From the Official Google blog 9 months ago
Could Microsoft now attempt to exert the same sort of inappropriate and illegal influence over the Internet that it did with the PC? While the Internet rewards competitive innovation, Microsoft has frequently sought to establish proprietary monopolies -- and then leverage its dominance into new, adjacent markets.
I expected a bit more class from Google. That would be like Microsoft publishing this
Could Google now attempt to exert the same sort of inappropriate and illegal influence over the Internet that it did with ignoring copyright and establishing a virtual monopoly on text links? While the Internet rewards competitive innovation, Google has frequently sought to establish proprietary monopolies -- pushing the rel nofollow tag, telling people broking ads similar to Google's ads that they must mark paid links in a human readable way, then banning or demoting webmasters for following that advice, and paying criminals to steal their content and wrap it in Google ads.
It is interesting to note how much Google has changed in the past couple years: buying products like FeedBurner and taking the leading position in the feed reader market, buying YouTube and owning the video market.
And their network effects are starting to show up in their ad network / approach to their ad network:
- Google has begun selling itself ads for competing brand keywords.
- Google used their non-profit adsense ads to drive traffic to their maps.
- Google warned publishers of potentially lower AdSense earnings, then started advertising their new browser in their ad network.
- Google settled a copyright lawsuits with book publishers and authors for $125 million, in part giving in to the powers to be rather than standing for their principals, and perhaps in part to try to block competition. Back deal partnerships with the powers that be will only slow innovation. Harvard already dropped out of Google's book scanning project based on this new semi-porous partnership.
- Benjamin Edelman sued Google for funding typosquatting.
Google is finally getting to the size where they are starting to get market blowback from governments...
However, after four months of review, including discussions of various possible changes to the agreement, it's clear that government regulators and some advertisers continue to have concerns about the agreement. Pressing ahead risked not only a protracted legal battle but also damage to relationships with valued partners. That wouldn't have been in the long-term interests of Google or our users, so we have decided to end the agreement.
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