Google’s Plan to Take Over the World: and Why You Should Be Thrilled

Buzz has been around for a little over a week, and while the verdict is still undecided, I for one have been loving it. By combining my followers between buzz and twitter, I have generated more hits to this blog than I ever thought possible, not to mention the conversations and people I have met on buzz have helped me grow and develop in some very interesting ways.

Yet everytime I log on, I see the same debate and concerns. People wonder if Google’s expansion into the social network should be cause for alarm. Some even wonder aloud if Google is becoming to much of a tech behemoth.

Yes. Google’s model, like many businesses, is based upon expansion, and Google has taken this to an extreme that could be quite alarming for those old guard business thinkers worried about monopolies and the sanctity of personal data.

What’s great about these chicken littles is there lack of even a basic understanding about what Google is trying to do. I could explain it myself, but I would much rather abdicate to the well renowned writer Lawrence Lessig. His description of Google’s aggregate behavior should put most at ease. The following text is from his book Remix.

“One might well say that all of Google’s value gets built upon other people’s creativity. Google’s index is built by searching and indexing content others have made available on the Web. As I’ve described, the original algorithm built its recommendations upon the links it found already existing on the Web; later, the algorithm also adjusted its recommendations based upon how people responded to the results Google returned. In all of these cases, the value Google creates comes from the value others have already created.”

Google feeds off its users. By offering its services free of charge, users interact with the search engine. When users utilize that engine, it learns and aggregates data in order to help that engine run better.

This defines buzz in two ways. One, buzz is not just a social platform designed to kill twitter or facebook. Buzz is a place for Google to create a new kind of search engine built from the information shared by Buzz users. Many tech sites have speculated that the next step for search engines will integrate real time communication for reliable and up-to-date results built from sites like twitter.

That search engine has been hard to create. Trending topics and data from twitter are hard to control and filter. Bing moved into this market rather quickly, but their efforts to filter twitter’s fire hose has not generated the amount of attention they probably hoped it would.

By creating buzz and integrating it within Gmail, Google has unleashed a rather wicked beast. Buzz ties in with reader and a variety of other pages and services of the Google family. This means that Google’s learning machine now has access not only to all of our profile data, but also ALL of the information we bring to buzz via shared news stories and media. If news breaks, Google is in a position to access all of the data buzz users bring in early on. Buzz is not just a free service we all use to just have fun, its a necessary tool for Google’s next move. The real time search engine and new aggregate to trump all news aggregates. If I was newscorp, or any other news organization, I would be very very scared right now.

Here’s why this should excite you. Google DEPENDS upon the content created by others for its own algorithms. Google will NEVER create content on its own; therefore, a monopoly or world domination does not make sense. Without massive inflows of data from OTHER sources, Google’s model falls apart.

Google needs us, the users, to help it learn and grow. It also needs news organizations and entities to generate content to share. Google is a new kind of organization dependent on sharing and cooperation to further its own existence. It will NOT allow those organizations to go extinct. Google needs them to much to simply let them die out.

I will leave of with this. Google, with its game changing business, and reliance upon sharing and cooperation represents a new step in the evolution of human society: Social Capitalism. Business and market forces that integrate with socialistic freedom and sharing for power.

Chew on that for a few minutes.


9 Responses to “Google’s Plan to Take Over the World: and Why You Should Be Thrilled”

  1. Your Google Buzz article is the very best article I have read to date from a link on Mashable. I hope you will add a Twitter retweat button as well as a Goggle Buzz button to this WordPress blog so that people like me can spread around your great writings.

    – William

  2. Social Capitalism. I like it. I think you are right that Google is ultimately building platforms that harness user creativity and collective intelligence.

    • atmaweapon42 Says:

      Well I actually looked up social capitalism after publishing this, and I am not happy with what it actually is. Its more social welfare controlled by corporations. I am thinking more of a pure sharing economy described in Lawrence Lessig’s book.

      But the two do have a bit in common.

  3. I am very intrigued by this blog. As I am always the skeptic, I will play devils advocate. I see on the surface that this can be very useful as to tell the tone of any current event as they happen. Algorithmic searches are progressive as new information gets correlated into mainstream culture but I also see this as manipulative as Wiki has turned out to be. We all thought Wiki was the impartial source of information by regular people to expand everything from Bio’s, historical connotations and policy. Many of us used it as a source for our term papers or even to conduct a debate on twitter. Now we know this forum has been tainted to include partisan spin and misinterpretations of the truth.

    I believe though Googles efforts are pure on its intention to create a more real world opinion of all that is topical, I also see this as another way for those who want to control the message a credible way to spin any topic to say whatever they want it to say. I believe we already see this on twitter as paid advocates for one cause or another manipulates a message by broadcasting that message loudly through many different venues virtually flooding our twitter streams. Google can not parse out the bots from the humans without a litmus test. This would be utterly impossible so in the beginning it may be more main stream opinion that gets correlated but after time the well funded marketing will gain the system unless they can come up with filters to block the spin. I also see a problem in the future if net neutrality and open source INTERNET blows up like fairness doctrine did to radio media as content and speed are auctioned off to highest bidder blocking mainstream populous voices nullifying any dissent from a well funded counter opinion.

    Innovation is the key for any company to survive and I believe Google is the leader for search technologies so they will be the leader for this innovation; that being said, I am not convinced that this will be another free speech forum for long & will be another source of propaganda for well funded & well crafted positions to skew actual results.

  4. “Wicked beast” indeed…lovin’ it! 🙂

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