Hot on the heels on the “Humble Indi Bundle” where customers pay what they think an item is worth, it appears Steve Ballmer is experiencing what it is like to be a “Bumbling CEO Bundle” and having his bonus cut for the third year running.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

Microsoft Corp.’s MSFT -1.68% board reduced the bonus awarded to Chief Executive Steve Ballmer, citing factors that include the company’s unprofitable online division and the its failure to hew to an agreement with European regulators.

Source: Wall Street Journal

The report continues to Ballmers misfortunes with the only “positive” I can see being the completion of Windows 8 which hasn’t even gone to market.  I expect Ballmer’s woes would include the apathy from consumers as a whole to Windows Phone 7, that languishes in the doldrums of the smart-phone market.

What was particularly interesting in the article over on the Wall Street Journal (and I recommend you follow the link) was some of the first few comments which appeared:

He earned a bonus? If I had an interest in the company, I’d be clawing back his base salary.

or

Nothing innovative has emerged from Microsoft since Gates left. Balmer is not a visionary and Microsoft needs to terminate his employment.

and

MSFT will jump 5 points if Ballmer resigns. This guy is a millstone around the company’s neck. If he doesn’t leave soon, MSFT will not be around in 3 years.  They’ve missed every wave since 1999: search, social media, cloud computing even email……

Again, I recommend people paying a visit to the article.

I on the other hand celebrate Steve Ballmer.   Why? Because I think his “leadership” has led to the creation of openings for competitors in the marketplace.  Windows Phone failed to stomp over everyone, online services are spread through a diverse range of providers.  I think Steve Ballmer is to thank for the loss of stranglehold on the tech market and as the mainstream consumer is shifting to new form factors, Microsoft’s Windows legacy holds little sway.  If for a minute we look at say Apple (collective boo heard in the background) they have managed to engage their customers with their products, satisfy the demand for new tech/form factors and made (to say the least) many loyal customers who quite probably would purchase a wet toilet roll if it had the Apple logo on it.

Android too is enjoying great popularity in the market and grasped the hearts and minds of the consumer.  When we look at the Smartphone market, there isn’t really a 3rd player and Microsoft is now finding itself in an almost impossible battle with Apple and Google.

Steve Ballmer was alleged to have said “I’m going to f*cking bury Google” – It now seems quite the reverse is true and it will be Google that buries him.

Mail: bytes4free@googlemail.com

Skype: tim.openbytes