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AOL Cleans House

Throws Away Over 50 Projects

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What once was considered an Internet powerhouse, seems to be dwindling away. AOL is getting rid of (or has already) more than 50 of its projects according to Silicon Alley Insider. We knew about AOL Journals and AOL Hometown, but this list is huge.

The dead projects fall into a number of categories including video, audio, messaging, social, toolbars, desktop, safety, mobile, and email. Check SIA’s article for the complete list.

I wonder how many employees get the axe along with these projects. Layoffs are pretty prevalent these days within the world of online companies, from Yahoo! to Gawker to eBay. Speaking of Yahoo!, there have been rumors floating around of a possible AOL/Yahoo! merger, but they are just that – rumor. It’s hard to see many reasons Yahoo! would want to take on the AOL mess, but some say the deal might even happen this month.

"It’s clear that AOL’s parent company, Time Warner, wants this deal more than ever," says Tech Crunch’s Michael Arrington. "What isn’t clear is whether AOL’s assets will fix any of Yahoo’s problems." I guess AOL and Time Warner don’t consider any of these 50+ projects to be worth enough to sweeten such a deal.

"As far as the list itself: We’re hard-pressed to find projects we think AOL is foolish to be dropping," says SAI’s Peter Kafka. "We’re far from convinced that its newish strategy, which is more or less dependent on the fortunes of its Platform A third-party ad network, will pan out. But we don’t see how keeping any of these items helps the company move forward."

You have to wonder how much wasted time and money went into this massive list of dead projects. I guess it’s not as much as would’ve continued to be wasted had they stayed around. Otherwise they probably wouldn’t be dead.

AOL Cleans House
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