Feeds

Google snubs press in privacy fury

Adds CNET to Do Not Call list

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Google has thrown a hissy fit and blacklisted tech news site CNET's News.com - vowing not to provide quotes or statements to the site for a year.

"Google representatives have instituted a policy of not talking with CNET News.com reporters until July 2006 in response to privacy issues raised by a previous story," noted reporter Elinor Mills here.

The previous story, by the same reporter and published on July 14, drew on information largely gleaned from Google itself to note Google CEO Eric Schmidt's political affiliations and hobbies.

"Like so many other Google users, his virtual life has been meticulously recorded," wrote Mills. Since Schmidt is on the public record with a promise to build "a Google that knows more about you", he's hardly in a position to complain when his company is demonstrated to be functioning as designed.

"Shouldn't he resign if he feels that searching through Google's index is so evil?" wrote one correspondent to Dave Farber's IP mailing list.

The move is likely to backfire on two counts. Google isn't alone in amassing one of the world's largest databases of personal information and behavior - as Yahoo! and Microsoft have too. But the retaliation against the news site is only likely to focus more attention to Google's often contemptuous attitude to press and analyst scrutiny (on its first ever financial analyst day the company offered its chef, but not its CFO) and puts its privacy issues firmly in the spotlight.

Secondly, Google's official PR statements typically fall into two categories: the useless and the downright misleading. (We discovered that the hard way, when a promise to deliver a written news policy for its Google News aggregator made one Friday had vaporized by the following Monday; to this day Google has never made a public policy statement of its criteria for including sources in Google News).

By dispensing with the obligatory Google spin, CNET may be emboldened to take an even more critical look at the company.

There are many employees at Google who take its responsibilities as one of the world's largest databases of personal information and behavior seriously. But those responsibilities don't appear to be shared by their management. ®

Related stories

Search pioneers join Yahoo! - but is the web beyond search?
Google seeks RSS ad patent
MS nixes Google hire
Google puts the brake on Web Accelerator
Google AutoLink: enemy of the people?
Google to Wall St: our CFO couldn't make it. So meet the Chef
Google News' chief robot speaks out
Gmail accounts 'wide open to exploit' - report
Google finally fixes Desktop security vuln
Google's Gmail: spook heaven?
Google's Ethics Committee revealed
Google values its own privacy. How does it value yours?
PR rules, OK? Google ducks promised news policy pledge

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.