With the Justice Department considering whether to look more deeply into the Google/Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) search ad pact for potential antitrust violations, Google (NSDQ: GOOG) has been aggressively mounting a public relations campaign defending the tie-up. On Friday, Yahoo President Sue Decker had her say in a rare post on Yahoo's official blog. She had several points to convey about the deal: one, that Yahoo be a stronger competitor in all aspects of online advertising; and secondly, it is not exiting the sponsored search business. Decker also stressed that the partnership will not give Google 90 percent of all search marketing.
While Decker's post had five comments on it by Sunday night, she succeeded in attracting attention and appeared to make a fairly compelling casebut is it too little, too late? Some highlights from reviews of Decker's post included:
-- AllThingsD: With mounting criticism and Google being the lone voice arguing in favor of the "Yahoogle," Kara Swisher says that Decker's response comes not a moment too soon. After all, even the Canadians are considering regulatory action. Swisher praises Decker's "just the fact, ma'am" approach and finds her rebuttal to the deal's critics sensible and straightforward.
-- Portfolio: Where Swisher found Decker's post clear and reasonable, Sam Gustin detects fear, resignation and "stridency." " In the end, Decker "may feel a showdown with the government is inevitable."
-- Search Engine Journal: Google creates an entire website and FAQ offering a series of points and counterpoints about the ad pact and all Yahoo can muster is a single blog post? Decker's post essentially covers the same territory Google did, but the DOJ should take their points into account.
By David Kaplan