Thursday, November 30, 2006

The speech act of replying to a question

It is somewhat interesting to note that the Google Search result for the definition of "answer" gives a large majority of answers related to the legal practice. For a company so certain it can decrypt the vast complexity of human nature by using algorithms, that must the finding must have been devastating! From then on, the reaction to the stimulus was ineluctable. An automatic correlation with the recent increase of the number of legal proceedings against Google was obvious and could only lead to a single answer: bring down Google Answers…

Although the announcement eulogizes the innovative nature of the service, it did not protect it from down to earth consideration: it was not making money. Many have been and still are questioning the company's pretence to innovation. Google is no different than any other large incumbent, it just chose another moto: the "non evil" company. But these are just words. Google is master at coercing and, as many businesses, will use its power to smooth out its way to domination.

More simply, Google is not about people: its business model is only to become the largest advertising agency ever. Advertising only works by flattering basic instincts, lowering critics barriers and feeding distorted and subjective information. No wonder there is no space for real human answers in this context…

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