Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Lolz of the Day
What was it I said yesterday about Viacom needing radical change in it's very DNA?
What a surprise, then, today, that they decide to sue YouTube and Google.
Nice one guys - it's like putting off going to the gym...by ducking into Krispy Kreme.
Gamesmanship doesn't really buy you time or space - the opportunity cost, in a hypercompetitive economy, is simply too high. Rather, it's just (a desperate) excuse to not meet the fundamental challenge of deep, sweeping strategic reinvention.
Let me put it another way: though Viacom might gain near-term bargaining leverage from this move, it foregoes much more - the opportunity to innovate, to build new resources and capabilities, to force deep, fundamental change in it's corporate DNA.
And that kind of myopia is exactly how the music (film, publishing, radio, newspaper...etc) industries got themselves in a seemingly inescapable black hole of value destruction.
It's the mark of a truly great firm to embrace this challenge head-on. Conversely, not having the imagination, vision, or appetite to embrace this challenge is usually the mark of a once-great firm slowly dragging itself past strategy decay and into strategic irrelevance.
Umair - I really don't know why because VIA is spending some time and effort in trying to kill GOOG they can't also address their long-term strategic deficit? Killing GOOG in and of itself will be good for the current crop of VIA managers and shareholders. Whether or not they get their longterm act together seems (almost) irrelevant. In any case, the probs that VIA'll severely damage a longterm competitor seem much higher than that they'll stumble on a workable longterm strategy.
1) do you think via can really "kill" goog? assuming they win the suit, it's just a relatively large nuisance cost for goog (ie, cashflow covers it).
2) can you think of a single company which has played the litigation game and gone on to discover advantage? there aren't any - because for bigcos, every action has a very real, very steep opportunity cost.
thx for the comment.