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Piracy

Google's problem with having an algorithm for a soul...

Kudos to the Wall Street Journal for a highly-illuminating page-one story: "Google under fire over controversial site" because it provides a rare window into the soul of the company who's purported company's motto is "Don't be evil." 

At its core, Google is a "math cult" of mathematicians/computer scientists whose core belief is that most any problem can eventually be solved by one of Google's cutting-edge computer algorithms. 

  • Google algorithmic prowess and focus has built the world's best search engine algorithm, with 400 plus variables, and it has also built the world's best online-advertising algorithm business, producing revenue growth twice that of its industry.
  • Moreover, Google co-founder Sergy Brin has said the "perfect search engine would be like the mind of God."

A big theme I have written about with Google is that it has a culture of "innovation without permission" which I have translated to mean there are few internal controls or little adult or human supervision at Google.

The Wall Street Journal article provides an outstanding case study of this point -- that Google cares little about the non-algorithmic aspects of technology and/or business.

News Corp needles Google for not protecting copyright -- Is Google an "honest" broker?

Google just can't seem to get on the right side of copyright law -- or the law in general for that matter.

  • Google's MySpace partner, News Corp clearly doesn't believe Google is doing enough to protect copyrights. 
  • Peter Chernin, President of News Corp., in an interview with the Financial Times yesterday, chided Google that ""they could do a better job" at preventing illegally copied video from appearing on its YouTube site."
    • FT asks: "Do they have the technology to do it?"
    • Chernin: "It's pretty safe to say that they have the technology available, that if we [MySpace] have the technology available, a) it's publicly available, and b) I haven't yet heard a lot about Google being technologically constrained."

The point here is that Google clearly has the wherewithal to not violate copyright, but they are making a business decision that it is better or more profitable for Google to disrespect copyright law rather than to respect copyright law.

AP: "Ethics group urges Congress to examine Google's Copyright controls"

Google's copyright kleptomania just can't stay out of the news for long. Per the AP/San Jose Mercury News last week:

  • "In letters sent to several lawmakers Wednesday, the National Legal and Policy Center excoriated Google for allowing its video-hosting service to become an online theater for showing and promoting illegally copied movies."

  • "The nonprofit group, which says it has no financial ties to the movie industry..."

  • "The grievances made to Congress focused exclusively on content found on Google's Web site rather than the company's more popular YouTube subsidiary that is being sued by Viacom Inc. for alleged copyright infringement."

I am a panelist with Tim Wu at Future of Music Conference 9-17

I am on a Broadband Policy panel on Monday at 4:45 at the Future of Music Summit with a couple of the lead folks who champion net neutrality: Professor Tim Wu, who coined the term, and Ben Scott, of Free Press who has slickly popularized it in close coordination with Moveon.org.

  • Should be interesting, the panel appears to be fairly balanced: one against NN (me) and the rest of the panel avidly for it.
  • Wish me luck.

 Leveling the Playing Field: how does broadband policy affect musicians?

Congress and the FCC are currently working a series of initiatives designed to revise the telecommunications regulatory framework, with everything from spectrum reform, to broadband deployment, to network neutrality on the table. How will proposed revisions impact musicians, citizens and technologists? How does broadband policy intersect with concerns about protecting intellectual property? What would a pro-musician Telecom Act look like?

Charles Bissell Musician, The Wrens

Scott Cleland Chairman, NetCompetition.org

Peter Gordon President, Thirsty Ear

Jason Oxman Vice President, Communications, Consumer Electronics Association

How Google systematically misrepresents its services as "free"

Google openly represents its value in the marketplace as supplying users with "free" services: free search, free email, free docs/spreadsheet/other applications, free content, etc.  

I'll be speaking at Conservative Leadership Conference on new media in Oct.

I am very excited to be attending, and to be one of the speakers, at the Conservative Leadership Conference on "Conservatives and New Media" in Reno Nevada, October 11-13.

  • This will be "the first national conference of its kind in the western United States to fully utilize the power of blogging and the internet to promote a conservative/libertarian, limited-government agenda."

The left is massively more organized and involved in new media than conservatives, so I am thrilled to help the CLC, Chuck Muth et al -- build a formidable conservative counterweight to the liberal-dominated blogosphere and new media.

I heartily encourage like-minded folks to attend, learn, and get better at promoting free-market, limited government principles over the Internet.

 

WSJ "Googling 'Monopoly' Op-Ed Superficial

Google must be worried about their Doubleclick acquisition having arranged an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal today entitled Googling 'Monopoly' by PFF President Tom Lenard and Emory University professor Paul Rubin.

  • While Google must be thankful for the placement in the WSJ, they have to be bummed about the unfortunate title.
    • Google loves to generously slather the "opoly" epithet on any formidable competitor who is in their way, so it must drive them crazy when it sticks to them in the WSJ.

First, let me say that I genuinely respect Mr Lenard and Mr. Rubin, and understand that on antitrust issues, analysts can honestly disagree on outcomes and impacts.

Who is America's most notorious scofflaw?

The outrage over Google-Youtube's complicity in rampant content theft and piracy continues to spread around the world.

    • "A coalition of Japanese television, music and film companies slammed YouTube Thursday, saying the online video sharing service was not doing enough to rid the site of cartoons and other clips that infringe copyright." ...
    • "There is no middle ground," Matsutake said. "We demand that all copyrighted material be removed immediately."

Let's focus on the corporate scofflaw pattern here: American, Japanese, and European content owners accross a wide swath of content industries are all outraged and suing Google for theft.

"Google-aganda:" Do as I say not as I do" See great Network World piece

Johna Till Johnson of Network World, has got Google's number in the article "Net Neutrality? Google, go first!"

  • "Forget "don't be evil" -- Google's real motto is: "Just trust us (and pay no attention to the man behind the curtain).""

    "Sorry, fellas, I'm not the trusting sort. And I always worry about the man behind the curtain. The reality behind the propaganda is this: The "open" company's considerable fortunes are based around the world's most proprietary search engine. And as for "neutral" -- try Googling Google, and you may notice something surprising: very few negative comments on the company pop up. Odd, no?"

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Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths