Google: “Digital Vampire”?

By Casey Lynn
Contributing Writer, [GAS]

In a recent speech, Dow Jones Chief Executive and publisher of the Wall Street Journal Les Hinton waxed poetic upon the evils of Google by picking a metaphor and, er, sinking his teeth in. He called Google a vampire that’s been “sucking the blood” out of the newspaper business. Of course, he continued, Google isn’t all to blame. Newspapers should never have offered content free on the web!

“There is a charitable view of the history of Google. [It] didn’t actually begin life in a cave as a digital vampire per se. The charitable view of Google is that the news business itself fed Google’s taste for this kind of blood. [Free web content] gave Google’s fangs a great place to bite. We will never know what might have happened had newspapers taken a different approach.”

Hinton also says that Dow Jones is in the process of creating a new web platform that will level the playing field. I can only assume that the code name for this super secret project is “Buffy.”

Of course, the real question is, just what kind of vampire is Google? Hinton implies that it needs blood to survive, but is it also immortal? Will a stake kill it, or do we need sunlight/fire? Most importantly, I think, Google is the kind of vampire that requires an invitation into your home. Oh, and it definitely has some kind of psychic and/or mesmerizing ability. I’m pretty sure it doesn’t sparkle, though.

Okay, I think this metaphor is done; put a stake in it.

[Picture source: Flickr (CC)]

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