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Facebook and Microsoft in merger talks–grist on the rumor mill

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I got this little tidbit in my morning IM updates:

Rumor is that Microsoft is looking to close a deal to buy Facebook for the amazing sum of six billion dollars. Henry Blodget says that while he can?t confirm it, he has definitely heard that Steve Ballmer is desperately trying to make a big splash play to counter Google in the internet game. Considering that all we?ve been hearing of Ballmer recently is that his focus aas the new leader of Microsoft is in services, it would make sense to grab the most buzzworthy free agent on the web.

What could happen with Facebook? Unlike buying Yahoo, Facebook actually fits into Microsoft?s portfolio, since they don?t have a social network. What Microsoft does have is Windows Live Spaces, the most popular blogging service on the planet, and the two should complement each other. In fact, if an acquisition happens, the Facebook team should be combined with the Live Spaces team, and the two services should become one. Source: ? Microsoft To Buy Facebook For $6 Billion? ?  InsideMicrosoft – part of the Blog News Channel

So the operative question is whether Facebook is worth it. Facebook’s advertising strength on the ropes, so that can’t be a huge draw.  Would there be a mass rebellion of FB users if Microsoft bought them?  Would FB’s open development platform be closed?

In thinking about this merger rumor writing this post, I wonder if this might bring a whole new raft of features to Sharepoint.  I can imagine being able to get more information into and out of Facebook, maybe something that might make it better for collaboration.

Of course this might only fuel fears that Facebook is trading our information away.

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