Robert Thomson, who is the News Corp CEO and right hand man to dark lord Murdoch has lashed out at Google for “piracy, zealotry and kleptocracy” Let me for a moment check Google for definitions of these words, Piracy is well-known so I won’t be checking that.
Zealotry – right wing fanatical and uncompromising pursuit of religious, political, or other ideals;
Kleptocracy – is a term applied to a government seen as having a particularly severe and systemic problem with officials or a ruling class.
I can see where he is coming from with the term Zealotry, after all, Google is extremely uncompromising in its business model towards privacy, competition and other interests. Kleptocracy? Google has a problem paying taxes and to some extent has disobeyed the ideals of the ruling class, but in others has assisted by sharing data of consumers etc. It depends how you define the relationship between state and tech companies.
Finally piracy, again, Google is perceived to rip news corporations off by offering free news, but should consumers pay for the right to educate themselves on world events. Google has also taken steps to delete millions of links to pirated content in the last few years, I am not defending Google, but I don’t believe everything should be behind a paywall, as is News Corp’s vision.
Robot Thompson went on to say that Google and LinkedIn among others “redistribute the content created by others, they would argue that such redistribution is a natural extension of their role as social networks. I would argue that much of the redistribution is an unnatural act” Before stating “the digital age has been hostile to investment in reporters and reporting” I would argue this is a speech from a Republican dilutionist who lost his audience at “unnatural act.”
News Corp and many other avenues are facing challenges of monetizing their content effectively, the old days of buying a newspaper is fading fast and it’s up to these companies to strategize a future whereby consumers are more inclined to pay for content, instead of knocking the search engines that after all, link to their content in the first place. This also highlights what consumers actually want from their news, if you had the choice of paying for a news article which basically tells you the same as a free article, which one would you choose?
News is news, the US or some other company being hacked again is the same whether it’s paid to read or free. It will be interesting to see how you monetize news when there is a saturation of sources available.
Thank you mUmBrella for providing us with this information.
Image Courtesy of Forbes