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Google PR's party line: Even though Verizon Wireless and AT&T mostly won the FCC"s 700-Mhz spectrum auction, Google got what it wanted out of the bid by forcing the carriers to agree to "open" their new airwaves to any wireless device, including the still-mythical Googlephone. Google's latest actions speak otherwise: Google telecom lawyer Richard Whitt has moved from talking about 700 Mhz to new spectrum, formerly used by TV channels, that will become available next year. Some suspect Google's top management was always bluffing with its spectrum bid. If so, we're guessing they never let the team working on the project in on the secret.

Why? Because we hear the people working on the bid worked themselves sick trying to pull off the impossible. A tipster tells us members of the team saw nervous breakdowns and other health problems. Google's likely to throw the same people on a rush project to lobby for more airwaves. We're curious: How bad did it get for the Googlers, and are they in any shape to work on a new rush spectrum job? Tell us what you've heard. (Photo by alistairmcmillan)