Subject: Washington Post: Rumor: AOL, RH, in aquisition talks
From: "Karsten M. Self" <>
Date: Sat, 19 Jan 2002 13:04:59 -0800
Sat, 19 Jan 2002 13:04:59 -0800

    By Alec Klein,
    Washington Post Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 19, 2002; 9:14 AM

    AOL Time Warner Inc. is in talks to buy Red Hat Inc., a prominent
    distributor of a computer operating system, an acquisition that
    would position the media giant to challenge arch rival Microsoft
    Corp., according to sources familiar with the matter.


    The Red Hat negotiations -which are still fluid - are the latest
    indication that AOL Time Warner, the world's largest media company,
    is looking for alternatives to software made by Microsoft, whose
    Windows operating system runs 90 percent of the world's PCs. The
    longtime competitors have fought over an array of rival consumer
    technologies lately, including online subscription services,
    instant-messaging systems and Web-based video and audio players.

    Officials of AOL, Red Hat and Microsoft declined to comment.

    To counter Microsoft's desktop hegemony, New York-based AOL Time
    Warner could use the deal to couple its America Online software, the
    market leader with more than 33 million Internet subscribers, with
    Red Hat's operating-system technology, sources said.


    With such a move, AOL Time Warner could potentially make significant
    inroads into Microsoft's bread-and-butter business. An even graver
    challenge to Microsoft would be for AOL Time Warner to develop a
    rival operating system that works exclusively with the media giant's
    own Internet service provider, its Web browser or proprietary

This could result in as much as 40% penetration of GNU/Linux on the
Internet.  I'll also note that AOL's made something of a habit of
aquiring properties which are useful as negotiating tools in its
dealings with Microsoft.

Slashdot discussion:

LinuxToday: story.php3?ltsn=2002-01-19-002-20-NW-RH&tbovrmode=3



Karsten M. Self <>
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