The Backlash Against Google

More good April fool’s pranks, but the pesky bad press surrounding Google’s decision to discontinue Reader refuses to go away. 

Google’s unofficial corporate motto is “don’t be evil”. And since the company’s founding 15 years ago, it has managed to maintain a public image of being an anti-establishment good-guy. Given its success it was only a matter of time before the company became too big and was considered an out of touch one-trick behemoth pony – much like Microsoft.

The reaction to Google’s famous string of April fool’s pranks closely mirrors the public’s (dis)contentment with the company. In years past, we all marveled and laughed at the company’s fake new products which included the likes of Gmail Motion.

And 8-bit Google Maps for Nintendo. 

This year, although the pranks themselves weren’t all that different, the reactions were. Google Nose is silly and undoubtedly funny. 

This may be the funniest one yet – it also managed to piss off a lot of people .

Holy cow! I know it’s a joke and all but Kudos to Google for pulling together so many viral celebrities. I really enjoyed it, but that’s probably because I wasn’t a use of Google Reader. For those of you who aren’t aware, Google will be discontinuing their kinda sorta popular RSS news feed thingie called Google Reader. Not many people use it (which is why it’s being pulled) but those who do, swear by it. Most companies would do anything for a product with such a loyal base of users. But it seems Google is going all in on Google+, even at the expense of some of its smaller more cultish products.

The fake video about YouTube hit too close to home for offended Reader users. What could have been a hilarious April Fools prank ended up being a poorly timed twist of the knife in the side of jilted Reader users who have taken to the internet to voice their discontent. Tip for other companies: don’t joke about killing off beloved products right around the time you actually kill off beloved products.

Considering that the video has attracted several million views in just one day, it’s safe to say that the very fact that we’re even talking about this is a win for Google. And who knows, maybe this is all some sort of macro-prank in which Google will reveal that they were kidding about Reader this whole time – right. Considering the company’s history, the decision to discontinue Reader has so far been a public relations disaster – but you can only be “not evil” for so long.

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One thought on “The Backlash Against Google

  1. i think it’s actually smart…. the more the READER people make noise about this, the more people will see their april’s fool prank and since most people don’t use reader or don’t care, google doesn’t look like a bad guy at all.

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