I find it ironic that the same people that place things on pedestals are often the ones that knock those same pedestals over. It seems like this might be happening with Digg right now, but there's also talk again about it happening with Google. This isn't the first time that people have grumbled over Google. In fact, after years of being able to do no wrong, I started to notice a definite shift in the "love" trend from the main stream media around the time that Google went public back in 2004. Danny Sullivan has noticed it too. The current issue with Google is over their use of the OneBox to promote certain Google services.
While it's fairly easy to argue that any company that is held up to such lofty standards is going to fail at some point, it's also important to remember that people are finicky. We're all about finding the next big thing, be it shoes, restaurants, cars, diets, or yes, even search engines. The problem is, once everyone knows it's the next big thing, it's well...no longer the next big thing. So our focus shifts and we start looking for reasons to tear down what was once popular in order to make way for the NEXT big thing.
Is that what's happening with Google? To an extent. I tend to lean more toward the idea that any company that grows into a HUGE powerhouse is going to have it's detractors. Microsoft? Walmart? McDonalds? You simply can't be at the top of the game without having someone trying to knock you down. That's not to say that Google (and the other three companies I mentioned) don't make mistakes, it's simply to say that when you're the most popular business, there are more folks to NOTICE when you make mistakes.
It will be interesting to see how things progress in the next few years. I'm seeing a bit of a trend among industry bloggers that may suggest that Ask.com is going to become the new "pet" search engine. That's not to say that Ask's growing popularity isn't earned...they're doing great things over at Ask.com these days. It's simply to say that while Google needs to pay attention to make sure that they aren't crossing too many lines or taking too much advantage of accumulated good will. Even the companies at the top of their game need to remember how they got there and need to continue aiming high.
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