larry page

Tech news from around the web:

  • Online travel site Expedia is planning to spin off TripAdvisor, in a deal that could value the unit at as much as $4bn, the Wall Street Journal reports. Dara Khosrowshahi, Expedia chief executive,  said the recommendation and travel media site had grown to a point that it was now ready to be spun off into a pure-play media company.

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Larry Page returns to work at Google today as its chief executive, although he never went away in the first place, having spent a decade as “president of products” and part of the triumvirate that ran the company.

Still, with Eric Schmidt moving up to becoming “executive chairman” – usually an ambiguous term that means “the old chief executive who is not yet willing to relinquish the reins fully” – Mr Page appears to be back in charge of the company he co-founded with Sergey Brin.

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Maija Palmer

Google logoGoogle doesn’t do humility very well, especially in the rarefied atmosphere of the annual Zeitgeist conference. This is generally an opportunity for high flying executives to rub shoulders with the great and good – this year’s opening keynote was by Archbishop Tutu – and spend two days congratulating themselves on their vision and innovation.

It was an uncomfortable place for Google to find itself at the centre of a privacy row over the unauthorised collection of WiFi data by its StreetView cars. Unsurprising, therefore, that the company showed little real remorse over the incident. Read more

Silicon Valley’s commitment to shareholder democracy – or to public shareholder democracy as opposed to the influence wielded by venture capital firms – does not seem to be strong.

The news that Facebook has established a dual-class share structure, converting its existing shareholders to Class B stock carrying 10 times the voting rights of Class A shares, suggests that (despite its denials) Facebook is readying itself for an initial public offering.

It is also falling in line with Google, which created a dual-class share structure for its IPO in 2004, which also gave 10 times the voting power to some shareholders. Eric Schmidt, the company’s chief executive, and Larry Page and Sergey Brin, its co-founders, control the majority voting rights as a result. Read more