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CNET Sandboxed?

Google is not talking to CNET reporters



4:17 am on Aug 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

As reported in the CNET article about Google's chef search:

Google could not be immediately reached for comment. (Google representatives have instituted a policy of not talking with CNET News.com reporters until July 2006 in response to privacy issues raised by a previous story.)

Does this strike anyone else as strangely ironic? It looks like the Google folks are applying a similar algorithm to media relations, as they do to developing search indexes.

Expect a patent application to follow soon ;)


5:19 am on Aug 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I think you are referring to this article:


Correction: The original article incorrectly implied that Google Desktop Search can track what's stored on a user's PC. The service does not expose a user's content to Google or anyone else without the user's explicit permission.


7:14 am on Aug 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

cnet is doing beautiful things with their com.com domain. Multiple listings for a variety of searches related to the keywords "ratings" and "reviews". I'm surprised Google hasn't banned them yet, lol.


5:10 am on Aug 8, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

The CNET article is a good investigative journalism, full stop. The original version had some factual errors, but they were quickly corrected, and the article stands as something that educates readers, making them better informed consumers. Badda-bing, vestiges of a democratic society. Both the writer, Elinor Mills, and her editors at CNET should be proud. Does G's punitive reaction not lessen their image by saying that if you write something critical of them, regardless of truth, they will seek to restrict your voice? Geeze, fluffy Google pudding tastes like...a publicly traded multinational corporation seeking to maximise returns for shareholders, no? The profit motive is of course perfectly legitimate, and indeed a paragon of capitalism, badda-boo, but is this how you want to be treated as a C-U-S-T-O-M-E-R?

One year after the IPO am I just a now piece of meat data? Ungrateful I: just shut up and take what's given.

Vive la CNET!

Google Inc. has blacklisted all CNET reporters for a year, after the popular technology news website published personal information of one of Google's founders in a story about growing privacy concerns for the Internet search engine, according to a CNET statement...

...Google spokesman David Krane told CNN the company declined comment.

Scott McClellan would be proud.

[money.cnn.com ]


5:29 am on Aug 8, 2005 (gmt 0)

pretty stupid to p*ss off reporters. You never know when you're going to need them. Cnet is pretty well read and respected too.


5:34 am on Aug 8, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Wow, this suggests that newspapers can only write positive stories about the companies they cover or their acces will be pulled. I hope CNET continues to write regardless of Google's move - I'd hate for any news organization to be an advertising vehicle for the companies they cover.


10:50 pm on Aug 8, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Story is now picked up on the AP.


>>pretty stupid to p*ss off reporters

Yeah, no kidding. If they would have given an interview and presented some well worded retorts (read: some creative spinning), this story would have gone away. Or at least not been as much of a one-sided view presented to the public.

Their PR people need a good talking to.


3:20 am on Aug 9, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

The New York Times has also picked it up:

[nytimes.com ]
registration required

Had Google not responded, the issue would be over and the original article would have faded. This is strange behavior from a once savvy PR department.


4:52 am on Aug 9, 2005 (gmt 0)

front page MSNBC (AP story)

"In her story, Mills included a link to Schmidt’s home address, his net worth of $1.5 billion and noted that he has attended the Burning Man art festival and is an amateur pilot. Mills said she spent 30 minutes on Google to obtain the information."


1:50 am on Aug 10, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Well - from my perspective as a paranoid webmaster, the most interesting thing about this story is that Google seems to be using the same social engineering technique on reporters that it does on webmasters.

If a Google detects that a webmaster is doing some link farming, or building up spam sites, it's going to drop his sites from the index for an undetermined period of time.

Right now, getting dropped is the biggest topic among webmasters in the Google News forum - and this fear (of being dropped), prbbly inspires more than a few webmasters to walk a straight line with their SEO methods.

Google seems to think that it can train (inspire fear?) in reporters using the same tactic.

... of course - I think that Google holds much greater power over webmasters, than they could ever hope to over media companies and reporters.

:D ... again, just the humble opinion of a highly paranoid webmaster.


10:42 pm on Aug 11, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Expect a patent application to follow soon ;)

Probably already filed it :)


10:44 pm on Aug 11, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

pretty stupid to p*ss off reporters

Sign of an amateur and unevaluated PR strategy.


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