Google’s goobristic permission policy: We never need your permission, but you always need ours

June 7, 2010

Google’s CEO Eric Schmidt, dismissed the notion that Google was “arrogant” in an FT interview.

  • Mr. Schmidt: “The arrogance comes across because we trying to do things for end-users against organised opposition from stakeholders that are unhappy — and they paint us as arrogant. But I am sure that all successful organisations have some arrogance in them.”

It seems to me that “the arrogance comes across” with Google because Google operates, and expects to operate, under a double standard — where rules, laws and expectations apply to others, but do not, and should not, apply to Google — because Google is somehow special.

The latest example of Google’s expectation to be treated differently and better than Google treats everyone else — is Google’s “permissions” policy. (See the Goobris Series below for other examples.)

Only Googlers would not see the irony or hypocrisy in requiring others to seek Google’s permission when Google maintains it needs no one’s permission to do its business.

This special treatment/double standard appears to be a well worn pattern for Google. Consider:

  • No one can use Google property without permission, but Google can copy 12 million books without permission or payment.
  • No one can infringe on Google’s trademarks or copyrights, but Google-YouTube can copy/infringe the copyrights of tens of thousands of TV shows and movies without permission or payment.
  • Competitive broadband providers must be neutral and not discriminate, but Google’s search advertising monopoly does not have to act neutrally and can discriminate against competitors.
  • The FCC’s Open Internet regulations should apply only to broadband information services but not to Google’s information services.
  • Consumers should have to pay more for more bandwidth use, but Google should not. (See paras 106 & 103/104/112 of the FCC’s proposed rules.)
  • The FTC should not investigate Google for antitrust despite the FTC determining Google has market dominance, but the FTC should investigate Apple for antitrust when Apple has not been found by the FTC to be dominant.

In sum, Goobris is Google expecting that all the rules, laws and standards that apply to others — do not, and should not, apply to Google — because Google is special.

Goobris Series:

Goobris defined: See Goolossary at www.GoogleMonitor.com

Goobris I: “Goobris”

Goobris II: “Goobris Alert: ‘We want to be Santa Claus’”

Goobris III: “Clueless Goobris”

Goobris IV: “Schmidt Goobris: ‘we should have 100% share.’”

Goobris V: “Real Discrimination Goobris — Google’s hiding its EEO track record”

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