Friday, December 02, 2005

Its Google's Fault

Reading that last post about being overwhelmed got me thinking about a different thread. There is a great discussion on Fred's thread about the worm turning moment and anxiety that is surfacing around google's power.
I found the comment by David Gibbons most interesting in highlighting that Google is not a Web 2.0 company.

I think google is sticking to their knitting of "owning the internet's rawest material" but they're applying what worked for Web1.0 to the read/write web, and if they do, they will become the tirants that Mark describes.

Google own Web1.0 because they own its rawest commodity, the URL. The URL, is the "crude oil" of Web1.0 and indexing it is the refinery process that provides the gas for our internet experience, namely search. Google has the biggest, most efficient URL refinery on earth, so they take home the spoils (of web 1).

The raw material of Web2.0 is you and me, the user. Web 2's commodity is our time, expertise, attention, productivity, assets and our wallets. I'm increasingly feeling that Google wants to "own" me, and that's partly what I take from your Google posts, Fred. Problem is, this strategy of owning the web's raw material isn't going to work when applied to humans ... we aren't URL's and we wont stand for it :-)

I think Google's going this route because;a) They realize that the URL refinery will loose internet market share and,b) They think they can use URL ownership to lock in "people ownership" ... hence the google box and the "cube" (frightening) ... c) ... but they're also in a corner over the fact that the new internet could increasingly choose to workaround the URL ... thanks to increasingly intelligent clients (VoIP etc.) and increasingly "dumb" central servers.

I'm personally torn over google; gmail rocks but they are lame in that they so poorly support Mac users and revenue model's a bit of a on-trick pony. When the whole world is your client, how do you dominat a new market without competing with them?

Now, I will point out that Google is a big facilitator of web 2.0 -- and they make a ton of scratch on it.

AdSense is about you and me, not just the URL. But they have built the network; they are not necessarily a part of it (like eBay).

Of course, the point is that they are in a position to exploit the environment that has emerged around their platform (like MSFT), and there ain't nothin Peer-based about that.


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