Sunday, October 15, 2006

View from the Googleplex

Google's CEO had words of reassurance for "content companies" during this recent interview with the Financial Times, but they were tempered with a warning for the slow and reluctant.

Here's Eric Schmidt sounding like a cooperative and cozy partner:

All of the media companies are dealing with dramatic changes in their business. All of them are looking for a partner. All of them are looking for a way to make money. One of the great news, from our perspective, is people are using this content on the internet. The bad news is it doesn’t make as much money for the businesses. And ultimately the businesses need to make money in order to produce the new content. So what we’re trying to do with all of these partners is to say, ‘if you work with us we can combine our advertising platform and your content with a much larger audience.’ So far people like that message, they are now trying to figure out what to do about it – should they, should they not, under what terms, and those sort of things.

And then here's a taste of the warning he had about the kind of change ahead, and about winners and losers:

You know, every technology dislocation has winners and losers. And the winners are the companies that can adopt these technologies more quickly and the losers are the ones that are stuck, unable to make the transition, unable to take advantage of new technologies. It is clear that the internet and the web and what is generally known as a marketing term of web 2.0 are the defining new technologies. I think that race is underfoot. It’s too early to say who the losers will be. Clearly the winners will include companies like Google and all the other companies that have made their bets on web 2.0.

I think partnerships will be key, and I think we need to get started. Some may turn out to be fundamental building blocks of the 21st century news company. Others will be useful for a while and then fade as conditions change, or as our own capacities grow. Still others will, of course, turn out to be mistakes.

Ready, fire, aim.

We're engaged in that at corporate; I hope many of you are doing the same thing at home.
–Howard Weaver

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