Facebook outed as source of anti-Google PR smear campaign

Shared by Mystech

Yeah, that’ll do nicely and typically for this week’s “You been Zucked, baby!”. You don’t know how much I fervently hope that Facebook is just the longest 15 minutes of fame in history or that we’ll be able to look back on it like Reality TV one day… What? You mean they’re still doing Reality TV?

Facebook is reported to have hired public relations firm Burson-Marstellar to generate negative stories about Facebook competitor Google— specifically, “urging [journalists] to investigate claims that Google was invading people’s privacy.” Well that’s rich.

One of their targets was Christopher Soghoian, a security researcher and blogger, who is no chump. Things did not work out as planned.

Dan Lyons chronicles the epic “Keystone Kops”-like routine at The Daily Beast.

Soghoian has posted the email exchange he had with Burson-Marstellar here.

At Wired News, Sam Gustin writes,

In the annals of shady public relations stunts, Facebook’s attempt to surreptitiously plant negative — and highly misleading — stories about Google into leading media outlets will surely go down as one of the most ham-handed in recent memory.

Ham-handed it may be, but as Declan McCullagh of CNET noted on Twitter today, there is precedent.

(Image: Facebook, a Creative Commons Attribution No-Derivative-Works (2.0) image from fbouly’s photostream)

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