So the Googlies are, allegedly, gnashing and wailing.
Their ears, their nostrils, even their fully formed eyebrows are twitching beyond all human control.
Though I am not one of those who necessarily subscribes to the idea
that Googlies ever have extreme emotions, the rumor is that they are in
a fizzy tizzy. Because of Bing, the new search fragrance from Microsoft.
According to a report,
Google's Sergey Brin has ordered some of his finest brains to take Bing
apart as if it were a secretly smuggled advance exemplar of the
He wants to know how it thinks. He wants to know who its friends
are. He wants its very innards examined for performance-enhancing
I would very much like to believe this story. Mainly because I want
the word "Bing" to become part of the language, but also because Bing
seems like a rather fine product.
However, a small part of me, somewhere between my spleen and my liver, is sending a warning signal.
You see, last Christmas I read the highly amusing Michael Wolff biography of Rupert Murdoch.
In it, Wolff describes how Murdoch's wife, Wendi Deng, encouraged
him to hang with a younger crowd. You know, some of the folks that
might just decimate the newspaper industry as we know it. Folks such as
Sergey Brin and Larry Page.
So perhaps that place between my spleen and liver has been aroused
by the fact that the newspaper that broke the "Google is blinging
scared" story was Murdoch's own, and very much beloved, New York Post.
Of course it's possible that someone at Google was trembling so much
that he spilled his tale of fear to a friend at the New York Post.
However, when you're perceived as being a little bit of a, well,
monopoly, isn't it nice to occasionally bathe in the idea that there is
a serious threat to your throne and your, um, pension? Might you just
be tempted to find a nicely engineered way of slipping that story out
there just to improve the way you are regarded?
It's a little like movies of the last 15 years or so in which the
male protagonist has to show his vulnerable side to get the girl.
Because he sheds a tear or two and visits a psychologist to talk
about his mama, we end up thinking his belching, slobbering, swilling,
snorting, slightly uncouth persona was all actually rather charming.
He does get the girl, though. And that, for him, is really all that matters.