In one will likely become a textbook example of a bad quote coming back to haunt you, Richard Parsons adressed the 56th annual National Cable & Telecommunications Association conference in Las Vegas with:
“The Googles of the world, they are the Custer of the modern world. We are the Sioux nation,” Time Warner Inc. Chief Executive Richard Parsons said, referring to the Civil War American general George Custer who was defeated by Native Americans in a battle dubbed “Custer’s Last Stand.”
“They will lose this war if they go to war,” Parsons added, “The notion that the new kids on the block have taken over is a false notion.”
Let us look beyond the fact that Parsons is attempting to portray the world’s media giants as underdogs comparable to Native Americans, which is already ridiculous on its surface. Let’s instead look to his larger message: Custer may have lost his last stand but while they may have won the battle, ‘manifest destiny’ ultimately steamrolled the Sioux nation.
Other than ridiculous statements, it seems that the official old-media stance on Google being a “frenemy” is now morphing into just plain “enemy” (much as we predicted back when the “frenemy” term was first coined).