Everything’s negotiable

The New York Times has updated its story on the deal between Google and Time Warner, providing further details about the terms. It reveals just how desperate Google was to maintain the AOL partnership:

In the new arrangement, Google will offer promotion to AOL in ways it has never done for another company, two executives close to the negotiations said.

If a user searches on Google for a topic for which AOL has content – like information about Madonna – there will be a special section on the bottom right corner of the search results page with links to AOL.com. Technically, AOL will pay for those links, which will be identified as advertising, but Google will give AOL credits to pay for them as part of the deal. They will also carry AOL’s logo, the first time Google has agreed to place graphic ads on its search result pages.

Google will also provide technical assistance so AOL can create Web pages that will appear more prominently in the search results list. But this assistance will not change computer formulas that determine the order in which pages are listed in Google’s search results.

Google will also make a special effort to incorporate AOL video programming in its expanding video search section and it will feature links to AOL videos on the video search home page. These links will not be marked as advertising.

An executive involved in the talks said Time Warner asked Microsoft to give AOL similar preferred placement in advertising and in its Web index and that Microsoft refused, calling the request unethical.


4 thoughts on “Everything’s negotiable

  1. Expert Texture

    Google gives AOL what?

    I have posted several times about the Microsoft / Google debate, making the point that the trust / faith people give to Google is beginning to wain. The news in the NYT about the AOL / Google agreement brings me back to this same point.

    Like many, …

  2. Tech Beat

    Why Was Google So Desperate for AOL?

    I don’t get it. Here’s a company that seems to have everything going for it–absurdly high revenue growth and profits and a $127 billion market cap. But according to this New York Times story: Google will also provide technical assistance…

  3. Microsoft News Tracker

    More adverse reaction to Google AOL “sell out”

    As I mentioned yesterday, whether or not Google is overpaying for AOL, it certainly seems to be tarnishing its reputation. More commentary…

  4. Technophilia

    Google sells out

    Several blogentators (see here and here) referred to a NY Times story on the deal Google made with Time-Warner to acquire 5% of AOL. Much of the concern centered around plans to enhance ad placement for AOL, but the following quote (buried at the end…

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