Wouldn't our world be boring without TechCrunch fanciful headlines to liven the blogosphere up?
Michael Arrington's "Completely Unsubstantiated Google/YouTube Rumor" is one for the record books.
Isn't a rumor "unsubstantiated" by definition? Perhaps Arrington believes such an oxymoronic phraseology provides professional "coverage." His statement "Based on experience with these sort of rumors, I’d put this at 40% likely to be at least partially true," is similarly incongruous.
Arrington confides to TechCrunchers:
I got an email tonight about a possible Google acquisition of YouTube that may be in the final stages before closing. Rumored price is $1.6 billion. A quick phone call to a VC confirmed that the rumor is circulating (he also confirmed the price), but that is far from confirmation that this deal is happening. I’m digging for more but the source on this one is very good.
Arrington's presentation may be slightly more colorful than the recent New York Post, Wall Street Journal or Business Week inflated rumor mills (see "MySpace, YouTube, Facebook, Digg: $17.7 billion "voodo exuberance"?"), but Arrington is in good company in the spreading of buy-out gossip fuel so that "unsubstantiated rumors" spread like real wildfires.
My sources, however, lead me to a different conclusion than Arrington's.
The Google triumvarite--CEO Eric Schmidt and co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin--hosted many high powered meetings this week with industry leaders and its video strategy was on the agenda.
Brin is said to have "hinted" that Google may tweak its technology so online videos appear on the first page of responses to search requests:
Often times in research, video can be a very good answer to a question.
Is Google planning to change its algorithms to list videos as possible solutions?:
It's an oversight that it's not true today.
My source is not as dramatic, or as sexy, as Arrington's covert email exchange, but I lay greater than 40% odds that it is more reliable: AP reports.