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Net neutrality funder Soros says; traditional free market theory flawed -- how wrong he is...

The USA Today's business section cover story is on George Soros, who is notable here as probably the second biggest funder of net neutrality/information commons causes after Google.

The appropriately skeptical article, by David Lynch, has a second page-headline that sums up George Soros' government-first, economic point-of-view: "Traditional free market theory flawed."

George Soros is really the poster child for net-neutrality-ish thinking, which is that the few, the truly wise, like Mr. Soros, know what is truly best for everyone else -- and that the whole free market concept of accumulating all the actions of all market actors through supply and demand to determine prices or market equilibrium -- is all wrong and a waste of time -- according to Mr. Soros.

  • Why include all this riff-raff -- like consumers and businesses -- be free to make constant decisions and adjustments, when the brilliant elite thinkers like Mr. Soros can cut through all the free-market mumbo jumbo and simply tell people what the right economic answers should be to any economic question?  

Just like the Google/Soros astroturf net neutrality army who think they can rename an issue and demagogue it into the mainstream popularity, Mr. Soros now has his very own theory of economics, which he calls "reflexivity" (think knee-jerk-ivity), that Mr. Soros proposes replace current free-market theory and thinking.

More on Google's conflict of interest in protecting G-mail users from new "spam bazooka"

Garett Rogers of ZDnet has a good post on how "Gmail can be used as a "Spam Bazooka""

This real and increasing Google security problem provides even more evidence to my recent posts of why Google is increasingly being targeted and leveraged by spammers and scammers to get access to unsuspecting Google users -- and why Google won't warn its users that they are at serious risk -- (Google does not work for users but for advertisers and publishers.)  

Must read: FT's "Google triumphant" -- it's an excellent analysis of why Google is dominating...

Kudos to Richard Waters of FT for his insightful analysis "Google triumphant."

Let me highlight some key takeaways:

  • The failure of the Microsoft/Yahoo merger eliminates the biggest short-term threat” to Google’s unrivalled position on the web, says David Yoffie, a professor at Harvard Business School. For now, its momentum “seems unstoppable”.

The article also provides excellent new detail to the thesis in my Googleopoly analysis and Senate testimony that Google's real dominance is as the dominant "market maker" for online advertising.

BBC News in Silicon Valley picks up on growing antitrust concern over Google-Yahoo pact

BBC News' Silicon Valley bureau is reporting on increasing "Alarm at Google-Yahoo partnering" and is highlighting a new letter to the DOJ Antitrust Division by 16 civil rights and rural advocacy bodies:

  • "In a letter to Assistant Attorney General Thomas Barnett, head of the Justice Department's anti-trust division, the coalition argues that such a deal would give Google almost 90% of the search advertising market and strengthen its influence over internet users' access to information.

    "We face a possible future in which no content could be seamlessly accessed without Google's permission," the letter states."

It appears others are noticing that Google's dominance of search, and online advertising threatens to control the monetization of all content on the Internet...

Last summer I wrote an op-ed for the Washington Times entitled: "The Ultimate Internet GateKeeper," which is what Google is quickly becoming...  

Has Google's dominance of search reached the tipping point asks American Consumer Institute

The American Consumer Intstitute just put out a good consumergram on: the DOJ investigation of the Google-Yahoo deal and asks if the search market has reached a tipping point.

  • The ACI consumergram is asking the right questions.
  • More entities should be, and will be, asking these types of questions going forward because the facts and Google's behavior will demand it.

As I explained in detail in my Googleopoly analysis, the search market has already tipped to Google and the Google-DoubleClick merger was a tipping point to enable Google to extend its market power in search advertising to display and online advertising as well.

As I explained the stakes of lax antitrust enforcement in my Senate Judiciary testimony:

"The Stakes of Lax Antitrust Enforcement: Will Google be enabled to become the:

“Online-advertising bottleneck provider” picking Internet content winners and losers?

More evidence of Google's conflict of interest in protecting its users from spammers & scammers

Found a smoking gun on how Google's conflict of interests actually hurts Google users, which I explain later in this post.

  • As I have blogged several times of late, here, here, here, here, and here, Google works for advertisers and publishers not users/consumers; and Google's undisclosed conflict of interest, lulls Google's users into a false sense of security that Google is looking out for users' best interests -- and safety -- when they clearly are not.
  • I have found specific evidence below that Google is not looking out for its users' best interests or safety. 

Google knows there are "potentially harmful sites that make Google users more vulnerable to spammers or scammers. I have suggested before that they could easily warn users of the danger from specific results with warnings on search result pages.

Why EU's concerned with a Google-Yahoo pact -- Google is close to monopoly share in Europe

A Yahoo-Google search outsourcing pact arguably faces even more problems with European antitrust authorities than the reported U.S. DOJ antitrust investigation, for two reasons:

Market forces work! Clearwire/Sprint Wimax deal proves broadband competition remains robust

Net neutrality proponents who argue broadband competition doesn't work and see a "duopoly" in every shadow, were confronted with powerful market evidence recently that their take on the broadband competitive facts is flat wrong. 

The big Wimax consortium announcement this week by Clearwire, Sprint, Google, Intel, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House, is obvious evidence that:

  • National broadband competition and consumer choice continues to increase; and
  • Congress' and the FCC's rejection of net neutrality legislation and regulation encourages investment in broadband deployment to all Americans most quickly.

This free-market, innovative business model development, which Google has embraced with a $500m investment, takes even more wind out of the sails of the net neutrality movement.

Signs of calculated retreat by net neutrality proponents at House hearing on Markey Bill?

I have to admit that I was surprised by all the back-pedaling and calculated retreat by net neutrality proponents at the House Internet Subcommittee hearing on Chairman Markey's net neutrality bill HR5353.

Net neutrality proponents were clearly on the defensive, proactively responding to criticisms of the bill and not spending much time touting its benefits.

Google's founders understood the conflict-of-interest in its business model from the beginning

A consistent theme in my ongoing analysis of Google, has been Google's corporate refusal to overtly disclose the fundamental financial conflict of interest inherent in their business model, i.e that Google does not work for users like they routinely claim, but for advertisers and publishers. 

  • The best example of the serious risks to users of this undisclosed conflict of interest has been how Google has reacted since early April to the dramatic increase in risk to its users of indentity theft and fraud by cyber-criminals exploiting security weaknesses in Google's search results.
  • I personally have seen the consumer devastation that undisclosed conflicts of interest can cause.
    • After the collapse of Enron, I was asked to testify in the Senate on how conflicts of interests were integral to Enron's fraud.
    • I was also asked to testify on the dangers of undisclosed conflicts of interest in the House during the tech meltdown.

Interestingly, it appears I am not the only one concerned that Google's advertising-based search model has a serious inherent conflict of interest.

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Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths