Ghost Sites of the Web

Web 1.0 history, forgotten web celebrities, old web sites, commentary, and news by Steve Baldwin. Published erratically since 1996.

June 11, 2008

Microsoft's Windows Live Expo Scrapped

Much has been made of the complicated problems that have prevented Microsoft from dominating the online space, and the failure of Windows Live Expo supports the notion that MSFT really doesn't have a clue. I've long been of the view that Microsoft will eventually succeed because it's got more cash than Saudi Arabia, possesses major engineering talent, and is infused with exactly the kind of killer spirit required to win in the online space.

But lately I'm beginning to have my doubts. MSFT keeps demonstrating a failure to master the simplest principles of Internet Marketing 101, including the principle stating that you must have a catchy name whose meaning bears some close resemblance to what the function of your property is. The name "Live Expo" sounds like some kind of virtual trade show, not a classified site. "Live Marketplace" or "Live Classified" would have been a far better choice, but even the word "Live" (used by its flagship search engine, "Live Search") is practically meaningless, unless what you're selling is longevity products.

Do us all a favor, MSFT, and name your products with terms that can be used as verb. Nobody "Lives" anything, they "Yahoo" it (rarely) or "Google" it (ubiquitously). Let go of the ridiculous notion that you have to globally brand everything under a single, meaningless moniker, and you might get a few insights about the online world. Hell, even "" would have a better chance of gaining traction than your crazy "Live" empire.

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