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Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times reporter Sharon Chan.

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November 3, 2008 4:02 PM

Microsoft news roundup: Salesforce beats the cloud drum; GOOG-YHOO revamp search ad deal, while Icahn says a Microsoft search deal still makes sense; MSN vet goes to Yahoo

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano, the software as a service company that loves to put Microsoft's business model in its cross hairs, today announced a Web hosting service for enterprise clients called Sites. It was one of several Salesforce announcements Monday, including partnerships with and Facebook, all of which elevate the company's cloud computing offerings as competition for these services continues to intensify. (See Microsoft's cloud platform expansion from last week.) Here's coverage from Reuters.

Google and Yahoo have tinkered with the terms of the proposed search advertising deal in a bid to pass Department of Justice muster, according to The Wall Street Journal.

"The new plan, which the companies submitted over the weekend, shortens the original agreement to two years from ten years and caps the revenue Yahoo can generate from the deal to 25% of Yahoo's search revenue, according to [people familiar with the matter]. Previously, there was no revenue cap. It also specifies that Google advertisers can opt out of having their ads displayed on Yahoo sites."

Meanwhile, Carl Icahn, the Yahoo board member who advocated for a sale to Microsoft earlier this year, is restating his opinion that Yahoo should do a search deal with Microsoft. From an interview he gave to CNBC:

"I believe that eventually Yahoo! should make a deal with Microsoft. Not to buy the company anymore but for search. We could save a fortune at Yahoo! if Microsoft would do the search for us."

Yahoo has hired Microsoft veteran Jeff Dossett as senior vice president, U.S. audience. Dossett joined Microsoft in 1991 and joined MSN in 2000. He was most recently executive producer and general manager for the MSN Media Network.

Yahoo shared this interesting biographical note about Dossett in its press release:

"In 2002, Dossett took two years away from his career at Microsoft to pursue his passion for adventure with a goal to climb the highest mountain on each of the seven continents, known as the "Seven Summits". Reaching the summit of Mount Everest on May 24, 2004, Dossett became the third Canadian in history to successfully complete the Seven Summits. On May 22nd, 2008, Jeff became the second Canadian in history to reach the summit Mount Everest for the second time."

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