Google’s stealthy innovation: buying academic research to cement market dominance


Across the state, from UC Berkeley and Stanford University in the West to Harvard University in the East, professors and educational scientists have been pocketing cash from Google in exchange for writing papers the tech titan could use to foyer in opposition to rules threatening its dominance.

That’s the assert in a new report delivering a purported detailed seem into how the business has taken the business of lobbying into the shadows, with voluminous payments to teachers whose papers, favorable to Google, typically fall short to observe that Google compensated for them.

“Over the earlier 10 years, Google has assisted finance hundreds of research papers to defend in opposition to regulatory troubles of its sector dominance, paying out stipends of $five,000 to $four hundred,000,” the Wall Street Journal noted July 11.

“Some scientists share their papers just before publication and let Google give suggestions,” the WSJ noted, primarily based on the fruits of public-data requests for e-mail correspondence from additional than a dozen university professors.

“The professors really do not constantly expose Google’s backing in their research, and few disclosed the economic ties in subsequent posts on the similar or very similar matters.”

Google’s stealthy affect campaign “is an case in point of how lobbying has escaped the confines of Washington’s regulated atmosphere and is significantly hard to location,” the WSJ asserted.

Some of the academic papers were being despatched by Google lawyers to the Federal Trade Fee in 2012, when the agency was near to selecting on regardless of whether to cost Google with antitrust offenses, according to the WSJ. No expenses were being laid, immediately after Google agreed to alter some of its business methods.

Google did not promptly respond to a request by SiliconBeat for comment on the WSJ report. The business told the WSJ that it experienced relished “strong relations” with universities and research institutes considering that its inception, and has “always valued their independence and integrity.

“We’re happy to guidance educational scientists throughout personal computer science and coverage matters, which includes copyright, absolutely free expression and surveillance, and to aid amplify voices that guidance the principles of an open up net,” the business claimed.

Google has funded about one hundred public coverage papers considering that 2009, and a different one hundred or so were being penned by people financed by Google-funded believe tanks or research facilities, the WSJ noted immediately after analyzing knowledge from the Campaign for Accountability, an arch foe of Google which is funded in element by Oracle.

At times, Google put together detailed “wish lists” for educational papers and “then they searched for ready authors,” the WSJ noted, citing a former Google worker and a former Google lobbyist.

That former lobbyist said Google promotes finished papers to governing administration officers, and experienced compensated journey expenses for professors to meet up with governing administration officers and congressional aides, according to the WSJ.

“Google has compensated professors whose papers, for instance, declared that the selection of buyer knowledge was a truthful exchange for its absolutely free solutions that the business didn’t use its sector dominance to improperly steer end users to Google’s business websites or its advertisers and that it has not unfairly quashed competitors. Several papers argued that Google’s look for engine ought to be authorized to backlink to publications and other mental home that authors and publishers say ought to be compensated for,” the WSJ noted.


Picture: Inside a Google data middle in Council Bluffs, Iowa (AP Picture/Google, Connie Zhou, File)



Tags: teachers, Google, lobbying, papers, research, Stanford, U-C Berkeley, UC Berkeley, universities