Has Google blacklisted CNET? News is hitting the Net that Google is no longer talking to CNET reporters. It seems that Google representatives have instituted a policy of not talking with CNET News.com reporters until July 2006 in response to privacy issues raised by a previous story. Seemingly, CNET got Google's back up when CNET did an article where all sorts of personal information about Google CEO Eric Schmidt was included. The information was obtained from Google searches.
The move is likely to backfire on two counts. Google isn't alone in amassing one of the world's largest databases of personal information and behavior - as Yahoo! and Microsoft have too. But the retaliation against the news site is only likely to focus more attention to Google's often contemptuous attitude to press and analyst scrutiny (on its first ever financial analyst day the company offered its chef, but not its CFO) and puts its privacy issues firmly in the spotlight.
Secondly, Google's official PR statements typically fall into two categories: the useless and the downright misleading. (We discovered that the hard way, when a promise to deliver a written news policy for its Google News aggregator made one Friday had vaporized by the following Monday; to this day Google has never made a public policy statement of its criteria for including sources in Google News).