Edinburgh International TV festival

Eric Schmidt

Eric Schmidt. Image by Getty.

In 2008, Michael Grade, then chief executive of ITV, branded Google a “parasite”, along with other internet companies that “live off our content”.

Tonight, Eric Schmidt, Google’s chairman, will take to the TV industry’s most prestigious platform to give the MacTaggart lecture in Edinburgh.

The Edinburgh International TV Festival’s annual keynote speech has been on steady rotation between the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 for most of its 35-year history, with the recent exception of News Corp Europe chief James Murdoch’s 2009 attack on the BBC.

So the symbolism behind the podium space granted to Google, Facebook and Twitter this year should not be underestimated. Read more