17 thoughts on “Murdoch: We May Block Google”

  1. Previously, I rarely used WSJ as a source for either of the places where I’m involved with news diarist blogs. Because of WSJ politics.

    Now, one more great reason to avoid linking to them altogether. No need to send traffic to someone who apparently doesn’t want it.

  2. He wants to go with the old model:
    Business Value = Eyeballs * Demographics
    Since he doesn’t like the people send over from Google, he doesn’t know who they are or where they come from, ie. no Demographics. Subscriptions were mainly used to build the demographic model.
    Problem is Advertisers expect intent in today’s world, and the Voodoo intent provided by demographics won’t cut it.
    Which means in the long run he will be left with just Eyeballs and subscriptions to support his business, even if we take into account that the distribution cost are shared over all participants. The cost to generate content and generate profit, his kind of profit, will be higher than the income from subscriptions. Most advertising will go to verifiable intent.

    Then he talked about having Reports in any given Country and how expensive that is. Questions is why can’t we sample a few hundred news sources in any given Country and evaluate the information we want think is presented? We got the technology, no need to keep news gathering like we are in the 20th century.

    Sorry listened only to the first few minutes, decided he’s wasting my time. He actually should work for Google, who seem to expect a linear solution to a none linear problem.

  3. Considering most of their content is wire feeds, just like anyone else… it will just be replaced by another news organization.

    They’ll loose their relevance and eventually try and get a government bailout claiming they made a “best effort” to revive the business. I suspect this is actually an attempt to make the business bad enough for bailout.

  4. I listened to the whole interview and in general it seems like Murdoch has a pretty good take on things.

    If he wants to start charging a fee for news and magazine type content I have no big issue with that.

    When it comes specifically to what he says about Google and Ask.com, they are not stealing anything. If I go to either one of these, click on the news link, then click on a story, it takes me to the original story at the original site, and unlike with some other things it’s a direct from the original site instead of having some common site navigation and advertising stuff and attempting to fit some other sites pages within that.

    Not sure what he is thinking when he talked about random readership that they don’t know anything about versus loyal subscribers either, it seems like a non-issue.

    If the news is free, having the stories aggregated by Google and friends theoretically brings more readers and more advertising revenue.

    If the news is not free, having the stories aggregated by Google and friends is like free advertising for the paid service where a subscription is required so they do have that information on the readers to build statistics on what they as individuals have an interest in.

    I just don’t get it. šŸ˜‰

    Later, Seeker

    1. Let me try and take a stab at this:
      Business Value = Eyeballs * X

      Where X in the old days where demographics, Google changed that to intent. So let’s call it for the sake of argument an action. In the old days that action was calculated based on statistics of the demographic distribution that so many actions of the reader will follow. Basically somebody will buy the advertised goods someday. Lots of Voodoo. With Google you have click throughs and can actually track with some accuracy your advertising, less Voodoo.

      Now if he gets Eyeballs without him doing Voodoo or some more verifiable intent (which Google is already monetizing) he’s left with actually a negative Business Value. albeit a small one since the distribution cost are shared. Leaves the creation of the content to consider. Which spreads over a large set of eyeballs is also small.

      Boils down to:
      Eyeballs * 0 still equals 0 (assuming some return value from display ads, to recover cost)

      Not a good business.
      The question is how to change X. But without eyeballs, X is also useless which he seems to ignore. Or he can go for:

      0 = 0 * 0
      which seems to be his goal:-)

      If it were me I would keep the eyeballs and figure out a way to change X or get a share of the money from the monetizing of X (can you say Bing). In such a deal I would drive Google to link through Bing, just for the eyeballs. Might get a good deal from Microsoft just for that and lowers distribution/maintenance (bandwidth/servers) cost to 0.

  5. Can someone just email ‘ol Rup the robots.txt file he needs, and then we can get on with the business of ignoring this flailing octogenarian windbag?

  6. Rupert, while you’re at it, would you please take Fox News off basic cable and make it a pay station. Thanks.

  7. lots of Murdoch haters. if you haven’t heard, news orgs are getting their a$$ handed to them. they are NOT making money with dot-com era ‘ad model.’

    Rupert has to run a profitable news biz and must answer to shareholders. he’s not doing it to support Google traffic & ad sales. all you tech entrepreneurs who want to get filthy rich from your life’s work should relate, if you can put your politics aside.

    1. Well the problem with your argument is that there are other organizations that are A) Finding a way to make money with ad-based news delivery or B) Are backed by a television organization who brings in the funds.

      The reality is that Google is the launching point for most people’s internet browsing experience and to exclude them from ANY activity that involves your company is pure stupidity. Murdoch may be running his company into the ground with pre-millennium thinking…

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