Scott Cleland

President, Precursor® LLC  

Chairman, NetCompetition®

Twitter @SCleland



A.               Summary Bio

Scott Cleland is a precursor: a proven thought leader with a long track record of industry firsts. Cleland is President of Precursor® LLC, a Fortune 500 research consultancy specializing in the future of Internet competition, property rights, privacy, cyber-security and cyber-ideology; algorithmic markets; and communications competition and de-regulation. Cleland authors the widely-read PrecursorBlog and serves as Chairman of NetCompetition® a pro-competition e-forum supported by broadband interests. A world-leading research authority on Google, Cleland authored the book: Search & Destroy: Why You Can't Trust Google Inc. and is publisher of the watchdog site Google Monitor. 

Cleland served as Deputy United States Coordinator for Communications and Information Policy in the George H. W. Bush Administration. Eight Congressional subcommittees have sought Cleland’s expert testimony and Institutional Investor twice ranked him the #1 independent analyst in his field. Scott Cleland has been profiled in Fortune, National Journal, Barrons, WSJ’s Smart Money, and Investors Business Daily. Ten publications have featured his op-eds.


Outline of

A.               Summary Bio

B.               Proven Thought Leadership

C.              A World Leading Research Authority on Google

D.              Congressional Testimony

E.               Selected Media Profiles/Interviews

F.               Op-Eds

G.              Long Bio

·        Private Sector Experience

·        Public Service

·        Education

H.              Precursor® LLC Web Properties

I.                 Contact Information


B.            Proven Thought Leadership   

2013 – First analyst to show how Google anti-competitively has extended its search/search advertising dominance to Internet video distribution dominance via YouTube and willful blindness to mass piracy.

2013 – First analyst to explain to financial law enforcement why Bitcoin & virtual currencies fan bubble economics & are dressed-up, modern-day, alchemy prone to fraud, crime, speculation, & manipulation.

2013 – First analyst to describe the 21st century cyber-ideology of codism, the belief system for a digital commons and rule of code i.e. no limitations on digital coding, information sharing or cyber-free-speech.

2012 – First analyst to spotlight the void of modern asset management by U.S. Government for radio spectrum, the 21st century’s most valuable natural resource, obstructing the spectrum auction pipeline.

2012 – First analyst to explain why U.S. communications law’s obsolete requiring total modernization.

2011 – First analyst to predict that Google’s plan to buy Motorola’s patent portfolio to defend Android against patent suits would be viewed as anti-competitive and would be opposed by antitrust authorities. 

2011 -- Authored first critical Google treatise/book: Search & Destroy: Why You Can’t Trust Google Inc.

 2010 – Founded, the world’s first watchdog site to make Google more accountable.

2009 – First analyst to spotlight/explain the systemic destabilizing effect of indexing financial instruments on the overall financial system, capital formation and the Financial Crisis.

2009 – First analyst to identify/describe the emerging ideological movement promoting net neutrality.

2008 – First analyst to document for Congress why Google’s the single worst corporate privacy offender.

2007 -- First analyst to explain why Google’s acquisition of DoubleClick would tip Google to monopoly.

2006 – Founded NetCompetition® the first e-forum to oppose net neutrality legislation/price regulation.

2002 – First analyst to testify to Congress explaining the key financial frauds in the dotcom bubble.  

2002 -- First analyst to figure out that WorldCom’s business model didn’t add up and predict its ultimate bankruptcy -- the event that triggered passage of Sarbanes-Oxley financial and research regulations.

2001 – First analyst asked to testify before Congress to explain what precipitated Enron’s bankruptcy.

2001 – Conceived and cofounded Investorside -- the first U.S. association of independent investment research providers and the first U.S. financial association to require members to adopt a code of ethics.  

2000 – First to predict DOJ would block WorldCom-Sprint, ending WorldCom’s long distance roll-up. 

1999 -- First investment analyst to warn investors that Internet data traffic was growing 16 times slower than the market assumed, protecting investors six months before the dotcom market bubble burst.

1996 – First analyst to predict change in media ownership rules would yield 1000+ radio station groups.

1995 -- First analyst to predict the “Baby Bells” could and would consolidate with end of monopoly.

1993 -- First analyst to predict Congress would change telecom law from monopoly to competition.


 C.     A World-Leading Research Authority on Google 

Having followed Google as an analyst for most of its existence, Scott Cleland was the first analyst to foresee that Google’s acquisition of DoubleClick would tip Google to a global monopoly and that its unprecedented market power -- in combination with its un-ethical business practices and aversion to accountability -- would lead to serious ongoing antitrust, privacy, property, cybersecurity and law enforcement problems.

Scott Cleland is the only Google expert to have testified three times before U.S. Congressional Subcommittees on Google. Government’s on four continents have sought out or used Precursor’s Google research. He is the author of the only critical treatise/book on Google: Search & Destroy: Why You Can’t Trust Google Inc. which has been translated into Portuguese and Korean. He is publisher of: Google Monitor, which holds Google accountable to the law and its public representations; and Googleopoly, which chronicles Google’s antitrust problems and rap sheet.  

Overall, Scott Cleland has written more Google accountability research than anyone in the world, with over a thousand blog posts chronicling a variety of research series: Googleopoly antitrust research; Google’s rap sheet of legal offenses; Google’s unaccountability; Google’s disrespect for privacy; Google’s disrespect for property; and security is Google’s Achilles Heel.  The New York Times described Cleland in a front page story on Google as “a consultant for Google competitors and a consumer watchdog whose blog maintains a close watch on Google’s privacy issues.”


D.    Scott Cleland Congressional Testimony  

  1. House Judiciary Competition Subcommittee, 9-16-10, Hearing on “Competition in the Evolving Digital Marketplace,” “The Evolving Competition Digital Dichotomy & Why Googleopoly is the Main Antitrust Event” 
  2. Joint House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee, 6-18-09, Joint Hearing on Behavioral Advertising, “Why A Consumer-Driven, Technology/Competition-Neutral, Privacy Framework Is Superior to a Default ‘Finders Keepers Losers Weepers’ Privacy Framework”  
  3. House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Internet Hearing, 9-17-08, “The Blind Eye to Privacy Law Arbitrage by Google -- Broadly Threatens Respect for Privacy”
  4. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee On Antitrust, 9-27-07, “Google-DoubleClick Merger and the Online Advertising Industry,” “The Google-DoubleClick Anti-competitive Case”
  5. Senate Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights, 10-19-05, “Video and Telecom Competition is Increasingly Vibrant and Here to Stay, Recommendations on Telecom Reform Legislation”
  6. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, 4-19-05, "Telecom Mergers in a Techcom World: How Antitrust Must Adapt to the Techcom Future"
  7. Senate Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, 2-11-04, Oversight Hearing, “Cable Competition – Increasing Price; Increasing Value?”  
  8. Senate Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, 6-18-03, Oversight Hearing, “NewsCorp/Hughes Proposed Merger”
  9. House Financial Services Committee Subcommittee on Capital Markets, Insurance, and Government Sponsored Enterprises, June 18, 2003, 6-16-03, “Mutual Funds Integrity and Fee Transparency Act of 2003” 
  10. House Financial Services Oversight Subcommittee, 3-21-02, “Global Crossing’s Bankruptcy: A Window Into a Broken System of Protecting Investors”
  11. Senate Commerce Committee, Panel on Consumer Affairs, 12-18-01, Hearing on Enron Bankruptcy, “Conflicts of Interest Are Eroding the Market’s Integrity and Internal Controls” 
  12. House Financial Services Subcommittee on Capital Markets, 6-14-01, “Who’s Looking Out for Investors?”
  13. House Judiciary Committee, June 5, 2001, 6-5-01 Oversight Hearing, “House Internet Freedom and Broadband Deployment Act of 2001”
  14. House Judiciary Committee, 7-18-00, Legislative Hearing on H.R. 1686, the "Internet Freedom Act" and H.R. 1685, the "Internet Growth and Development Act of 1999"
  15. House Judiciary Committee, 6-30-99, House Internet Freedom Act and Internet Growth, Development Act of 1999 
  16. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Business Rights and Competition, 5-19-98, Telephone Industry Consolidation


E.       Selected Scott Cleland Media Profiles/Interviews      


1.     CBS Evening News, "Google Surveillance Far Surpasses the NSA," 6-11-13

2.     Fox News, "Big Brother Meets Big Government," 6-15-13

3.     The New York Times, "Google Concedes That Drive-by Prying Violated Privacy,"  " 3-13-13 

4.     The Diane Rehm Show, NPR,"FCC's Proposal for Nationwide Wireless Network," 2-5-13 

5.     The Diane Rehm Show, National Public Radio, "The Future of Landline Phones," 12-6-12

6.     Managing IP Magazine, "Opinion: Google is waging war on IP law," 8-9-12

7.     San Jose Mercury News, "Microsoft & Google battle for influence in policy shadows," 7-27-12 

8.     Fox News, "Breaking down Google Privacy Issue," Justice with Judge Jeanine, 7-10-12     

9.     Bloomberg West, Bloomberg TV, "EU May Rule Google Monopoly, Sanction Firm," 3-1-12

10.  C-SPAN, "The Communicators: Scott Cleland on Google's Senate Antitrust Hearing," 9-23-11 

11.  FoxNews,"Can You Trust Google?," Fox and Friends, 5-9-11 

12., "Scott Cleland's new book details why Google can't be trusted,"  5-4-11  

13.  Investors Business Daily, "When Analysts Look Over Their Shoulders," Brian Deagon, 12-24-10 

14.  USAToday, "Google Takes Issue with Vocal Critics Gary Reback, Scott Cleland," 12-3-10  

15.  CNBC Street Signs, "Get Ready for Google TV,"  8-18-10

16.  CSPAN,"The Communicators: Scott Cleland & Markham Erickson on Net Neutrality," 12-4-09   

17.  Investors Business Daily; "Q&A Scott Cleland: Google Big Beneficiary of Lobbying" 9-12-08     

18.  Smart Money Magazine, "Side Effects" Eric Savitz, 8-06  

19.  PBS Frontline Special, "The Wall Street Fix," Produced by Hedrick Smith, 5-8-03  

20.  Fortune Magazine, "Calling WorldCom's Woes," Stephanie Mehta,  7-22-02

21.  National Journal, "The Profits of Being Less Clueless," W. John Moore, 9-16-00 


  F.       Scott Cleland Op-Eds

1.     The Daily Caller, “1G Government in a 4G World,” 7-16-13

2.     The Daily Caller, “New U.S. spectrum policy has big problems,” 6-19-13

3.     The Daily Caller, “Obsolete Privacy Law,” 1-22-13

4.     The Daily Caller, “What if Microsoft Exited the Search Business?” 1-14-13

5.     The Hill, "Courts, not FTC, Should Decide on Google Practices," 12-10-12

6.     Politico, LTE on Google Politicization of antitrust review, 10-16-12

7.     The Daily Caller, “US Government’s wasteful hoarding & rationing of spectrum” 9-7-12

8.     The Daily Caller, "Why U.S. Communications Law is Obsolete," 6-25-12

9.     The Wall Street Journal, LTE -- Google and Microsoft cases are Different, 4-29-12

10.  Forbes CIO Network, "Seven Ways the World is Changing the Internet," 1-11-12  

11.  Forbes CIO Network, "Obsolete Television Law Needs Modernization" 1-4-12

12.  The Huffington Post, "Big Brother Inc.," 5-23-11  

13.  The Washington Times, "E-totalitarianism at Google" 5-9-11 

14.  The Seattle Times, "Wake Up to Google’s Threat to Journalism” 2-6-09  

15.  The Atlanta Journal Constitution, “Googleopoly Darkens the Future of Innovation” 11-27-08  

16.  The Washington Times, “The Ultimate Internet Gatekeeper” 9-30-07 

17.  The Washington Times, “America’s Unique Internet Success” 2-1-07  

18.  The Financial Times, “Follow the Money to Wall Street’s Big Secret” 11-8-02


G.      Long Bio

Private Sector Experience: Precursor® LLC is a research consultancy for Fortune 500 companies, focused on the future of Internet competition, property rights, privacy, cyber-security and cyber-ideology; algorithmic markets; and communications competition and de-regulation. Precursor® LLC specializes in anticipating, bringing clarity-of-thought and applying framework analysis to complex emerging Internet problems before others sort them out.

Cleland authors PrecursorBlog, which Wired Magazine described as “widely-read.” Scott Cleland also serves as Chairman of NetCompetition®, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Precursor LLC and a pro-competition e-forum which provides analysis and insights for broadband companies. 

Previously, Scott Cleland served institutional investors as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Precursor Group® Inc. Cleland founded and co-built the Precursor Group® Broker Dealer from scratch to the #1 Institutional Investor-recognized independent research firm in communications in four years. The firm served most of the top investment institutions in the U.S., including 39 of the top 50. At that time and in that role, Cleland was well-known as one of the most-widely quoted and interviewed analysts in the United States. Overall Cleland has thirteen years experience in the institutional investment business including working for Legg Mason and the Schwab Washington Research Group.

Public Service: Scott Cleland serves as a member of the United States Department of State Advisory Committee on International Communications and Information Policy. In 2002, Cleland conceived and was the Founding Chairman of the Investorside Research Association, the first and only association of independent research firms. Also in 2002, Institutional Investor Magazine called Cleland “the de facto spokesperson for the independent research community.” During this time, he testified before Congress on both the conflicts-of-interest and accounting tricks that contributed to widespread telecom bankruptcies and Internet fraud during the dotcom market bubble. In addition, Cleland was the lead source and primary analyst for Hedrick Smith’s Emmy Award winning PBS Frontline Special, “The Wall Street Fix.”

Cleland has testified before Congress sixteen times before eight different subcommittees on variety of forward-looking public policy issues.   

Scott Cleland’s career as a public servant concluded in 1992 as the Deputy United States Coordinator for Communication and Information Policy at the U.S. Department of State, serving President H. W. Bush. Previously, Cleland served as a Senior Policy Advisor to the then Secretary of State James A. Baker III. He received the Superior Honor Award for his role as the lead congressional briefer to Secretary Baker on all foreign policy matters during the first Gulf War and the dissolution of the former Soviet Union. Prior to that, he served as Director of Legislative Affairs for the U.S. Department of Treasury and as a Budget Examiner for OMB in the U.S. Executive Office of the President.

Education: Scott Cleland has a Masters of Public Affairs from LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin and a BA in Political Science from Kalamazoo College. In 2000, Cleland earned Kalamazoo College’s Distinguished Achievement Award.


H.          Precursor LLC Web Properties 









I.        Contact Information


·        202-828-7800