Google CEO takes a slap at newspapers

The Newspaper Association of America got an earful from Google (GOOG) CEO Eric Schmidt. Newspaper executives got to sit and listen to a man whose company is making the extraordinary kind of money that they did a decade ago, in the age before broadband. Now consumers can turn to Google News and get much of what the newspapers used to deliver to their subscribers, and there is very little they can do about it.

There has been talk among newspaper managements that it may be a good idea to take legal action against Google for using their headlines in its Google News service. But these headlines point to newspaper websites, giving them tons of free traffic. The publishers can't afford to lose those eyeballs.