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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Google is the Media / Internet / God

The latest issue of Business 2.0, which hit the stands last week, features a very interesting look at four possible futures for Google. They are:

Scenario 1: Google is the media

Scenario 2: Google is the Internet

Scenario 3: Google is dead

Scenario 4: Google Is God

So which one do you buy? Myself, I tend to learn toward the first scenario. I think it's highly possible that Google will continue to increase its clout because of the importance of searching to our daily lives. It's so much easier to look for something on Google than it is to remember where something is. And if other scenarios previously predicted about the big G hold true, I can easily see Google dominating all forms of digital media, which is basically all media these days.

The other scenarios are plausible, but they require too many leaps of faith, especially Google becoming God (however appealing that might be!)

Of course, a more likely scenario that B2 didn't focus on was the increasing chance that Google will be broken up by the Justice Department if it becomes too powerful. Think about it. Google could easily eclipse Microsoft in its influence over technology and culture with a few years' time. And we're already seeing the intrusion of government in Google's affairs with the recent lawsuit over Google withholding search data from the U.S. Unless Page, Brin and Schmidt handle these touchy encounters very deftly, they will certainly run afoul of the government in a big way before long. We all know that Google, while certainly no evildoer, can be as arrogant as Microsoft, in its own way. (Still I trust Google with my personal information and not Microsoft -- what does that say?)

Therefore, I think the first scenario is most likely, but before that could ever happen completely, the government will surely step in and bust up Ma Google.

Posted by Cory Kleinschmidt




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