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“Boycott Bing” Revisited, Google Makes It Obsolete Anyway

Boycott Novell note



Summary: The New York Times' (NY Times) call for a Bing boycott worth another look now that Microsoft strategises on China

About a month ago, the NY Times took an unusual stance when one of its writers called for a Bing boycott, noting that it provided a biased/warped reality that happens to exclude not only Microsoft competitors but also competitors of its partners, who include the notorious Chinese regime. The short story is that Microsoft was censoring for the Chinese government, leading to calls for a boycott. Later on, Microsoft acknowledged the problem (when calls for a boycott became too widespread) and blamed it on a "bug".



Microsoft has problems in China. It has already lost Lee (so has Google) and a prior manager (mentioned here). Rather recently it fired 300 employees over there but it is still moving to cheaper labour and hiring from the outside, which leads to blunders [1, 2, 3, 4]. According to Reuters and Microsoft Nick, Microsoft wants more control and favouritism in China. Playing along with the suppressive government is maybe their strategy.

The posting from the NY Times by no means mean that the publication is against Microsoft; it's usually the opposite because NY Times works for its clients, who are advertisers, not subscribers [1, 2]. That's where all the big money is.

TechDirt accuses the NY Times of "Running A Ridiculous, Conflicted Op-Ed Against Google":

It makes you wonder why the NY Times would allow such an OpEd to go forward. Kedrosky has his opinion: "apparently NY Times OpEds over the holidays are vetted by malnourished monkeys."


It's about this article, calling for “search neutrality”.

Today, search engines like Google, Yahoo and Microsoft’s new Bing have become the Internet’s gatekeepers, and the crucial role they play in directing users to Web sites means they are now as essential a component of its infrastructure as the physical network itself. The F.C.C. needs to look beyond network neutrality and include “search neutrality”: the principle that search engines should have no editorial policies other than that their results be comprehensive, impartial and based solely on relevance.


While it is true that Google needs to be watched carefully (not just for privacy reasons but also for its occasional misuse of Free software), to pretend that Microsoft is better than Google when it come to ethics is totally laughable. See Verizon for example. On the issue of privacy, there is this new article:

Government data, our data, now held by Google



[...]

You see Google has been running a bit of an advertising campaign built around the fact that over 60% of the United States state governments are using part or all of Google’s Apps. I realized that the open source and freetard brigade will argue that this is a great thing given that it boost the whole idea of free and open source software in the public eye but stop and think for a minute.

60% plus. That’s 60% or better of states who are storing supposedly private and extremely personal data of ours on a third party server of a company thats sole purpose is to index all the information in the world.


It is better to have this data in Google's datacentres than in Microsoft's. But ideally, as we said before, no public institution should ever outsource data like this, specially to foreign entities. If private businesses choose to do it, then the matter is altogether different in nature. When it comes to Web-based software, Google is also said to be ahead of Microsoft. As someone from Fonality has put it this month:

I just took a moment to re-read what I have written. Sounds like I work for Google. I don’t. But this blog is about what works for business and I feel that Google made a bold move to make businesses work better. I actually am not a Microsoft Hater anymore. Outgrew that when I put away the code. I just think they are an old and overpriced model. It will be interesting to see how good their response to Google Docs is: Office Web Apps. I bet MSFT isn’t used to playing catch-up on one of their core businesses!


Google will hopefully turn out the lights for Microsoft.

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