Feeds

'Parasitic' Google feels TV's wrath

What has Sergey ever done for us?

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Your reporter holds TV executives in as much esteem as a flesh-eating virus. But even in the uniquely clueless world of television, they're finally waking up to Google's 'parasitic' nature. C4 chief Andy Duncan has become the latest to awake from his slumber. The problem? Duncan's "cure" will probably only make Google stronger.

Duncan says that Google sucks billions out of the UK economy without making so much as a 30-second trailer in return. Duncan followed Michael Grade - who used the 'P' word - in voicing the criticism.

"Google should pay for content that it uses. The burden of responsibility should be on it to identify the people whose content it is using and make sure they are being paid for it, rather than expecting other people to point it out," Duncan said.

Duncan also argued that because Google books so much advertising revenue it should regulated. This is muddle-headed and misses the point. In fact the call for regulation is likely to make Google stronger - at C4's ultimate expense.

Contrary to what the company says, Google is in fact quite keen on regulation - when it hampers Google's opponents. The giant ad broker helped orchestrate the historic move to create a "rule book" of technical mandates for the internet - something that would have had politicians vilified by digital rights activist groups. Google has even has succeeded in persuading the US telecomms regulator the FCC to adopt them, and has sneaked them onto the Brussels agenda, we revealed a fortnight ago.

By replacing the historical anarchy of the internet with mandates on what access networks can and can't do, Google makes its own private content delivery network (CDN) more valuable - and restricts the opportunity for access networks to create services based on the content that flows over the pipes. So the access networks gradually become dumb bit-pipe providers, and worthless. Therefore the market falls into Google's pure and innocent hands.

(And the company must be pure of heart - because it says it is.)

Unless they're careful, in pushing for advertising regulation for Google TV executives are likely to usher in the technical regulation that makes Google invincible.

We should also note that it's not quite true that Google doesn't hire people who make content. Recently it recruited the editor of the BBC's flagship nightly current affairs programme Newsnight, Peter Barron.

But Barron is not employed in content creation, but as a spin doctor. He joins 120 others in the UK PR team - what some would call lying for a living. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal
And our man Corfield is pretty bloody cross about it
China hopes home-grown OS will oust Microsoft
Doesn't much like Apple or Google, either
Super Cali signs a kill-switch, campaigners say it's atrocious
Remote-death button bad news for crooks, protesters – and great news for hackers?
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Fast And Furious 6 cammer thrown in slammer for nearly three years
Man jailed for dodgy cinema recording of Hollywood movie
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Don't even THINK about copyright violation, says Indian state
Pre-emptive arrest for pirates in Karnataka
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
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?