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joined:Jan 12, 2009
Google has 73% share of the search market in the US. By definition, they hold a monopoly. Holding a monopoly is not illegal. In Google's case, in my opinion, they earned it through effective marketing and the ineptness of their competition. But wait! ... there's more...
Antitrust laws were created to protect businesses and consumers from harmful business practices. In addition, a monopoly has a fundamental TRUST with the market and cannot legally violate standards of ETHICAL BEHAVIOR. THAT'S THE LAW. Not a policy from a large US company...IT"S THE US LAW. So, yes, a monopoly like Google does have responsibilities to their paying customers in this issue and should not be allowed to abuse their power in the market.
Regarding the "ethical behavior" aspect, not telling an existing customer SPECIFICALLY WHY they were terminated is ethically wrong on many fronts. An ethical company that cared about their customers would tell them specifically which rule is being breached and give the customer the reasonable ability to correct the breach. In Google's case, it would mean something really difficult like "Because you have broken our Webmaster Guideline(s) that read...". And then give a customer the opportunity to fix the specific issue before sending them a termination letter. This would not have any bearing on giving out trade secrets to competition or giving the "bad guys" a heads up on how to break Google's ranking algorithm. They have already posted the rules. Just tell the customer which one they are violating and give them opportunity(s) and feedback to fix it. To think that a company might have the power to not engage in business with a relative of a terminated customer is shocking. So, the son of a felon needs to put that on his job application because, as we all know, the apple does not fall far from the tree. What kind of Orwellian world are we living in?
This should not be too hard for a monopoly like Google to handle. In the past few months, Google has completely acted recklessly in an area of the sandbox in which I play. They cannot be trusted to be ethical and, therefore, need to be watched very closely in every other area in which they are involved with regard to the personal information they are capturing using free services as bait. We are internet marketers here. Wake up! Is there really such a thing as a free offer without serious strings? Google is not to be trusted. I will never support them unless it means cutting off my nose to spite my face.
The purpose for any forum like this is to communicate. I hope my info was helpful to someone and I hope they take action wisely. I also believe that people united are a powerful force. It cannot help Google to have knowledgeable people like the ones on this forum -- whether you have been affected or not -- understand the problems generated by this very powerful monopoly and be aware of the power an entity like this can have over all of us.
As the saying goes "Information is King". When it comes to information, Google is King. Given their mishandling of privacy issues in the past few years and the excessive use of power discussed on this and other forums, that is scary. Who knows how or what they will do with the info they gather or how they will encroach on someone's rights in the future. If you are comfortable with that, great. I am not.