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Google Takes Department of Interior Rejection Badly

Don't you just love headlines? We adore headlines. Some of our favorites so far this week include: "Google Sues US Government over Microsoft Favouritism" (complete with superfluous British "u" in "favoritism"), "Google Sues Agency over Microsoft-Only Cloud Deal" and "Google Sues US over Unfair Cloud Contract".

Well, that's that, then. Obviously, some U.S. government agency has jobbed Google by showing blatant favoritism toward Microsoft in the process of awarding a contract. Right? That's what the headlines say. So, case closed; Google can wipe the floor with the U.S. government -- the Department of the Interior in this case --in court and move on.

Or maybe not. Check out this little tidbit from our own RCPmag.com story, which has something of a more sophisticated headline:

"Google is suing the Interior Department for allegedly excluding Google's products in a request for quotation the agency issued on Aug. 30. The RFQ, for hosted e-mail and collaboration services, specifies that the proposed solutions must be part of the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite.

According to the court filing, Google officials had met with the Interior department several times, and pursued discussions in correspondence, in an effort to convince the department that Google's applications were capable of handling Interior's needs, and that they should also be considered as a possible solution.

Ultimately, however, Interior limited its scope to Microsoft with the requisite Limited Sourcing Justification document, telling Google officials that Microsoft offered unified/consolidated e-mail and better security than Google Apps."

Read that middle paragraph again; that's the money bit. Google officials had met with the Interior Department... and got shot down. That's how we read it. So, Interior is stipulating a Microsoft-only contract because it... prefers Microsoft's product offering. Shocking! Well, that certainly is "favouritism" if we've ever heard of it. It's called choosing one product over another. Of course, in today's America, that's ground for a lawsuit -- and for shocking headlines. Good luck with all that, Google.

What's your take on Google crying foul? Send it to lpender@rcpmag.com.

Posted by Lee Pender on 11/03/2010 at 1:23 PM


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