Via Drudge — FT.com unleases a whopper:
Microsoft on Tuesday launches a fierce attack on Google over its “cavalier” approach to copyright, accusing the internet company of exploiting books, music, films and television programmes without permission.Tom Rubin, associate general counsel for Microsoft, will say in a speech in New York that while authors and publishers find it hard to cover costs, “companies that create no content of their own, and make money solely on the back of other people’s content, are raking in billions through advertising and initial public offerings”.
Mr Rubin’s remarks, presaged in an article in Tuesday’s Financial Times, come as Google faces criticism and legal pressure from media companies over services allowing users to search online for books, films, television programmes and news. Viacom, the US media group, instructed YouTube, which Google owns, to remove 100,000 clips of copyright material.
Okay, so there’s a touch of irony here:
You see, Microsoft excels at marketing. They don’t excel at innovation. In fact, very little of what Microsoft has to offer is truly innovative. There is a tendency to come late to the game and snatch up an idea and build on it, perhaps years after the concept has hit the market, and call it their own. They market themselves as innovators and do a degree they are. Their innovation comes in the spit and polish and not in the technological breakthrough itself.
Examples of this go way back …
Arguably, Google has innovated more — with its search engine technology and the applications it has spun off them, and in the way it has changed the face of how people use their (and others’) computers — than Microsoft ever will. What commercial reality is motivating this attack, then? The biggest of them all: Dominance over all they survey:
Author Stephen Arnold has closely analyzed Google patents, engineering documents and technology and has concluded that Google has a grand ambition — to push the information age off the desktop and onto the Internet. Google, he argues, is aiming to be the network computer platform for delivering so-called “virtual” applications, or software that allows a user to perform a task on any device with an Internet connection.
“Google is this era’s transformational computing platform and could be about to unseat Microsoft from its throne,” Arnold writes in a summary of his book, “The Google Legacy: How Google’s Internet Search is Transforming Application Software” …
By and large, the desktop is where Microsoft dominates. The Internet is where it has stumbled repeatedly. MS must be guessing that it can gin up some opposition to Google among other legacy stakeholders, and it may be right. But Microsoft itself knows: It’s a pretty sad day for a technology company when its response to what is, in essence, a robust technological challenge is recourse to the courts and sniffs of moral outrage. Microsoft is just so 1990’s.