Feeds

Oracle: Google impurifying media's precious bodily fluids

Political groups, trade associations all in on it

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Oracle says it would never give money to any outside blogger or journalist who writes about its ongoing litigation against Google – except Florian Mueller, that is. On the other hand, the database giant says Google employs an insidious "network of influencers" that it uses to "shape public perceptions" about the suit.

Oracle made its accusations in a statement filed in response to Judge William Alsup's request that both companies disclose any paid relationships they may have with journalists, bloggers, and other media commentators, as Groklaw's PJ Jones reports.

In Google's own statement, the online ad slinger says it has no specific relationships to report:

Neither Google nor its counsel has paid an author, journalist, commentator or blogger to report or comment on any issues in this case. And neither Google nor its counsel has been involved in any quid pro quo in exchange for coverage of or articles about the issues in this case.

Oracle also denies that it has any paid relationships with the media, with the exception of Mueller, who disclosed his relationship with the company in April.

According to Oracle, it retained Mueller – who describes himself as "an award-winning intellectual property analyst-turned activist" – as a consultant on "competition-related matters," and that it did so after he had begun writing about the case. Jacobs further describes Mueller as "a frequent critic of Oracle."

Both companies admit that their own employees may have commented on the case in blogs, but both say that they have not paid any of their employees to do so and that they don't keep track of what their staffers post.

Google goes on to acknowledge, however, that "a large volume of material" has been written about the case, both in print publications and on the internet, and that some of the authors of that material may have indirect relationships with the Chocolate Factory via its philanthropic works or its participation in trade groups.

One can almost picture Oracle attorney Michael Jacobs' accusing finger trembling as he shouts, "A-HA!"

In Oracle's statement, Jacobs characterizes those same indirect relationships as a deliberately orchestrated strategy designed to "advance Google's intellectual property agenda."

"This network is extensive," Jacobs writes, "including attorneys, bloggers, lobbyists, trade associations, academics, and bloggers, and its focus extends beyond pure intellectual property issues to competition/antitrust issues."

Oracle even goes so far as to cite examples. One is Ed Black, president and CEO of the Computer and Communications Industry Association, which Oracle says is funded "in large part" by Google. Another is Jonathan Band, co-author of the book Interfaces on Trial 2.0, who the database giant says belongs to other Google-backed trade associations.

At press time, neither Black nor Band had responded to requests for comment from El Reg.

Oracle beats a familiar drum

In its statement, Google writes that it publishes a list of the trade associations and political organizations that it funds on its US Public Policy Transparency Page, but that it has not paid any of these organizations to comment on the case, even if their members have done so.

"It would be extraordinarily difficult and perhaps impossible for Google to identify all individuals who have commented on the issues in the case and who are also affiliated with one of these organizations," Google's attorney, Robert Van Nest, writes.

Perhaps Oracle could help Google with that. In 2000, it notoriously hired private investigators to comb through trash during Microsoft's antitrust trial to find links between Redmond and various industry and political organizations. At the time, Microsoft issued the following statement:

Oracle's attacks on trade associations and public policy groups are disingenuous and hypocritical. Obviously, Oracle has funded or supported numerous groups that have attacked Microsoft in recent years, such as ProComp, the Progress & Freedom Foundation, the Software & Information Industry Association, and the Computer & Communications Industry Association. While we do not agree with the views or tactics of these groups, we respect their right to express their views.

Oracle has not disclosed what trade organizations or political groups it funds currently, if any. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
Scrapping the Human Rights Act: What about privacy and freedom of expression?
Justice minister's attack to destroy ability to challenge state
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
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.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.