Google: Information Is for Us (Us Is the Google)

February 22, 2020

I won’t write about the alleged Google murder. Plus, I won’t run through the allegations related to this story: “Google Secretly Monitors Millions of School Kids, Lawsuit Alleges.” Google has many facets, and I find advertising Google style fascinating.

DarkCyber thinks the multi state investigation into Google’s possible violation of of antitrust law is philosophically challenging. The case involves information, consultants, Texas, and a tendril reaches Microsoft, an outfit skilled in software updates.

Let’s start with a Wall Street Journal (a story protected by a  pay walls) revealed an interesting Google stance.

“Google Resists State Demands in Ad Probe” (February 22, 2020) reported that the company’s resistance to requests for information, in the words of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton:

They don’t believe that they’re clean because they don’t act in any way like they are.

Those involved is the Texas-led legal action want more than email. Google has balked. Google has groused about c0onsultants working on the case.

Why the hassle over ads? According to the Murdoch owned WSJ:

News Corp has complained that Google and other digital companies siphon ad revenue from content creators.

DarkCyber finds the pivot point in this multi state tug of war is information.

Google is an information company. Some believe that Google sought to index the world’s information. Then allow people to access the content.

But advertising revenue and a mostly ignored lawsuit about ad technology have altered the definition of information.

Google has information about its ad business. Some of that information has been requested via appropriate legal vehicles by the states’ taking Google to court. Google does not want to make that information available.

If the data were made available, presumably attorneys would be able to:

  • Perform text analytics; for example, display statistical information about word occurrences, generate clusters of like data, etc.
  • Generate indexed entities and tag them. Once tagged, these entities can be graphed so relationships become visible
  • Output timelines of events and link those events to entities
  • Search the content using key words and use the tags to reveal tough to discern items of information; who influenced what action when the words used to describe the activities were ambiguous to a non Googler.

There are other functions enabled by the corpus and current content processing technology.

DarkCyber noted these thoughts:

  1. Google is an information company and does not want that information disclosed
  2. Tools, some of which may run on Google’s cloud infrastructure, can reveal important nuances in the ad matter, nuances which otherwise may be impossible to discern by reading and human note taking
  3. The legal system, which has been most ineffectual in dealing with Google lacks laws and regulations which have not be enacted in the US to deal with digital monopolies.

Net net: Google may have the upper hand… again.

Stephen E Arnold, February 22, 2020


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