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Antitrust

Googlephobia? No just holding a bad actor to account

I consider myself of like mind with my friend Adam Theirer of PFF on most all issues of substance, however, I must take strong exception to his misguided take on Google and Googlephobia

In Adam's post "Googlephobia: Part 6 - the Left Begin to Turn on Google":

Google's CEO: "Do you believe we have good values?" -- or could they be sub-prime values?

Google's CEO Eric Schmidt met with the New York Times Editorial Board last week, most likely on a charm offensive in response to the Rosenkranz Foundation oxford-style debate about whether or not "Google violates its 'Don't be evil' motto." 

  • David Carr, a columnist for the New York Times who attended the Schmidt meeting and who wrote "Google seduces with utility", asked Mr. Schmidt if he should "be worried that I am putting all my digital eggs in in one multi-colored, goofy lettered basket,  he said. That depends on what you think of our company and our values. Do you believe we have good values?"

Once again, Google is truly its own worst enemy.

IRS investigating if Mozilla-Google tax treatment is legal -- Why the DOJ should investigate too

There are reports that the IRS is investigating whether tax exempt Mozilla, the foundation behind the popular Firefox browser, can legitimately claim tax exempt status when 88% of the Foundation's revenues come from Google in payments for being the default search engine for Firefox downloads. 

I believe the DOJ should also consider investigating the Google-Mozilla relationship to see if Google anticompetitively gained an advantage -- given the facts, timing and circumstances.

Great read: "Google the first firewalled monopoly" by the Register

Cade Metz of the the Register, who is always insightful on the subject of Google, has a great piece I recommend: "Google the first firewalled monopoly: pricing power goes virtual."

Why Google lost the formal debate over its ethics -- And a compendium of Google's ethical lapses

Google effectively lost its first formal debate over whether "Google violates its own 'Don't Be Evil" motto" at the Rosenkranz Foundation's Oxford-style debate in New York City, November 18. (Transcript here).

  • Before the debate the audience was polled and voted 21% against Google and 31% for Google and 48% undecided; after the debate and learning more, 47% voted against Google and 47% voted for Google, and 6% undecided.
  • Apparently, most all of the undecideds voted against Google -- that Google violated their own 'don't be evil' motto. 

What does this mean?

Yang's "open" legacy is being overlooked going forward

Most are missing the lasting implications and legacy of Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang's signature "Open" strategy, in all the media chatter about his demise and his successor. 

Yang set Yahoo on a new and different strategic trajectory philosophically and culturally -- i.e. that of the open source movement -- which is strategically Google-aligned and Microsoft-opposed.

  • As Yang said in a statement reported in the Washington Post, "it was important to re-envision the business for a different era to drive more effective growth. Having set Yahoo! on a new, more open path..." [bold added]
  • In the WSJ today was another example of Yang's open legacy and open source/wisdom of crowds philosophy and culture that his successor will inherit: "Mr. Yang's preference for letting employees reach consensus rather than make tough decisions himself..."

This means the cultural momentum and trajectory at Yahoo is to remain close to its "open source" philosophical ally Google regardless of the DOJ decision to oppose the Google-Yahoo ad partnership and despite its investor-correct public statements to the contrary about Microsoft.

Jerry Yang's legacy will not only be opposing shareholder interests in scuttling the Microsoft offer, but also the under-appreciated 'open strategy' he implemented that is designed to continue to thwart a Microsoft bid going forward. 

Washington Post: DOJ was right to block Google-Yahoo

Kudos to the Washington Post for an excellent editorial: "Searching for Dollars: The Justice Department rightly opposed a Google-Yahoo deal."

 

Conflict of Interest Questions for Google CEO Schmidt as a Transition Spokesman

Google CEO Schmidt apparently is representing that he is speaking for the President-Elect's Transition today in Washington given the attached press release, which twice mentions Mr. Schmidt's membership on the "Transition Economic Advisory Board" in an otherwise very brief release. 

  • Given the perception created, conflict of interest questions are relevant and should be asked of Mr. Schmidt today. 

 

Perception of Conflicts with the Transition Ethics Code:

Responding to more personal attacks on my views -- from People for Internet Responsibility no less!

Thanks to a competitive Internet I am grateful to be able to freely respond to personal attacks on me and my pro-Internet competition views.

 

Mr. Weinstein of www.PFIR.org, People for Internet Responsibility, recently criticized me in his blog, which is his right, however, he did it initially in a manner which appears to be at odds with how Mr. Weinstein has suggested everyone should responsibly conduct themselves on the Internet. In particular, I reference the statement below from PFIR’s website, which is the concluding paragraph of why Mr. Weinstein formed PFIR.

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