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Google launches self-protection blog

Calls it a 'public policy dialogue'

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A week after Privacy International ranked the privacy practices of 23 major web companies and put Google at the very bottom of the list, the Mountain View-based search giant has launched a brand new blog where it will regularly address matters of Internet privacy and other public policy issues, including copyright and trademark protection, online safety for children, content regulation, and patent reform.

"Our hope is that this blog becomes a resource for policy makers," Google public policy spokesperson Adam Kovacevich told The Register. "We have a lot of interaction with policy makers at the federal, state, local, and international level who are working on all sorts of hot-button issues, and we want this to be a part of those debates and discussions."

Google’s growing team of policy lobbyists has been blogging within the company since April, and these internal posts are now available to the web at large. The company also allowed comments on the blog, hoping to include its users in these discussions.

"We're seeking to do public policy advocacy in a Googley way," said today’s post from Andrew McLaughlin, Google’s director of public policy and government affairs. "Yes, we're a multinational corporation that argues for our positions before officials, legislators, and opinion leaders. At the same time, we want our users to be part of the effort, to know what we're saying and why, and to help us refine and improve our policy positions and advocacy strategies. With input and ideas from our users, we'll surely do a better job of fighting for our common interests."

Google’s public policy team now includes roughly twelve lobbyists scattered throughout the world, and all will be posting regularly to the blog. Kovacevich estimates that new posts will arrive roughly once a week. ®

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