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Suddenly Something

May 22, 2008

Evil Google?

Google used to be everything till some time back, what corporates didn’t. It wasn’t ugly [like GE], It was cool [unlike DE Shaw and others] and most of all it was sweet. So sweet that we would rather love to see our pictures taken with Google “the wunderkind” than anybody else. And yes, they were kicking ass of evil corporates. [think Microsoft]

That was 7 years back. 2001. Those days, its stocks were anything but rocking. And it was like another cool boy with great manners type of a company.

Wonder what 7 years do to people. That next door kid with impeccable manners have become sort of a guy, whom people are raising eyebrows on. Its sweet policy of doing no evil has come under the scanner, as it is not doing what it promised to be. It promised to become the champion of the poors and unheard, the knights of the rebellions.

Today, 7 years later, we are talking of an ugly Google, with its monopolistic capitalism as the blemish on an otherwise impeccable career. It has grown big, hefty and suddenly undesirable. Somebody like our own Parveen Babi. Desirable in her youth, repulsive till the other day.

Now suddenly the very giant we were taking cudgels against, Microsoft that is, has suddenly made us shift our loyalties.Remember Microsoft’s dominance and anticompetitive behaviour in OS business? Remember licensing Java Source Code from Sun and coming up with Windows Java especially for Internet Explorer? We loved Google, for it was giving Microsoft a bloody nose.Punching it where it hurts the most with its pro bono Docs and Gmail. Today, we are siding with Microsoft, Yahoo and anybody else who can give Google a bleeding lip.

We suddenly, are feeling afraid of size and having our reservations kick in against Google.

Have a look at Techcrunch report on Live Search Cashback, how Michael Arrington is almost biased against Google.

Look at the common tech article getting hot in Digg or Slashdot [that more techie]. The average technology news will be of cola-and-mentos type[fizz unwanted and uncontrolled, but fizz nevertheless] but of what sensible tech news become hot, concern about how, Apple is cool, Yahoo shucks, and Google is evil.

Worth noticing is the third trend. That Google is evil. Suddenly we want Microsoft to have some search market share, take some money out of Google’s pocket and give Google a bloody nose[if thats possible].

Why suddenly this apathy to Google? Because of size and we always are afraid of Orwellian 1984 nightmare? Or is it because we love competition in a capitalistic economy and we hate seeing anybody settle taking us for granted. Perhaps both. But for me, its suddenly becoming more and more clear, that something deep afoot is happening.

The fear of Microsoft walking away with the largest piece of the desktop computing rose in the late 90s. Heck! people were wondering Microsoft is having the entire cake. People still didnt know about Open Source being as good as Windows and Open Office was not born yet.[It was being conceived in some lab in Berkeley Univ if I am right]

The fear and panic reached its zenith by 1997-99. Microsoft was fraught with anti-competitive policies and court cases [like Walmart remember?] and the entire US seemed like they were baying for blood. And incidentally, in 1999-2000, was the year when to mildly put, NASDAQ-IT crashed. [Is it a leading indicator, which tells us about a news to come?: Technical Analyst speak]

It seems history is repeating. Although the rise of Microsoft as an ugly giant was slow but steady, Google quickly very swiftly moved to a position of great power, which suddenly make us look like one of our own guys has hit paydirt, and surely but suddenly we are edging away from him, too conscious of our own lack of it.

This anathema for Google has reached massive proportions where the disagreement is not polite nods but a full fledged grumbling. Murmurs no more but grumbling.
This will peak off to shouts, and “Down Down with Google” screams one day, and that will be the day when Nasdaq-IT should crash again.Why? Well, just connecting the dots and nothing else. I am predicting it to be someday very soon. And it fits very well with my take, that sub prime in itself is a canary in the mine and not the real issue.

Sorry for fear mongering but to me the dots are in place and increasingly filling in the gaps. What is left all now is joining the dots.

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