If there’s one thing Google likes to do, it’s to lecture other industries and organizations about innovation.

The self-appointed arbiter of what constitutes advancement in any business sector selected for its glorious attention has been out in full force recently. Whether it’s informing U.S. cities that they should roll over for its Fiber product or writing juvenile rebuttals to media outlets that dare to challenge its supremacy, Google’s hubris appears to be growing by the day.

Google's Server Error page

Google: Errors, what errors? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On the latter point, regarding the company’s close relationship with the country’s legislators, Mountain View is in especially defensive mood.

Not surprising, given that the incident that kicked up all the fuss in the first place calls into question the core of Google’s business: the legitimacy of its search results.

A report from the Federal Trade Commission’s 2012 investigation of Google was recently leaked to the Wall Street Journal, leading to allegations that the regulatory body walked away from a strong case accusing the company of anti-trust violations. Central to these allegations is the idea that Google intentionally manipulated its results to promote its own shopping options over those of competing sites, violating its own standard of presenting only the most relevant results to searchers.

In the aftermath of the case, Google agreed to amend its business practices to resolve the dispute with the FTC, while simultaneously denying that any legal action was justified. That reeks of the same dismissive “make all of this go away” attitude that the company continuously flaunts, seemingly seeing itself above the same scrutiny placed on other industries, not least broadcasting companies involved in acquisition talks or attempting to negotiate a sensible solution to the debate around net neutrality.

Google repeatedly accuses the entertainment industry and others of stifling innovation (as it does in this Time article), yet documented evidence that it should be held to the same standards are dismissed by both the company’s executives and those charged with keeping an eye on its actions.

Google Appliance as shown at RSA Expo 2008 in ...

A Google soapbox? It wouldn’t be the first! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Moreover, what Google continues to ignore is that innovation is also found in creativity.

U.S. creators are second to none when it comes to driving the country’s economy and culture forward, which often manifests itself in technological breakthroughs. They drive more than $1 trillion dollars in GDP every year and rely on the underlying foundation of U.S. intellectual property law to have faith that their creativity will be rewarded, should the market deem it worthy. Innovation in technology follows a similar path, yet faces fewer hurdles when it comes to having the market respect its originality and value.

Unfortunately Google’s platforms often serve to starve the former set of creators of funds with its indirect support piracy, whether by placing unlicensed results in its search listings, or allowing pirated content to continually pop up on YouTube.

In these cases the company is unwilling to manipulate its results on an ongoing basis to weed out piracy, citing burdensome requirements and wasted resources. But when there’s an opportunity to further its own platforms and products, Google seems to feel no such limitations.

It is this hypocrisy towards innovation that defines Google’s recent actions, and which the Wall Street Journal’s revelations have ringing all the more hollow as we see how the company operates when the public microphone is off.