Did Google deep-six Kozoru?
There's an interesting series of posts over at the blog of John Flowers, about how he believes his small search company has suffered at the hands of Google. According to Flowers, Google recently banned his company's spiders, after initially shmoozing with him about a possible deal. Flowers posted a few weeks ago about how, after conducting talks with Google, the company suddenly stopped responding to his calls, though it did continue to access Kozoru's private interface. Then, apparently without warning, not only did Google stop taking Kozoru's calls, but stopped taking its traffic as well. Flowers speculates that Kozoru — which created a meta-search engine designed to pull more intelligible results from Google searches — was banned after Google "couldn't decide how or if [Kozoru's] results were able to be monetized -- after all, less results means less space for ads and so forth." Sounds like Google's playing a bit of hardball here, which the company has every right to do. But it does sort of fly in the face of Goog's whole "don't be evil" thing. Of course, I doubt Google's shareholders see this as evil; the company is protecting shareholder value, and if Kozoru gets in the way of that, hey, that's life in the big time. Still, it does seem like the whole "don't be evil" thing is getting a little old. Goog's a big company now, and is acting like one. It's time for it to stop pretending otherwise.