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<nettime> rise and decline of Google
Geert Lovink on Thu, 15 Mar 2012 03:19:26 +0100 (CET)


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<nettime> rise and decline of Google


Seen these?

http://truthonthemarket.com/2012/03/12/google-isnt-leveraging-its-dominance-its-fighting-to-avoid-obsolescence/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

http://www.themediabriefing.com/article/2011-01-09/decline-and-fall-of-the-google-empire

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/jw_on_tech/archive/2012/03/13/why-i-left-google.aspx

"The Google I was passionate about was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus."

It just doesn't stop.

Then my eye fell on a big add in the Pravda (WSJ for the clueless) by an organization called Fair Search.

http://www.fairsearch.org/

Extensive website.

Their add in the WSJ of March 9 2012 is the most mainstream version of our critique of free and open yet. It says: "Think Google's free?" It is a business critique that I have heard more often (anti-competitive, destroying my business etc.) combined with the privacy and monetizing riddle.

http://www.fairsearch.org/goodtoknow/

http://searchengineland.com/fairsearch-org-introduces-anti-google-good-to-know-ad-campaign-109304

I also noted that Google started to buy adds in our local Amsterdam newspaper Het Parool to promote their AdSense etc. products.

Which reminded me of the recent (second) rejection by EU to fund our small alternatives to Google initiative, led by Felix and Konrad in Vienna. It seems very hard to fund any alternative research in this direction. We at the Institute of Network Cultures contributed as well with the Society of the Query event, in Vienna there's Deep Search, there are efforts in Bangalore, Rene Ridgeway and so on.

I keep on collecting material, researchers and initiatives in this direction. Search seems to be so crucial, yet so abstract and invisible somehow, in comparison to the funky social media such as Facebook where people spend a lot of time. Search is almost subconscious. You go to the engine, type, klick and you're already somewhere else. And now this crisis at Google (a long one in the making, of course). What would Google do? Decline. This only makes our distributed efforts to look into the political economy of it all, and into the alternatives, more urgent.

Such a pitty we cannot get our act together (yet). If you have the golden funding tip, contact one of us!

Yours, Geert


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