Embrace and extend

Chris Dixon

Bill Gates had a very clever tactic for responding to open alternatives to Microsoft proprietary tech.

Embrace – Wikipedia

He specifically used these tactics against web1 protocols/standards and open source software.

Of course the modern equivalent would be web3.

It was a far cleverer tactic than trying to dismiss the tech. He saw the momentum and knew it would be smarter to try to co-opt it vs fight it.

Plan for internet

“Phase 1 (Embrace): all participants need to establish a solid understanding of the infostructure and the community—determine the needs and the trends of the user base. Only then can we effectively enable Microsoft system products to be great Internet systems”

“Phase 2 (Extend): establish relationships with the appropriate organizations and corporations with goals similar to ours. Offer well-integrated tools and services compatible with established and popular standards that have been developed in the Internet community.”

“Phase 3 (Innovate): move into a leadership role with new Internet standards as appropriate, enable standard off-the-shelf titles with Internet awareness. Change the rules: Windows become the next-generation Internet tool of the future.”


Originally published on February 19, 2022