We Really Meant "Do Very Little Evil"

Is the year of the Rooster Google's last year of benevolence? Until now, Google has managed to be the darling of the caffeine-saturated Slashdot crowd, the scourge of Microsoft, and generally one step ahead of everyone else. Oh, the Google search engine isn't too bad either.

So what's up with Google as of late? In the past few months, Google has

  • Released GooglePack, an underwhelming Windows-centric software pack
  • Released, then pulled, Google Analytics, an ad-targeting system
  • Partnered with AOL, and agreed to give AOL advertising and content some sort of preferential treatment
  • Released Google Video, a proprietary, DRM-encumbered video store and client

Even if we ignore the first two as silliness and attribute the third as a hedge bet against Microsoft, that still leaves us with a company — who's by-line, incidentally, is "do no evil" — releasing yet another bloody DRM-crippled media player. Which means more vendor lock-in, and more media in a format which can't be easily — or, in some places, legally — transferred between programs.

Then again, maybe they're just having an off month. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.