News has come down that Microsoft, the spurned, would-be former buyer of Yahoo!, may just yet be making a pitch to buy my old employer, AOL.

Very interesting new development in the search engine/portal buy-up wars. One of the sidebars of this little business psychodrama is that Google owns five per cent of AOL. Google’s not going to go quietly into the night over this potential move of Microsoft’s, and really, what’s stopping Google from buying AOL outright themselves? This might just be the push Google needs to snatch AOL away from Microsoft.

One thing’s for sure: heads will roll soon at Microsoft if there’s no successful bid by the company to enter the ad-dominated portal/search market more effectively than the company has done in the past.