Former Microsoft Employee Criticizes Company At Microsoft Event

Former Microsoft Employee Criticizes Company At Microsoft Event

Damon Danieli is not happy. He worked at Microsoft for 14 years and was involved in several projects at the Redmond company — from things like the Xbox Live Service to ActiMates (look them up, seriously, do), the plush toys Microsoft released back in the 90s.

But at a company event held by the software giant at its headquarters he tried to explain some of the decisions Microsoft made in the last few years.

And it’s not a good sight.

In a story, Bloomberg quoted him as starting his speech in this fashion:

“Microsoft needs some help. Just look at the title: `Microsoft Accelerator for Windows Azure Powered by TechStars, Startup Edition Service Pack 1’.”

Sure, you may say the guy worked at Redmond during the good old days, the all-or-nothing days and it’s just nostalgia kicking in.

But he has a point when he says that Microsoft used to set up teams and pay developers to create its own solutions, instead of going on a buying spree and acquiring companies like Skype:

“It pains me to see what happens now where Microsoft pays $8.5 billion to acquire Skype or $1.2 billion for Yammer.”

Microsoft said that it will be discontinuing its iconic Windows Live Messenger and moved all its users to Skype — a decision that has merit as video communication is set to explode in the future, but then again, the big and burly Microsoft of old would have developed its own Skype.

What’s your take on this? Has Microsoft lost a bit of initiative in these past few years? Or is acquiring popular services the way forward? Do sounds off in the comments section below.

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  • Janet010

    Both have a point. Microsoft created some very useful services, but that doesn’t work when people keep bashing them. Buying established names can be a logical step.

    On the other hand I can understand that it causes pain to a former employee to see that services are bought, while good development knowledge is likely incompany.

    It is a hard case, and both pounts of view are valid.

    • Fahad Ali

      Agreed. 🙂 The way I see it, acquiring everything diminishes a fair amount of innovation and initiative, at least in a company like Microsoft. But that’s just how things are these days.

      Quite true, the bashing bit. I’ve rarely seen a company more bashed than Microsoft.

  • xinu

    It would be valuable for Microsoft to further develop and integrate its own services with acquired features such as Skype. If you look back at the late 90’s, Microsoft where developing some very interesting and good products, some of which never lasted very long. I think the best times at Microsoft are gone now, and if they want to regain some very much lost marketshare, they have to start innovating again and create desirable products. So far Microsoft has failed to do so. The sales figures of Windows 8 are poor, I guarantee you that if Microsoft were selling Windows 98, 2000, XP or 7 at just $39 ($15 if you bought a new pc) for an upgrade they would have been instant hits and would achieve much higher sales than Windows 8 did.

  • Mahesh Kumar

    acquiring skype is good step from microsoft and way the skype changed in terms of improvements is fantastic….! i think its good for both microsoft obviously will generate huge revenues that its investment…! and skype. development is good but stepping into competitive market with a new skype would have been worst and it would have given huge loses that its investments…! skype on other hand has captured a huge market and making it microsoft part is good decisions in terms of business…!

    i would suggest danieli to think from postive side and teat skype as its own and make it more better instead of criticising and being a fool….! first learn some business