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Eric Schmidt says his company is naturally controversial, but that its top priority is giving its customers the best product at any cost.  (Source: Reuters)

Among Google's biggest enemies now are the Chinese government and Apple, Inc.  (Source: Boy Genius Report)
Google isn't afraid to stir the pot

Eric Schmidt knows very well that Google is no stranger to controversy.  In a talk with reporters at Google's headquarters, he responded to a question about Google's strengths and weaknesses, stating, "Every government sort of has some group that's busy trying to figure out what we're up to. Because information is power.  We're quite disruptive, and in the course of that disruption we tend to create enemies, which are hopefully not intended on our part."

Google, is among the most powerful companies in America today, yet it has numerous enemies.  Among those "enemies" include the world's largest nation, China.

The EU and the U.S., while supportive of Google's stand against China, have taken a wary eye to Google's growing marketshare.  The United States Federal Trade Commission is currently investigating Google and trying to figure out whether its acquisition of AdMob for $750M USD will hurt competition.

The California company also has corporate enemies.  Among the most powerful is Apple, which has begun suing handset makers of Google's Android smart phones over violations of iPhone related patents.  Apple also plans to challenge Google in mobile advertising market, announcing the inclusion of in-app ads in the coming iPhone OS 4.0.  And there's some rumors Apple will even launch its own search engine in the next few years.

Still Google continues to find tremendous success in a variety of new areas.  Among Google's more recent conquests is paid productivity software (à la Microsoft Office).  Google has for some time now offered free versions of its productivity software to the public online.  Now it is selling enhanced versions of the software to the company.  

It charges $50 per user per year for access to all its professional apps, including word processing and Gmail.  Currently the company has racked up a couple million subscribers.  And it's adding 3,000 new ones a day.

Still, Google's core business and biggest source of controversy remains its use of search and data mining to deliver smarter ads to consumers.  That business earns Google most of $24B USD in revenue it made last year.

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Google may be big
By AliShawkat on 4/13/2010 9:01:50 AM , Rating: 2
But atleast they got a soul!

RE: Google may be big
By ebakke on 4/13/2010 9:50:57 AM , Rating: 5
Just keep telling yourself that.

RE: Google may be big
By GodisanAtheist on 4/14/2010 4:23:43 AM , Rating: 2
Or you could just wait for the next SCOTUS ruling...

Why are some people automatically rated one?
By AliShawkat on 4/13/10, Rating: 0
By LRonaldHubbs on 4/13/2010 10:02:18 AM , Rating: 2
Ways you can be automatically rated down include:
1) Using profanity in your post
2) Replying to a post with a -1 rating

There might be others, but these are the ones I have noticed.

RE: Why are some people automatically rated one?
By acase on 4/13/2010 10:37:23 AM , Rating: 3
3) Making a negative comment about Jason Mick that he sees.

RE: Why are some people automatically rated one?
By bissimo on 4/13/10, Rating: 0
By Anoxanmore on 4/13/2010 12:12:38 PM , Rating: 3

whispers It's that Brandon guy you gotta wach out for...

Black helicopters whirl overhead


You can't tax "free"
By Rob94hawk on 4/13/2010 11:27:31 AM , Rating: 2
Governments don't like it because you can't tax "free." Plain and simple.

RE: You can't tax "free"
By foolsgambit11 on 4/13/2010 12:12:19 PM , Rating: 2
Isn't a company taxed when they purchase ad space? After all, it is a sale, so it should be subject to sales tax. If so, then the vast majority of that revenue is taxed just like any other transaction. The state takes their chunk, and the federal government gets massive corporate profits. Sounds to me like governments should like it a lot.

To clarify, Google's products are free to the majority of its users, but only because somebody else is paying for your Gmail account - the advertisers. And that ad sale is taxed just like paying for a Gmail account would be taxed. So yeah, you can tax 'free', but only because it wasn't really free to begin with.

Is this really news?
By amanojaku on 4/13/2010 9:04:27 AM , Rating: 2
I know Schmidt gave an interview, but that's not the same as news. I know, I'm griping and not saying anything useful... Kinda like Schmidt. Large, successful companies always make enemies, friend.

By shin0bi272 on 4/13/2010 9:30:10 AM , Rating: 2
They investigate google but miss bernie madoff, the housing crisis, the lending debacle, banks that were "too big to fail", and a presidential candidate who wants to "fundamentally transform america" but it goes after a company that's actually making money and even stood up to china when our president bows to their leader. Oh wait that makes perfect sense now... google is doing what our government should be doing so it pisses off our government ... stick your head up out of the crowd google and the government will cut it off for you.

By dflynchimp on 4/13/2010 12:00:16 PM , Rating: 2
That picture of the SinoApple flag had me rolling.

Yes, please listen to what Chairman Jobz has to say. His word is the law for all you iFolks who's duty it is to bear unquestioning faith in his wisdom and continue supporting the state of Apple either ignorant of its idea suppression or willing to live with sub-par overinflated products whose aesthetic magicality can at any time substitute for a mini fusion reactor when it is allowed to gather energy from the sun while sitting out in the open.

As to government censoring of Google, we all saw it coming, but frankly, I'm disappointed in their approach.
The United States Federal Trade Commission is currently investigating Google and trying to figure out whether its acquisition of AdMob for $750M USD will hurt competition.

Okay, first off, all aspects of a successful business should be establishing field superiority through better service or feature set than the competition. Google purchasing AdMob fits this description. Indirectly, performing well or improving performance in this sector is going to "hurt" the competition, but unless Google is indulging in the anti-competitive practices like Apple seems to love so much, then the FCC doesn't really have much of a case here.

By Golgatha on 4/13/2010 12:46:40 PM , Rating: 2
Among Google's biggest enemies now are the Chinese government and Apple, Inc.

If that doesn't say perfect business model, I don't know what does. ;-)

I think...
By Landiepete on 4/14/2010 4:50:20 AM , Rating: 2
Companies making as much money as google are per definition disruptive.
Not only because of their size and turnover (they can cause havoc by simply uttering an intention or strategy), but, in my opinion, because of their business model.
Since the backbone of capitalism is growth, google must continue to grow. Because growing within your activities becomes harder as you get bigger (double figure growth when you already own serious market real estate is exceedingly hard), they broaden their scope.
So in order to expand, they develop some new initiatives, but also look at the market, see what works and what doesn't, and try to grab some of it.
The M.O. google has been using for a while is to look around at what works, throw a truckload of cash at it and start doing it for free.
This forces smaller companies, that often have everything AND the kitchen sink invested in something, to abandon their activities, or at least prevent them from developing new ones. You simply cannot compete with a company that has so much cash to burn that it effectively does not impact their existing business.
Just my 2c, really.

Not worlds largest nation
By oab on 4/13/10, Rating: -1
RE: Not worlds largest nation
By spookynutz on 4/13/2010 12:08:39 PM , Rating: 5
Nation can either refer to the territory itself, or it's citizenry. The latter is actually the more common definition.

RE: Not worlds largest nation
By Murloc on 4/13/2010 12:17:01 PM , Rating: 1
he should have said biggest maybe.
Large refers to space.

Anyway, it's population that matters.

RE: Not worlds largest nation
By omnicronx on 4/13/2010 12:27:59 PM , Rating: 3
Large refers to space.
no.. it doesnt.. It can refer to quantity, capacity, size etc....

Yes he could have given us a reference of what he was talking about, but the statement is not incorrect.(and one should easily be able to infer what he is talking about)

RE: Not worlds largest nation
By omnicronx on 4/13/2010 12:21:35 PM , Rating: 2
Jason, China is not the worlds largest nation. That's Russia.
You do realize that the word largest is not exclusive to surface area right?

I could say Russia is the largest nation in the world, you could say China is the largest nation in the world and we would both be correct.

China is surely the largest nation in terms of population, while Russia is the largest in terms of surface area.

Similarly I could be the 'largest' person in the world in terms of weight, but someone else could be the largest in the world in terms of area. (perhaps because I have more muscle mass etc)

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007

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