Monday, December 1, 2008

An Alternative to Blaming Google

I'm reading Imre Szeman's article “‘Do No Evil’: Google and Evil as a Political Category" (published in TOPIA: Canadian Journal of Cultural Studies). Google comes under a lot of attack here for its way of implementing its book scanning/search service. From the perspective of a pro-open access, open source graduate student, I would certainly say there are problems...

That said, why is the emphasis always on a sort of quasi-whining? Sure, Google is popular and often good at what it does. Is it the end of search and using information? No. Why can't there be more discussion and work on projects like the Open Content Alliance or the Internet Archive? Instead of complaining about why Google is lacking in some way, is it not more productive to build something better? I presume that most critics simply lack the resources or IT skills to create something like that, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be attempted at all.

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