Last December, Vint Cerf — Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist — said Google CEO Eric Schmidt will provide official statements to the press, if needed, within an hour. Philipp Lenssen of Google Blogoscoped decided to test that claim. He generated a list of questions from readers and sent them in. A month later, he’s still waiting for a reply.
Philipp emailed Vint Cerf asking him about the lack of response, and Vint replied that such a fast response is meant for corporate policy issues:
Rapid responses might only reasonably be expected for on-the-record corporate policy questions. Even then it may be expected that internal consultation and coordination might still take some time. Most of the questions … though very interesting, are not about corporate policy and thus unlikely to provoke responses, regardless of time frame.
Of the six questions Philipp emailed, four were dismissed as not being policy issues. One on disclosing contracts between Google Book Search and libraries was not answered, and the remaining one on China Vint replied to himself:
Question: How do you communicate with the Chinese government about which sites to censor? Is there any automatism? Or do all censorship requests go through a human review?
Answer: My understanding is that this is not an automatic process and that the Chinese government makes known what information is of concern to them.
Heck, I email Google all the time with questions. I often get quick responses, but some emails go unanswered or take a long time to get a response.