What do you do if there is no big story at a trade show? Well, you focus on Google team which has signed up for the conference, and write a sensationalist piece which is going to generate a lot of buzz. Buzz about Google jumping into the VoIP space will surely be picked up by Google-mad web loggers, and generate easy page views. Well that’s precisely what News.com did, resulting in a very public flagellation. Jeff Pulver called them the “National Inquirer of VoIP.” Oh Pulver is being polite I think, for the Inquirer does run photos.
I just read a story on CNET tonight which seemed to refer to a casual conversation I had during lunch today with a friend. It turns out that a reporter who I also know from CNET was at the same lunch table and picked up on the name of my friend and the company he worked for. Turns out that my friend works at Google and at VON, this seems to be “news.”
Earlier this year, almost single-handedly, CNET took a Google job posting and jumped to all sorts of conclusions about how Google was planning a VoIP offering — without one shred of actual evidence. While I’m not at this VON, I’ve certainly gone to VONs in the past. Does this mean that Techdirt is starting a VoIP play? Of course not. So why does CNET think that because Google (a major company with lots of interests) sends some folks to VON (a major conference with plenty of interesting things happening) that they’re obviously getting into the VoIP business?