Marissa Mayer Will Likely Fail at Yahoo—But Don't Blame Her

Farhad Manjoo: She's great, but she has a near-impossible task
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 17, 2012 6:52 PM CDT
Marissa Mayer in New York City in May.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Marissa Mayer has said she likes to feel a little over her head, and her decision to leave Google to run Yahoo certainly must qualify, writes Farhad Manjoo at Slate. Mayer is great, but Yahoo is a bloated, unfocused mess. Lately, it has "flitted from one new Web fad to another"—search engine, social networking, media company, etc.—without getting especially good at any of them. Why does Yahoo exist? Mayer will have to answer that question first before making changes.

Manjoo isn't optimistic because the task "looks impossible." Yes, Steve Jobs resurrected Apple, a rare feat in the tech industry, but Apple had a loyal customer base that Yahoo doesn't. Still, "while I have severe doubts that Mayer will be able to turn Yahoo around, I’m excited to see what she can do with the place," writes Manjoo. "Yahoo has long been headed for failure. Now, at least, it will be an interesting failure, not a depressing one." Read his full column here.

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