By now, you’ve undoubtedly heard the news. Google set up a sting operation (how cool is that?) in an attempt to catch Microsoft red-handed stealing their search results. And according to them, they did just that — and made it known. Microsoft has seemingly both sidestepped and denied the claim — and then has sent accusations back Google’s way. The whole thing is amazing, and to be honest, I’m still trying to parse it all. But you can get the whole gist by reading what’s on Techmeme, starting with Danny Sullivan’s original post on the topic.
But what’s most interesting right now is that Google and Microsoft are engaged in a full-on war. Yes, they’ve more or less been at war for many years. But it’s mainly been a quiet war, that takes place behind the scenes and only occasionally includes quick jabs at the other one in public. But now they’re straight-up calling each other liars on Twitter, and their own very popular blogs!
After the news and subsequent fight first broke out this morning. Microsoft immediately put up a rebuttal on their Bing blog, entitled: Thoughts on search quality. That article directly addresses Sullivan’s post but doesn’t directly call out Google for much.
Then things started to get ugly. This prompted Microsoft communication head, Frank Shaw, to take to Twitter in an attempt to swing Microsoft into the offensive postion. Here were his three key tweets:
1. Don’t be fooled. Google wants to change subject because they’re under investigation in the US and Europe for manipulating search results.—
Frank X. Shaw (@fxshaw) February 01, 2011
Google’s Matt Cutts fired back on Twitter:
Google then decided to escalate things further by using their official blog to very directly call Microsoft out with a post titled: Microsoft’s Bing uses Google search results—and denies it. I mean, just think about that for a second.
Then, about an hour ago, there was this great exchange on Twitter in response to Dave Winer posting a link to the original story:
Grab the popcorn and pull up a ring-side seat!
[image: The Weinstein Company]