MSN reassigns Siegelman

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Microsoft Corp. named company veteran Laura Jennings VP of Microsoft Network. She replaces Russell Siegelman, who developed and launched the online service last August and who Microsoft said will take another job at the company "in the near future."

Ms. Jennings previously was general manager of workgroup applications and senior director of marketing for consumer systems.

MSN, owned by Microsoft (80%) and cable giant Tele-Communications Inc. (20%), was criticized early on for being slow and lacking content. Microsoft did an about-face in December when it began to reposition the proprietary service as a Web-based service.

In strategic moves that suggest a less central role for MSN at Microsoft, the company recently struck deals to bundle America Online and CompuServe access software with Windows 95 as a way to promote the Internet Explorer browser, and it is pursuing a similar deal with Prodigy Services Co.

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