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Nov 16

“Show Me the Money” Mr. Schmidt

It’s not a surprise that Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt continued his attacks on proposed U.S. anti-piracy legislation (Protect IP Act and SOPA-Stop Online Piracy Act).  His latest volley came yesterday during an appearance at M.I.T.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov 15 (Reuters) – Google Inc Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt blasted proposed legislation to tighten online copyright regulation on Tuesday, saying the bills would lead to censorship of the Internet.

Intended to combat the trade in pirated movies and music, the two bills would give copyright holders and law enforcement officials added powers to cut off websites and require search engines, payment collectors and others to block access.

“The solutions are draconian,” Schmidt said during an appearance at the MIT Sloan School of Management. “There’s a bill that would require (Internet service providers) to remove URLs from the Web, which is also known as censorship last time I checked.”

Forgive me if I find his protestations a tad disingenuous, if not laughable.  Of course he’s against the legislation, and it’s not because of some higher principle.  He’s against it because, if passed,  it would hit Google where it hurts–in the pocketbook.  If Chairman Schmidt wants me, and others, to take him seriously I would suggest that he engage in a bit of corporate soul-searching and come clean about just how much money Google makes from ad revenues earned off products placed on pirate websites.  By the way, in the most recent quarter, Google reported 9.3 billion in advertising revenue.

If the cure is really that much worse than the disease, then why not prove it?  SHOW ME THE MONEY Mr. Schmidt. Show me, and everyone else concerned about this issue,  that Google doesn’t earns millions off content theft and counterfeit products.  Open your books and prove it.  Show me where that 9.3 billion in advertising profits came from.  Maybe then you will have the credibility to speak on this issue. A little transparency could go a long way.  For now, it just seems like all you are doing is protecting Google’s profits at the expense of others.