Google to Newspapers: We Come in Peace
Search CEO says his company's not to blame for industry woes
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 3, 2009 9:07 AM CST
Eric Schmidt, Chairman of the Board and CEO of Google speaks at the Gartner Symposium ITxpo in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2009.   (AP Photo/John Raoux)
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(Newser) – Newspapers of the world, Google CEO Eric Schmidt wants you to know that it’s not his fault. The print industry is certainly in crisis—it’s a “traditional technology struggling to adapt to a new, disruptive world”—but the anger at Google is misplaced, he writes in today’s Wall Street Journal. “Google is a great source of promotion. We send online news publishers a billion clicks a month…for free.”

Nor is Google really profiting off newspapers’ work. Google’s revenue comes mainly off product searches. A typical news search—for Afghanistan, for example—generates few if any ads. But a news-gathering crisis is a big deal, and Google “is serious about doing its part” to help publishers “develop new ways to reach readers.” Eventually technology is bound to create more news, not less. “Video didn’t kill the radio star,” he reasons. “It created a whole new industry.”