Google-News Corp. Marvelous, He Said, She Said

September 26, 2014

I don’t have a dog in this hunt. I think both Google and News Corp. are wonderful. Weaknesses, none. Both companies just have strengths. Google has its Washington, DC lobbying effort and News Corp. has Fox News. Google has its ups and downs with the privacy issue (except at Stanford University). News Corp. has that alleged telephone tapping matter. Google has legions of users in Europe. News Corp. has fingers clutching newspapers, eyeballs watching television, and some Web users.

One big difference. Google is a  15 year old adolescent. News Corp. is an aged information company.

The two, like a May December romance gone sour will face nothing but irreconcilable differences. Need an example? Check out this blog post from the Google charmingly labeled “Dear Rupert.” See, Google does have a sense of humor.

I don’t have the energy to walk through the arguments and counter arguments. I do want to highlight one point and comment about it. News Corp. leaves a door open with its comment: “Google’s “power” makes it hard for people to “access information independently and meaningfully.” Google is “willing to exploit [its] dominant market position to stifle competition.

The Google response is wonderful. I believe that Commodore Vanderbilt, Jay Gould, John D. Rockefeller (oops sorry. He’s apoplectic about his descendants’ dumping holdings in fossil fuels), and JP Morgan (you remember: the fellow whose portrait makes it appear he is holding a knife as he starts to push himself from a chair) could not have collectively inked a better response:

With the Internet, people enjoy greater choice than ever before — and because the competition is just one click away online, barriers to switching are very, very low.

Well, I sort of enjoy the one click notion, but the reality for online users is that once a habit is formed, users have a tough time breaking it. Google is a habit with a market share only a drug lord can seek: 95% of users in Denmark, 66% of users in the US, 95 percent of users in France (gasp, France, home of Exalead, the former Quaero brain trust centroid, and numerous search vendors), etc. For more data see

Add to the monopoly position Google search controls, competition is few and far between. is just not able to gain significant market share from the GOOG. The hot ticket search engines according to search “experts” are and Er, there are metasearch engines and need access to other vendors’ indexes. As metasearch vendors, as search vendors doing primary indexing bite the dust, these outfits face some tough choices if they want to stay in business. The little known Exalead search,  which is almost unknown, offers a tiny fraction of the GOOG’s coverage. And Yandex? Well, Mr. Putin may make it difficult for that outfit to remain in business without picking up and heading to a new campground.

One click? Nope. As users shift to mobile devices, the information access mode shifts to applications or apps. Maybe News Corp. can tackle Google in this new space. I am not sure, however, if those who know how to do intercepts focus much on cutting Google off at the knees with an appealing online ad platform.

You can work through the rest of the arguments. Remember, you are one click away from finding a new search engine.

Stephen E Arnold, September 26, 2014


One Response to “Google-News Corp. Marvelous, He Said, She Said”

  1. Siti Internet Aziendali » Google scrive al caro Murdoch on September 28th, 2014 4:04 am

    […] o fanno riferimento alla selezione effettuata dai propri contatti sui social network. Se i netizen continuano a scegliere Google, suggerisce la Grande G, non è certo perché vi ravvisano autoreferenzialità nel proporre servizi […]

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