Valleywag: Google PR Tests Market for Non-Existent Product in WSJ, Again
November 27, 2007
It’s common knowledge, or it should be, that attaching the world Google to anything you pitch gives you a much better chance of getting a reporter’s eyes/ears. Well, if you’re working for Google itself, things can be a lot easier. Valleywag’s Nicholas Carlson reports:
Credit the Google PR machine with this much; They know how to stir up media froth without serving up any real products. Android and the OpenSocial initiative showed that much. Of course, the process is often as simple as leaking “scoops” to the Wall Street Journal. Today, for example, the Journal reports that Google is working on an Internet storage service that will work like just another hard drive. This would be a scoop, of course, if the software, codenamed “Platypus,” hadn’t been out for a year already. The paper cites “people familiar with the matter,” but you can safely describe them as product managers eager to test the market without accountability.
To the defense of the WSJ reporters, no mainstream outlets had written about “Platypus,” just the blog listed by Valleywag. Also, the story is lighting up Techmeme right now, so the reporters are laughing all the way to the page-view bank.