The media’s love affair with Google has continued apace today. Google sniffed, and the media shat itself.
While I obviously don’t think it’s pleasent that Google is censoring its results in China, I am actually surprised that they weren’t already doing that. Remember a year or so back when MSN banned its Chinese users from using words like “democracy” on MSN Spaces? This is not new. Google is not setting a precedent.
Google’s censorship was the subject of Victoria Derbyshire’s phone-in (which is always a laugh, or depressing, depending on how optimistic you feel about humanity). One man phoned it to say that he had deleted Google from his own computer, as well as his wife’s and childrens’ computers, in protest. To which another texter replied, “Who’s the censor now?”
And who is prepared to get rid of Windows from their computer because of MSN’s own censorship? And as one commenter over at The Guardian‘s tech blog notes:
Who’s being hypocritical here? Google, or those who condemn its actions in China while being more tolerant of “good” censorship in Germany and France?
What is with the media’s obsession with Google? When Google Talk launched, the BBC was all over it. It was mentioned in Five Live’s bulletins every half hour, it got its own report on the 6 O’Clock News, and probably lots more coverage as well. This was despite the fact Google Talk is complete shit. It might have had a couple of nifty, quaint features, but that doesn’t merit a slot on the 6 O’Clock News. Google Talk did nothing new then, and it still does nothing new now. I never use it. In fact, I think just about everything Google has done since Gmail was launched has been a complete disappointment.