Tuesday 15 December 2009

Murdoch’s Mexican stand off

A couple of weeks ago, the Financial Times reported that Rupert Murdoch wanted to shut Google out of his news sites, and people sat up and took notice. Murdoch decided that he would rather exclusively allow Microsoft’s Bing search engine to search his publications like the Times and WSJ. He could lose about 25% of his traffic but snap up a payment from Microsoft in the process, which is busily trying to buy Bing a place in the search market.

This is big news for journalism and if others follow suit (News Corp is certainly rallying the troops) it could change the way that we use the internet to gather information. If Bing became the only, or even best place to find quality reporting, it could for the first time be a real threat to Google’s stronghold. But what interested me is the fact that this story was reported in TechCrunch blog two weeks before; it just took coverage in the Financial Times for people to start paying attention.

TechCrunch is one of the most respected technology blogs on the net, and if nothing else, Robert Peston has shown the power of blogging over the past year so it is disappointing that the story wasn’t picked up earlier. Perhaps we still have a way to go before the power of the blogosphere can compete with mainstream media.


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