Was there ever a clearer indication of how much Yahoo doesn't want to be taken over by Microsoft?
Enjoying a sense of the perverse this week, the Redmond target announced it is starting a trial of Google's AdSense for Search service, a move Microsoft is furious about.
The nitty gritty of the deal will see an initial three per cent of Yahoo search results returning a side column of Google's keyword sensitive advertisements. Yahoo says if the experiment goes well AdSense will be applied increasingly liberally to Yahoo results pages. Yahoo has also refused to comment on the "nature or timing" of the agreement, but it's clearly a strong repost to Microsoft's hard line tactics.
For its part, Microsoft has reacted to the news with understandable (though somewhat amusing) venom. Invoking the infamous pot-calling-kettle-black approach, Microsoft declared "This would make the market far less competitive, in sharp contrast to our own proposal to acquire Yahoo. We will assess closely all of our options. Our proposal remains the only alternative put forward that offers Yahoo! shareholders full and fair value for their shares, gives every shareholder a vote on the future of the company, and enhances choice."
Is it just me or is this latest quote beginning to sound rather desperate?
Of course the move is a wonderfully hostile attempt to taint Microsoft's takeover attempts. After all, if the trial goes well Microsoft will be looking to invest in a company with a strong Google partnership and Google - let it not be forgotten - is the entire reason Microsoft wants Yahoo in the first place, however cracked the logic...