There are reports that Digg is really (and finally!) on the block, and that one of the four suitors is – surprise, surprise – Google.
While it might make strategic sense for Google to acquire Digg given its traffic and advertising potential, it just doesn’t feel right that Google seems to snap up every interesting Web service as it strives to control the Internet.
In the past year, for example, Google has bought cool start-ups such as Panoramio, FeedBurner, Adscape, GrandCentral, Postini and Jaiku, while Facebook slipped through its M&A clutches when Microsoft was allowed to buy a teeny-tiny stake for $250-million. (A complete list of Google’s acquisitions can be found here.)
Is it really healthy for the Internet that Google is so dominant and capable of buying anything within its strategic desires? Is the lack of a strong #2 player going to be bad for the Internet’s evolution when you’ve got one company essentially running the market, including its ability to control the economics of many businesses through AdSense.
Maybe we’re starting to enter the anti-Google (AG) era. Look at it this way, Google has gone from cool start-up that came out nowhere into an economic powerhouse with its tentacles increasingly stretching into every nook and cranny on the Web.
This is purely anecdotal but I think there’s some Google Fatigue starting to set in as people grow tired of seeing Google around every corner. For anyone looking to liberate themselves from Google, a good starting point is using a different search engine – a difficult task for many people but perhaps necessary task for Google to be reigned in.