Google – the evil empire?
The San Francisco Chronicle has an article entitled: Who’s Afraid of Google, which addresses concerns from Silicon Valley, Madison Avenue, Hollywood, and from Privacy advocates worried that the search engine’s collection of personal information will create a massive database that can be mined by government.
Since going public in 2004, the Internet giant’s market value has grown to dwarf Disney and McDonald’s combined. Earlier this year, it became the most visited Web property in the world and was named the world’s most valuable brand. And its runaway success in search and advertising has big corporations like AT&T and Microsoft crying monopoly without a trace of irony.
Is Google taking all of the talent out of the market by using it’s wealth to deny smaller competitors access to key personnel?
James Currier, a former venture capitalist and serial entrepreneur who sold the social networking site Tickle to job site Monster.com, said that a company on whose board he serves recently lost a prospective employee to Google. The worker, whom he described as a genius, turned down an offer of $120,000, plus stock options, in favor of a $375,000 salary from Google.
A major worry is the search engine’s collaboration with the Chinese Government:
Nowhere is Google’s control of information more controversial than in China, where it built a search engine that censors results deemed dangerous by the Chinese government.
Human rights groups and members of Congress have attacked Google over the matter, comparing the company to a Nazi collaborator. Google responded that it censors reluctantly under the theory that providing some information to China’s residents is better than none at all.