Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Taking a stand against Google? Not exactly.

There is a principled way to live, and there is a not principled way to live. (Most of us, myself included, admittedly choose the latter.)

And there is also the option of claiming to live by principles when you do nothing of the sort.

Take anti-Google sentiment. Any large entity - Google, the AARP, the Deadheads - generates its own opposition because of its size. This became apparent when viewing the contents of a recent GigaOM post. The post concerned Google's changes to the Zagat service that it owns; reviewers now have to sign up for Google+ to continue to have reviewing privileges. Or, as GigaOM put it:

Zagat fans received an email this week saying the restaurant rating site will pull the plug on user reviews — unless, that is, they sign up for a Google+ account.

I received a copy of the email by way of a disgruntled friend who harrumphed about the search giant finding another way of “forcing” users onto its unloved social network.

In case you don't know it, there's a really easy way to get a Google+ user riled up. Refer to Google+ as "unloved" or as a "ghost town," and you'll get a lot of angry invective. In fact, whenever a major publication wants to get some page views and "engagement," it simply runs another story about Google+ being a ghost town. It's guaranteed to sucker in the angry comments - works every time!

But in this case, GigaOM didn't only get comments from angry Google+ users; it also got comments from people who are angry at Google.

Here's what Roger L had to say:

Everything Google does seems directed at collecting more info for their ad business, often now making negotiating the web more difficult for users. I remember when Google used to mean the exact opposite.

Roger then helpfully provided his e-mail address:

rogerusher at gmail dot com

Yes, Roger is using a free e-mail service from Google, yet complaining about all the stuff Google is doing for its ad business.

(And yes, I know that I am constantly complaining about my personal YouTube situation. Yet I know that I get what I pay for.)

But Roger L's stance is minor compared to the stance of Expatriate for Jesus, who really let Google have it:

Google is clearly wanting to become big brother. From having their employees have food so that they can work unending hours, to having a gross amount of TVCs (Contractors), Google has a reputation for working their people to the bone and giving a rats ass about any of them. They want everyone under Google+ so that they can have more money.

After more of the same, Expatriate concludes:

Don’t use Google+

It is what George Orwell warned us about.

Now this is a more critical stance than "ads increase navigation difficulty." This is a moral offense against humanity and society. Slavery, capitalism, and mind control. The solution, as an old Apple ad agency would say, would be to take your hammer, smash the Big Brother screen, and refuse to be sucked into Google+. This is how the expatriate would save the country. Jesus would be proud.

Well, until Jesus looked at the link embedded in the Expatriate's comment.

Presumably Expat is claiming that the use of "built by slave labor" Blogger to spread the message is merely an application of Luke 16:9. Perhaps...
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