updated 04:50 pm EDT, Fri August 28, 2009
Screw Google campaign
Microsoft has allegedly organized an anti-Google campaign, referred to by several insiders as "screw Google" meetings, according to DailyFinance. The collaboration reportedly involves Microsoft and other companies that perceive the search giant as a threat. Third parties are also said to be involved, hired by the group to help discredit Google.
"Microsoft is at the center of a group of companies who see Google as a threat to them in some combination of business and policy," claims a source allegedly familiar with the matter, although choosing to remain anonymous. The companies are working together to "make Google like like the big high-tech bad guy here."
Another source claims that Law Media Group, a DC-based PR firm, has been "working full-time on Google-bashing." Microsoft has been spearheading the effort, in an attempt to "knock them off their game." The software giant is allegedly pursuing several angles involving regulatory, legal and litigation tactics.
Microsoft spokesperson Ginny Terzano denies the "screw Google" allegations, while admitting that the search company is a topic of discussion in a variety of meetings. "This is absurd. While Google is a healthy competitor, [Microsoft's chief DC lobbyist Fred Humphries] is focused on advancing policies that benefit our partners and consumers, and not running meetings of the type you describe," Terzano said. "Your sources are badly misinformed, and your information is wrong."
The rivalry between Google and Microsoft has continued to brew, particularly with the recent launch of the Bing search engine. Microsoft is said to have spent between $80 million and $100 million solely on the ad campaign, while Google holds a dominant position without millions spent on marketing. The companies also compete in the software arena, with the Web-based Google Docs apps offering many of the essential functions of Microsoft's Office suite.