Feeds

Google ducks angry authors

Misses opportunity to enlighten

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

CISAC Google gave a keynote speech to the biggest global gathering of authors' societies today.

The internet advertising giant is embroiled in several areas of copyright litigation. Publishers and authors object to its mass scanning project, Google Books. News agencies and publishers have sued it over its use of links and excerpts in Google News. And Viacom is suing Google for using infringing clips on YouTube.

So the audience at CISAC's Copyright Summit was presented with Google's EMEA chief Nikash Arora. Would he tell the authors he felt their pain? Would he speak a language they understood?

Not likely. Arora may as well have chosen to speak in Klingon. He was also the first non-government speaker at the summit to avoid answering questions from the audience. Instead, we were treated to a stage-managed 15 minute Q&A which avoided the tricky subject of litigation all together.

Arora is a marketing guy and a former telcomms analyst who has only been at Google two years. He crammed in every Web 2.0 cliche he could. It was all there: Wikipedia was replacing libraries - because "you're more likely to rely on the wisdom of crowds". "Nerds", he said were the new cultural arbiters:

"People who have never left the house are now surfing at home, finding new talent," he said - so perhaps soon, the only music in the world will be made by prog rock or death metal bands.

Arora used phrases like "connected society", "democratisation of information", and enthused a plenty about the "Long Tail". Everywhere he looked, the internet was overcoming the homogenity of the modern world by promoting diversity, he argued.

Naturally, there was no mention of research that shows people who spend a lot of time on the internet become more narrow-minded than ever - because they tend to seek out only people who share the same views. All was for the best in all possible worlds.

He did concede, however, that, "it requires a lot more users to monetise than it does in the physical world".

There was little indication Google was locked in combat with the audience.

What we did learn instead, was that when Arora went for his interview, he was wearing a jacket...while the Google staff were wearing short-trousers. While Sergei Brin was doing yoga on the floor, waiting for the next meeting to start.

Short-trousers! Yoga! You can't help loving us!

Maybe this is what Googlers tell each other to motivate themselves, to reinforce their sense of goodness. But the message bombed - delegates we spoke to complained they'd learned nothing new and resented being patronised. Google had lost a golden opportunity to explain and enlighten.

Parlez-vous Klingon? ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed
Remastered so hard it would be difficult or impossible to master it again
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.