The Future's Enemies: Protesting Google

Looks like the traditional MSM is just about finished completing the transformation of Google's media image from hip vanguard of the future to "Evil Corporation." Now, Google is facing the inevitable crowds of professional protesters "descending" on its Mountain View campus. Lame:

A protest organized by, Free Press and other advocacy groups angered by Google's recently proposed rules on governing Internet access drew about 70 activists to the online giant's Mountain View headquarters on Friday.

The animated group carried signs that read "Google Don't Be Evil," with devil horns and a pointed tail emerging from the company's name; chanted slogans as creative as "hey hey, ho ho, corporate greed has got to go"; and sang "democracy requires net neutrality" to the tune of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic."

The gathering on Google's corporate campus was the latest example of a simmering backlash over an agreement announced this week between the company and Verizon to advance a set of federal rules that many say betray Google's earlier support for an open Internet.

The online search king and other Web businesses have long argued that Internet service providers should treat all legal Web content the same, providing users with unfettered access to the sites and services of their choosing, be they text news articles or network-clogging videos.

But the rules proposed by Google and Verizon included provisions that critics say contradict that position, in particular one that states wireless access providers wouldn't be subject to the same standards.

I didn't realize that 70 protesters holding pre-printed signs is enough for the SF Chronicle to put their little protest on the front page of the business section, along with accompanying full-color pictures. But, is involved, so it must be news, right?

Functionally speaking, Google is no different that network television; it gives away content for "free" and then makes money selling its audience to advertisers. Stop the presses! But, for whatever reason, Google has been viewed with deep suspicion by older media companies. Android seems to have been a bridge too far for many of Google's rivals, and now its efforts to expand its wireless presence is drawing patent troll lawsuits from Oracle and dopey protests from the professional left. Why it's "bad" for Google to enter into a pact with Verizon when Apple has done the same with AT&T is beyond me. Must be the Apple Rule in action again.

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