Why Semel Failed Yahoo

Opinion: Google smacked Terry Semel and Yahoo around, and now Yahoo's former CEO seems to have lost his Tinseltown touch.

Credit Google with making Yahoo and all of Yahoo!s senior management, especially its soon-to-depart chairman and chief executive officer Terry Semel, look bad. Heres a company that, in the last few years, has done a brilliant job of expanding its business and building industry-leading apps. Yet, much of the media and business world sees the online giant in a negative light.

Google, on the other hand, is recognized as fluid and innovative. Sure, the company has its problems. There are growing fears about Googles pervasive power and seemingly all-seeing Internet search eyes (do you have any idea just how much Google knows about you and everyone else in the world?).

Still, Google is a star, and it has the power and resources to do just about anything and buy just about anything (YouTube, anyone?).

So, how did perception so soundly trump reality for Yahoo, and how will the company respond? Ive had numerous meetings, countless phone calls, and untold numbers of e-mails outlining every detail of Yahoos plan. Yes, there is a plan. The company has a real strategy for creating an ecosystem of information—online, in the living room and mobile—for end users.

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