Thursday, March 15, 2007

Google the Internet Equivalent of Wal-Mart?

Yes, so, we're all excited about Google's new "privacy" initiatives. Even Google, who is "pleased to report [the] change in [its] privacy policy." The more I read about Google, the more it strikes me as a company made of contradictions.

So imagine my surprise when I saw "Google Is Reviving Hopes for Ex-Furniture Makers" in the New York Times this morning. A rather liberal use of the phrase "reviving hopes" once you read the article, and it made me think: is Google the Internet Equivalent of Wal-Mart? The promise of new jobs overshadows the enormous tax breaks and other incentives such companies are given just to move into an area. And then the article mentions commissioners going door-to-door to 35 homeowners, asking them to sell their land so Google can have it.

So let's see, Google is taking advantage of the following in Lenoir, N.C.,

1) Underused electric power grid
2) Cheap land (sold to it by residents of Lenoir)
3) A robust water supply

Hmm....perhaps Google has been closely watching Wal-Marts efforts to expand, and the roadblocks Wal-Mart has run into in recent years.

Well, if any gigantic public company is good at pulling the wool over the eyes of the public, it is Google. People are so fascinated by the right hand, they forget about the left. No wonder Google blazes trails everywhere.

We shall see how this Lenoir server farm deal plays out, and what plays from the Wal-Mart expansion play book Google will use to its advantage. Too bad it couldn't find acres of open land, like Disney found in Florida so many years ago to build its own country: Disney World.

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