18.10.2021 Author: Phil Butler

It’s About Time to Kick Back Google and the Rest

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It’s hardly a secret that we were happier consumers before the big boys in America propped up the most mediocre of emerging video channels. And I should know, they used all of us tech journalists to further their evil ways.

The current row between Russian officials and the technocrats running the digital show involved YouTube dumping RT Germany from it’s channels. Google execs say the German channel ran on too much about coronavirus vaccines being questionable. I am laughing here because of the stomach ache I have because of idiotic anti-vaxxers and poor, poor, mask prisoners in our digital world. Why can’t the world just get it? Social media and media in general these days, is just about empowering those who want to bitch. Social media is the replacement for the games of the Roman Colosseum. We are, all of us, the gladiators and the lions at the same time.

That said, Russians shouldn’t “threaten” to block YouTube, they should just do it. Trust me, in two weeks, no one in Russia would care. Before Google bought the video startup, there were dozens to choose from, and a few that made the cheesy black, red, and white boom tube look pitififul. Few reading here will recall a startup called Joost, which was created by Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis, founders of Skype and Kazaa. And how about Hulu, Blinkx, Dailymotion, Metacafe, or Dmitry Shapiro’s elegant Veoh? Most people do not realize the deciding factor on these startups was not value or innovation, it was investment. Cue the sinister American oligarch music.

Russia should be the second major power to outlaw the engine of misuse and misinformation the world order uses on us all. Let me tell you, I bear some responsibility for helping this truly evil company rise to prominence. Did you know that there were over 100 search engines in competition with the Mountain View company back in the mid 2000s? And again, search relevance and value was not what put Google on top. Hakia, Powerset, even Jimmy Wales’ Wikia Search were frontrunners as capable of producing semantic or natural language results. Even Yahoo! Search was no slouch back then. But, Angel round that included Jeff Bezos, Ram Shriram, and Canadian billionaire David Cheriton, who was in turn the professor of Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page. Interestingly, though, Google’s growth/investment profile does not fit the standard model. Compared to Facebook, for instance, there were no giant moves by Bill Gates and Microsoft to rocket the startup to become a virtual monopoly. It is, however, the only tech startup Richard Nixon’s notorious Secretary of State Henry Kissinger invested in.

The company that helped the NSA spy on us all, came out of nowhere because of other “out of nowhere” poster boys like Bezos. We’ve no space here to get into Fairchild Semiconductor, Silicon Valley’s grandpa of venture capital, Don Valentine, or how the US Department of Defense actually set Silicon Valley in motion. What we can highlight is how the military industrial complex and the liberal order hate RT and anything that challenges the supremacy of the American hegemonic propaganda.

Back to our current crisis, if I were Putin I’d axe Google like a much needed chunk of firewood. For an average Russian, Yandex must suffice anyhow. And YouTube can easily be replaced by incentivizing video sharing like that on TikTok or some other such platforms. German RT is banned? What a laugh, for Google (YouTube) to ban the Russian broadcaster for a country where every utterance of media is owned by the elites. German media operates under the government, Axel Springer, or under the direct supervision of the formerly Hitler-friendly Bertelsmann, which is still owned by the Mohn family. What a hypocrisy!

My point on YouTube and Google, is that sooner or later somebody is going to have to stomp on these conglomerates. It may as well start with Russia. Of course, Vladimir Putin will be all the more the valiant for finally nixing the real interferers in things. But, given that everything Russian has been mutated into a great evil, maybe now’s the right time to hit the western technocrats where it hurts, in the money bags. Maybe the rest of the world will catch on. And who knows, maybe a rising competitor will emerge, and give us some of that glowing competition western capitalism is supposed to thrive on!

Do it Vladimir, go ahead, just do it.

Phil Butler, is a policy investigator and analyst, a political scientist and expert on Eastern Europe, he’s an author of the recent bestseller “Putin’s Praetorians” and other books. He writes exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.


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