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Old 05-02-2006   #1
dannysullivan
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Google Objects To Microsoft's IE7 Search Default Plans

Microsoft's IE 7 Serve Unfair Advantage Over Google & Yahoo? from Barry on the SEW Blog covers the New York Times article out yesterday where Google's complaining that IE7 shouldn't go with MSN Search by default. Google wants users to be giving a choice in picking a search provider -- something that plenty are noting doesn't happening in Firefox or Opera, where Google pays to be the default choice. I've also posted some thoughts of my own in the follow-up article, Google Worried About Microsoft's Browser Advantage? What Advantage?.

What do you think? Is the default choice in a browser even that important any more? Should Google be pushing for choice in the products its already has bought the default in? Should Microsoft change?

Last edited by dannysullivan : 05-02-2006 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 05-02-2006   #2
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That's the equivelant of saying to the Apple stores don't show macs by default let the users have a choice between PC and Mac... Ya ok.
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Old 05-02-2006   #3
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Recently there was a post here showing that the most frequent search queries were for other search engines, not information or products. I think if today users are going to type "google" into msn's website, they'll have no problem typing it into their browser search box.
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Old 05-02-2006   #4
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I think Google just needs to quit whining. If they want to dominate the default search of people's browsers, then they should create their own and then compete with Microsoft on the browser front. However they are already kind of doing that by being the default search in Firefox and Opera.

It's Microsoft's browser - of course they are going to default to their own search. Who wouldn't?
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Old 05-03-2006   #5
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Google/ MS/ At&T/ anti-competition

Research is my passion, much of my profession, and Google Search is my home page. That said, know that I'll use whatever search engine gets the necessary results, including Yahoo, Alta Vista, etc. so on.

But this isn't the point here. The point is whether currently dominant corporations are trying to STIFLE competition. Do we have a free market or not?

Is it permissible for the "new" At&T (SBC now re-buying up all the baby bells created by the '80s monopoly break up) to attempt their stated goal of "charging admission" to the internet by pressuring the FCC (through quiet "channels") to drag its heels on licensing ultrabandwidth providers? Do you think Ed Whitacre's backpedalling on that stated goal is sincere? That he has the public's best interests at heart (like Bill Gates)?

Are we to return to the party-line days when most Americans were powerless against "the phone company"? Must we again shake our heads and mutter, "they'd be out of business if they had competition"?

Does "free-trade" mean the bullies with the bestest & mostest behind the scenes connections win? ~jill (angry comments welcome )
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Old 05-03-2006   #6
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I would do the same as MS after investing in a product you want that product to use your services by default.

Google can promote firefox more to get more searchers
or
Google can create its own Open Source Linux with Firefox as default
its just a question of a few Billion $ investment
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Old 05-03-2006   #7
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As long as my Firefox continues to default to Google, I don't see an issue with IE defaulting to MSN search.

Why is it that when Google does it, it's "value-added", but when MS does it, it's "stifling the competition"? Seems to me that since Google dominates the search arena, the FireFox and Opera deals are more troublesome, and more indicative of an attempt to monopolize..

I also note that when you install the Google Toolbar it tries to change the default to Google, unless you make a specific "opt-out" choice not to.

Further, I notice that whenever I upgrade my PDF plugin, Yahoo now tries to install the Yahoo toolbar - once again, opt-out.

And IE has had a default search (to MSN) for YEARS now - you just have to type in a question mark "?" and your search in the address bar and off you would go. This really isn't anything new, just easier to use.

In a single day of putting together a new computer and accepting the defaults, a user can install XP (and thus set the default to MSN), then update the PDF plugin (thus changing it to Yahoo), then install the Google toolbar, thus changing it to Google, and this is ALL default behavior!

I also note that every Linux build I've used defaults to Google for browser based searches, which they seem to be glossing over...

I'm not sure if I should call this "the pot calling the kettle black" or "much ado about nothing".

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Old 05-03-2006   #8
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In fairness to Microsoft, it is their product, why should they not promote their own search engine by making it the default? I certainly don't think they owe anything to Google, or any other engine, for that matter.
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Old 05-03-2006   #9
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well the alternatives are forcing someone to choose a preference when installing, not offering the service or setting a different default. Hmmm. Which of those would be "better for the user"?
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Old 05-05-2006   #10
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Thank for the laugh Danny

Poor Google only has a tiny share of the defaults. It just ain't fair, and I feel for them
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Old 05-05-2006   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gurtie
well the alternatives are forcing someone to choose a preference when installing, not offering the service or setting a different default. Hmmm. Which of those would be "better for the user"?
I think this is the main point. Most new computer users are completely clueless about changing any settings at all, and by setting self-serving defaults, MS is taking advantage of its operating system monopoly.

I'm not sure how operating systems ship now, but I remember that for some years after 8-bit graphics cards became ancient history, Windows was shipping with the color palette defaulting to 256 colors... and many designers were forced to design that way because users were clueless that they could change their defaults. This was probably due more to Microsoft's carelessness than to greed, but the point is the operating system defaults are likely to go unchanged by a great many users.

Google deals in algorithms and is clearly capable of estimating how many users will fail to change their search engine defaults because they don't know any better. Chances are that Microsoft has a good sense of those numbers too. I can just hear new users saying things like: "Oh, you can get Google on this thing too? I thought I had to pay extra for that."

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcanerin
As long as my Firefox continues to default to Google, I don't see an issue with IE defaulting to MSN search.
I don't either, and I think Google sees it that way too. I believe Google has offered to drop their Firefox default arrangement if MS drops its browser default. Also, as I remember, IE has been defaulting to MSN search all along, which is why Google started its arrangement with Firefox in the first place (not to say they might not have done this anyway ).

They're both playing hardball, but I think Google is tending to go more for open standards in many areas, arguably both better for everybody and a good way to combat Microsoft's power.
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Old 05-05-2006   #12
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PS to the above. I think Google's noise now, long term, may not be so much about the browser as about laying a precedent to keep Microsoft search from being incorporated into the operating system.
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