming the loss of whatever they originally paid, if higher, than the sale.

  4. mwschmeer says:

    This is how the browser wars end, not with a bang, but a buyout.

  5. leidentech says:

    This would have been a brilliant move, about 15 years ago.

  6. Jim Saul says:

    How the world changed since this would have been a stunning capitulation.

  7. Cowicide says:

    If you can’t beat ‘em with free enterprise competition… borg ‘em.  It’s the Microsoft way…

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