18 January 2004

There is an interesting book review of two books on the AOL/Time Warner merger debacle in today's New York Times Book Review. I've been no friend of AOL since the early 1990s, shortly after it got off the ground and decided that noncompliance with existing standards was actually a sign of being user-friendly. I'm not much more of a friend of TimeWarner, and will probably become even less of one in the next year or two if TW tries to act against several of my clients. (Occasionally, representing an author requires maintaining a defensive posture, not necessarily suing.) In either event, it is interesting to see some of the material that one could obtain only in scattered sources beginning to appear in consolidated form in reputable books. This fits nicely into the Perfesser's remarks on corporate governance—and shows that the rot is a lot deeper and wider than Enron and other companies whose principal business turned out to be gambling with financial instruments.