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Doug's Mailbag: Google's Monopoly Reach?, Cloud Fears

Here are some thoughts on Microsoft's attempt to block Google from buying ITA Software:

Microsoft going against Google for becoming a monopoly is like the pot calling the kettle black. Microsoft is grabbing up companies left and right to become number one online. It's just another way to control the competition. It happens to a lot of large corporations. Microsoft has even been called a monopoly many times.

In a capitalist market, the best get to the top. Injecting government intervention in their success or failure is more of a dictatorship. Look how Ma Bell came out of the government mandated breakup. Not even close to the huge success it once was. It built this country's phone system to become what it is today. Who knows if the Internet would even be what it is today without them.
-Dustin Harper

If owning ITA will let Google dominate online travel does that mean ITA already has a monopoly on online travel? If so, what's the diff? Is it one monopoly per customer? Of course, Microsoft has already exceeded that limit. Google's just playing catch-up.

One reader shares his thoughts on keeping private data in the cloud:

I do not store personal or corporate data on the cloud. I advise all my clients against this practice. My reasons are simple. There is a legal question of data ownership. In storing your data on another company's servers and secondary storage, you may be ceding rights to inspect or review the data by any person or company the cloud's management designates to inspect or review the data. That means your data may no longer be completely private. Worse, legally, it may not even be your data. Another reason is that it opens your data to search without due process, only cooperation from the cloud provider.

Two other potential issues worth mentioning include cost of bandwidth to access your data and proposed regulations that allow federal agents to order the shutdown of a Web site without due process. Currently, ISPs are doing everything they can to move Internet access to a metered service. As a metered service, the cost of operating on the cloud becomes staggering. Worse, under the guise of "traffic management," your ISP controls your ability to operate competitively in your market. In a nightmare scenario, the fed uses its new-found power to shut down your cloud site as leverage to force both you and your cloud provider into compliance with their whims. Long term, the cloud is a very bad idea for all. On the other hand, a private cloud could provide amazing benefits to a corporation. However, that's a horse of another color and fodder for a future discussion.
-Dr. Dave

Share your thoughts with the editors of this newsletter! Write to [email protected]. Letters printed in this newsletter may be edited for length and clarity, and will be credited by first name only (we do NOT print last names or e-mail addresses).  

Posted by Doug Barney on 01/10/2011 at 1:18 PM


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