The luxury market, Google, and Critical Mass

I was down in New York earlier this week to discuss the luxury market at events sponsored by Google and Critical Mass, leading up to the Luxury Interactive 2007 conference.  The premise was a lot of fun for me personally, having worked with PUMA's design partners to bring collaborations to life online (e.g. Christy Turlington, Philippe Starck, Neil Barrett).

Some might argue that luxury and interactive go together like a Porsche with automatic transmission.  Not so!  Forrester's Consumer Technographics data shows that in comparison to the general U.S. population, luxury shoppers are more technology-optimistic, are veteran cross-channel shoppers, and spend almost double the amount of time using the internet.

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FTC review of Google/DoubleClick: No big whoop

You have probably heard the scuttlebutt around the FTC investigation into Google's acquisition of DoubleClick.  Last week, the FTC confirmed that it would conduct an antitrust review of the deal, paying particular attention to the amount of consumer data DoubleClick gives Google access to.   

My take is that this is all much ado about nothing.  Why?

*Google is an easy target.  Google is so large, and has seen such rapid growth over the last 3 years, that we all (competitors, consumers, government officials, press, industry analysts) can't help but be a little suspicious of them.  And maybe a little jealous of their wealth and presence. 

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