Microsoft’s Role In GOOG-YHOO Delay: Outlobbying

So how did Google (NSDQ: GOOG) move from promising to start its deal with Yahoo with or without the regulators to postponing it all within a matter of weeks? Chief among other factors, Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) played the DC chess match more deftly, applying its expensive tutoring to starting — and staying — a few moves ahead of Google and Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO). One excellent illustration from the NYT’s look at the lobbying that has Google on the defensive: Microsoft launched its protest site July 15, while Google waited more than three months after announcing the deal to put up its own explanation.

Another example underscores Google’s traditional public self-confidence and how that can chafe the folks with power in Washington. Schmidt promised reporters on Sept. 17 that the partnership would kick in this month with or without Justice approval, while admitting they hadn’t explained it well enough. But a tech lobbyist tells the Times: “I watched that with some amusement because policy makers don