Google Miffed at Getting 'Googled' by Reporter
E Commerce Times
August 9, 2005
by Saul Hansell
Google says its mission is "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful." But it does not appear to take kindly to those who use its search engine to organize and publish information about its own executives.
CNETNews.com, a technology news Web site, said last week that Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) had told it that the company would not answer any questions from CNET's reporters until July 2006. The move came after CNET published an article last month that discussed how the Google search engine could uncover personal information and that raised questions about what information Google collects about its users.
After the article appeared, David Krane, Google's director of public relations, called CNET editors to complain, said Jai Singh, the editor in chief of CNETNews.com.
"They were unhappy about the fact we used Schmidt's private information in our story," Singh said. "Our view is what we published was all public information, and we actually used their own product to find it."
He said Krane called back to say that Google would not speak to any reporter from CNET for a year.
Using Google, I found David Krane's blog. In his 8/4/05 post of a top five list of the ways his new daughter will be just like Google, I made this addition (reprinted verbatim):
Hey, Dave! I just got through reading about your conversation with the folks at C|Net, and I've got another one for ya!
6. (The baby will), realizing that everyone loves and adores it no matter what, will think nothing of crapping on people just because (she) can.
Richard Silverstein adds this cogent comment to C|Net's News.com's TalkBack regarding the original article:
I just don't get Google's churlish response to this article. It's a perfectly & responsible article. All the information about Schmidt was publicly available using his own company's technology. These people really have to get a life. It's not like the reporter went dumpster diving or dredged up former lovers or wives who wanted to tell all about him.
If Schmidt wants to be as prickly and thin-skinned as Bill Gates, then he'll have to pay the price in earning the public's disdain for his arrogance.