Yeah, it's nice going shopping on Black Friday because of all the money that can be saved, but I don't shop like normal people. Saturday I went to Macy's because I needed socks. I also picked up a coupld tees. After I got home, I remembered that I had coupons for $10 off. I said to myself I could never have too many socks and tees so I went back yesterday. The fine print on the discount coupon explains that merchandise must be $30 and the tees were just over $30. I didn't have a problem other than having to wait in a slow line. I decide to go back today with an exact duplicate coupon for the same discount, $10 off a single purchase of $30 or more. The dumb fuck at the register says sorry, but the item I'm trying to buy isn't qualified. Could it be because it's already marked down to 29.95? WTF, it was only yesterday that it was $34.50, but the fuckhead at the register says it's because the item is a designer label. I explain that I came yesterday and made the exact same purchase with a second coupon, but he's insistent and explains that the clerk who helped me yesterday must've committed a mistake and yadda yadda yadda. In the end, I end up waiting for managerial help and got the damn discount. Is it Macy's? Is it Glendale? or is it me? On weekends, Macy's is packed up the fucking ass and there's no way around waiting in line, today there's nobody there and still I'm given a hard time. That's why I loath going shopping!
In other news, here's a different angle to the bait and switch tactic concerning first amendment rights, Internet access and a perfect sample of what it tastes like to be herded like sheep, goats, etc.
I fast tracked Power Lunch on CNBC and got as far as a media segment about Google. Everyone loves Google. Everyone, that is, who hasn't yet discovered Bing.
Mean time, Microsoft is reportedly is talking to News Corp about teaming up on search and thereby withholding content from Google.
Check out the Financial Times headline this morning:
MICROSOFT AND NEWS CORP EYE WEB PACT
It reads like something from Variety. Will this be a blow to Google we wonder. Joining us CNBC Julia Boorstin and the author of the article in the Financial Times article Matthew Garrahan, who's L.A. correspondent for FT.
Uh, Mat, obviously, I mean, we talk a lot here about Rupert Murdock doesn't want to give anything away. He wants to be able to charge for content online. This is part of that strategy, obviously. Isn't it?
MG: Yeah it is. And it's a pretty big deal, actually because, you know, Ruport has been getting increasingly grumpy of late accusing Google of stealing stories published by News Corp newspapers. It's almost like, you know, he's becoming sort of Larry David from… He's railing against the world. And not being getting too happy about it. ¶ But this is, you know, shows he's still got what it takes. I mean, I think he's stumbled across something which proves there's still value in the news business.
How is he going to work? I read this de-indexing. What does that mean? Is he going to tell Google they gotta pay up? Or, explain exactly it'll work.
MG: So he would remove Google from News Corp newspapers from Google's search index. So you could go onto Google, you could type in a, again, look for a story but you wouldn't find it because they have the ability to block Google's search technology. ¶ And the other side of this is that Microsoft is waiting in the wings and they have a big pot of cash and they would be prepared to pay News Corp. to do this.
Which I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before any trust guys say “Microsoft paying News Corp. to… so it won’t give stuff to Google…" Uh, Julia, it seems to be that Matthew’s wrongly says that Rupert has got what it takes. I think it shows that Rupert doesn’t get it at all.
JB: Well I think it’s too soon to say that Rupert has what it takes. First of all the deal has not been totally completed yet. So it’s too soon to say what kind of compensation News Corp. would get. Obviously Rupert Murdock is smart to want to get paid for content. That part makes sense. The question is how much of the search audience is he giving up by this? Now Bing.com only has about 10% of the search audience; so the question is could Bing.com amass enough news content that it really becomes the destination for news online? If it got the New York Times online, if it got the… If it got all these other newspapers, then maybe Bing.com could be defined as a place where one finds news. I think of the Wall Street Journal as the only news organizations that restricts it’s content to Bing.com, then it’s giving up 90% of the search audience.
Smart move on Microsoft’s part, but what does Google do about this? Do they fight back? or What?
MG: Well, I think you guys are missing the point because what Rupert’s done is he’s creating a market. Okay? He’s put a value on news content. And if Google wants the Wall Street Journal, the Sunday Times, etc. they’re going to have to pay. And that’s a revenue stream that News Corp. wasn’t getting before, and nobody was getting before, because search engines don’t pay for content.
Yes, but it remains to be seen whether consumers will buy it. That’s the big question. You can hang a shingle out there and hang a price tag on something, but if they don’t buy it, you pull it back again.
The metric we would be watching for to see if people go to Bing.com instead, knowing that they’re going to get that content instead… or is the idea here that Microsoft going to charge us if we go to Bing.com to get that news content?
MG: No, no no. Sorry to interrupt. Microsoft doesn’t charge us to go to Bing.com. Microsoft, as I’ve said, has a war chest it’s ready to spend on building Bing.com into a more competitive search engine.
So, for the user, the content is still free. That’s the key thing, right?
JB: But, but but… what makes you think that Google is going to pay up for access to Wall Street Journal’s content. Google is the one with the control here. They direct so much traffic to the Wall Street Journal website that they’ve said publicly in statements “we think that if people put content online, they want it to be index,” and they say “if you don’t want us to index your content, we’ll happily stop doing that.” But I don’t think Google’s made any indication that they’re going to be willing to pay up for this.
Just one last thought, guys. Matthew, just one last thought. I’m not sure it would even be legal for News Corp. to forbid Google fttz… simply lifting a story. Number one; and number two, Google is not stealing those readers. It’s directing readers to the News Corp. sites. I think it’s a false charge.
MG: They’re sending them to their sites, but they’re then those users aren’t worth much in terms of advertising revenue.
It’s not Google’s fault. … Google stealing any reader and stopping down here from getting to the News Corp. site.