Sergey Brin: “I Did Not Try To Buy Twitter”





Sergey Brin made a surprise appearance at Web 2.0, where he spent 17 minutes talking with John Battelle about a number of topics. Bullets of what they talked about are below the video:


Here’s the bullets:

  • He’s wearing “freaky” five toes shoes, due to a sprained ankle playing ultimate Frisbee.
  • When asked if Google tried to buy Twitter, Brin says “I did not try to buy Twitter,” but “when companies approach us, we definitely consider any opportunities that can buy.”
  • In response to Facebook and Twitter getting more attention from users, while Google sprays people all over the web: When we started Google search inventory was the bottom of the barrel. We made a bet…and now it is lucrative, but you can’t predict these things. Today something is valued lowly but tomorrow could be very valuable.
  • On display ads: Web is so much better for advertising because you know how the ads perform, so yes, over time, the rates for Internet ads will go up.
  • Why can’t Google focus on just one thing? We’ve entered places where we’ve encountered a problem. For instance with Gmail, web email offerings at the time were toys. We did Android, because we weren’t happy with platforms we saw.
  • Will there be Google hardware? I’ll leave that to Andy Rubin. But, we worked on the G1. We want to work closely with hardware makers.
  • Brin uses Bing, but he uses all search engines. “Bing reminds us that search is competitve.”
  • It’s a shame that Yahoo plans to abdicate. I wish they would continue to innovate in search.
  • WSJ/NYT complaints about Google: They’re conflating Google with change, and the business models are changing. And sure Google has done well, but they’re making a leap that Google is causing it. Dont agree with the conclusion, but he recognises the pain.
  • Using Chrome for Mac, but it’s dissapointing that it’s taking so long to get to Beta.
  • Surprised at the criticism of digitizing the world’s books.