Saturday, January 17, 2009

I Hate Google

Google is an arrogant company, and albeit ran by smart people, the more and more I deal with them, the more and more I realize that not only are they arrogant elitists, but have more power than what I'd like.

I will inevitably move from Blogger (which is owned by Google) to Word Press or what have you in the future, but no matter how "intelligent" they fashion themselves, no matter how "creative" or "cutting edge" they may be, the realities of the free market (otherwise known as reality) boils down to this;

Americans don't like arrogant elitist pricks and they don't trust companies with too much power.

I suggest doing your searching on Yahoo.


Anonymous said...

I suggest doing your searching on Yahoo.

I would, and in fact the past couple of days I've been using (powered by Yahoo)... the only problem is that Google really is much, much better. It turns up more results and has the great 'cached pages' feature.

Ed Kohler said...

I prefer Yahoo Finance as well.

As for GOOG's recent stock slowdown. I think people loved the company too much only a few years ago. Eventually, people figured out that as much as Google has been able to grow, it simply cannot continue to grow at such ridiculously high rates. The web only grows so fast, which becomes an issue once you have such high market share.

Plus moves into other advertising channels like radio and TV have been slower and more costly than people anticipated.

Anonymous said...

To prove your point that Yahoo is better, you should use Yahoo's stock tracking feature instead of Google's.

Oh wait, it sucks. :)

Captain, Google still has a higher P/E ratio than Yahoo: 18.85 to 17.84. They also have nearly six times the market capitalization.

Yahoo peaked at just short of $30/share within the last year in February of 2008, and it's down to $11.59/share today. Google peaked at $600.79/share a year ago and today it's worth $299.67/share.

Google's stock is worth more for its earnings and has lost about half its value from a year ago rather than Yahoo losing 60% of theirs.

While it's rather iffy to measure trust in a company by looking at stock prices, I don't think the data supports your position. At least, given your conclusion, if you apply the same methods to looking at Yahoo, it would indicate they're trusted even less than Google.

Anonymous said...

points to remember when moving a blog from one platform to another

1) You will lose about half you readership and it will take a year to get it back

2) Don't delete the old page as it will eventually be taken over by spammers who will use all your hard work to sell smut (without giving you a cut). Also, your old page will direct people to your new site.

3) Wordpress would be where I'd recommend you move, it has the easiest system for transferring posts from blogger to the new platform.

4) Back up your blogger blog using the xml feature under "settings" before you do anything (Look, you worked hard on this blog for a long time and a lot of us continually link to your archived posts and use yuor graphs against the forces of darkness).

Did I mention not to delete your old posts?

Anonymous said...

I've gotten away from Google precisely because of the arrogance, their penchant for leftism and their lack of concern for privacy.

The yahoo search seems to me to get fewer hits, but has a higher signal to noise ratio (more relevant stuff and less crap) than Google for the searches I do.

This is one case where I'm rooting for the underdog.

Hot Sam said...

It all boils down to the rhetorical question I asked several posts ago, "How are these guys making money?"

Google was spawned as a useful internet tool...a search engine...which, oh, by the way, offered sponsored links as advertisement.

Contrary to what the resident dufus has to say, Google's doom is not from the internet growing too slowly but indeed by it growing too swiftly. It has rendered their search engine slow and ineffective and hence, people employ numerous engines to find what they want, lingering for only a few moments. Nobody watching tends to hurt advertising revenues.

Websites have cracked the algorithms to deluge the engines with worthless hits. You might have to dig 10 o's into to find exactly what you're lokking for.

As I said long ago, retailers are losing out with these engines as advertising and most are leaving. Google remains profitable only by pass-through business. As soon as people realize they stink, they leave, and are replaced by other ignorant fools.

Google spent BILLIONS on 'green technologies' and 'corporate social responsibility.' Now their stockholders are realizing that it's really 'Red propaganda' and 'Corporate Financial Stupidity.'

Anonymous said...

Regarding some earlier comments about comparisons of Yahoo!'s and Google's stock prices and P/E ratios -- Yahoo's share of search engine traffic is down, as is ad revenue across internet companies as a whole, and those are some of the factors affecting its stock price. Stock price is based on an expectation the company will be profitable in the future, or that the stock will go up and can be sold for a profit, and a whole bunch of herd-mentality factors, as much as whether people "trust" or "like" the company.

That said, I do agree with the Captain about Americans in general not liking elitist pricks. And Google has been acting like elitist pricks lately.

A while back it was a big deal in the techie press that their company motto is (or was) "don't be evil", but they seem bent on accumulating a lot of user data and market dominance that could easily be used for evil (or at least highly unprincipled) ends.

For example, the first publicized instance of alerting a government agency about search terms by region was for a good cause -- they told the CDC which parts of the country had an increased number of searches for terms like "flu" and "flu symptoms" -- but the overall concept is still pretty creepy.

With regards to Blogger, I had an account on Blogger years ago prior to the Google acquisition. Google just added on more and more layers of b.s. -- you had to change your Blogger ID to a Google ID. And to have a Google ID you had to have a Gmail account. Any updates about your blog went to your Gmail account, instead of any non-Gmail account you used to use. And on and on.

I was not then and still am not now a devoted or even semi-regular blogger. Even so, the difference between Blogger and Wordpress was night and day. I am much happier with Wordpress. I would not be surprised if the Captain likes it better too if he ever decides to switch over.

Ed Kohler said...

Robert, here are some 3rd party facts that seem to contradict your assumptions.

I wouldn't expect you to agree with my analysis but at least get your facts straight.

Hot Sam said...

Ed, you're "third party" facts don't refute my point. They prove my point.

These are single-month statistics. They are no more relevant than the record-high Black Friday sales.

The article states that SEARCHES in December were at record high levels, i.e. click-throughs. But SALES were in the tank!

So the companies which advertised through Google, Yahoo, et. al. paid a lot of money in web advertising for people who were only bargain hunting and not necessarily buying. They are waiting for prices to drop more.

Electronics and other big ticket items were selling at a loss. Circuit City and other retailers declared bankruptcy.

We've lost hundreds of thousands of jobs in the past few months and over 500,000 in December alone. No longer confined to Construction and Financial Activities, it's now spread to the Retail sector. And the huge January seasonal layoffs are coming!

The Captain and I are looking at the big picture and long run prospects. Google's declining stock value shows that the market understands more about Google's profitability than you do.

No, Ed, both your "analysis" and your "facts" are 180 degrees from reality.

Ed Kohler said...

Robert, you used examples of offline failures.

Hot Sam said...

Google just announced a fourth quarter 2008 loss!

To add further insult, they just lost the Top Place to Work award.

Contractors have been let go. Layoffs will be next.

All is not well in Gooooooogleland.

Yes, this is gloating.

Ed Kohler said...

Robert, in what world is net income for a quarter of $382 million a loss?

Hot Sam said...

In what world Ed?

In a world where analysts compare year-over-year results in order to remove the seasonal, cyclical, and irregular components of a time series. In this world, Google's profits declined 68% in the year-ending fourth quarter 2008.

In a world where Economists, who are trained to think about these things, take into account the opportunity cost of a firm's capital. All that money could have been doing other stuff.

That's the world in which Google lost money, Ed - the REAL world that actually thinks and reasons rather than basing ideas on meaningless, nominal data.

In this real world, Ed, Google's management, stockholders, and employees are soiling their drawers.

Here's what the Google CEO had to say about the 4th quarter:

Google's stock has recovered some of its losses only because their declining profits beat expectations due to the "record" December searches. Let's see if the massive layoffs in January from retailers will outstrip the "January Effect" on Google's stock.

BTW, you still haven't told me how Google's single-month record searches translated into record sales or record profits for its advertisers. As the CEO points out, searches in December were driven by comparison shopping, precisely what I told you: multiple searches resulting in one or zero sales.

I forgive you, though, for not understanding what happens to a firm, in the long run, when they have increasing market share in a declining industry.

Anonymous said...

Merriman Curhan Ford analyst Richard Fetyko points out that online ad conversion rates -- the percentage of clicks on paid ad placements that resulted in a sale -- have dropped to 2%. Any further drop could cause ad buyers to reconsider their spending strategy.

Ed Kohler said...

It's not surprising to see a company that controls such a large portion of advertising see a decline in revenue due to a down economy. But to suggest that this somehow reflects poorly on Google's business model is quite a reach.

Soiling their drawers? Did you miss the part where Google cashed 1/4 of a billion over a quarter? Drawer soiling and a billion/year in net profit do not mix.

Hot Sam said...

Ed, for someone so tech savvy and a part of this industry, you really don't have your ear to the rails. The search engines are in a panic, not merely on how to survive the recession but how to maintain profits in the long run. They're rethinking their business models, not merely hunkering down.

Google could, like ATT, reinvent itself and come out good for decades. But the search engine as a profit center is losing its steam. That's what Google's CEO and the tech market is saying, not me.

Let me explain opportunity cost. You are a baker earning $30,000 per year. You open your own bakery and make $25000 in accounting profit your first year. Guess what! Your economic profit is -$5000 because you passed up the income you could get as a baker. Google had a loss, Ed, and a large one. Much of it was due to a write-down of AOL, but that bill had to come due sometime. No one at Google is dancing a jig. They just laid off 100 recruiters. That means no job growth in the next year.

The internet world is changing. Google understands this. You do not. You're simply defending your point now instead of embracing 'the real world.'

I don't know software tech from rice farming, but I can read and understand what the street is saying. And I can see what markets are doing.

TELL ME, if you can, how well Google's advertisers did during the 'record' search month of December. You are ducking the shoe.

Somebody already told you that searches are converting to sales only 2 percent of the time. I'd venture that is a high estimate from bargain hunting in a Christmas season.

I can barely find anything on Google or Yahoo anymore even with advanced search techniques. The search engine is dying a slow death. I wish it weren't true, but it is.

Ed Kohler said...

If you care to understand what you're talking about, I think you should take a look at what divisions Google scaled back.