Feeds

Google UK boss: Think of us as a newsagent

With schoolkids allowed in all the time?

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

The head of Google UK reassured MPs yesterday that the massive ad broker does not steal content from impoverished publishers, and should be thought of more as a kindly local newsagent with a massive server farm at the back of the shop.

Matt Brittin gave the Culture Media and Sport Select Committee the impression that he was distressed by descriptions of the search giant as a "parasite".

'I want to make one thing incredibly clear - we do not steal content," he said, according to The Telegraph.

He added that Google was simply using a snippet of publishers' content and was in return sending oodles of impressions their way.

"We are, if you like, a virtual newsagent," he said.

If anything, he said, Google was performing a public service, as in a physical newsagent, publishers often have to pay to have their publication in the shop.

We like this image - of Eric, Larry and Sergy running a little corner shop, sort of like Ronnie Barker, David Jason and Nurse Gladys Emmanuel in an Open All Hours for the internet age.

The difference is that Google doesn't face the prospect of paying for their deliveries of magazines and are totally disinterested in whether or not customers are simply skimming the choice/dirty bits of the papers before they put them back, then buy some sweets.

Brittin insisted there was a long term future for papers - including locals - as "you can flick through things, you can find things easily, it's a nice assortment of stories and content, including advertising that's relevant to you".

Whether local papers will survive Google's latest wheeze of getting into property sales advertising is quite another question.

Brittin also put paid to the idea that Google is somehow groaning with cash on the back of all those ads it places around the snippets of other people's stories it uses in its search results.

Overall growth had slowed down to zero earlier this year he said, and it was picking up now.

But he added, when it comes to news content: "We don't make money from this content in any great measure." ®

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
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.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.