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Web Giants Band Together to Fight a Common Enemy - Google

eBay, internet auction king, also owns Paypal, the online payment market leader. Microsoft, the PC desktop king, needs a strong presence on the web. Yahoo, internet veteran and web portal king, is loosing the race in web search. All the three players have a common enemy - GOOGLE

Google's mission was to organize world's data but in the process, Google has started making strong inroads into other's territory. What started as a search-only company has now proved to be the biggest nightmare of giants like Microsoft, Yahoo and eBay.

I remember reading ancient war stories where weaker opponents (either friends or foes) would join hands to fight a common enemy who was much stronger. These same age-old warfare tactics are again being tactfully applied in this DOT COM War - Part II.

Though Yahoo has accepted defeat at the hands of Google Search, eBay has a different but more aggressive game plan. To defeat the common enemy Google, EBay is talking to both Yahoo and Microsoft about the possibility of working together to thwart growing competition from Google.

EBay, Yahoo, Google and Microsoft are clear leaders in the tech world and yet their competitive landscape is still profoundly uncertain. In particular, the rapid growth of online advertising has injected new competition into the Web, forcing the foursome to challenge each other in ways they hadn't in the past.

Google recently introduced Google Base that competes with eBay auction listings. Google is also developing GBuy, an online payment system that sounds similar in concept to eBay's PayPal. eBay also owns Skype which again competes with Google Talk, another Internet phone service

But again, this is a web of complex relationships. eBay is one of the largest Google Adwords customer while Google provides eBay three times more search traffic than Yahoo or MSN. eBay can't afford to leave Google but at the same time, it may find it hard to work with a company that is developing competing products.

More commentary by Jonathan Berr, John Battelle and Rhys Blakely