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back to article Microsoft's $1bn Yammer gobble gabble blabbed by insiders

Microsoft is reportedly in talks to snap up enterprise social network Yammer for over $1bn. Redmond is currently discussing the acquisition and it could make up its mind as early as tomorrow, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg. Yammer was set up in 2008 and is used by over 200,000 companies, including Shell, DHL, …

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Anonymous Coward

How much?

I don't understand how Yammer ever convinced anyone to pay for their product and I certainly don't understand why anyone would think it was worth that much money.

If MS built 'social' into Outlook / Exchange they'd have that sort of user base in a week - why buy from outside and then have to shoehorn it in?

(All of which translates as "Why didn't I set up a shit social company and wait to get bought out - did I not learn from the previous bubble that an idea does not have to have any merit whatsoever to make money?")

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Re: How much?

"If MS built 'social' into Outlook / Exchange"

Actually we have something like that here at work called Lync. It's basically MSN Messenger with an ugly skin and less user control, and I can "friend" my colleagues and update my status. Unfortunately it won't let me play Farmville with them (or even Battleship) so the appeal is limited.

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Stop

Yammer Time

What a stupid name. They must have been yammered when they thought of it.

But I guess when all you have is a Yammer, everything starts to look like a nail.

Thank you, thank you, I'm here all night.

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FAIL

Re: Yammer Time

It's a great name: in German, "Jammer" (pronounced yammer) means a moan, a whinge, a complaint.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Yammer Time

"in German, "Jammer" (pronounced yammer) means a moan, a whinge, a complaint."

My father's family (Scandinavian roots) would use "What are you yammering on about?" as an approximate equivalent of "What are you wittering on about?". Also phrases such as "Folks were doing too much yammering".

In that sense it doesn't sound suitable for business to my ears.

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Headmaster

Re: Yammer Time

"My father's family (Scandinavian roots) would use "What are you yammering on about?" as an approximate equivalent of "What are you wittering on about?""

Used all the time by my family since forever, (English/Italian). So I'm fairly sure the phrase is fairly wide spread in the English speaking world, (and probably has a Germanic/Nordic invader type derivation, which makes a change from nicking Latin and French words).

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Anonymous Coward

do people really use it?

we tried Yammer. had it running for 3 months trial period or something. i think all but 6 people, most of them on the grad student programme, gave up using it after the first few weeks.

instead we resorted to an in-house equivalent that no one uses either.

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Anonymous Coward

Eh?

Ok, be honest, hands up anyone who's heard of this company/product before?

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Re: Eh?

We use it in our company and it has been probably the most successful attempt to introduce social networking concepts into the business. However that is not saying a lot since most previous attempts died quickly through lack of interest.

Yammer itself is quite slick and the interface is not bad, especially compared to our internal tools. However I think its success in our case has as much to do that it has bee set-up, used and supported outside the company sanction and our IT dept. and therefore users do not feel quite as restrained in using it as an internal company product. Saying that we have been surprised that it has not been blocked by the company firewall yet.

Truth is data security is a concern and how the company will feel if all the internal company discussions are being piped through Microsoft is an interesting area.

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Thumb Down

Re: Eh?

Indeed, in our company it's now being researched/used on a trial basis. However, at the client i'm working at, it's being actively blocked. So the only way into Yammer would be using a phone or separate (non-client-managed) data connection.

The security thing (not only to Microsoft, just in general) also has me wondering - what good does it do, if you can't (or probably shouldn't) discuss company/client-sensitive information over Yammer?

Apparently you need to start paying them if you want more admin-ey functionality, to manage groups/folders.

And you know what else? Another time-waster, another website to keep track of.

Yammer in Dutch is very close to 'jammer' - 'too bad'.

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Meh

Re: Eh?

My employer network has just under 5k people Yammering. We are pretty good a self policing to make sure nothing too sensitive is posted.

I have had clients who wanted to block it and another who has excess of 10k users.

I don't think either have opted to pay for the enhanced features so really not sure that the Freemium model works well enough to validate a $1bn price tag.

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Windows

SharePoint Social

I'm pretty much the only person in my company who uses a SharePoint MySite. All in all, it's pointless - in SharePoint 2007 there's no facility to send status updates, shout out questions into the hubbub or anything conceivably useful.

Perhaps MS is half thinking of half integrating a half-decent social enterprise play into a half-decent document uploading tool so that two people in my company will use it.

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FAIL

We ran it for a month or two by which time most people were bored with it then somebody in legal realized that all the crap that people wrote using it would be subject to discovery in the event of legal action and it was canned on the spot - much like facebook, it's pretty much useless.

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FAIL

Yammer == SharePoint

Microsoft(R) Yammer(TM) will be about as successful as SharePoint. In other words, there will be plenty of it deployed, but it will do absolutely nothing useful.

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Meh

Re: Yammer == SharePoint

We've got six offices and 277 employees in our company and we run quite well (great in fact) using SharePoint. It's a very powerful tool, especially if you are an MS house.

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Re: Yammer == SharePoint

Bet they rename it. To something catchy like "Sharepoint Twitface 2012".

-A.

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Facepalm

IIRC

Unreal IRC - 2mb for the server

Probably not worth $1bn

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Anonymous Coward

One of my previous jobs was working in the web division of a small company, and the supervisor there, along with being an Apple fanboi of the highest order, was also enamored with whatever was the new trendy social networking app of the week. Despite the fact that the majority of the people in the web department were crammed in next to each other in half-height cubicles and could easily talk to each other over the useless short cubical "walls," the supervisor still insisted that we used iChat to keep in touch with one another instead of speaking, and later in 2009 he added using "Yammer" to that list.

When I first saw Yammer I was incredulous with how its functionality wasn't already largely redundant with what we were already doing with our communicating back-and-forth in the department-wide chat room in iChat. If Yammer is the same now as it was back in 2009, it basically was kind of like a message board thread that you could post your own status updates to, and it asked the question, "What are you working on?" There really wasn't much special about the app besides the fact that it had the question "What are you working on?" listed beside its text-input box. And it was that question that was listed to the left of the input textbox that got my supervisor so enthralled with it-- the fact that the Yammer app directed you to enter what you were currently working on and nothing else made it seem like some kind of revolutionary new project management tool in my supervisor's mind. I could have just as easily typed-in what I was currently working on in the department's iChat chat room, but no, I had to type it in to Yammer now (and I didn't really want to have to type it in anywhere at all-- this supervisor was only sitting about 4-and-a-half feet away from me-- I could have just *told* him what I was working on instead of being forced to deal with the nuisance of programs like iChat and Yammer breaking my concentration all of the time).

So if you haven't already guessed, I wasn't particularly impressed with Yammer back then, and I was very critical towards whether such a program was in any way genuinely useful or just another distraction developed by some upstart flash-in-the-pan web company that was being forced on me by management. As a result, I am genuinely shocked to learn now that the company could potentially be valued at $1-billion-- as the AC above posted on Thursday 14th June 2012 12:45GMT mentioned, apparently some social software only has to be marginally useful to suddenly one day be worth insane boat-loads of cash. I guess that I have just wasted my chances at amassing any kind of fortune thus far in my life by developing programs that had clear utility and that solved real problems instead of developing frivolous flavor-of-the-month social networking tools. *sigh*

Personally, just like Skype before it, I don't know why Microsoft would be potentially interested in buying Yammer. I can actually see the real value of Microsoft possibly buying Nokia someday since Nokia has a valuable patent portfolio and is currently the prime producer of Windows Phone 7-powered smart phones, but I don't see the real value of Microsoft going after Yammer. Sure Yammer and its user base are worth something, but $1-billion just seems ridiculously high to me. There has just got to be some better company or product out there than this that is worth Microsoft spending a billion dollars on-- There has just got to be!!!

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