Feeds

Google ducks angry authors

Misses opportunity to enlighten

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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
Bladerunner sequel might actually be good. Harrison Ford is in it
Go ahead, you're all clear, kid... Sorry, wrong film
Musicians sue UK.gov over 'zero pay' copyright fix
Everyone else in Europe compensates us - why can't you?
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Megaupload overlord Kim Dotcom: The US HAS RADICALISED ME!
Now my lawyers have bailed 'cos I'm 'OFFICIALLY' BROKE
Euro Parliament VOTES to BREAK UP GOOGLE. Er, OK then
It CANNA do it, captain.They DON'T have the POWER!
Forget Hillary, HP's ex CARLY FIORINA 'wants to be next US Prez'
Former CEO has political ambitions again, according to Washington DC sources
prev story

Whitepapers

Go beyond APM with real-time IT operations analytics
How IT operations teams can harness the wealth of wire data already flowing through their environment for real-time operational intelligence.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Seattle children’s accelerates Citrix login times by 500% with cross-tier insight
Seattle Children’s is a leading research hospital with a large and growing Citrix XenDesktop deployment. See how they used ExtraHop to accelerate launch times.