I think it’s been obvious to the thinking person why BlackBerry has had so much difficulty competing against the Googopoly that brings us Android – to the point where the adage “If you can’t beat ’em , join ’em” has come into play.
We also might wonder why BlackBerry has so much trouble breaking into carrier support in the USA.
We are seeing anti-trust action against Google in other countries, yet none in the host country for Google. Why?
There is a reason for this, and it has nothing to do with democracy. It has to do with a shockingly close relationship between Google and the Obama White House that most Americans are not even aware of.
The Intercept teamed up with Campaign for Accountability to present two revealing data sets from that forthcoming project: one on the number of White House meetings attended by Google representatives, and the second on the revolving door between Google and the government, and have published their findings in interactive chart form here: Google’s Remarkably Close Relationship With the Obama White House, in Two Charts .
What do you think the recent visit to Cuba was really about? Love and affection and a welcome back to a long disenfranchised neighbor and friend? Nope. It is about opening up new internet providing services to a fertile new ground.
Google doesn’t just lobby the White House for favors, but collaborates with officials, effectively serving as a sort of corporate extension of government operations in the digital era.
In just the past few years, Google has provided diplomatic assistance to the administration through expanding internet access in Cuba; collaborated with the Department of Housing and Urban Development to bring Google Fiber into public housing; used Google resources to monitor droughts in real time; and even captured 360-degree views of White House interiors.
It is a very cozy relationship with Google effectively acting as an IT help desk for any kind of tech problems that may arise in government operations. After the Obamacare website fiasco who can blame them for seeking private sector help with these types of projects. And Google is more than willing to run to the aid of the administration, of course expecting and receiving political influence in return.
Then of course, there is that small matter of NSA collaboration that we’ve discovered via Edward Snowden.
The obvious question that arises is: Can government do its job with respect to regulating Google in the public interest if it owes the company such a debt of gratitude?
Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, said the administration “has been a huge help” to Google both by protecting it from attempts to limit its market power and by blocking privacy legislation. “Google has been able to thwart regulatory scrutiny in terms of anti-competitive practices, and has played a key role in ensuring that the United States doesn’t protect at all the privacy of its citizens and its consumers,” Chester said.
And what is Obama doing in the UK, threatening our closest ally if they choose to leave the European Union?