Is Google trading access for positive media coverage?

<update:> I received this message from Jeff Jarvis regarding this post: "I had no access to Google. I have no idea why the words "generous access" are in quotes.

<update:> I received this message from Jeff Jarvis regarding this post: "I had no access to Google. I have no idea why the words "generous access" are in quotes. Those certainly are not my quotes. I chose to write my book from a distance without any access or favor from Google."</update>

After posting on Randall Stross's puff piece on Google in the New York Times, I came across (via Portfolio.com) what I think is an important post on journalistic integrity and Google's journalist-by-journalist press policy. Diary of a Rat noted the obvious similarities in Stross's column and Google's Public Policy posts and chastised the Times for bio-lining Stross as "an author based in Silicon Valley and a professor of business at San Jose State University," without noting that he is working on a book on Google, for which he received:

[U]nprecedented access ... to the highly secretive "Googleplex" ... \
Stross is not the only one writing a Google-blessed book and carrying Google's lobbying water at the same time, Rat notes. Acclaimed journalist-cum-blogger Jeff Jarvis recently repeated Google's talking points on this deal, while at least disclosing he is writing a sympathetic book.
Jarvis discloses that he is also publishing a book about Google that, one can assume, resulted from “generous access” (not so, as it turns out.) Further, he admits that his book is admiring of the company. The disclosure is one step ahead of the Times and is appreciated because it provides a lens through which we can critically assess his sentiments.
While journalists depend on access for scoops, the price being paid may be too high. Google reacted angrily when ZD's sister site News.com revealed personal details of Eric Schmidt's life by searching on Google. Google boycotted News.com for some period of time. We all know that publishing in this day and age is a battle for readership, but in the long run integrity will outpace access.

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