Google sticks its toe into enterprise waters (is Google hiding from bloggers?)

Remember on Friday when I was talking about big-company PR? Yeah, Google went to the New York Times to leak tomorrow’s announcement of new business-focused services. Information Week got a good look too. It’s already at the top of TechMeme.

Hey, lookie here, 107 news stories about the exact same thing. On a Sunday night, even! I had no idea so many journalists were even working on a Sunday. (Hint: they aren’t, this was written Friday and held).

OK, most of that is big-company news sources. See how this works? One, or a few reporters get an exclusive, then everyone has to jump in too.

So, I figure since it’s Google that the blogs would be all over this one. Over to Google blogsearch I go (I like Technorati better, but this is a story about Google so you’d figure that they’d get at least a few bloggers to talk about it, right?)

I can’t find a single blogger who got leaked this information along with the big-city newspapers.

Surely they’ve given Mike Arrington or Om Malik an early look, right?

Nope and nope.

UPDATE: Om says he was invited to be on the beta, but turned it down because he didn’t like the privacy disclosure.

How about John Battelle, search engine expert who wrote a book on Google. Surely he has the inside track, right?

Nope. He had to learn about it from a spammy mail sent to customers.

How about Danny Sullivan, most important influential in the search industry? (According to Google’s founders). Nope.

Dan Farber? He writes for ZDNet (professional press, surely he got in on the news) and covers Silicon Valley like a glove. Nope, he’s reduced to linking to Information Week.

Damn, did we all piss off Google PR or something or are they trying to hide something?

Well, hope that PR strategy works for Google. In the experiences of other companies that have gotten lucky enough to get all that PR it really doesn’t work out all that well unless the influentials also back up the hype.

The funny thing is that at PodTech we’re actually using most of the “Google Office Suite.”

I hate it. It isn’t even in the same ballpark yet as having an Exchange server.

Maybe that’s why Google didn’t want to show it to influentials first. They’d tell the big-city press crew to take a pass on this until it at least gets close to Microsoft’s enterprise offerings.

And, yes, I am meeting with Google this week to show them just how far off the mark their offerings are in the Enterprise space.

Please note: that doesn’t mean Microsoft should sit back and celebrate. They are gonna get their ass kicked in this space because of their lack of attention to the Macintosh. That’s the #1 reason I’ll probably be using Google’s stuff over the next year instead of Microsoft Exchange, Outlook, and Entourage.

But more on that another day. For today Microsoft is safe from the Google onslaught.

When Google starts showing normal everyday bloggers (not even self-important jerks like me, but the “z list” that no one usually cares about) their stuff, then Microsoft should worry big time.

Comments

  1. Why would a reputable firm choose to involve Arrington or any of your other a thru z listy friends early on? This is a case of echo chamber stuff Robert. You’re shouting down a deep well and hearing your own voice.

  2. Why would a reputable firm choose to involve Arrington or any of your other a thru z listy friends early on? This is a case of echo chamber stuff Robert. You’re shouting down a deep well and hearing your own voice.

  3. **************
    Well, hope that PR strategy works for Google. In the experiences of other companies that have gotten lucky enough to get all that PR it really doesn’t work out all that well unless the influentials also back up the hype.
    *****************

    You have to back this statement up with something… Please don’t trot out people with crap products, as that isn’t a fair fight. What I would love to see is an example of a good product that used this strategy to go out and FAILED. It it is good, don’t you think the “influentials” will pick it up? Isn’t this a meritocracy? -or- is are the “influentials” going to get peeved and dump on Google becuase they went to the old school press first? If that is true, what is the benefit of an influential (i.e. they act the same as a regular PR person) and why should I deal with them? If it isn’t true – then what harm was done, as the influentials will pick it up anyway?

    Gavin

  4. Frank: because the top tech influencers are reading TechCrunch. If you don’t care about them (or you think you can reach them some other way) then go for the other way.

    I’m just giving you the data I’ve learned.

    There was a reason that Arrington had lunch with Bill Gates at Mix06 (and why Mix06 sold out). We talked to EVERYONE, not just big-city journalists.

  5. Frank: because the top tech influencers are reading TechCrunch. If you don’t care about them (or you think you can reach them some other way) then go for the other way.

    I’m just giving you the data I’ve learned.

    There was a reason that Arrington had lunch with Bill Gates at Mix06 (and why Mix06 sold out). We talked to EVERYONE, not just big-city journalists.

  6. **************
    Well, hope that PR strategy works for Google. In the experiences of other companies that have gotten lucky enough to get all that PR it really doesn’t work out all that well unless the influentials also back up the hype.
    *****************

    You have to back this statement up with something… Please don’t trot out people with crap products, as that isn’t a fair fight. What I would love to see is an example of a good product that used this strategy to go out and FAILED. It it is good, don’t you think the “influentials” will pick it up? Isn’t this a meritocracy? -or- is are the “influentials” going to get peeved and dump on Google becuase they went to the old school press first? If that is true, what is the benefit of an influential (i.e. they act the same as a regular PR person) and why should I deal with them? If it isn’t true – then what harm was done, as the influentials will pick it up anyway?

    Gavin

  7. Further – who is this aimed at? If Google doesn’t have everything together yet, as you claim (and I haven’t played with it enough to know – I am on Exchange…), then this is a pure pitch at Wall Street.

    For pitching to Wall Street, the influentials are worse than useless. No one on Wall Street, as best I can tell, even knows they exist.

  8. Further – who is this aimed at? If Google doesn’t have everything together yet, as you claim (and I haven’t played with it enough to know – I am on Exchange…), then this is a pure pitch at Wall Street.

    For pitching to Wall Street, the influentials are worse than useless. No one on Wall Street, as best I can tell, even knows they exist.

  9. Gavin: how did Google grow in the first place? It wasn’t the big-city newspapers that did PR onslaughts like this one. It was the “little people” who kept talking Google up.

    Microsoft does these big-city onslaughts better than anyone. I don’t see that they’ve helped grow Microsoft out of a Windows and Office company.

    And, where Microsoft is seeing some sizeable growth (Xbox and Live) they bring along influentials (Search Champs, GameFests, etc) as well as the big-city journalists.

    Oh, the influentials will give Google a fair shot but this is a control thing. Cause now no one will get quoted in the press saying “Google’s offerings here suck.”

    Brilliantly played PR. That’s all I was trying to point out.

  10. Gavin: how did Google grow in the first place? It wasn’t the big-city newspapers that did PR onslaughts like this one. It was the “little people” who kept talking Google up.

    Microsoft does these big-city onslaughts better than anyone. I don’t see that they’ve helped grow Microsoft out of a Windows and Office company.

    And, where Microsoft is seeing some sizeable growth (Xbox and Live) they bring along influentials (Search Champs, GameFests, etc) as well as the big-city journalists.

    Oh, the influentials will give Google a fair shot but this is a control thing. Cause now no one will get quoted in the press saying “Google’s offerings here suck.”

    Brilliantly played PR. That’s all I was trying to point out.

  11. Gavin: really? I’ve had quite a few people on Wall Street ask me questions on my cell phone. And, more than one investor in Microsoft has called me from time to time (some VERY LARGE investors too).

    That’s called doing their homework to make sure they know what the grassroots are saying.

    You should have listened to Jim Cramer last week when he talked about his biggest mistakes. They came from when he DIDN’T listen to people who actually KNOW what they are doing (hint: that isn’t me, but the people I hang out with).

  12. Gavin: really? I’ve had quite a few people on Wall Street ask me questions on my cell phone. And, more than one investor in Microsoft has called me from time to time (some VERY LARGE investors too).

    That’s called doing their homework to make sure they know what the grassroots are saying.

    You should have listened to Jim Cramer last week when he talked about his biggest mistakes. They came from when he DIDN’T listen to people who actually KNOW what they are doing (hint: that isn’t me, but the people I hang out with).

  13. Robert,

    Big-city journalists are very busy doing their job and this make them predictable. Give them some all matherial and they will publish nearly as is without rarely adding own personal opinion. They will not add anything bad about your company as this can result in lawsuits or dropping bussiness relationships. This guarantee good press about product.

    Small bloggers are numerous and there is no way to reach them all. As well – letting thouse geeks to see product before big press is bad as big press can pick some negative comments (even if thouse will be less then 1%) to make article “balanced”. Nobody will be able to sue big press for this – as it’s small man who told this (it’s like making interviews on street – and then after 99 positive responses and 1 negative show to air only 1 positive with this 1 negative).

    Google is good at PR and you need to learn from them. All their april fools joke, e and pi stocks numbers looks like fun – but in reality serve as undercover for large money making mashine.
    Even the way they have webspam and adsence spam is nothing but conspiracy to shutdown adsense on small third-party websites and move this traffic to their own services and large publishers.

  14. Robert,

    Big-city journalists are very busy doing their job and this make them predictable. Give them some all matherial and they will publish nearly as is without rarely adding own personal opinion. They will not add anything bad about your company as this can result in lawsuits or dropping bussiness relationships. This guarantee good press about product.

    Small bloggers are numerous and there is no way to reach them all. As well – letting thouse geeks to see product before big press is bad as big press can pick some negative comments (even if thouse will be less then 1%) to make article “balanced”. Nobody will be able to sue big press for this – as it’s small man who told this (it’s like making interviews on street – and then after 99 positive responses and 1 negative show to air only 1 positive with this 1 negative).

    Google is good at PR and you need to learn from them. All their april fools joke, e and pi stocks numbers looks like fun – but in reality serve as undercover for large money making mashine.
    Even the way they have webspam and adsence spam is nothing but conspiracy to shutdown adsense on small third-party websites and move this traffic to their own services and large publishers.

  15. “The funny thing is that at PodTech we’re actually using most of the “Google Office Suite.”I hate it. It isn’t even in the same ballpark yet as having an Exchange server.”

    What, you mean it doesn’t require having an IT-team on standby and frequent reinstalls? Having worked 10 years+ with the various incarnations of Exchange I can’t say there is any microsoft product I hate more. To be fair, all mail servers suck monkey balls. And also, the 2003 incarnation seems to be a tad more stable. But it still sucks. Maybe not for the end-user.

  16. “The funny thing is that at PodTech we’re actually using most of the “Google Office Suite.”I hate it. It isn’t even in the same ballpark yet as having an Exchange server.”

    What, you mean it doesn’t require having an IT-team on standby and frequent reinstalls? Having worked 10 years+ with the various incarnations of Exchange I can’t say there is any microsoft product I hate more. To be fair, all mail servers suck monkey balls. And also, the 2003 incarnation seems to be a tad more stable. But it still sucks. Maybe not for the end-user.

  17. Michiel: you can get Exchange hosted now and it works great when you do that. It’s cheap per seat too.

    So, these kinds of complaints just don’t make sense anymore. Plus, I know many small businesses that are running Exchange without much pain at all (in fact, last week I had a couple Web 2.0 companies say they gave up the Google suite for Exchange’s superior calendaring and scheduling and mobile phone synchronization).

  18. Michiel: you can get Exchange hosted now and it works great when you do that. It’s cheap per seat too.

    So, these kinds of complaints just don’t make sense anymore. Plus, I know many small businesses that are running Exchange without much pain at all (in fact, last week I had a couple Web 2.0 companies say they gave up the Google suite for Exchange’s superior calendaring and scheduling and mobile phone synchronization).

  19. “it really doesn’t work out all that well unless the influentials also back up the hype”

    So, this post was basically a way to say Google won’t succeed unless it delivers to customers? And that great PR can’t save a crappy product?

    Brilliant insights, Robert. ;)

  20. “it really doesn’t work out all that well unless the influentials also back up the hype”

    So, this post was basically a way to say Google won’t succeed unless it delivers to customers? And that great PR can’t save a crappy product?

    Brilliant insights, Robert. ;)

  21. If Google called me about a product release I’d assume it was a crank call. It’s just not something they do. Om say they asked him into the beta, so they are clearly reaching out to at least some bloggers, but I don’t get why Om as late on the story if he knew about it. He must not have know when the story would hit.

    Funny thing at Foo camp this weekend, which was full of Googlers (none of them would come within 20 feet of me): Someone said Google’s attitude is just like Microsoft’s 10 years ago. That is 100% true.

  22. If Google called me about a product release I’d assume it was a crank call. It’s just not something they do. Om say they asked him into the beta, so they are clearly reaching out to at least some bloggers, but I don’t get why Om as late on the story if he knew about it. He must not have know when the story would hit.

    Funny thing at Foo camp this weekend, which was full of Googlers (none of them would come within 20 feet of me): Someone said Google’s attitude is just like Microsoft’s 10 years ago. That is 100% true.

  23. WHAT???? No blogging about this announcement, yet the press picked it up? How can that be in this day and age.
    Obviously they are doomed for failure because they didn’t involved the “A-listers”.

    Or are you simply pissed because traditional means still seem to be working?

  24. WHAT???? No blogging about this announcement, yet the press picked it up? How can that be in this day and age.
    Obviously they are doomed for failure because they didn’t involved the “A-listers”.

    Or are you simply pissed because traditional means still seem to be working?

  25. It’s not in the same ballpark as Exchange? Exchange is simply a huge complicated database managing simple text files. The reason you don’t like GMail is because there is no calendar integration or free busy, which is really what Exchange buys you over a hosted email service like GMail or Hotmail. If you are using Exchange simply for email, you are an idiot for dealing with that overhead to simply manage text files. And excluding calendaring, I challenge you to tell us what Outlook and Exchange together give you over Outlook connecting to any other email server. I’m asking for specific Exchange and Outlook together features purely focused on email.

  26. It’s not in the same ballpark as Exchange? Exchange is simply a huge complicated database managing simple text files. The reason you don’t like GMail is because there is no calendar integration or free busy, which is really what Exchange buys you over a hosted email service like GMail or Hotmail. If you are using Exchange simply for email, you are an idiot for dealing with that overhead to simply manage text files. And excluding calendaring, I challenge you to tell us what Outlook and Exchange together give you over Outlook connecting to any other email server. I’m asking for specific Exchange and Outlook together features purely focused on email.

  27. Do you think this offering will help an organization with IT related overhead or just lead us all down the road to Google lock-in?

  28. Do you think this offering will help an organization with IT related overhead or just lead us all down the road to Google lock-in?

  29. LayZ: I’m not pissed. Of course it still works. If it didn’t, why would you think Google would try it? Plus, by not including bloggers you’ll cause a round of discussion about that too. There is no such thing as bad PR, right?

    Anyway, if you work in a corporation with OTHER PEOPLE (something I’m not sure you do) then you need a calendar. If I only needed email Gmail is just fine.

  30. LayZ: I’m not pissed. Of course it still works. If it didn’t, why would you think Google would try it? Plus, by not including bloggers you’ll cause a round of discussion about that too. There is no such thing as bad PR, right?

    Anyway, if you work in a corporation with OTHER PEOPLE (something I’m not sure you do) then you need a calendar. If I only needed email Gmail is just fine.

  31. B76: it’s very attractive to small companies for just the reason that a guy gave above: you get everything for free and you don’t need an IT guy. The problem is that the calendaring isn’t good enough yet to run a decent sized business.

  32. B76: it’s very attractive to small companies for just the reason that a guy gave above: you get everything for free and you don’t need an IT guy. The problem is that the calendaring isn’t good enough yet to run a decent sized business.

  33. Google lock-in, ultimately. If that’s NOT the goal, they are doing this for the wrong reason. It’s the same reason Microsoft, IBM, Sun, Oracle, go after the enterprise.

  34. Google lock-in, ultimately. If that’s NOT the goal, they are doing this for the wrong reason. It’s the same reason Microsoft, IBM, Sun, Oracle, go after the enterprise.

  35. I stopped getting influenced by the influentials on stories like this once I realized that they all have their own agendas. Parsing out their biases just became too tedious.

  36. I stopped getting influenced by the influentials on stories like this once I realized that they all have their own agendas. Parsing out their biases just became too tedious.

  37. Two sentences? One better. I can ultra-condense in 5 words…

    Google Talk Not Us, Pout.

    Or directly translated…

    Small = Significance, Big = Irrelevance, until such time as *I* become big, then big, really truly honestly matters, but then and only then. And oh yeah, Google sucks, well had they talked to us (I mean who else matters?), then they, irrespective of product quality, woulda sucked less, and been Humans joining the little-people drum-circle ‘Word of Mouth’ Conversations. Ammmmen!

  38. Two sentences? One better. I can ultra-condense in 5 words…

    Google Talk Not Us, Pout.

    Or directly translated…

    Small = Significance, Big = Irrelevance, until such time as *I* become big, then big, really truly honestly matters, but then and only then. And oh yeah, Google sucks, well had they talked to us (I mean who else matters?), then they, irrespective of product quality, woulda sucked less, and been Humans joining the little-people drum-circle ‘Word of Mouth’ Conversations. Ammmmen!

  39. Frank: because the top tech influencers are reading TechCrunch.

    Mike has said as much as he’s waiting for web 2.0 to crash so that he can cash in. That’s not a “tech influencer”, that’s a saboteur. The real “tech influencers” aren’t a bunch of bloggers or RSS syndicators talking about/redistributing stuff but the people who actually make the products you talk about. Figure out your place in the food chain, sheesh.

  40. Frank: because the top tech influencers are reading TechCrunch.

    Mike has said as much as he’s waiting for web 2.0 to crash so that he can cash in. That’s not a “tech influencer”, that’s a saboteur. The real “tech influencers” aren’t a bunch of bloggers or RSS syndicators talking about/redistributing stuff but the people who actually make the products you talk about. Figure out your place in the food chain, sheesh.

  41. [...] 1) My reading habits online when I’m procrastinating typically start with Bloglines, then Techmeme, and finally NYTimes. I read about the Google Apps for Businesses release on this NYTimes story today, and I thought for certain that the NYTimes was reporting on some old soggy story that managed to squeak by me on the blogosphere weeks ago. There was no mention on Techmeme at the time, so I just assumed that the story had already fallen off the front page. Since when does old media get the scoop on a Google story? Never! I genuinely thought I was out of the loop, and it wasn’t until Scoble posted on this unusual leak that I realized I wasn’t just behind on the news. Why would Google go straight to old media sources with a leak and not include even Techcrunch? It completely difuses the echo chamber effect of the blogosphere buzz around their product launch if everyone has already read the news in the morning paper. It’s like Google PR is actively trying to downplay the launch on the blogosphere… so old school… so 1.0… so un-Google. [...]

  42. Google’s Macintosh support is lagging behind too. Almost nothing works as adverized with Safari (Blogger beta, features missing on Gmail, etc). Use Firefox? Well, OK, but is that Macintosh support? What about “Windoze support” which didn’t work with IE? Use Firefox if you’re a Windoze user? I can’t see Google trying that one.

  43. Google’s Macintosh support is lagging behind too. Almost nothing works as adverized with Safari (Blogger beta, features missing on Gmail, etc). Use Firefox? Well, OK, but is that Macintosh support? What about “Windoze support” which didn’t work with IE? Use Firefox if you’re a Windoze user? I can’t see Google trying that one.

  44. “Michiel: you can get Exchange hosted now and it works great when you do that. It’s cheap per seat too. So, these kinds of complaints just don’t make sense anymore.”

    Well, I haven’t seen this hosted exchange in these waters, and ‘cheap’ would require some further qualifier. Cheap to you might not be cheap to me or some startup.

    Besides, just because it’s somebody else’s problem to keep it running doesn’t mean it is a good product.

  45. “Michiel: you can get Exchange hosted now and it works great when you do that. It’s cheap per seat too. So, these kinds of complaints just don’t make sense anymore.”

    Well, I haven’t seen this hosted exchange in these waters, and ‘cheap’ would require some further qualifier. Cheap to you might not be cheap to me or some startup.

    Besides, just because it’s somebody else’s problem to keep it running doesn’t mean it is a good product.

  46. For real analysis…

    This is just a faux Street stock-play for the usual glib way way oversimplified “Google vs. Microsoft”, “software as a service” vs. “shrinkwrap”. The Season Opener in the long running Battle, the Opening Shot, the First Spark, the First Chop at the Mighty Microsoft Redwood, blah blah blah. Hooking all the zero-day light-analysis ‘rewrite Press Releases’ fairy-tale journalistic newbits.

    Kicking the tires beforehand, blogger or otherwise, lessens the impact…page outta the Apple playbook, as opposed to the Microsoft overhype for years, spin influentials into a psychotic frenzy, hold tons of junkets, cut half features, miss deadlines, final deliver way late and charge double and then play crying wounded dog, woe is us, this is too hard.

    But Google is not a real Company, it’s a Cultic Religion posing as a Company.

  47. For real analysis…

    This is just a faux Street stock-play for the usual glib way way oversimplified “Google vs. Microsoft”, “software as a service” vs. “shrinkwrap”. The Season Opener in the long running Battle, the Opening Shot, the First Spark, the First Chop at the Mighty Microsoft Redwood, blah blah blah. Hooking all the zero-day light-analysis ‘rewrite Press Releases’ fairy-tale journalistic newbits.

    Kicking the tires beforehand, blogger or otherwise, lessens the impact…page outta the Apple playbook, as opposed to the Microsoft overhype for years, spin influentials into a psychotic frenzy, hold tons of junkets, cut half features, miss deadlines, final deliver way late and charge double and then play crying wounded dog, woe is us, this is too hard.

    But Google is not a real Company, it’s a Cultic Religion posing as a Company.

  48. Anon: damn, and here I thought +I+ was the arrogant jerk. Sigh.

    Robert, I’m sure the product will be a failure since you’re not on the shill team. After all, products don’t stand on their own merits – they need people like you to hype them up because the masses can’t make their own decisions!

    BTW, I started using Google in 97, before they even had adsense and long before I’d ever heard of you, techcrunch, or even read about it in any newspaper or magazine.

    Remember, today’s “news” wraps tomorrow’s fish. Words to live by. In your case, there isn’t even any tangible asset for wrapping the fish. :P

  49. Anon: damn, and here I thought +I+ was the arrogant jerk. Sigh.

    Robert, I’m sure the product will be a failure since you’re not on the shill team. After all, products don’t stand on their own merits – they need people like you to hype them up because the masses can’t make their own decisions!

    BTW, I started using Google in 97, before they even had adsense and long before I’d ever heard of you, techcrunch, or even read about it in any newspaper or magazine.

    Remember, today’s “news” wraps tomorrow’s fish. Words to live by. In your case, there isn’t even any tangible asset for wrapping the fish. :P

  50. Michiel may think Exchange server sucks (it’s actually not that bad) but does he or anyone else really think this cheeseball suite of tools is a replacement for ANY decent office suite? Seriously?

    Gmail – not bad for web mail, sure as hell wouldn’t want it as my only email all day every day, especially since everything that goes through it gets catalogued and recorded by Google. An online calendar, chat, and web page maker are suddenly what makes up the rest of an office suite for REAL businesses?! C’mon, people, quit smoking the rope and open your eyes.

    I personally don’t even use Microsoft Office anymore, I have the NeoOffice Aqua Beta on my Mac instead, so I’m not saying this as a fan of office. I’m saying it as a fan of FUNCTIONALITY. Why would I want Google to have all my data, and after I schedule a meeting on the calendar, forward the dumb joke of the day to my co-workers, and IM a buddy about who got laid off today, then what? Use some cheeseball editor to make a beginner web page?

    I’m surprised this is even a topic at all. Maybe I’ll have to blog about it, considering it’s so unimportant and therefore is a great match for my blog. :D

  51. Michiel may think Exchange server sucks (it’s actually not that bad) but does he or anyone else really think this cheeseball suite of tools is a replacement for ANY decent office suite? Seriously?

    Gmail – not bad for web mail, sure as hell wouldn’t want it as my only email all day every day, especially since everything that goes through it gets catalogued and recorded by Google. An online calendar, chat, and web page maker are suddenly what makes up the rest of an office suite for REAL businesses?! C’mon, people, quit smoking the rope and open your eyes.

    I personally don’t even use Microsoft Office anymore, I have the NeoOffice Aqua Beta on my Mac instead, so I’m not saying this as a fan of office. I’m saying it as a fan of FUNCTIONALITY. Why would I want Google to have all my data, and after I schedule a meeting on the calendar, forward the dumb joke of the day to my co-workers, and IM a buddy about who got laid off today, then what? Use some cheeseball editor to make a beginner web page?

    I’m surprised this is even a topic at all. Maybe I’ll have to blog about it, considering it’s so unimportant and therefore is a great match for my blog. :D

  52. just to clarify robert, i was invited to their beta (calendar and email) and not what is now being offered as any one else would have … signed up and got an invite. it was not as a blogger or a media person. thanks!

  53. just to clarify robert, i was invited to their beta (calendar and email) and not what is now being offered as any one else would have … signed up and got an invite. it was not as a blogger or a media person. thanks!

  54. [...] Some have suggested Google is either a religion or a cult as well, and sometimes I think they are right. I saw two different blogs tonight talking about the wonderful new online services for businesses. What’s funny is that while both blogs called Google on the actual usefulness of the product(s) in question, the comments on these blogs are pretty amazing, IMO. Take Robert Scoble’s article on it – he got slammed by those who thought it was sour grapes on his part (read the comments). So let’s analyze this thing and see just what it offers business anyway. [...]

  55. Robert, since this new google app is a Office Live follower, it makes sense to compare it with Office Live. Do not compare Apples with Banana. Of couse we know desktop products are miles ahead of web products, so comparing google app with exchange does not enlighten anybody. Comapring google app with Office Live might be more useful. As it is now, I do not see why a business should choose google app over Office Live?

    Disclaimer: The commentator is a Microsoft employee though the opinion is his personal opinion.

  56. Robert, since this new google app is a Office Live follower, it makes sense to compare it with Office Live. Do not compare Apples with Banana. Of couse we know desktop products are miles ahead of web products, so comparing google app with exchange does not enlighten anybody. Comapring google app with Office Live might be more useful. As it is now, I do not see why a business should choose google app over Office Live?

    Disclaimer: The commentator is a Microsoft employee though the opinion is his personal opinion.

  57. > ahh, so professionals don’t have agendas?

    Professional journalists that work for an organization that relies on having a non-biased reputation have to worry about getting fired if they don’t get the story right.

    Influentials are typically work for themselves and are not likely to fire themselves if their agenda gets exposed. They will continue to attract those readers that share or benefit from their agenda.

  58. > ahh, so professionals don’t have agendas?

    Professional journalists that work for an organization that relies on having a non-biased reputation have to worry about getting fired if they don’t get the story right.

    Influentials are typically work for themselves and are not likely to fire themselves if their agenda gets exposed. They will continue to attract those readers that share or benefit from their agenda.

  59. Robert, you are such an arrogant ass!

    Sorry, I just got into the spirit of things there for a second. heh.

    Anyone that has met Robert knows that he is one of the smartest and nicest people in the world. I’ve seen him talk to his readers for hours at parties, cornered, and just kept talking as long as they liked. Every ounce of Robert is good.

    On the comment right above regarding the bias of journalists v. bloggers…it just isn’t true that journalists don’t have bias. They hide their bias, lack of product knowledge and research behind balanced stories that are hard to find fault with, but equally hard to become passionate about. Bloggers have their commenters to keep them honest. It’s a much better method.

  60. Robert, you are such an arrogant ass!

    Sorry, I just got into the spirit of things there for a second. heh.

    Anyone that has met Robert knows that he is one of the smartest and nicest people in the world. I’ve seen him talk to his readers for hours at parties, cornered, and just kept talking as long as they liked. Every ounce of Robert is good.

    On the comment right above regarding the bias of journalists v. bloggers…it just isn’t true that journalists don’t have bias. They hide their bias, lack of product knowledge and research behind balanced stories that are hard to find fault with, but equally hard to become passionate about. Bloggers have their commenters to keep them honest. It’s a much better method.

  61. I have to agree with Michael, anyone who does any serious, critical reading of what’s written by journalists on any topic will see bias, ignorance, deceit, and other unprofessional characteristics on a routine basis. Obviously some journalists are very good and do a professional job. But we all bring something to the table when we sit down to write. Some like myself, who are just bloggers, don’t hide the fact we write opinion, but sometimes journalists write opinion and do try to hide it.

  62. I have to agree with Michael, anyone who does any serious, critical reading of what’s written by journalists on any topic will see bias, ignorance, deceit, and other unprofessional characteristics on a routine basis. Obviously some journalists are very good and do a professional job. But we all bring something to the table when we sit down to write. Some like myself, who are just bloggers, don’t hide the fact we write opinion, but sometimes journalists write opinion and do try to hide it.

  63. In my opinion, Google’s announcement is about spreading seeds of doubt about Microsoft supremacy in the enterprise space. It really isn’t so much about today’s deliverables as tomorrow’s promise. Google doesn’t care if corporation ABC becomes a Google Apps customer today. It deeply cares if corp. ABC decides to delay re-upping with MSFT so that it can “wait and see.” Inaction rather than action may be the goal. Disclaimer: I’m not a blogger, I don’t work in Tech., and I’ve never taken my laptop to a baseball game. Therefore I may not know what the hell I’m talking about. As the A-listers say, heheh. . .

  64. In my opinion, Google’s announcement is about spreading seeds of doubt about Microsoft supremacy in the enterprise space. It really isn’t so much about today’s deliverables as tomorrow’s promise. Google doesn’t care if corporation ABC becomes a Google Apps customer today. It deeply cares if corp. ABC decides to delay re-upping with MSFT so that it can “wait and see.” Inaction rather than action may be the goal. Disclaimer: I’m not a blogger, I don’t work in Tech., and I’ve never taken my laptop to a baseball game. Therefore I may not know what the hell I’m talking about. As the A-listers say, heheh. . .

  65. > I hate it. It isn’t even in the same ballpark yet as having an Exchange server.

    True, but remember not all of us want to be in the ballpark of an Exchange Server. Google hosted email is right now aimed at small and midsize companies, and not all of us need/want all the features, costs, and overhead of running our own MS Exchange Server.

    I first read about google hosted mail on your blog (for which I am very grateful! thanks!) and after comparing its features and costs to companies hosting Exchange and other solutions, we switched our mail hosting to google and have not looked back. (Note: We switched from one hosted solution to another, not from our own management of our own mail server to hosted. We never wanted to have to manage our own mail server–having done that before and yes it was Exchange–it takes too much time to worry about uptime, connectivity, etc. Happy to let someone else manage that for us!).

    If I compare google’s web email experience to, say, the outlook web access (OWA) experience, i am much happier with google’s web mail UI. I love the “search don’t sort” philosophy/capability that google has that OWA doesn’t have, google’s method for linking messags in a thread, google’s method for capturing messages sent via local mail clients to its smtp servers and placing those messages in the hosted gmail sent folder. all of that i like. plus the ability to customize google webmail experience (ever tried customizing OWA experience? fairly limited).

    As for an offline experience comparison–google allows us to have 2GBs of online messages and to have POP access to it, so we both leave our mail on their servers AND download it via pop via pop3 clients for offline acccess , so get the best of both worlds.

    We haven’t used the calendaring feature much yet, mostly because most of our meetings are with clients rather than with each other so our appts show up on our client’s calendars rather than our internal ones. We are able to use ical to get a copy of the gcalendar though so that we always have an offline view of dates whenever we’re not connected.

    yes it’s a bummer that we can’t make edits to our gcalendar via ical but for us that’s not a deal breaker.

    > Maybe that’s why Google didn’t want to show it to influentials first. They’d
    > tell the big-city press crew to take a pass on this until it at least gets close
    > to Microsoft’s enterprise offerings.

    i can’t tell you why google didn’t include bloggers but fwiw, i’ve been telling friends and clients that i love the gmail hosted experience.

    Will it replace exchange for those who want everything exchange provided? Absolutely Not.

    But does it meet the needs of many small businesses even so? Yep. Not all of us need/want everything exchange provides, plus, again, in some features, google’s hosted email surpasses exchange.

    As to its office-like offerings, from what i read in the information week article, it doesn’t say it’s trying to compete with creating documents; it says it’s trying to compete with sharing/collaborating on documents. don’t know how well they will do this. it would be very interesting if a word document edited online was as sharable/editable as a wiki entry–but regardless of how that turns out–for me google’s hosted domain email alone is enough of a win for me now to give this hosted solution a big thumbs up.

    it’s funny that you are unhappy with the google hosted experience and yet as a key influencer it was your discussion of google’s offering several week ago that influenced me to get it! go figure!

    thanks again

  66. > I hate it. It isn’t even in the same ballpark yet as having an Exchange server.

    True, but remember not all of us want to be in the ballpark of an Exchange Server. Google hosted email is right now aimed at small and midsize companies, and not all of us need/want all the features, costs, and overhead of running our own MS Exchange Server.

    I first read about google hosted mail on your blog (for which I am very grateful! thanks!) and after comparing its features and costs to companies hosting Exchange and other solutions, we switched our mail hosting to google and have not looked back. (Note: We switched from one hosted solution to another, not from our own management of our own mail server to hosted. We never wanted to have to manage our own mail server–having done that before and yes it was Exchange–it takes too much time to worry about uptime, connectivity, etc. Happy to let someone else manage that for us!).

    If I compare google’s web email experience to, say, the outlook web access (OWA) experience, i am much happier with google’s web mail UI. I love the “search don’t sort” philosophy/capability that google has that OWA doesn’t have, google’s method for linking messags in a thread, google’s method for capturing messages sent via local mail clients to its smtp servers and placing those messages in the hosted gmail sent folder. all of that i like. plus the ability to customize google webmail experience (ever tried customizing OWA experience? fairly limited).

    As for an offline experience comparison–google allows us to have 2GBs of online messages and to have POP access to it, so we both leave our mail on their servers AND download it via pop via pop3 clients for offline acccess , so get the best of both worlds.

    We haven’t used the calendaring feature much yet, mostly because most of our meetings are with clients rather than with each other so our appts show up on our client’s calendars rather than our internal ones. We are able to use ical to get a copy of the gcalendar though so that we always have an offline view of dates whenever we’re not connected.

    yes it’s a bummer that we can’t make edits to our gcalendar via ical but for us that’s not a deal breaker.

    > Maybe that’s why Google didn’t want to show it to influentials first. They’d
    > tell the big-city press crew to take a pass on this until it at least gets close
    > to Microsoft’s enterprise offerings.

    i can’t tell you why google didn’t include bloggers but fwiw, i’ve been telling friends and clients that i love the gmail hosted experience.

    Will it replace exchange for those who want everything exchange provided? Absolutely Not.

    But does it meet the needs of many small businesses even so? Yep. Not all of us need/want everything exchange provides, plus, again, in some features, google’s hosted email surpasses exchange.

    As to its office-like offerings, from what i read in the information week article, it doesn’t say it’s trying to compete with creating documents; it says it’s trying to compete with sharing/collaborating on documents. don’t know how well they will do this. it would be very interesting if a word document edited online was as sharable/editable as a wiki entry–but regardless of how that turns out–for me google’s hosted domain email alone is enough of a win for me now to give this hosted solution a big thumbs up.

    it’s funny that you are unhappy with the google hosted experience and yet as a key influencer it was your discussion of google’s offering several week ago that influenced me to get it! go figure!

    thanks again

  67. “Please note: that doesn’t mean Microsoft should sit back and celebrate. They are gonna get their ass kicked in this space because of their lack of attention to the Macintosh. That’s the #1 reason I’ll probably be using Google’s stuff over the next year instead of Microsoft Exchange, Outlook, and Entourage.”

    Dude, honestly, Microsoft gives the Mac more attention than any other enterprise company from a client POV. Have you ever USED Oracle’s stuff? Nice server, but ugh, nasty client. I wouldn’t inflict Domino on people I want to die and go to hell. Groupwise has a nice client I hear, but you can’t use it for internet email. Etc. Etc.

    A lot of the disparity between WinOffice and MacOffice is because WinOffice ties so tight to windows. By the time you decouple it, you get…well, MacOffice. Sure, there’s a lot that E’rage can’t do that it should and could, but it gets *much* better every release, and I’ve no doubt that MacOffice 12, (now that there’s a choice over that morass of evil and instability that is the Office 97 file formats), will provide better compatibility on many levels, (the VBA issue aside) than I’ve seen in years.

    The VBA thing sucks, but we’ve only seen half the story, i.e. that VBA is being cut. We don’t know if, or what it’s being replaced by, and while most of Microsoft hasn’t earned squat, at least in my eyes, the MacBU has earned me holding off until I find out the rest of the story.

    But dude, seriously, out of all the enterprise companies, Microsoft’d Mac support is pretty damned good. Now, if the WINDOWS side of things would stop making integration with !Microsoft suck total rancid ass, things would be even better, but Ballmer will never allow it, and I don’t think Sinofsky gives a rat’s ass about it.

  68. “Please note: that doesn’t mean Microsoft should sit back and celebrate. They are gonna get their ass kicked in this space because of their lack of attention to the Macintosh. That’s the #1 reason I’ll probably be using Google’s stuff over the next year instead of Microsoft Exchange, Outlook, and Entourage.”

    Dude, honestly, Microsoft gives the Mac more attention than any other enterprise company from a client POV. Have you ever USED Oracle’s stuff? Nice server, but ugh, nasty client. I wouldn’t inflict Domino on people I want to die and go to hell. Groupwise has a nice client I hear, but you can’t use it for internet email. Etc. Etc.

    A lot of the disparity between WinOffice and MacOffice is because WinOffice ties so tight to windows. By the time you decouple it, you get…well, MacOffice. Sure, there’s a lot that E’rage can’t do that it should and could, but it gets *much* better every release, and I’ve no doubt that MacOffice 12, (now that there’s a choice over that morass of evil and instability that is the Office 97 file formats), will provide better compatibility on many levels, (the VBA issue aside) than I’ve seen in years.

    The VBA thing sucks, but we’ve only seen half the story, i.e. that VBA is being cut. We don’t know if, or what it’s being replaced by, and while most of Microsoft hasn’t earned squat, at least in my eyes, the MacBU has earned me holding off until I find out the rest of the story.

    But dude, seriously, out of all the enterprise companies, Microsoft’d Mac support is pretty damned good. Now, if the WINDOWS side of things would stop making integration with !Microsoft suck total rancid ass, things would be even better, but Ballmer will never allow it, and I don’t think Sinofsky gives a rat’s ass about it.

  69. “you can get Exchange hosted now and it works great when you do that. It’s cheap per seat too.”

    Google’s offering is free. This makes a big difference to a small business. And you don’t need to hire anyone to administer the thing.

    As for Om’s comments: Your domain administrator can already read your email, if she so wishes. Or see anything you’re doing on the internet that goes through their part of the pipe. So that point is mute.

  70. “you can get Exchange hosted now and it works great when you do that. It’s cheap per seat too.”

    Google’s offering is free. This makes a big difference to a small business. And you don’t need to hire anyone to administer the thing.

    As for Om’s comments: Your domain administrator can already read your email, if she so wishes. Or see anything you’re doing on the internet that goes through their part of the pipe. So that point is mute.

  71. …from way up the top…
    **************
    Gavin: really? I’ve had quite a few people on Wall Street ask me questions on my cell phone. And, more than one investor in Microsoft has called me from time to time (some VERY LARGE investors too).
    ***************

    That is IF they are trying to get play and get adoption or looking at making a big investment. IF you just want fluff peices, then this is what you do. You are, I think, making the assumption that they want to get people to use it. I don’t think (and have used the press this way in the recent past) that announcing things is always for the purpose of getting users.

    On a seperate note, I would say that the use of influentitals hasn’t done much to drive their maps in to everything. I am in BioTech, so see geeks that don’t use computers nearly as much – and they all still use Mapquest.

    Still stuck on the power of influentials – Would say there are a lot of ways to skin a cat, and the use of influentials is just another tool. Good for some things, not good for others. It is not always the right answer. If you want fluff peices in the investor press, influentials are useless.

    I would agree that for hedge funds et al. making serious investment that they will call a lot of people – but – was that Googles goal?

    I also think from your postings above that I missed the point where you meant google did it right – so it could be that we are agreeing with each other…

    Gavin

  72. …from way up the top…
    **************
    Gavin: really? I’ve had quite a few people on Wall Street ask me questions on my cell phone. And, more than one investor in Microsoft has called me from time to time (some VERY LARGE investors too).
    ***************

    That is IF they are trying to get play and get adoption or looking at making a big investment. IF you just want fluff peices, then this is what you do. You are, I think, making the assumption that they want to get people to use it. I don’t think (and have used the press this way in the recent past) that announcing things is always for the purpose of getting users.

    On a seperate note, I would say that the use of influentitals hasn’t done much to drive their maps in to everything. I am in BioTech, so see geeks that don’t use computers nearly as much – and they all still use Mapquest.

    Still stuck on the power of influentials – Would say there are a lot of ways to skin a cat, and the use of influentials is just another tool. Good for some things, not good for others. It is not always the right answer. If you want fluff peices in the investor press, influentials are useless.

    I would agree that for hedge funds et al. making serious investment that they will call a lot of people – but – was that Googles goal?

    I also think from your postings above that I missed the point where you meant google did it right – so it could be that we are agreeing with each other…

    Gavin

  73. Agreeing w/ Gavin. Why should there be a one-size-fit-all approach to tech and web PR? There are numerous variables to consider in formulating your tactics. Here are three of the most important: Ethos: Who are you and who’s gonna take your call and cover you?
    Target: Who do you need to reach? (investors, customers, not-yet-customers, competitors?)
    Objective: What do you want them to know, feel, believe, and–especially–do?

    Also consider–do you really want kibbitzers evaluating and filtering your news–or would you rather have a stenographer to paraphrase your press release?

    If you’re an A-list newsmaker your range of tactics is widest. Your news will not be ignored by anyone. It’s just a question of who goes first.

    (BTW: If you’re an A-list newsmaker, turns out that the best way to get blog buzz is to go directly to NYT or WSJ. Then wait a nanosecond for Scoble to post that you don’t know how PR works in the modern era, and you’re off to the races.)

  74. Agreeing w/ Gavin. Why should there be a one-size-fit-all approach to tech and web PR? There are numerous variables to consider in formulating your tactics. Here are three of the most important: Ethos: Who are you and who’s gonna take your call and cover you?
    Target: Who do you need to reach? (investors, customers, not-yet-customers, competitors?)
    Objective: What do you want them to know, feel, believe, and–especially–do?

    Also consider–do you really want kibbitzers evaluating and filtering your news–or would you rather have a stenographer to paraphrase your press release?

    If you’re an A-list newsmaker your range of tactics is widest. Your news will not be ignored by anyone. It’s just a question of who goes first.

    (BTW: If you’re an A-list newsmaker, turns out that the best way to get blog buzz is to go directly to NYT or WSJ. Then wait a nanosecond for Scoble to post that you don’t know how PR works in the modern era, and you’re off to the races.)

  75. To me Arrington’s comment is telling. I look forward to Google’s non-ad driven pricing for the enterprise. Then we can see if they are truly different – “not evil” et al – or just a slightly different recipe of the MISO – Microsoft, IBM, SAP Oracle – soup.

  76. To me Arrington’s comment is telling. I look forward to Google’s non-ad driven pricing for the enterprise. Then we can see if they are truly different – “not evil” et al – or just a slightly different recipe of the MISO – Microsoft, IBM, SAP Oracle – soup.

  77. To John C Welch: If you really think Microsoft’s attention to the Mac is adequate these days, you haven’t been using any other OS X software. IOW, you’ve lost your frame of reference or something.

    Office and even messenger for the Mac haven’t truly been updated in years. Small little things, but feature-wise and user experience-wise, they are horrible. Everyone I talk to using the Mac thinks Microsoft quit trying not long after Office 2004 was released, and they aren’t so sure about that product either.

    Personally, I no longer have any Microsoft products on my Mac. Unless you are forced to, there’s no reason to have any products from companies that are writing cross-platform software and hence don’t bother to try to make it nice when they do the Mac version. The original software written only for OS X is too good.

    Granted, the one area the Mac has a serious lack of options in is the Office suite arena. I’m currently using NeoOffice Aqua Beta, but it’s got problems.

  78. To John C Welch: If you really think Microsoft’s attention to the Mac is adequate these days, you haven’t been using any other OS X software. IOW, you’ve lost your frame of reference or something.

    Office and even messenger for the Mac haven’t truly been updated in years. Small little things, but feature-wise and user experience-wise, they are horrible. Everyone I talk to using the Mac thinks Microsoft quit trying not long after Office 2004 was released, and they aren’t so sure about that product either.

    Personally, I no longer have any Microsoft products on my Mac. Unless you are forced to, there’s no reason to have any products from companies that are writing cross-platform software and hence don’t bother to try to make it nice when they do the Mac version. The original software written only for OS X is too good.

    Granted, the one area the Mac has a serious lack of options in is the Office suite arena. I’m currently using NeoOffice Aqua Beta, but it’s got problems.

  79. Someone said Google’s attitude is just like Microsoft’s 10 years ago. That is 100% true.

    I guess that includes product naming as well? “Google Office,” ok. “Google Suite,” better. But “Google Apps for Your Domain?” Uh, did they ask someone in Redmond to come up with that name?

    I’m trying not to see this as another “Google Pack.” I am. But as Tyler Durden once said, “Sticking feathers up your butt does not make you a chicken.”

  80. Someone said Google’s attitude is just like Microsoft’s 10 years ago. That is 100% true.

    I guess that includes product naming as well? “Google Office,” ok. “Google Suite,” better. But “Google Apps for Your Domain?” Uh, did they ask someone in Redmond to come up with that name?

    I’m trying not to see this as another “Google Pack.” I am. But as Tyler Durden once said, “Sticking feathers up your butt does not make you a chicken.”

  81. [...] Now on to the way Google rolled out the story. As Robert Scoble pointed out in his post this morning, news of Google Apps originated with the New York Times, InformationWeek and a few I might have missed, who were briefed by Google. It’s like Google’s PR team handing out gifts to a few selected reporters. I have been the lucky recipient of such gifts during my years as a journalist, and I thoroughly enjoy getting the scoops–but that was when a company had one handful of choices, not a dozen key outlets, to spread the word.  Surely Google could get its executives to talk to ZDNet, TechCrunch, GigaOm (Om didn’t like the privacy disclosure) and the various Google topnotch bloggers prior to the announcement.   [...]

  82. While hosted Exchange has a nice UI (it invented the whole AJAX craze many years ago, after all), it is pretty unusable because of it’s very poor spam filtering. If Microsoft adds a spam filter that can rival the Gmail one, then we are talking.

  83. While hosted Exchange has a nice UI (it invented the whole AJAX craze many years ago, after all), it is pretty unusable because of it’s very poor spam filtering. If Microsoft adds a spam filter that can rival the Gmail one, then we are talking.

  84. Scoble, they’ve been letting “z-list” bloggers use custom domain feature for a while. I got an invite way back in February and I’m as z-list as it gets.

  85. Scoble, they’ve been letting “z-list” bloggers use custom domain feature for a while. I got an invite way back in February and I’m as z-list as it gets.

  86. [...] Google has the dominate user marketshare and has plenty of money, talent, and ambition to make it happen.  However the task to dominate in the enterprise will not be a ‘cake walk’.  SAP, IBM, and others have been moving their software stacks to a service model.  Google’s handwaving about its intentions needs to be backed up with good products.  [...]

  87. I think Mike made a good point in comment #39. I give him credit for keeping the comments on his blogs turned on. In my opinion every publication should provide a mechanism for public comments.

    That said, perhaps Mike did not notice that the comment he responded to (#38) was preceded by an earlier comment (#21) by the same author which provided context for what he was responding to. I don’t blame Mike if that was the case. It is very tedious to wade through so many comments (let alone trackbacks/pingbacks), as it is to wade through the swamp of techmeme articles that typically appear when a big story like this breaks, especially one that is so politically charged and with huge ramifications to the tech industry.

    I would rather Google did not pre-release stories to either MSM journalists or influentials in the blogosphere. It just pisses off those that don’t get invited which sometimes gets reflected in their opinions. It reminds me of why we have camps of wannabe influentials fighting foo all over the globe.

  88. I think Mike made a good point in comment #39. I give him credit for keeping the comments on his blogs turned on. In my opinion every publication should provide a mechanism for public comments.

    That said, perhaps Mike did not notice that the comment he responded to (#38) was preceded by an earlier comment (#21) by the same author which provided context for what he was responding to. I don’t blame Mike if that was the case. It is very tedious to wade through so many comments (let alone trackbacks/pingbacks), as it is to wade through the swamp of techmeme articles that typically appear when a big story like this breaks, especially one that is so politically charged and with huge ramifications to the tech industry.

    I would rather Google did not pre-release stories to either MSM journalists or influentials in the blogosphere. It just pisses off those that don’t get invited which sometimes gets reflected in their opinions. It reminds me of why we have camps of wannabe influentials fighting foo all over the globe.

  89. I consider myself both a professional journalist, just like those at the New York Times, and a blogger. Worried I didn’t get a prebrief on this? Nah.

    Robert, I cover search. This ain’t search. That’s probably why I didn’t get a nod about it coming this time. And since it’s a holiday for me today over here in the UK, I don’t even mind too much :)

    I get plenty of other advanced briefings, especially on stuff related to search. I even get offers for stuff not related to search, but since we then don’t do much coverage about that, it doesn’t get much ink at Search Engine Watch. So I’d guess in this case, the powers that be at Google probably figured we weren’t looking for a heads-up.

    Anyway, I can’t speak for the other bloggers, but it’s not a case of “hiding” from me. Plus, I’m pretty sure there have been a number of examples where bloggers have been allowed to break stories by Google and then the “traditional” press gets to pick it up. They play us off each other; and, of course, the publications play them as well. That’s just PR.

    I’ve been part of Gmail For Domains for several weeks, though I signed-up

  90. I consider myself both a professional journalist, just like those at the New York Times, and a blogger. Worried I didn’t get a prebrief on this? Nah.

    Robert, I cover search. This ain’t search. That’s probably why I didn’t get a nod about it coming this time. And since it’s a holiday for me today over here in the UK, I don’t even mind too much :)

    I get plenty of other advanced briefings, especially on stuff related to search. I even get offers for stuff not related to search, but since we then don’t do much coverage about that, it doesn’t get much ink at Search Engine Watch. So I’d guess in this case, the powers that be at Google probably figured we weren’t looking for a heads-up.

    Anyway, I can’t speak for the other bloggers, but it’s not a case of “hiding” from me. Plus, I’m pretty sure there have been a number of examples where bloggers have been allowed to break stories by Google and then the “traditional” press gets to pick it up. They play us off each other; and, of course, the publications play them as well. That’s just PR.

    I’ve been part of Gmail For Domains for several weeks, though I signed-up

  91. Danny: I consider you a very professional source of information. The best in the industry, in fact, on search.

    If it were only you they didn’t invite that might make sense, but there were lots of other “professionals” who cover enterprise stuff who weren’t pre-briefed either.

    I’m not sure what it says, but it’s a trend I’m noticing. Google used to show up at influential conferences too and didn’t this year. It’s a strategy shift of theirs and strategy shifts that multi-billion-dollar corporations do are always interesting to talk about. :-)

  92. Danny: I consider you a very professional source of information. The best in the industry, in fact, on search.

    If it were only you they didn’t invite that might make sense, but there were lots of other “professionals” who cover enterprise stuff who weren’t pre-briefed either.

    I’m not sure what it says, but it’s a trend I’m noticing. Google used to show up at influential conferences too and didn’t this year. It’s a strategy shift of theirs and strategy shifts that multi-billion-dollar corporations do are always interesting to talk about. :-)

  93. I dont see how any of this is NEW news. Google has had this info on its publicly accessible pages when I came across it in mid June (no invite, just me clicking around from the Google domain squatting service pages).

  94. I dont see how any of this is NEW news. Google has had this info on its publicly accessible pages when I came across it in mid June (no invite, just me clicking around from the Google domain squatting service pages).

  95. @66. Or could it be your level of influence exists only in your own mind? Maybe Google doesn’t feel all you A-Listers aren’t all that influencial in the end. I know is sucks to be out of the loop.

    Yes, Arrington,I’m sure Scoble is a very nice guy. From reading his blog, I’m not so sure about the “smart”.

  96. @66. Or could it be your level of influence exists only in your own mind? Maybe Google doesn’t feel all you A-Listers aren’t all that influencial in the end. I know is sucks to be out of the loop.

    Yes, Arrington,I’m sure Scoble is a very nice guy. From reading his blog, I’m not so sure about the “smart”.

  97. [...] Update 8.28.06: This morning there are stories from the Associated Press, the New York Times, News.com, Reuters. Om Malik’s got some privacy concerns, though. Michael Arrington at TechCrunch uses the news to point to Zoho. Kent Newsome doesn’t think Google will take the office-suite crown from Microsoft. And Scoble says this was a classic case of leaking a story to make big news. [...]

  98. [...] Robert Scoble’s rants about Google’s recent PR tactics were echoed by Rob Hof of BusinessWeek yesterday.  It seems that, when announcing Google Apps, Google ignored bloggers in favor of pre-briefing a handful of traditional media such as The New York Times and InformationWeek.  Even ZDnet’s Dan Farber didn’t get a look-in.  Rob Hof rightly points out the irony of the situation: “that the world’s most prominent Internet company–one that’s specifically trying to get us all to do our work online instead of on the desktop–chose to brief mostly print publications.”  [...]