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Technology & Innovation

How Google Ambushed Microsoft

Google pulled off a huge PR coup. It changed the topic. Media coverage isn’t about spam and how Google profits from this; we are debating how valuable Google’s search results are.

I moderated a panel discussion this week between Google, Microsoft, and Blekko. The event, which I emceed, was called Farsight 2011: Beyond the Search Box, and was organized by BigThink and Microsoft. As I joked, it seemed odd that Google was playing the role of “evil” monopolist; Microsoft, the “good” contender, whilst Blekko was a fly on the wall. In opening the debate, I said that, as a professor, I can’t condone any kind of plagiarism or cheating — and that is what Microsoft’s usage of Google data seems to amount to. But in the tech world, such information exchange is the norm.


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