May 21, 2004
MS Blog, coming to you soon

Bill Gates Likes Blogs

Blogs are good for business, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates has said.
In a speech to an audience of chief executives, Mr Gates said the regularly updated journals, or blogs, could be a good way for firms to tell customers, staff and partners what they are doing.

He said blogs had advantages over other, older ways of communicating such as e-mail and websites.

More than 700 Microsoft employees are already using blogs to keep people up to date with their projects.


Mr Gates made a point of dwelling on blogs and said that although they started in the technical community and have come to be a broader social phenomenon, businesses can use them too.

They had advantages over more traditional ways of keeping in touch such as e-mail and websites, he said.

E-mail messages could be too imposing or miss out key people who should be included, said Mr Gates.

Websites were a problem too, he added, because they demand that people visit them regularly to find out if anything has changed and require regular updating to avoid going stale.

These problems could be solved, said Mr Gates, by using blogs and Real Simple Syndication (RSS), that lets people know when a favourite journal is updated.

"What blogging and these notifications are about is that you make it very easy to communicate," he said.

"The ultimate idea is that you should get the information you want when you want it."

All true. It's also much better for archiving and retrieval than email. Ever search an Outlook PST file for a keyword? Takes forever. I know where to look for my old stuff 99% of the time, and when I don't, my search utility finds what I need in short order.

Now for the ominous news:

Microsoft currently does not make any individual blogging tools but it is widely expected to move into this space soon. If it does the move would pitch it into even sharper competition with Google and others such as AOL.

Look on the bright side - as far as we know, they haven't attempted to buy SixApart. Yet.

Via The Agonist.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on May 21, 2004 to Blog stuff | TrackBack