In the personality-driven world that is our industry, Qi Lu stands out for his relative lack of public profile. Widely respected as a technological leader while heading up search at Yahoo, Qi burst onto the industry scene when he defected to Microsoft last year and took the role of President of the Online Service division. In short, Qi is the man in charge of Microsoft’s online strategy.
Our interview later this month will mark Qi’s debut on the Web 2 stage. From all accounts, Qi is a very different character from his boss Steve Ballmer (who was a highlight of Web 2 two years ago). I’m looking forward to our interaction. Clearly we have a lot to discuss – the shifting sands of alliances (Facebook, Yahoo, Myspace, etc.), the rise (and fall?) of Bing, the Yahoo search deal, the future of MSN with regard to content, the role of ad exchanges and platforms (the Aquantive deal), and much more.
But I digress. What do *you* want to hear from Qi this year?
Others we’ll be interviewing (and I’ve asked for your help):
To come: Aneesh Chopra, Sheryl Sandberg, Jon Miller, Austan Goolsbee, Paul Otellini, Shantanu Narayen, Tim Armstrong, Tim Berners Lee, and more. Again, an amazing lineup.
If you want to come, I can still get you a Searchblog discount (for about another week). Just ping me here.
5 thoughts on “Web 2: Help Me Interview Qi Lu”
Good luck with that one. I was at SMX in Seattle where Danny Sullivan interviewed Lu on stage and it was PAINFUL to watch.
Lu keeps to the script, repeating talking points. Even the jokes seem orchestrated.
comon Friend. if anyone can wrangle in a good interview, it’ll be John.
Qi left Yahoo claiming he wanted to spend time with his family, having worked so hard for 10 years, etc. etc. And then promptly jumps to Microsoft, where he’s again working 18-hour days.
So what was it: is the family less important than the Microsoft money? Or was there a problem at Yahoo, and “family” was just an excuse?
I know Andrew (Blelvis) personally as well. While he’s not adverse to a beer or seven, I’ve absolutely no reason to believe he’s a crack smoker or thief. The last few times I saw him around he was doing some work with a contractor. There’s somewhere between hero and nuisance, you know, like, regular guy (who happens to know every Elvis song) trying to get by.
The new bing format prides itself on being a decision engine, where the user is given more than just search results, they’re given reviews, images, and well organized links, all of which are supposed to enhance the user experience. This is nice, but it only works with certain terms, usually nouns, and more specifically, popular nouns.
For example, bing’s features will be activated when doing a search for “toyota prius”. If, however I search for “tape recorders”, all I’ll get is normal search results. In addition, the more conversational searcher, will also fail to activate bing’s unique features, as a search for “how do I buy a toyota prius” also returns normal results. Could this inconsistency be seen as a problem for Bing, as it tries to claim a share of the search market?