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Feb 02

What if Google turns evil?

Some months ago I found a text about the influence of Google on the blog of Xelransu. Because I don’t want to keep this great stuff away from you, I’ve translated it into English. I know that this article doesn’t have the latest news. But I think it is still worth reading. Enjoy.

Google crawls

Nearly every person who uses the internet stumbles upon Google as search engine. The words “to google” is used online and offline. In a very short time, Google takes the lead of search engine providers far ahead of the previous leader AltaVista. Also the new competitor live.com can’t change anything. Everyone has heard of Google and nearly all use it. But what’s the secret of the brand Google?

Okay, there is Google Video. But it has been closed, because there was no way to get market shares from YouTube. Wait a minute; YouTube has been buoyed by Google. So the market of internet videos belongs to Google.

There are also blogs, like mine. These, who don’t want to buy web space or a server, use a hoster for blogs. The leading companies in the United States are Blogger and BlogSpot. Now only Blogger exists, and who owns it? Yes, Google.

Another point is emailing. On the German market some providers like web.de or GMX are leading. But across the ocean, Gmail is there and a lot more user-friendly than competitors. It also has less advertising and more space and features.

Some of you use a service to plan your trips. Some pages like map24 or viamichelin are used sparely and there are not few people who already use Google Maps (not only because of this great satellite view). The satellite view let me think about the next point: Google Earth. It has such a high resolution, that you don’t see only your mail box – you can also see these loose screws on top.

Let’s get to surfing. At the moment Internet Explorer and Firefox are highly dominant. But Google has started his first try to steal some market shares with Google Chrome, which slightly gathers more and more users.

Take a look on the instant messaging services. I don’t think that they can detach ICQ, AIM or MSN, but ignoring this potential? Of course, Google don’t and released Google Talk, which is used by a couple of users.

Some of the rather, but casually used products are Picasa for editing your pictures online, Orkut as a well-established social network in china and SketchUp for creating models in 3D.

Webmasters have also the possibility to analyze their visitors using Google Analytics. So they know where did they come from, how long they stayed, where they clicked and where they left.

How to fund Google?

How does Google make big bucks? Of course, advertising. Google calls this Google AdSense or AdWords. AdSense brings ads from other webmasters on your page. AdWords is like an auction, highest bidding gets the product – in these case commercials. This means the one, who paid the most, get preferred by displaying these ads. The money comes from promoters, a little is paid to the webmasters who display the ads.

But how much earns Google with one click? I’ve made a test lately. How much do you have to pay for getting clicks on your AdWords ad displayed from time to time? This test shows that you slightly have any chance beyond 50 cent. Surely, it depends on the topic and it’s a law of demand and supply to define a price. But also cheap topics costs about 20 to 30 cent per click.

And how much gets a webmaster? For this question, I’ve also made a test. Sometimes clicks are paid with 1-2$ but it cost a lot for the advertiser to book this. Mostly a click is paid with one to ten cent, by my own experience. What happened with this 20 to 50 cent? Google has kept some money.

The statement

Now, we have two questions:

  1. Why is he telling this, when the title promises a very different beast?
  2. Why aren’t there any competitors to Google AdSense and AdWords which distribute more?

The answer to the first question can be given by the second question. Let’s start on the ground: Why aren’t there any competitors? Of course, they are and it’s a lot. eBay offers an own partner program and has a fixed price per click of 15 ct. Why aren’t all changing?

Today’s buzz word is: user relevant content

Okay, eBay Relevance Ads offers relevant content, but only on eBay auctions.

Take a look on direct rivals like Mirago. It searches the advertising pages of keywords and links them with relevant commercials. Sounds great, and it is. However, why has a Google AdSense still higher market share?

At this point, all other Google projects come into play.

Starting with the search engine, you search for something and end on a page. On this page are ads from Google AdSense. Why knows Google AdSense, what you’ve searched? Yes, you’ve entered it a few seconds before into google.com. For example, searching for sneakers carries you to a site with sneakers. This site has ads for sneakers. How great.

The sense of search engines is now obvious, but what about Google Mail? You don’t visit any page. But it’s irrelevant, because you need a Google account. You register and accept the Terms of Service. And who really read this? But, the main content stands there in big letters:

Gmail stores, processes and maintains your messages, contact lists and other data related to your account in order to provide the service to you.

Why does Google need this to send me emails? Alright, spam must be filtered but is this the only reason? If we continue, we don’t have to answer this question anymore:

The Gmail service includes relevant advertising and related links based on the IP address, content of messages and other information related to your use of Gmail.

There it is, Google reads my messages and displays relative commercials. In fact, this means: If someone sends me a mail about sights in Berlin I got ads from the Hotel Adlon. The same method as using the search engine.

These were two of the high amount of Google products and guess how it behaves in YouTube? The same. And in Picasa? And Google Talk? And Google Maps? Got it?

Now Google has a lot of information of many persons. How does Google link them? Only by IP address would be boring and too easy, because of the frequently changes. Because of that, you have a Google account which can be used in nearly all projects developed by Google.

Once registered, you can not only use Google Mail, Blogger or similar end-user projects but also Google AdSense, AdWords and – of course – Google Analytics. Let’s take a deeper look into third: Information about your visitors. You see, what visitors have searched to find your page. So, here the search engine also appears.

But how do Analytics know, where these visitors came from, when they’ve clicked on other pages? That’s also Analytics or AdSense on the page the visitor came from. So, what does Google with AdSense and Analytics similarly? Yes, searching your own page. Google now see all external links, so links to other pages than yours. It can control when and where someone has clicked on a link and he will be shown in your Google Analytics.

Summarizing the last paragraph: All these users of Google AdSense and Google Analytics built up a network of webmasters transferring data which are evaluated by Google.

So, Google knows where we came from (search engine), where we’ll go (Google AdSense and Analytics) and lead users on their way through the internet (Google AdSense).

But it’s not all: A very nasty program is Google Desktop. The description says: Google Desktop – Search your computer.

Hold on, there is the Windows search, yet. Exactly, it takes a long time searching files. Google Desktop turns your computer into a second Google. This means an input field and a series of results just in a matter of seconds. Sounds great, but it’s the known Google characteristic. This data is not only saved for your use, but also on Google servers. A better name would be: Google Desktop – Your computer being searched.

Another example, Google Chrome. Not yet accepted by the minor users but it’s designed rather for these who already used Google services. In my opinion, Google Chrome had to be released much earlier than they did. Every page you visit gets saved on Google servers. This nearly detaches the search engine (if the browser would be used by the same amount).

Recapitulation

Google knows, where you are (Google Chrome), what you’re searching (Google.com), what you click (Google AdSense), what you’ve written (Google Mail), what you’ve on your local pc (Google Desktop), who your friends are (Google Talk), where you want to travel (Google Earth), where you really travel (Google Maps), what videos you look (YouTube), what news you’re interested in (Google News) and of course, Google also knows your diary (Blogger). And these are not all Google products.

What happen, if Google really turns evil?

Nonetheless, Google behaves innocently. It dominates nearly half of the internet, knows everything of almost all and shows relevant ads. But, it’s only advertising, would someone say now. But what if Google wants more than earnings?

We got spam every day and sometimes ad letters or ad calls. Mostly it’s about Viagra or penis enlargement. We delete these messages without reading, because we all don’t need this (I think so, but I don’t know my visitors as well as Google). But imagine you get mails with a job offer you search at this time? And this job is incidentally offered in your city? This mail would be interesting and we will open it. The same applies on the ad letters and ad calls.

In future, we can only see what Google wanted us to see. Our browser only shows these pages, which had paid Google. Google Mail sends and deletes job offers, which are paid or not. Google Maps only displays companies, which had paid and Google Earth also only shows hotels, which had paid.

You know, what I wanted to say? Google only works with companies, which paid. Because of the high market shares they won’t have a choice.

So, Google gets paid from almost every company on the world and because everyone does so and there are no alternatives, Google defines the price. If you pay 100$, you only stand on page 30 on Google search. Those, who pay 10000$ will be found on page 5 and only who pay 1 million dollar is in the top 10.

What about an auction? The first three pages get sold to those, who pay most. Maybe for a word like “car”. How much popular keywords exist? A lot. In how many countries Google is present? Nearly all.  How much keywords exist in these different countries? Much more.

Anyway, politicians are corrupt, so no one would try to stop Google. But there are some newspapers. How much does Google have to pay for them? Maybe some billions, that’s nothing for Google. Television is available nearly as a gift. The other press gets buyed and the right of a free mind forbidden. Maybe Google only buys the police? Simply arresting everyone and you don’t even need a judgment.

All people in the world get gaged and the companies paid Google, which buys more and more other companies. This is the ultimate imperium.

Viva la Google!!

(These speculations are just fiction, farfetched and not realistic – maybe)

Permanent link to this article: http://project89.com/what-if-google-turns-evil-80/

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