A $1 bln suit won’t stop Google from getting its Dauman

March 18, 2009

The big highlight of the McGraw-Hill media summit in New York when NBC Universal’s Jeff Zucker took a couple of shots at Jon Stewart.

But our favorite story came at the end of the day, courtesy of Viacom top dog Philippe Dauman. The background to this story was a question about Viacom’s $1 billion lawsuit against Google’s YouTube  over copyright infringement.

That led Dauman to mention that his son, Phillippe Dauman Jr., happens to work at… wait for it… Google.

Here’s the CEO’s described the chain of events that led to his son’s hiring:

“It just so happens that he was being interviewed at business school by someone at Google on the very day we sent our massive takedown notice.

So he called me up the next day, Saturday. ‘Dad you really screwed me up.’

I said, ‘What do you mean?’ I had no idea.

‘I had a great interview with Google yesterday,’ he said. ‘And they aren’t going to hire me.’

I said, ‘Oh? Well, you’re right, they probably won’t. But you’re a smart kid and you’ll get lots of offers.’

Now I give Google a lot of credit because his interviewer — who was actually a very  senior guy — called him the next week. ‘We liked you,’ he said. But he couldn’t escape who my son was because he’s, well, a junior. But he told my son they make offers on merit, and he invited him out to Mountain View and ran him through the computerized tests — and he got a job offer.

It was actually down in the end between Apple and Google, he had offers from both companies. So my son called me up. ‘I know you have this thing with Google,’ he said. ‘But I really liked Google. I told him Google’s a great company, and we have a dispute at the moment at the top, but it’s still a great company.

‘You should go there.’

The next time I saw Eric Schmidt — because I did find out they ran it up the flagpole to him because it involved my son — I said to him, ‘I admire what you did. It could have come out differently.’

And my son’s doing very well there. He loves it. But we agreed, and my son is meticulous about this, that we don’t talk about it.”

And what exactly does Philippe Dauman Jr do at Google?

“He’s in content acquisition.”

(Picture: Reuters)

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