Jared Polis Tells FTC To Back Off Google Antitrust Investigation

from the waste-of-government-resources dept

Colorado's Jared Polis is likely a familiar Congressman to our readers. He was one of the key voices in Congress against SOPA. He's also been one of the few members of government willing to speak out against all of the problems in the domain seizures that have occurred. Now we learn that his pro-tech stance over government-meddling continues with a strongly worded letter to the Federal Trade Commission over its investigation of Google for antitrust violations.
At a time when the national economy continues to stagnate, it's not clear to me why the FTC should be focusing on a product that consumers seem very happy with, search engines. While Google is surely a big company and an important service in peoples' lives, my constituents also use a variety of competing services, including Amazon.com for shopping, iTunes for music and movies, Facebook for social networking and recommendations, and mobile apps like Yelp for finding local businesses. Competition is only a click away and there are no barriers to competition; if I create a better search algorithm I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google. To even discuss applying anti-trust in this kind of hyper-competitive environment defies all logic and the very underpinnigns of anti-trust law itself.
His admission, that Google is indeed a massive entity, likely is designed to push back against the FTC for targeting Google specifically in the search space, despite the relatively high level of competitive search engines on the market. Antitrust violations are not designed to punish really successful companies, and they're not supposed to just go after companies for being "big." Rather, they're designed to prevent anti-competitive practices for the benefit of a healthy marketplace and, most importantly, for the benefit of consumers. While the country is still waiting for the official charges against Google by the FTC over any kind of anti-competitive behavior, there can be little doubt that there is indeed a swath of competition and that the public is pleased with Google's product. It's not like Bing and Yahoo (or Blekko or DuckDuckGo) don't exist, after all, it's just that more people trust Google for their search results. None of this seems worth pursuing an antitrust suit over. As Polis notes:
I have never heard one of my constituents say that they don't feel like they have enough choices online, or that they feel locked in to using any one of these services. Competition among these services is leading to lots of great services for consumers -- and consumers aren't asking Congress or the FTC to protect them.
Indeed, it only seems to be Google competitors who are asking for help here. And that's not the purpose of antitrust law.

Having said all that, Polis went further in his letter, issuing a warning to the FTC that if screws this up, it risks being downsized.
The FTC should tread carefully when reviewing Google, Facebook, Twitter or any other tech company, given the dynamism of our tech industry and the potential for making things worse through regulation. Today's giants can be tomorrow's failures without any government intervention; market forces drive obsolescence at a break neck pace which should only further abrogated the need for government intervention. I believe that application of anti-trust against Google would be a woefully misguided step that would threaten the integrity of our anti-trust system, and could ultimately lead to Congressional action resulting in a reduction in the ability of the FTC to enforce critical anti-trust protections in industries where markets are being distorted by monopolies and oligopolies.
Critics of Google will point to this as some kind of hinted blackmail by Polis, but that isn't at all what he's saying. All he's saying in this instance is that if the FTC brings a poor case against Google and loses face over it, the representatives of the people (whom government is supposed to serve) will take action. It's a warning that the FTC had better have its ducks in a row when considering such a move against a huge member of the national business community.

In the end, we'll have to see if any actual anti-competitive practices by Google are really brought forth. Barring that, Google simply being really successful is no reason to bring an antitrust suit against them.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:03pm

    For every troll that claims Polis is a Google shill, I'm taking a shot.

    Hopefully, I'll be wasted by evening time.

     

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    Lance, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:05pm

    Kansas City

    Although Google's search competitors whine, my guess is the only reason the FTC is being called in on this one is Google's experiments with high speed internet in Kansas City. The telcos have more pull in D.C. than any of the tech companies do, and they speak monopoly as well as any industry in the U.S.

    (PS: DuckDuckGo rocks)

     

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    out_of_the_blue, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:06pm

    "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Yeah, right. Just how Google got the billions for HUGE server farms -- necessary before it even could be effective -- is worth looking into.

    "Rather, they're designed to prevent anti-competitive practices for the benefit of a healthy marketplace and, most importantly, for the benefit of consumers." -- You can state good intentions, but fact is that left without regulation, corporations will always run wild.

    Perhaps more in a sec...

     

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  4.  
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    Another AC, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:06pm

    A Pro-Google Article!

    The trolls are abandoning their other posts at this very moment to pounce on this one! "Mike is a Big-Search Apologist" they will say! "Hypocracy" they will cry! "We were right all along" they will chant!

    Just remember guys, Mike didn't write this one, Tim did.

    Annnnddddd....... go!

     

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  5.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:08pm

    Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    "Perhaps more in a sec..."

    OMG, does that mean you're going to reply?

     

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    Another AC, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:08pm

    Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Yes, Google started with a small server in a room probably about the size of a garage, and built an empire from that. Microsoft did that too FYI. Your point?

     

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  7.  
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    Mike42 (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:12pm

    Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    You don't need huge server farms, and they don't cost billions. All you do is set up a spider, start crawling, and log everything to a database. So you need an internet connection and some sort of database software. It can all be on one machine! The key is what you log, how you log it, and how you set up the search.
    Poor little sub-creature, maybe someday you will learn how to use a computer.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:13pm

    Having not read the entirety of the letter, the tone of it from my reading was that "If you waste taxpayer money on a fruitless, baseless investigation, we will conclude you don't need as much money to do your job."

     

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    Baldaur Regis (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:13pm

    When is Google going to just buy the government and populate both Houses with life-sized bobble-heads? They've got the money, and the bobble-heads would probably be more effective legislators.

    ....

    On a more serious note, just knowing the names of 5 or more tech companies puts Polis miles ahead of his colleagues.

     

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  10.  
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    Perhaps more in a sec..., Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:14pm

    Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Perhaps more in a sec...

    No thanks.

     

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  11. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
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    out_of_the_blue, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:15pm

    Corporatized Freedom

    Liberals and conservatives as in the 1980's don't exist anymore. Back then, nearly everyone argued for freedom in personal terms, however broadly defined and mistaken from the "opposite" point of view it might be.

    Now look at Mike here: his concerns about "freedom" just nearly always involve some corporation being harassed by the gov't. The usual story is that those corporations are (or want to) provide the public some service and are being hindered from doing so by oppressive gov't standing in the way of progress. -- Mike favors some corporations which slightly obscures that his views are always PRO-corporate. The battles are only between corporations, though, not between "natural" persons and giant heartless corporations, EXCEPT in a copyright story, say: the overarching goal is that his favored corporations wish to do away with all copyright; any "natural" persons affected are only useful toward that goal. It's clear that Mike views corporate "persons" as primary, "natural" persons secondary.

    Further, Mike sees corporations only favorably, as wanting to bestow services for free on "natural" persons, deliver wonderful new toys at the lowest possible cost, and how bountiful we'd all be in a truly "free" market. -- He expresses no knowledge of the uniform history of corporate power, no concerns about monopolies ruthlessly exploiting both workers and customers, only vaguely hints of corruption with the elliptical phrase "regulatory capture", never has stories about union-busting, environmental problems, bailouts of giant banks, massive real estate fraud with robo-signing, war profiteering in privatized wars of empire to seize land for oil companies -- in short, NEVER ANY pieces about the rampant corporate evil that surrounds us every day, appears simply doesn't exist in Mike's mind.

    The LACK of reporting about corporations doing evil is quite remarkable once noticed. Closest that I can recall to Mike reporting such was last year about the company suing everyone who linked to them, and EVEN THEN Mike didn't wish the corporate officers to suffer after trying to extort thousands from innocent victims! He clearly views corporations as shields from all personal responsibility. That's the view of the 1% class he was born into and of the Ivy League school where he was indoctrinated with opinions he mistakes for "economics". [By the way, that's not an ad hominem attack, merely stating facts. Mike's views aren't wrong because of his privileged background or any other personal attribute, but he'd definitely have other views if had ever been subject to the purer forms of "capitalism" that he admires.]

    Mike is always loading his prejudices into complex packages, as typical last week, asking "what's the harm" that Google is doing: he just can't understand why the FTC would want to investigate a benevolent and trustworthy corporation (as they all are to him) that provides its services for "free". Mike thereby puts the burden of proof onto skeptics, when fact is that we should all be skeptical of every action made by a soulless, heartless, conscienceless, effectively immortal entity that has profit as its only goal and is utterly immoral as to means, because that's what a corporation is.

    Of course, many identify with the corporation they work for, viewing it as the source of their well-being, when in fact the relationship is that workers are disposable tools like everything else a corporation uses for its one goal of profit. As I've said, fools see the tamed corporations of today and think they'd serve the public good even better if we just took the chains off.

    Summary:

    - Mike appears to worry about (economic) freedom for corporations ONLY.

    - Mike appears to never worry about corporations doing evil.

    - Mike expresses only the typical views of his technocrat class, no surprises.

    - It's far simpler to ask "what's the harm?" than show how corporations always tend to evil.

    - The limited range of politics and economics discussed these days is astonishing to the dwindling few of us who watch with just a little bit of historical perspective.

     

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  12.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:22pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    "
    - Mike appears to never worry about corporations doing evil."

    The move studios and music labels (corporations) will be so glad to hear that all of their dislike for this site is completely unfounded....

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:23pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Most trolls here troll just as a hobby. It's refreshing to see a pro at work. Same zany logic tho.

     

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  14.  
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    Franklin G Ryzzo (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:24pm

    Re:

    20 minutes in and 2 shots down... I don't think you'll be making it until evening :P

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:24pm

    once jealousy rears it's ugly head, then greed steps into the fray. as Google is immensely successful, doesn't necessarily mean it is doing anything wrong. i do, however, agree that there is more to what's going on than is being released, including the telcos being forced to start to compete in Kansas City. this is what happens when any legacy industry has to start doing things to bring it into the modern day by upping it's service and by giving customers what they want. continuously giving a crap service and charging mega bucks for it wont always be tolerated. get a 'new kid on the block' and suddenly things change!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:24pm

    Wow, way to go Jarhead Polis. Threatening the FTC with retaliation if it goes after your benefactor. What a disgrace.

     

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  17.  
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    Obsession... by OOTB, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:27pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Your obsession with Mike is unhealthy.

    Step away from the computer, get some fresh air, take your meds, have a nice dinner, then go watch Fox.

     

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  18.  
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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:27pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    I, too, am skeptical of proposals that are put forth primarily out of corporate self-interest. To counter the "corporations good, government bad" biases I see, I often point people to this site.

    P2P Foundation: "The P2P Foundation is an international organization focused in studying, researching, documenting and promoting peer to peer practices in a very broad sense. This website is our knowledge commons and it's collaboratively build by our community."

     

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  19.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:27pm

    Re:

    Can you prove that Google gave him any money for his campaign?

    Seems to me that Polis was asked by his constituents, the people who voted him in, to look into the matter more closely.

     

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  20.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:28pm

    Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Hasn't_got_a_clue, as usual.

    Wanna see what I just read on the Wikipedia entry for Google?

    "The domain name for Google was registered on September 15, 1997,[41] and the company was incorporated on September 4, 1998. It was based in a friend's (Susan Wojcicki[25]) garage in Menlo Park, California. Craig Silverstein, a fellow PhD student at Stanford, was hired as the first employee.[25][42][43]"

    Yes, gang. Google did start in a GARAGE and from there, became the mighty company it is today.

     

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  21.  
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    Chris Dodd, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:29pm

    Re:

    Yeah thats my turf. Maybe I can sue him for Trademark...

     

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  22.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:30pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    This can't be the same out_of_the_blue we're familiar with.

    The one we know doesn't know words with more than three syllables.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:34pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    So then, I guess none of that matters, since Tim wrote the article?

     

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  24.  
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    Baldaur Regis (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:35pm

    Re:

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:41pm

    Yeah I get the feeling this is over the high speed internet in Kansas forcing competition and companies are whining and complaining about "evil" Google.

     

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  26.  
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    The eejit (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:42pm

    Re:

    According to Open Secrets, Google didn't donate to his campaign in 2010, OR throughout his career.

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:42pm

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    A BC News, M$N BC News, C BS News, Faux News

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:43pm

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    You know what's interesting, I used to visit Torrentfreak daily. At one point, there was this one troll that would go into every article and post something moronic. Each and every single day without fail. They'd do so anonymously, yet thanks to Disqus, and whatever anonymous login they were using, their comments could be viewed and tracked.

    Then one day, same troll (as far as Disqus was concerned) went from writing like a complete idiot, to writing something similar to what's above in OotB's second comment. Namely, they went from writing like a moron to sounding like a semi-well educated person but who was still bitching about piracy. I noted the difference and came to the conclusion that whoever was trolling was replaced by someone else. Because within a week the writing style went back to the familiar moronic styling.

    Am I saying OotB has been replaced? No. But could someone have written that for him? Yes.

     

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  29.  
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    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:44pm

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Seems like an anti-corporate/pro-government control rant there, not so much in line with the Fox News fare. Does OWS have a news network?

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:46pm

    Re: A Pro-Google Article!

    I'm reasonably sure the trolls just parse the URL for keywords so they don't have to read anything on Techdirt at all.

     

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  31.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:47pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    What's stunning here is how almost everything ootb wrote is flat out wrong. First of all, I didn't write this post in question, but ignoring that stunning idiocy...

    Summary:

    ... of everything ootb got wrong.

    - Mike appears to worry about (economic) freedom for corporations ONLY.

    Quite the opposite. I am almost entirely focused on what is best for the end user/consumer/public. But I believe that smart companies (of which there are not many) focus on how to make the lives of the public better. If you don't do that, you fail.

    - Mike appears to never worry about corporations doing evil.

    I actually worry about it quite a bit, and talk regularly about the problems of crony capitalism, and when the government is run by corporations -- and how that leads to regulatory capture. But, why let facts get in the way of an insane rant.

    - Mike expresses only the typical views of his technocrat class, no surprises.

    Except that I tend to disagree with "the technocrat class." On nearly everything.

    - It's far simpler to ask "what's the harm?" than show how corporations always tend to evil.

    The focus should be on what benefits the public. That's all.

    - The limited range of politics and economics discussed these days is astonishing to the dwindling few of us who watch with just a little bit of historical perspective.

    Um. Ok. Having dealt with you for whatever time you've been here, you've shown absolutely no grasp of economics, policy or history. So, for you to misinterpret stuff this badly is really quite impressive.

    Keep it up. You're entertaining.

     

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  32.  
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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:56pm

    Re: Re:

    Jared was one of (or perhaps the first) Internet billionaire. He sold bluemountain.com reportedly for close to a billion in stock and cash (probably didn't get that much).

    He's been able to fund a lot of his campaigns himself. I haven't looked at his records to see what donations he has gotten, but he is a wealthy guy.

     

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  33.  
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    Baldaur Regis (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 1:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Trollbot logic boards are twitchy at best. They have to be changed out frequently. Some batches are better than others.

     

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  34.  
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    Mr. Applegate, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 2:01pm

    What?!

    Do you actually even bother to read before you start with your verbal vomit?

    "Mike" didn't write this article, Timothy Geigner did. Yet you go on a 663 word rant against Mike. (Hint the entire article is only 715 words)

    "The limited range of politics and economics discussed these days is astonishing to the dwindling few of us who watch with just a little bit of historical perspective."

    Perhaps there is a limited range to discuss, because most has been lost (by both sides). Government has its hand in everything and Big business takes all the scraps and leaves little for the individual to even fight for. I have nearly 50 years of historical perspective and regularly comment on a wide range political and economic issues. I also don't get so caught up with one person or one issue that I forget to do basic fact checking, and only rarely resort to attacking a person.

     

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  35.  
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    Mike Dee, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 2:06pm

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Entertaining? Hardly. Foolishly annoying? Definitely. But I'm glad to see you comment back to him.

    Sigh. He ruins any chance of intelligent discussion. It was entertaining for a little. Now the joke has ran its course.

     

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  36.  
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    The Mighty Buzzard (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 2:32pm

    Re: Re: A Pro-Google Article!

    So, basically what we all manually do on /. then.

     

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  37.  
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    Chosen Reject (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 2:43pm

    Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Nonsense, we all know that Google had billions of dollars before it made a single...uhm...dollar.

     

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    Simple Mind (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 2:59pm

    the vote

    Where is the easy-to-vote-for congress guy in my state (AZ)? You Coloradoans are privileged to be able to cast your vote for this Polis guy and feel good about it. In my state, whoever I vote for I feel dirty about it afterward.

     

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  39.  
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    Scott, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 3:05pm

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    That's why I tell them to di something constructive like looking at porn.

     

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  40.  
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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 3:11pm

    Re: the vote

    Yes, the elected Representatives for the district that includes Boulder tend to reflect Boulder's concerns pretty well. Issues important to Boulder are the environment and healthy living, technology and startups, scientific research, and to a lesser extent legalization of marijuana and women's and gay rights. We're a college town with lots of government-funded research, lots of startups and tech companies, and lots of healthy people and athletes.

    I know Jared. I worked for an online business publication that his funding launched. We've been in meetings together and at events together. I'm not in touch with him these days because I am not currently writing about CO startups, VCs, and tech companies, but we do know many of the same people.

     

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  41.  
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    Digitari, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 3:17pm

    Re: the vote

    do as I do when it comes to "the lesser of two evils" I always write in "None of the Above" I sleep well at night

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 3:45pm

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    So then, I guess none of that matters, since Tim wrote the article?

    You mean Charlie McCarthy.....

     

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  43.  
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    lucidrenegade (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 4:07pm

    Re: Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    ... and they didn't even need to make a $100 million dollar movie!

     

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    lucidrenegade (profile), Oct 16th, 2012 @ 4:10pm

    Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    If y'all would just ignore him and click the report button, no-one would even see his posts.

     

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  45. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 5:27pm

    Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Report to avoid censorship:

    Yeah, right. Just how Google got the billions for HUGE server farms -- necessary before it even could be effective -- is worth looking into.

    "Rather, they're designed to prevent anti-competitive practices for the benefit of a healthy marketplace and, most importantly, for the benefit of consumers." -- You can state good intentions, but fact is that left without regulation, corporations will always run wild.

    Perhaps more in a sec..

     

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  46.  
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    Terry, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 5:36pm

    Sadly, anti-trust has never been about consumers

    Read the history of anti-trust activity. It's always been about one or more companies using government power to take down their competitors.

     

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  47.  
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    F!, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 6:49pm

    right to investigate Google, wrong reason

    I wish someone would investigate the Google-CIA partnership.

    Yes, Google IS evil.

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 7:06pm

    Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    "Yes, gang. Google did start in a GARAGE and from there, became the mighty company it is today."

    That isn't the issue (nice way to misunderstand).

    The real issue is when Google wants to be in a new business (say email) they just allocate some servers from their huge cluster, and away they go. Google has the physical resources to come into any computing intensive market place and dominate with all the power and might. They turned on Google+ without spending any money for computing power that is beyond what most of us will ever have, including a global presence. There is no way that me in the garage could have that same power (and don't even suggest S3... pokey piece of crap!).

    Google unfairly leverages is power in search to promote it's money making businesses, and uses that money to try to buy it's way into all sorts of other markets. They use their search rankings to suppress competition, by pushing their own sites to the top of the search results.

    You don't think that the people building Google sites don't know what the secret sauce is? You don't think that Matt Cutts and his team don't happen to give the SERPs calculations to the various teams so they can optimize to be "naturally" on the top?

    You don't think that a Google.com address isn't the "most trusted" in the SERPs calculation?

    Google has the money, the equipment, and the staff to take on any business it chooses. It often fails (Google+, anyone), but in doing so often hurts or fundamentally changes the marketplace, usually taking money out of it.

     

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  49.  
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    Beech, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 7:29pm

    Re: Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    "Google unfairly leverages is power in search to promote it's money making businesses, and uses that money to try to buy it's way into all sorts of other markets."

    Absolute retardation. 1. Google makes money. 2. Google invests money in new business oppurtunites. 3. Illegal somehow? Your arguement is like me saying that Coca-Cola unfairly leverages the popularity of Coke Classic to promote new entries to the beverage market like Cherry Coke, Diet Coke, etc? You don't think that it's pretty cheap for them because they can just re-purpose the giant beverage-producing machinery they have for Coke Classic? They don't use the money they made off of Coke Classic to advertise their other product lines?

    "You don't think that Matt Cutts and his team don't happen to give the SERPs calculations to the various teams so they can optimize to be "naturally" on the top?"

    Not really familiar with how search engineing works, but if you're accusing people in Google of telling other people in Google how their own dealys work, doesn't exactly sound unfair to me. If you're trying to set up your own email business in your garage you are more than welcome to start your own search engine as well and optimize so your email service always comes out on top.

    "Google has the money, the equipment, and the staff to take on any business it chooses"

    OMG! they must be evil!!

    " It often fails (Google+, anyone)"

    Don't forget Google Wave

    "but in doing so often hurts or fundamentally changes the marketplace, usually taking money out of it."

    huh? need some explanation on that. Are you saying the failure of Google+ somehow hurt social media sites as a whole?

     

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  50.  
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    Beech, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 7:48pm

    Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Now, I know how bad huge companies can get. Make a lot of money, buy a lot of political influence, push around the little guys. It's pretty sickening. But, is Google doing that? I haven't really heard any stories of Google polluting lakes, or hiring crooked Senators, or kicking puppies, or pulling massive "screw yous" to users. I don't know, maybe Google news buries all those stories. My point is, sure, there have been a lot of huge companies that have pulled a lot of shit. That doesn't mean its wrong for companies to be big. Near as I can tell Google has made infinity dollars just by being cool as hell. If you have any info to the contrary I would be interested in considering it.

    Also, Mike frequently hates on huge companies outside of the realms of company-vs-company and company-vs-copyright instances you claim. Teleco's come to mind. And Mobile Phone operators with their damn broadband caps. Really, I think your post is too convoluted. Maybe you should distill it down to an infographic or flowchart (story-> about company -> if yes, about copyright -> if no, Yay company!) Then it would at least make enough semblance of sense to tear apart properly...

     

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  51.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 8:10pm

    Ever notice how non chrome browsers work slower on Google than Chrome does? but work fine on other search engines.

     

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  52.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 8:11pm

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Let's look at your answers, Mike, and see how they line up here.

    "I am almost entirely focused on what is best for the end user/consumer/public. But I believe that smart companies (of which there are not many) focus on how to make the lives of the public better. If you don't do that, you fail."

    Do you think that Google using their dominant position in search and advertising is good for the end user, compared to there being many other options out there? Do you consider it good that Google uses it's dominant position (and locked in position in Android, example) to push people towards search results that generate the most profit? Is that good for the people? Which people, exactly?

    "I actually worry about it quite a bit, and talk regularly about the problems of crony capitalism, and when the government is run by corporations -- and how that leads to regulatory capture. But, why let facts get in the way of an insane rant."

    So don't you think it odd that one of the major opponents of SOPA (Google) has one of the major opponents of SOPA (Polis) calling off the FTC? Did you bother to take a second to see how much Google money got filtered through the charities and PACs and groups towards Mr Polis' campaign funds? Crony capitalism and regulatory capture go both ways.

    "The focus should be on what benefits the public. That's all."

    Again, what part of the public? All of it? Some of it? Even if they break the law?

    "Ok. Having dealt with you for whatever time you've been here, you've shown absolutely no grasp of economics, policy or history. So, for you to misinterpret stuff this badly is really quite impressive."

    Actually, I think he asks some good questions, and while you think you have answered his questions completely, you seem mostly to have just dismissed it all with single line answers that don't seem in line with other things you say and do.

    You really don't think Google is doing anything wrong? You don't think that they are perhaps using their dominating position and huge cash reserves to move into other markets, harming existing business (you know, where the public works), and causing disruption where none would naturally occur?

    Put it this way: If Google had to start Google+ as a stand alone business, and had to buy ad space, and had to work out SEO on their own terms, and couldn't use GMAIL directly to leverage a user base... do you think they would start the business? If the answer is "no", then you can start to understand why the FTC would be looking at them.

    Much of what Google does today wouldn't work without their incredibly head start in a dominant search business, a leading email service, a leading mobile operating system, and a huge network of ad sites generating income to pay for all of it. As stand alone businesses, almost everything Google does would be a failure and out of business by now. Their ability to keep propping up destructive business models with other income sources isn't good for the public in the long run, IMHO.

    How do you feel about that (and try to use more than one sentence)?

     

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  53.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 8:13pm

    Re:

    Do you honestly think that Google is going to have a profitable business doing this project? Do you honestly think that it's a valid stand alone business, or will it exist only because Google has huge cash reserves and is incredibly profitable in other ways?

    Do you think they will come in and hurt / damage / eliminate competition in the market place by effectively dumping the product in the market?

     

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  54.  
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    varagix, Oct 16th, 2012 @ 10:08pm

    Re: Re:

    They're promising better speeds, by at least an order of magnitude, and reasonable prices for even better speeds by another order of magnitude.

    Are you seriously suggesting that a new player in a market offering a better service, that competition in and of itself, is bad for competition?

     

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  55.  
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    The eejit (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 12:41am

    Re: right to investigate Google, wrong reason

    However, Google is less evil than the current ruling members of the GOP. though, admittedly, that's not hard.

     

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  56.  
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    techflaws (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 2:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Much of what Google does today wouldn't work without their incredibly head start in a dominant search business

    Even if that were true you still haven't given any reason why it's Google's fault.

     

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  57.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 2:43am

    Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Avoid... what censorship? The back-breaking intense labor to click a link to unhide an idiot's rant?

     

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  58.  
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    techflaws (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 2:43am

    Re:

    Yeah, almost as disguting as Chris Dodd's threat about revoking the **AA's donations.

     

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  59.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 3:48am

    Re:

    Want some help? or are you already in an alcoholic comma? ;D

     

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  60.  
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    Donglebert the Needlessly Obtuse, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 3:49am

    easy solution

    Google should give users the option to pick their search algorithm..

    Option A: Old school search. Return will include other search engine outputs; hundreds of price comparison sites; advertising sites with lots of meta tags; aggregated partial forum posts with aggressive advertising; any other site that gets in the way of the content you want.

    Option B: Google adapted search. Return might not be perfect and may highlight our own products, but will typically be useful.

    Option C: You do know you can use other search engines, don't you?

    Wonder which option would be picked the most?

     

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  61.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 3:50am

    Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    I don't see people complaining about Microsoft having billions in assets. And it started in a garage as well.

     

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  62.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 3:55am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    Totally agreed. Retardation at it's finest I must add.

    If they want to complain about something it's Google flexing its muscle in the mobile market and threatening companies that try to offer other operational systems with 'commercial sanctions' such as delaying the release of new versions or whatever they can do. Entering new markets by using its financial might i simply ok.

    "OMG! Johnny should be investigated on grounds of anti-turst"
    "Why?"
    "Because he's an engineer but use his wages to open a restaurant!"

    Seems legit.

     

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  63.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 3:56am

    Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    No no, little child, you just have to click the pink link to see it, it was not removed. I know it's hard for your little undeveloped mind but I'm sure you will learn some day!

     

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  64.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 4:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Do you think that Google using their dominant position in search and advertising is good for the end user, compared to there being many other options out there? Do you consider it good that Google uses it's dominant position (and locked in position in Android, example) to push people towards search results that generate the most profit? Is that good for the people? Which people, exactly?

    Prove they push search results, I challenge you. I've compared the results of a few search engines and the only thing Google do is to enhance the results based on your surfing habits if you are logged in and want them to do it. Android is open, I can go and install a Cyanogen Mod on my mobile phone whenever I want. And there are phones that actually make that much easier already. So again, PROVE IT.

    So don't you think it odd that one of the major opponents of SOPA (Google) has one of the major opponents of SOPA (Polis) calling off the FTC? Did you bother to take a second to see how much Google money got filtered through the charities and PACs and groups towards Mr Polis' campaign funds? Crony capitalism and regulatory capture go both ways.

    Thanks for presenting a non-issue. First because Google was very late in entering the fight. Second because Polis is mentioning many of Googles competitors and third, the other side was also packed with MAFIAA sponsored congress critters in much higher levels and with much more money. Your point?

    Again, what part of the public? All of it? Some of it? Even if they break the law?


    What law has been broken? Evidence please. You are all talk, all bs so far.

    You don't think that they are perhaps using their dominating position and huge cash reserves to move into other markets, harming existing business (you know, where the public works), and causing disruption where none would naturally occur?

    You see, PepsiCo moved from the beverages market to food in general using their dominant position in the beverage market. I don't see you complaining. Microsoft went from their software market with their huge financial muscles and started Bing, a search engine. I don't see you complaining. If they are actually causing a disruption it's because they are offering a better product so it is a good thing. Seriously, you need to educate yourself in reality.

    Their ability to keep propping up destructive business models with other income sources isn't good for the public in the long run, IMHO.

    Never mind that ALL THE DAMN COMPANIES IN THE WORLD do that. Never mind that many of their attempts failed because even with shitloads of money they didn't do it right (Buzz is a good example, Wave another). You should refrain from talking about what you don't understand or at least adopt a humble stance of learning. Seriously, there's too much bs in your post...

     

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  65.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 4:14am

    Re: Re:

    And you shut the trolls collective mouths from spewing out stuff they take out of their collective arses. Bravo!

     

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  66.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 4:43am

    Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    I've reported the report because, well, I'd like to see the report of the report of the report in italic next time.

     

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  67.  
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    karim, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 4:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    I normally lurk in the TD techdirt comments while waiting for a build to finish (I work for an Evil Interwebs Company) and chuckle at the trolling comments of varying degrees of stupidity before getting back to work, but this one wins a stupid prize. In fact, I think I may have lost some brain cells just reading it. So maybe you would like to help me out? I'm trying to get at what you mean (if anything at all).

    Much of what Google does today wouldn't work without their incredibly head start in a dominant search business, a leading email service, a leading mobile operating system, and a huge network of ad sites generating income to pay for all of it.

    What I think you mean here is "Google could not possibly be successful if they were not successful".

    As stand alone businesses, almost everything Google does would be a failure and out of business by now.

    What I think you mean here is: "I would prefer it if businesses had to stick to a single business activity."

    Their ability to keep propping up destructive business models with other income sources isn't good for the public in the long run, IMHO.

    What I think you mean here is: "It's not fair that business can use the money they earned to achieve growth."

    Putting that all together:

    Google could not possibly be successful if they were not successful. I would prefer it if businesses had to stick to a single business activity. It's not fair that business can use the money they earned to achieve growth.

    There, FTFY.

     

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  68.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 5:09am

    Re: right to investigate Google, wrong reason

    Have my funny vote, sir!

     

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  69.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 5:09am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    "Prove they push search results, I challenge you."

    try Best Hot Dogs In New York. Why are there Google plus listings at the top? Why does almost every entry on the first page use google tools, google ads, google api, google maps, and the like? Seems odd that every one of them does.

    " the other side was also packed with MAFIAA sponsored congress critters in much higher levels and with much more money. Your point?"

    You answered yourself and you are too stupid to know it. If you are going to call out the "MAFIAA" (nice slander), shouldn't you call out Google for the same things?

    "What law has been broken? Evidence please. You are all talk, all bs so far."

    It's called anti-trust. Maybe in grade 12 you will get to study the concept a bit.

    "PepsiCo moved from the beverages market to food in general using their dominant position in the beverage market. "

    Incorrect. Pepsi does not have a dominant position in the beverage market (they are number 2 or 3 in the US, and much lower around the world). Further, they do not control the flow of consumers to other companies products. Your analogy just don't work.

    When Google controls the flow of a vast majority of people, and guides them to sites that profit Google, or to Google products in preference, then you have a problem.

    "Never mind that ALL THE DAMN COMPANIES IN THE WORLD do that."

    Few companies can do it for very long. Google's massive cash reserves and dominant market position means they can keep walking in like the 800 pound gorilla, wreaking havoc on other people's environments without having any actual concern for profits.

    Google can put a billion dollars a year into a project and only hurt their bottom line by 10%. Few other companies have that cash flow, and enough control of consumers to try over and over again.

    Google+ opened by anyone else, would have been a total failure, with maybe a few hundred thousand users. Google propped it up with money, search rankings, ties to gmail and other products, and they forced like hell to get it up to the current X million of users. It's still not that good, because the product is typical of Google. It certainly has impacted the social media marketplace in it's own way.

    "You should refrain from talking about what you don't understand or at least adopt a humble stance of learning"

    I recommend you take your own advice. Seriously, I figure that you are still in high school, impressed with the power of being Mike's toady yes-man. You appear to have no real world experience, nor are you old enough to remember anything before twitter. I really suggest you take your own advice and stop trying to be a mini-Mike. You just don't have the skill or the brains.

     

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  70.  
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    abc gum, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 5:20am

    I thought anti trust laws were put in place to regulate monopolistic behavior, apparently it has now become the big stick for beating your competition to a bloody pulp.

    If the various mouth pieces in DC were actually concerned about anti trust they would be making a lot of noise about corporations other than Google, Monsanto for example. The fact that they let Microsoft off the hook is rather telling. Is it possible this is simply a request for more contributions.

     

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  71.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 5:33am

    Re: Re:

    The problem is that Google doesn't do very much political directly. They run Google PAC, but it's spending levels are very low (less than 1 million). Direct donations are rare, and when they do make them, they are very careful (their total spend in 2012 is split almost dollar for dollar evenly on the donkeys and the elephants.

    While there may be no direct contributions, you can be certain that there are indirect routes, plus probably phone calla and other communication. During the SOPA deal, I am sure there was plenty of communication.

    It should be noted that Google donated to many other democrats in Colorado, but specifically NOT Polis. I wonder why?

     

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  72.  
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    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 6:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    try Best Hot Dogs In New York. Why are there Google plus listings at the top? Why does almost every entry on the first page use google tools, google ads, google api, google maps, and the like? Seems odd that every one of them does.

    This was already discussed and debunked.

    It's called anti-trust. Maybe in grade 12 you will get to study the concept a bit.

    IT was not. You still failed to provide evidence. There is one part of Google business that could be scrutinized for that and I mentioned in another comment. But not the search engine. Google is not imposing any barriers, you can change search engine whenever you want, they even provide means for you to download the data they have stored from your daily usage so you can move on. Also, search for "search engines". No Google related link and quite a few lists. Where is the problem? I'm asking you to point it.

    Incorrect. Pepsi does not have a dominant position in the beverage market (they are number 2 or 3 in the US, and much lower around the world). Further, they do not control the flow of consumers to other companies products. Your analogy just don't work.

    So your issue is if it was number one. If I'm in the market and I have a big financial muscle but I'm not first it's ok to venture in other markets but if I'm no 1 then I'm automatically breaking antitrust laws?

    When Google controls the flow of a vast majority of people, and guides them to sites that profit Google, or to Google products in preference, then you have a problem.

    TV networks do the same and yet we are not seeing any problem here? You see, you made up a straw man that Google manipulates search results which is not true. And consider for a moment that companies that do well in Google results also use Google ads, because well, they will get more exposure. Your line of thought doesn't stick.

    Few companies can do it for very long. Google's massive cash reserves and dominant market position means they can keep walking in like the 800 pound gorilla, wreaking havoc on other people's environments without having any actual concern for profits.

    Now you are telling me that Google doesn't want to profit. Oh the comedy. And again why is it a problem if Google disrupts a business he was not in or is not part of its primary one? The very fact that it is disrupting means Google is offering a better service that people want.

    Google+ opened by anyone else, would have been a total failure, with maybe a few hundred thousand users. Google propped it up with money, search rankings, ties to gmail and other products, and they forced like hell to get it up to the current X million of users. It's still not that good, because the product is typical of Google. It certainly has impacted the social media marketplace in it's own way.

    And yet people still stayed mostly with Facebook. Where is the damn problem? Google kept Buzz and Wave alive by bleeding its own profits. They ended up closing. So what the fuck is the problem? Maybe Google+ will follow the same path, maybe not. Where's the antitrust issues?

    You appear to have no real world experience, nor are you old enough to remember anything before twitter.

    Ah the world before Twitter. I still remember my very first computer, the brand new cutting-edge 486 33MHz with the infamous turbo button that doubled its speed. Before that I only messed with 286/386 computers at my father's work. I still remember my Pentium 166, my AMD K6-2 400MHz, my Athlon 2600+ (Barton core). The earlier days of the internet were pretty blurred in terms of search engines too, the last good one I used before Google was Altavista and it still exists despite big bad evil monopolist antitrust bogeyman Google.

    Once you lose a point you start attacking a made up straw man huh? Have fun ;)

     

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  73.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 7:39am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    "try Best Hot Dogs In New York. Why are there Google plus listings at the top? Why does almost every entry on the first page use google tools, google ads, google api, google maps, and the like? Seems odd that every one of them does."

    If you're searching for a specific thing like that, Google+ listings will also appear as they are RELEVANT. Also, depending on your browser, such listings appear differently. In one browser when I search "cyanogenmod" the Google+ listing appears near the top, in another browser it appears at the top but located off to the right side. Why? Because it is RELEVANT.

    As for "seems odd that every one of them does", it can't just be a coincidence, right? Or perhaps, they utilize all those things because there's a benefit to doing so. One that might not even be related to making them appear foremost in searches.

    It almost seems like you're grasping at straws to make a point that is really a non-point.

    "Incorrect. Pepsi does not have a dominant position in the beverage market (they are number 2 or 3 in the US, and much lower around the world). Further, they do not control the flow of consumers to other companies products. Your analogy just don't work."

    It's irrelevant that they are number 2 or 3. But having said that, would it then change things if they were number 1 in your mind? Would they then need to be investigated?

    Also, they do to an extant control the flow of consumers to other companies products. Pepsi (and Pepsi made products) are exclusively found in certain restaurants. (Taco Bell, Long John Silver, etc.)

    I personally prefer Pepsi over Coca Cola, as such, I prefer going to restaurants where Pepsi can be found. Which by default means that because of Pepsi at least one customer is being directed to other companies products (we'll ignore the fact that I have always enjoyed Long John Silver's).

    "When Google controls the flow of a vast majority of people, and guides them to sites that profit Google, or to Google products in preference, then you have a problem."

    But Google doesn't control anything beyond their algorithm, which no one outside of Google knows how it works.

    Beyond that, Google list things as people want them, not how Google wants.

    Nor do they guide them to particular products or sites. You have a choice, but Google has a plethora of products that happen to be better than some of the alternatives. Email, Online Web Documents, Cloud Music, etc. But in no way is anyone forced to use them or even directed to them. In fact, you have to actively choose to go to any of those other services/products.

    "Few companies can do it for very long. Google's massive cash reserves and dominant market position means they can keep walking in like the 800 pound gorilla, wreaking havoc on other people's environments without having any actual concern for profits."

    Wait, did you just say Google doesn't care about profits? Wtf? That makes no sense at all, not to any company.

    You seem to be advocating for no competition based on your "wreaking havoc on other people's environments".

    Is it wrong that Google wants to try to enter other markets? No. Is it illegal? No. Do they lose money from time to time? Yes. Is that a crime? No. Is it wrong? Possibly, since all companies are in the business of generating a profit.

    Again though, your argument here seems to be "but that's not right, trying to enter other markets!"

    "Google can put a billion dollars a year into a project and only hurt their bottom line by 10%. Few other companies have that cash flow, and enough control of consumers to try over and over again."

    And? What's your point? That is not a crime. That might not be good business sense, but it's not illegal to do or even that bad. If you have the means to try and fail without harming your bottom line too much then go for it. If your success outweighs your failures by a huge proportion, and your profit gains versus losses are the same, there is no problem.

    The fact that few other companies can say/do the same isn't a mark against Google. If anything it's a mark for them, they're good at what they do. Creating products/services that people want to use.

    "Google+ opened by anyone else, would have been a total failure, with maybe a few hundred thousand users. Google propped it up with money, search rankings, ties to gmail and other products, and they forced like hell to get it up to the current X million of users. It's still not that good, because the product is typical of Google. It certainly has impacted the social media marketplace in it's own way."

    Actually, Google+ still does not have a huge user base, but what little it does seems to consist of professionals in various fields (a majority in the tech sector) and hobbyists (in the same fields).

    As for your "it's still not that good" bit, that's purely subjective. I have Google+, I feel it is better than Facebook and Myspace and other alternatives (current and past).

    Also, if you read up on it, you'll see that Google Hangouts, a part of Google+, is universally praised. By people whose opinions have a bit more relevance and credibility than that of some Anonymous Coward.

    Also, I fail to see your point on it's ties to other Google products/services. If you have a Gmail account, you can have a Google+ one, but you aren't forced into it. Ditto all the other things that are related/offered by Google.

    As for the "forced like hell" bit, nonsense. I've never seen even a hint of proof supporting that claim. Google has run a handful of Google+ commercials, mostly emphasizing Google Hangouts, that's it. A far cry from forced like hell to get it up to the current X million users.

    If Google+ has grown it's come from word of mouth mostly.

    "I recommend you take your own advice. Seriously, I figure that you are still in high school, impressed with the power of being Mike's toady yes-man. You appear to have no real world experience, nor are you old enough to remember anything before twitter. I really suggest you take your own advice and stop trying to be a mini-Mike. You just don't have the skill or the brains."

    Ah yes, the usual irrelevant ad hom laden final comment. Classy. You know nothing about the person you're replying to, yet you make assumptions nonetheless based on nothing.

    Way to prove a point though, that you're someone who can't stick to the topic at hand. A grown up can ignore insults and ad homs, so if the person you replied to is still in high school, I'd say you are too. Especially since you also appear to have no real world experience, much less understanding of how businesses work, much less Google's.

     

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  74.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 8:15am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: "I could set up a server in my garage and compete globally with Google!

    This is a blatant straw man attack.

     

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  75.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 8:18am

    Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    That post isn't trolling -- it's actually very accurate.

    You just don't like that someone is attacking your precious Google, despite the fact that they're basically useless dead weight on the web. There's a superior alternative for every service they offer, but you're too balls-deep to care.

     

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  76.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 8:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    "This was already discussed and debunked."

    No, actually Mike to a swing at it, and then didn't bother to answer the points I raised there and here again. Nice attempt to dismiss it, but you fail.

    Answer the point, or concede it.

    "You still failed to provide evidence. "

    try re-reading my post. You learned that last year, right?

    "So your issue is if it was number one."

    No, number one and being the main funnel to the market place, with the ability to choose what consumers see and don't see. Please try to read along past the first few words. I know it's hard, but TRY!

    "TV networks do the same and yet we are not seeing any problem here?"

    TV networks are neither dominant or the the main funnel of consumers. Last time I looked, good prime time ratings in the US still weren't much past 10%. Swing and a miss for the student from Brazil!

    "Now you are telling me that Google doesn't want to profit."

    No, I didn't say that - I am saying they can afford NOT to profit for a very long time. The often offer services with no ads and no income source, 100% dead loss, just to add to their reach. Again, try reading the whole thing, not just the words you know.

    "And yet people still stayed mostly with Facebook"

    Facebook actually changed much of the way they do things to try to stay ahead of Google, they were very concerned. Thankfully for Facebook, Google's social skills are extremely limited, and while they made a technically complete product, it was not socially compelling. However, their "failure" still gained Google market exposure, position, and so on.

    "I still remember my very first computer, the brand new cutting-edge 486 33MHz with the infamous turbo button that doubled its speed."

    Yup, and when you got rid of it after 12 months, you found Techdirt (about 6 months ago) and ever since, it's been a licking Mike's ass fest as you try your hardest to get a staff job here.

    You claim to know all so much, and yet you are incredibly ignorant, just like a schoolboy. How is that possible?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  77.  
    icon
    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 8:53am

    Re: Re: Re:

    It should be noted that Google donated to many other democrats in Colorado, but specifically NOT Polis. I wonder why?

    Polis's district, which includes Boulder, has traditionally been a Democratic stronghold, so he isn't considered to be at major risk of losing his seat. So Google may have felt it should donate to other candidates who need the money more.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  78.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 9:23am

    Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    "That post isn't trolling -- it's actually very accurate."

    No, not a single one of OotB's comments on this site, in any article, has EVER been even remotely close to accurate, much less have something resembling a fact contained therein.

    "You just don't like that someone is attacking your precious Google, despite the fact that they're basically useless dead weight on the web."

    Mike has himself written articles attacking Google and being critical of Google and various things they've done.

    No one here has a problem with critiquing Google or being critical of some of their actions, it's when people like OotB or bob or a few ACs write things that are not based in reality that people have a problem. More so when it is quite clearly their own opinions they're trying to present as facts.

    "There's a superior alternative for every service they offer, but you're too balls-deep to care."

    Name some. Keeping in mind that "superior" is purely subjective.

    Gmail. There are alternatives, are any superior? Hotmail. Spam central. Yahoo. Meh. (They're even trying to copy Gmail with their Ymail thing.)

    Google Drive (formerly Google Docs). Now it's more storage, of which there are a great many competitors. Dropbox being the standout, but it's not without its flaws.

    Youtube. There are alternatives, none that match Youtube though.

    Google+. The alternative used by most is Facebook. Is it superior? As I said before, purely subjective. Most people on Google+ are there because they dislike Facebook (that's the common opinion/consensus).

    Android OS. There are a handful of alternatives. iOS being the only other dominant player. Superior? Again, purely subjective.

    Google Search. There are alternatives, but the reason people say "Google it" is because Google is the one everyone uses and for a reason. The popular alternatives like Bing are kinda meh. But again, that's subjective.

    There are alternatives to Google products/services, but to say they are superior is to state ONLY your opinion (which appears to be based purely on your hatred of Google and nothing a little more substantial like facts/evidence).

    All this is off topic a bit though. Basically, everything written by OotB in that comment is false. Everything he writes about Mike, false. Proven by articles on this site.

    "- Mike appears to worry about (economic) freedom for corporations ONLY. "

    Lol. Mike has written numerous articles about freedoms regarding people and how they're being violated. As well as articles on where some freedoms are more clearly defined.

    As for (economic) freedom, he's also written articles about people in such regards. So again, this is OotB writing something that is proven false.

    "- Mike appears to never worry about corporations doing evil."

    LMAO. Mike has tons of articles criticizing corporations for making decisions that harm the public. As well as articles criticizing governments/laws putting the needs of corporations above the wants/needs of the people.

    He's written numerous articles criticizing Google. Just fyi.

    "- Mike expresses only the typical views of his technocrat class, no surprises."

    This is only true in OotB's mind, no one else's. Mike's views range and differ from people in his "technocrat class". Else he wouldn't have trolls show up here regularly.

    "- It's far simpler to ask "what's the harm?" than show how corporations always tend to evil."

    What? Mike quite clearly writes about the harm caused by corporations on a regular basis. Again, proof shows how false this is to say.

    "- The limited range of politics and economics discussed these days is astonishing to the dwindling few of us who watch with just a little bit of historical perspective."

    This site is called "Techdirt". It's going to focus on things specifically related to a limited range. So there is no limited range per se. You want to discuss more? There are other sites, as well as the option to submit stories.

    You just don't like that Blue got reported for being off topic and completely wrong like usual. You also have a very clear bias against Google.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  79.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), Oct 17th, 2012 @ 9:43am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    No, actually Mike to a swing at it, and then didn't bother to answer the points I raised there and here again. Nice attempt to dismiss it, but you fail.

    Don't quite recall if Mike bothered to address your nonsensical comment at the time but many others did and as I said it's been properly shot down. Repeating it ad nauseam won't make it true ;)

    try re-reading my post. You learned that last year, right?

    Re-reading it won't make the evidence magically appear. What you seem to refer as evidence are just your own assumptions.

    No, number one and being the main funnel to the market place, with the ability to choose what consumers see and don't see.

    They don't choose what people will see aside the ads that are pretty much marked as sponsored links. As I said, I tried the same searches on different search engines and it's virtually the same. Google separates results from sponsored links. And consumers are free to use other search engines as I did while testing. I used, hold your breath, 4 different search engines. The results differ but the search algorithms are not the same either so makes sense. On fields I expected Google to show its own services first it wasn't really case.

    Now you sparked a doubt on me regarding Google+ links and I went to check. It happens because Google+ is more open to search engine crawlers and the results I got were from discussion threads that related to the search terms. And depending on the terms they'd simply vanish and I would infer that this is due to the very nature of Google+ today, a social network that had deeper penetration within the tech community. You see, no big conspiracy theory here and your point lies down in ashes.

    TV networks are neither dominant or the the main funnel of consumers. Last time I looked, good prime time ratings in the US still weren't much past 10%. Swing and a miss for the student from Brazil!

    You got that one, it's very different in Brazil, the main network often goes above 40% of the audience. However, how many of those 10% networks belong to a single conglomerate?

    No, I didn't say that - I am saying they can afford NOT to profit for a very long time. The often offer services with no ads and no income source, 100% dead loss, just to add to their reach.

    Yes you said that. But in any case, they failed on quite a few instances even with their deep pockets at their service. Google is fighting Apple in the music business (iTunes et al). Is that a problem because Google can take losses? Oh but Apple can too. And yet you don't see them being investigated on antitrust grounds. Amazon. They are virtually EVERYWHERE including where Apple, Google and Microsoft are. Care to elaborate about them too?

    Facebook actually changed much of the way they do things to try to stay ahead of Google, they were very concerned.

    Oh nice, they faced competition and were forced to provide better services. And because of that Google broke antitrust laws. Very reasonable. Let us all leave the current businesses intact so they can blissfully profit without competition ;) for the records, Facebook is still doing well. They should beware of Google+ though. As they should beware of all those startups wanting to eat them alive ;))

    Keep failing, it's amusing ;)

     

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  80.  
    identicon
    BigKeithO, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 1:08pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    Awesome comment.

    +5 internets to you good sir!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  81.  
    identicon
    BigKeithO, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 1:13pm

    Re: Re:

    I'd pay for it. Really I could care less if the currently telcos face a little competition if it means faster internet for less price for me. I could also care less if Google made money at it or not.

    Why are you even asking that question, how is it relevant? There is nothing stopping the current players from matching or exceeding what Google is doing other than laziness.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  82.  
    identicon
    BigKeithO, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 1:19pm

    Re:

    No...

    I have noticed how people tend to get gassy after eating beans but not other fruits...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  83.  
    identicon
    F!, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 5:36pm

    Re: Re: right to investigate Google, wrong reason

    So... maybe I read your response incorrectly, but have you forgotten too? Here's the easiest link I could find:
    http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=4774
    There is more online, but for some reason the information gets harder and harder to find. Articles disappearing, etc.

    Everytime I check Google's Wikipedia page about this, there is actually less information than before, and now it only mentions it in passing, claiming it as "allegations" (yet it hasn't been removed entirely).

    Call it a tin-foil theory if you want, but I believe it would be naive to just laugh it off. Look at the way the USA is headed, this is far from being an unlikely scenario.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  84.  
    identicon
    F!, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 5:46pm

    Re: easy solution

    Regarding solution A:
    http://ixquick.com/
    Ixquick has the added benefit of anonymity - they claim not to store or share your IP address, nor keep any record of searches.

    Solution C:
    DuckDuckGo https://duckduckgo.com/
    also ranks high on search privacy.

    I've been using Ixquick for a year or two, have never missed Google.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  85.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2012 @ 7:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporatized Freedom

    "But Google doesn't control anything beyond their algorithm, which no one outside of Google knows how it works. "

    Incorrect. Google controls many things outside because of their algo. Specifically, people build sites, structure their sites, and such to suit Google's whims. Google's design dictates everything from linking to page layout, from advertising to content percentage, and everything in between. If you want to rank well on Google, you have to do it Google's way.

    Many SEO people (search engine optimization, for those who don't know) have suggested that the presence of Google tools and advertising on a website is a plus. It may not be a big plus in and of itself, but when you are talking probably decimal fractions between the best site in a search result and number 50, everything helps. Google knows this, and they are very careful not to directly suggest it, but some A B tests seem to support it.

    "Ah yes, the usual irrelevant ad hom laden final comment. Classy. "

    Sorry for that if it offends you. However, I truly feel that Ninja is acting like a child. He clearly hasn't seen the world and seems to lack real world experience, yet talks with the same arrogant tone that Mike uses. At least Mike has a clue most of the time. Ninja, well... he likes to insult and say people are talking out of their ass, yet it appears to be his nature.

    " I'd say you are too. Especially since you also appear to have no real world experience"

    Almost 30 years in various online businesses, computers, networking, and such, enough so that I can live very comfortably in one of the most expensive cities in the world and enjoy pleasant weather all the time and take care of my family. Real world experience doesn't sound scholarly, because it isn't. Life isn't a term paper or thesis, it is actual work and reality. The real world ain't pretty, it doesn't write up nice. The faster you (and especially Ninja) catch onto it, the better things get. The real world will bite your theories and spit them out in shreds. That's the truth.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  86.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 18th, 2012 @ 6:18pm

    Oversight

    When are we going to see some effective oversight over the FTC? Here they are, wasting their time on an obvious non-problem, while declining to investigate other monopolies. Where is their investigation into Monsanto? How about investigating collusion in the oil industry? What about insider trading on Wall Street? There is no shortage of suspicious activity to investigate.

    Somebody must have actually taken the decision that Google was worth wasting taxpayer funds investigating. When do the boneheads get named and shamed? When do they get fired?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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