Microsoft CEO Says Google Reads Your Email

    October 8, 2007

The last thing search giant Google needs right now is any suggestion that it has become all knowing, all seeing. The company is trying to get its DoubleClick deal approved, so comments from Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer won’t help.

“Google’s had the same experience, even though they read your mail and we don’t,” Ballmer said, to chuckles and and a couple of gasps in the audience. “That’s just a factual statement, not even to be pejorative. The theory was if we read your mail, if somebody read your mail, they would know what to talk to you about. It’s not working out as brilliantly as the concept was laid out.”

Ballmer’s comments came in reply to a question raised at a recent speech in the UK.

Of course, it’s not such a shocking revelation. Google freely admits to examining your personal information using cookies. However, Google claims they don’t actually “read” your email.

It will be interesting to see Google’s response. If they don’t actually “read” your Gmail, they’d have to come out on the defensive–perhaps even sue Ballmer for slander? If they keep quiet, you’ll know Ballmer’s hitting close to the truth and Google would rather not debate the topic.

You can watch the video here.