I think this is worth echoing, from an "On The Media" segment on Google Print: (my emphasis below)
BOB GARFIELD: If not Google now, then who? And when? Who should be in charge of deciding which books get scanned?
SIVA VAIDHYANATHAN: Well, I actually think that this is the job of libraries. I think libraries should be doing this first and foremost. The Library of Congress should have identified this as a major public need and goal and pursued this sort of project years ago. Instead, they've outsourced it to a private corporation, and this corporation, as good as they like to make us think they are, is still operating by keeping us blind. Their technology is proprietary. Their algorithms for search are completely secret. We don't actually know what's going to generate a certain list of search results. They don't work for us.
Again - "They don't work for us". Whatever their cool geek-dream origin (and I share the fantasy!), Google is a now a very large corporation, accountable only the shareholders. It may seem overly critical to emphasize it, but that's reality.By Seth Finkelstein | posted in google | on October 17, 2005 09:55 AM (Infothought permalink)