Mark Cuban, Web luminary who made a bundle selling broadcast.com in the Internet Boom days, blogs that Google has announced their belief Web TV is not viable due to technical limitations. He crows that this confirms his post that broadband video is overrated. Here’s a link to a USA Today article on the subject.

The posts are interesting, as are the reader comments. Yet it seems strange to me that Google, purchaser of YouTube for a hefty price tag, and champion of Net Neutrality, would make such a statement. Well, I Googled the subject and found . . . a GigaOM post contradicting the entire premise, with quotes from an unnamed Google rep.

Okay, GigaOM isn’t unnecessarily the best primary source. But the post has some credibility. Yet there’s another, more conspiracy theory type motivation for Google to downplay the viability of Web TV. I, Cringley (excellent tech column) has this “do-evil” post. Well, maybe not evil, but the plot Cringley outlines certainly is nefarious. I’ll save you the trouble of reading the entire article (although I recommend it). Here’s the conclusion reached by Cringley:

“It is becoming very obvious what will happen over the next two to three years. More and more of us will be downloading movies and television shows over the net and with that our usage patterns will change. Instead of using 1-3 gigabytes per month, as most broadband Internet users have in recent years, we’ll go to 1-3 gigabytes per DAY — a 30X increase that will place a huge backbone burden on ISPs. Those ISPs will be faced with the option of increasing their backbone connections by 30X, which would kill all profits, OR they could accept a peering arrangement with the local Google data center.

Seeing Google as their only alternative to bankruptcy, the ISPs will all sign on, and in doing so will transfer most of their subscriber value to Google, which will act as a huge proxy server for the Internet. We won’t know if we’re accessing the Internet or Google and for all practical purposes it won’t matter. Google will become our phone company, our cable company, our stereo system and our digital video recorder. Soon we won’t be able to live without Google, which will have marginalized the ISPs and assumed most of the market capitalization of all the service providers it has undermined — about $1 trillion in all — which places today’s $500 Google share price about eight times too low.

It’s a grand plan, but can Google pull it off? Yes they can.”

Am I recommending buying Google stock? No, I’m just putting the pieces together: Google comforts current cable and telco companies by scoffing at the possibility of Web TV while they build a huge network to handle the upcoming bandwidth demand and assume monopoly power over the Web. Hmm. Maybe I *am* recommending the purchase of their stock.