If there is one powerhouse on the web today it has to be Google. Sure the little upstarts like Facebook and Twitter might be grabbing all the headlines but unfortunately Google is getting a different kind of attention, that it really doesn’t want. Mr. Dana Wagner, Google’s “senior competition counsel”, would like to have everyone believe that the company is part of an industry where disruption is only a mouse click away but not everyone is falling for that line.
Over the past little while Google has found itself under the ever increasing watchful eye of the Department of Justice. Following up on the derailment of a Google – Yahoo deal the company is facing three new antitrust investigations by the government. In an effort to soft-pedal Google’s influence Wagner has been making the rounds to talk with reporters in Silicon Valley, Washington and New York, as well as any Congressional staff members who let him in the door, and industry groups. In general anyone who can influence public perception about Google is getting a visit.
However not everyone is falling for the Google-spin about how it really is just a small company in the larger scheme of things and isn’t any danger to anyone because the market they operate in can change in the blink of an eye
Eyes are rolling, especially in reaction to the idea that Google is a relatively small player in a giant market. “They describe where they are in a market under a kind of a fairy-tale spun gloss that doesn’t reflect their dominance of key sectors,” said Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy. “Google search is an absolute must-have for every marketer in the world.”
Hand-wringing over Google’s power is not new. But some experts say that the steady stream of headlines about antitrust investigations could tarnish Google’s image with consumers, who by and large still view the company, and its growing list of free and innovative online services, positively.
“No company, whether it is Google, Microsoft or anyone else, wants to be portrayed in a negative way,” said David B. Yoffie, a professor at Harvard Business School. “It is absolutely right for Google to be worried, to be prepared, to be paranoid and to respond accordingly.”
Source: New York Times :: Google Makes a Case That It Isn’t So Big
While little press junkets like this might have worked in the past when Google was actually a small company the fact is they aren’t a small company anymore, and they do wield a lot of power on the Web. suggesting otherwise is just plain facetious.
image courtesy of InformationWeek